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Whitworth Office of Church Engagement to Hold 2021 Ministry Summit June 22-24

May 27, 2021

Please join the Whitworth Office of Church Engagement for the annual Ministry Summit on June 22-24. Participants can attend in person or online from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. daily. 

Whitworth Receives STEM Grant to Support Faculty-Student Collaboration

May 24, 2021

Whitworth University is pleased to announce it has been awarded a grant of nearly $200,000 as part of the Supporting Structures: Innovative Collaborations to Enhance STEM Research at CCCU Member Institutions grant program. The program is designed to support STEM research among faculty and students at member institutions of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU).

Whitworth Commencement Ceremonies for Classes of 2020 and 2021 to Take Place in the Pine Bowl May 22-23

May 19, 2021

Whitworth University, in celebration of the Class of 2020 and the Class of 2021, will hold three in-person commencement ceremonies on campus in the Pine Bowl over Commencement Weekend, May 22-23:

Saturday, May 22, 10 a.m.: Class of 2021 Graduate Ceremony (130 graduates degree candidates participating)

Sunday, May 23, 11 a.m.: Class of 2021 Undergraduate Ceremony (421 undergraduate degree candidates participating)

Sunday, May 23, 5 p.m.: Class of 2020 Combined Ceremony (56 graduate degree recipients and 277 undergraduate degree recipients participating)

Bestselling Author Ron White to Give Rare Glimpse Inside the Mind of President Abraham Lincoln

May 17, 2021

Whitworth University is pleased to host a virtual discussion with New York Times bestselling author and historian Ron White on Tuesday, May 25, at 7 p.m.(PST).

White will talk about his new book Lincoln in Private: What His Most Personal Reflections Tell Us About Our Greatest President. In it, White explores the meaning behind a dozen notes that President Abraham Lincoln wrote to himself.

“A deeply private man, Lincoln captured ‘his best thoughts,’ as he called them, in short notes to himself,” White says. “He did not date, title or sign them because he never expected anyone to see them.” 

In the book, White walks readers through 12 of the most fascinating notes, showcasing the president’s brilliance and empathy, but also his very human ambitions and anxieties. 

White writes: “We look over Lincoln’s shoulder as he grapples with the problem of slavery, expresses his private feelings of failure after a bid for a Senate seat, and, for a president many have viewed as not religious, writes a sophisticated theological reflection on the purposes of God in the midst of the Civil War.”

Jon Meacham, Pulitzer-prize winning author, writes: “In this elegant and illuminating book, the great biographer Ronald C. White takes us on a fascinating tour inside the mind – and the heart – of Abraham Lincoln.”

White has emerged as one of the nation’s leading scholars on Lincoln. His other books include Lincoln’s Greatest Speech: The Second Inaugural; The Eloquent President: A Portrait of Lincoln through His Words; and A. Lincoln, A Biography. He has received wide acclaim for his analysis of the context and content of Lincoln’s speeches and the ways in which they add new depth to our understanding of one of the nation’s most revered leaders.

White served as a religion professor and chaplain at Whitworth in the 1970s. But, in the 1990s, while teaching history at UCLA, he taught an elective course on Lincoln that turned into a personal passion. After reading Lincoln’s second inaugural address, he said in an interview, “I was just blown away. I wanted to find a book on the address, but I couldn’t – so I wrote one.” 

The event is free and open to the public. To register, click here. White’s book is available for purchase here

About Whitworth University: 

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian church. The university, which has an enrollment of more than 3,000 students, offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


Michelle Drennen, director of university events, Whitworth University, (509) 777-3449 or

Trisha Coder, media relations manager, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4703 or

Singer, Actor Leslie Odom, Jr. to Perform With the Spokane Symphony for Whitworth’s Fall President Leadership Forum Concert

May 11, 2021

Whitworth University, in partnership with the Spokane Symphony, is pleased to announce award-winning vocalist, songwriter, actor and author Leslie Odom, Jr. will perform at Whitworth’s fall President’s Leadership Forum Concert, to be held Friday, Oct. 15, at 7:30 p.m. at the Martin Woldson Fox Theater. 

Odom received two Academy Award nominations this year for the movie One Night in Miami. He was nominated for best supporting actor for his role as legendary singer Sam Cooke and received a nod for writing, composing and performing the film’s original song, Speak Now. Odom was also nominated for a BAFTA, Critics Choice, Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild award for the same performance.

Odom is perhaps best known for his role as Aaron Burr in the highly acclaimed Broadway musical Hamilton, for which he won a Tony Award in 2016.

Odom will be performing two sets with the Spokane Symphony under the direction of Music Director and Conductor James Lowe. 

“We are thrilled to be welcoming Leslie Odom, Jr. to Whitworth and to perform with the Spokane Symphony,” says Whitworth Interim President-Elect Scott McQuilkin. “His talents are immense, as a Tony Award winner for Hamilton, a Grammy Award winner, and most recently an Academy Award nominee. I believe this event will be a special opportunity for our community. Mr. Odom’s appearance aligns with the celebration of the university’s $155 million fundraising effort, The Campaign for Whitworth, for which the Cowles Music Center was a signature facility. We opened the public phase of the campaign celebrating the musical arts. We will close the campaign in similar fashion.”

Odom has released four studio albums, including two holiday records and his chart-topping, self-titled debut. He has performed at the White House, the Super Bowl, and on stages at the Lincoln Center and Rockefeller Center.  In 2018, he published his first book, Failing Up: How to Take Risks, Aim Higher and Never Stop Learning. 

His upcoming film projects include The Many Saints of Newark, a prequel to David Chase’s Award-winning HBO series The Sopranos set to be released this fall, and Needle in a Timestack, written and directed by John Ridley. Additional film and television credits include the limited series Love in the Time of Corona, Harriet, Murder on the Orient Express, Only, Red Tails and Smash.

Tickets can be purchased through the Fox Theater.

About Whitworth University: Whitworth, which has an enrollment of more than 3,000 students, offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


Michelle Drennen, director of university events, Whitworth University, (509) 777-3449 or

Alison Highberger, public relations manager, Spokane Symphony, (509) 842-2943 or

Trisha Coder, media relations manager, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4703 or

Whitworth University Board of Trustees Elects Two Members

May 3, 2021

The Whitworth University Board of Trustees is honored to welcome two new members, the Rev. Kelly Hostetler and Jocelyn Wilson, M.D. ’07.