Distinguished Public Lecture & Award

The University Writing Center organizes an annual public lecture series each spring with a distinguished writer who reflects the mission of the center. In addition to the public lecture, opportunities for students and faculty to participate in reading groups and research presentations will be organized. 

2021 Distinguished Public Lecturer

Nancy Duarte

Nancy Duarte, CEO & Principal of Duarte, Inc., which is the largest communication firm in Silicon Valley, as well as one of the top woman-owned businesses in the area. Nancy has won several awards for communications, entrepreneurship, and her success as a female executive. On the list of top 250 Women in Leadership, Duarte ranks #67 and on World’s Top 30 Communication Professionals for 2017, Duarte ranks #1. She has been a speaker at conferences and a number of Fortune 500 companies, and counts many more among her firm’s clientele. Her TEDx talk has over two million views. She speaks at business schools and has lectured at Stanford University several times.

Reading Group: (FULL)
Meeting 1: Wednesday, Feb. 24, 3:30-4:30 pm on WebEx. Assigned reading: Intro + Section I
Meeting 2: Wednesday, Mar. 03, 3:30-4:30 pm on WebEx. Assigned reading: Section II
Meeting 3: Wednesday, Mar. 10, 3:30-4:30 pm on WebEx. Assigned reading: Section III
Meeting 4: Wednesday, Mar. 17, 3:30-4:30 pm on WebEx. Assigned reading: Section IV + Summary

Distinguished Lecture Event: REGISTRATION NOW OPEN
Wednesday, Mar. 24, 3:30-5 pm on WebEx Events.
(Open to only current CBU student, faculty, and staff.)


2021 President's Award for Excellence in Writing

In an effort to encourage students in all departments of California Baptist University to achieve the highest possible standards in written expression and to honor students who do, the President of California Baptist University has established the President’s Award for Excellence in Writing. The 2021 award presented to the top winner will be in the amount of $600.00, the first runner-up will receive $360.00, and the second runner-up will receive $240.00.

For a list of past award recipients, see here.


Term papers or other substantial written projects (book critiques, creative articles, and short stories) that are submitted in satisfaction of course requirements during the 2020-2021 school year may be considered for the award. Any student of CBU may submit an entry to the teacher of the class for which the paper was written. The teacher will submit no more than two of his or her best papers for departmental consideration. The department will submit the best paper or two to a faculty committee, which will select the recipient of the award and the runners-up.


The selection will be based on the following:

  1. A substantial written project submitted for a class during the 2020 spring semester or at any time during the 2020-2021 academic year;
  2. The level of scholarship (certainly beyond general encyclopedias and Reader’s Guide periodicals) or creativity presented by the paper;
  3. The quality of the paper’s organization, readability, and effectiveness;
  4. Maturity of style;
  5. Overall excellence in writing. [Some written forms such as excellent technical research, statistical analysis, or chemical theories are difficult to evaluate against one another. Thus, the committee must adhere to the central intent of the President: to award excellence in the writing itself. Past winning essays have been deposited in the library.]
  6. Not in conflict with the Christian principles at the heart of the University.


  1. Refer to the Instructions for Entries listed below.
  2. Students must submit entries to teachers by March 12, 2021.
  3. Teachers will submit no more than two of their best papers to their department head by March 16, 2021.
  4. Departments will submit no more than two of their best papers to Rosemary Welsh, Department Secretary, Modern Languages & Literature, by March 26, 2021.
  5. The selection committee will submit the name of the winner and the two runners-up to the President by April 5, 2021.

Instructions for Entries

All students of California Baptist University are eligible to enter. Instructions are as follows:

  1. Follow the criteria and schedule above.
  2. After receiving a graded paper from a professor, type a clean copy as error-free as possible. Corrections and suggestions from a professor may be incorporated into the paper, but the work must be your own (not collaborative effort). Entries must be typed; computer versions should be letter quality.
  3. Do not put your name, your teacher’s name, or the name of the course on the submitted copy.
  4. In the upper left corner of the first page put your student number and the date. Center the title of the paper about two inches from the top of the page. No separate title page is needed.
  5. Though the original paper must be submitted for class by March 8, 2021, you may submit the clean copy to your teacher as late as March 12, 2021.


Community Service Hours

Coming soon. If you have writing-related community service projects that you would like to propose, contact the Director who is eager to partner with students, staff, and faculty who want to serve our local communities through writing. Future project ideas include summer writing camps, writing in prisons, tutoring for at-risk youth, creative writing workshops, and more.