First-Year Letter

Fall 2016

Dear Parents of Luther’s First-Year Students,

Greetings from your Parents Council first-year representatives!  We met recently during Family Weekend in September, and it is our pleasure to share with you what is happening at Luther, through letters you will receive twice a year.  It was encouraging to hear about what’s new at Luther and realize that our children, as first-year students, will be acquiring knowledge and skills, be challenged, and indeed be transformed during their time at Luther College.

President Paula Carlson shared with us Luther’s 2016-2018 priorities:

●      Offer students a more fully integrated learning experience across their four years at Luther.
●      Develop a comprehensive plan for achieving and maintaining maximum fiscal strength.
●      Foster the well-being of those who study, live, and work at Luther.
●      Finalize a comprehensive strategic plan by 2018.

Jim Jermier, vice president for development, shared Development and Alumni Office news.  Highlights included the following:

●      Luther had its 3rd highest giving year last school year, which included
●      Luther’s first ever “Giving Day,” resulting in nearly $575,000 raised in one day and a
●      2 percentage point increase in alumni participation in giving
●      A $1M+ gift from an anonymous donor will be used to renovate and resurface the outdoor tennis courts.
●      A $1.5M gift from Dennis ’64 and Suzanne Birkestrand has established the Birkestrand Chair in Economics and Management.
●      Finishing touches are being made to the softball and baseball stadiums.
●      More than 60 activities were being planned for Homecoming (9/30-10/2) as well as 17 class reunion celebrations.
●      The Alumni Council will continue its work on the Alumni Ambassador Program, which, in conjunction with the Career Center, provides internship and networking opportunities for our Luther students.

We learned there are various resources available to our children for all their needs (academic, social, or spiritual). To stay connected with everything happening at Luther, please visit the Luther College website (, and the main page for parents ( Both link to academics, career development, admissions, athletics, musical events, calendars, a parent newsletter, and social media (

As parents, one way we can ensure the Luther legacy is sustained for years to come is to consider making a gift of any size to Luther’s Annual Fund.  Many of us make gifts to organizations that we find worthy, and Luther is an excellent investment! Our contributions are an investment in our children’s education, as the Annual Fund provides support for all students in the Luther community through increased scholarships, building and campus improvements, expanded faculty and student programs, and many other important initiatives.

Thank you for your support.

Dates to Remember

2016    Oct. 14-18                   Fall vacation

            Nov. 23-27                  Thanksgiving vacation

            Dec. 1-4                       Christmas at Luther

            Dec. 12-15                   Final exams

2017    Jan. 3-26                      January Term

            Feb. 1                         Spring semester begins

            Mar. 18-26                  Spring vacation

            Apr. 14-17                   Easter vacation

            May 15-18                   Final exams

            May 21                        Commencement

We’ll write again in the spring,

Todd Saner ’90 and Jennifer Muss Saner ‘89   [email protected]

Michael and Dina Marron  [email protected]           

Colleen and David Bolthouse  [email protected]

Larry ’87 and Connie (Foxworthy) Logeman ’88  [email protected]

John and Vicki Sharp   [email protected]          

Jay and Maxine Tlust  [email protected]


“There are but two lasting bequests we can give our children.  One is roots, the other, wings.”

Roots and Wings—how often we think about these gifts as we guide and nurture our children through those first years. As parents, we have a special mission.

The roots are planted as we help them establish a firm foundation for life, a definition of who they are and where they came from, the security of family and a sense of community.

The wings emerge as we gradually let them go, allowing them the freedom to fly—to take what they have learned and soar to new heights, to reach beyond existing boundaries, to seek and find their place in this world.

You should have a sense of pride. Under your watchful eye, your child has grown into a young adult with dreams and unlimited potential for the future. And now, you are allowing those dreams to live, by encouraging the opportunity for new growth at Luther College, an institution with deep roots and caring people to assist students as they pursue their dreams and realize their potential.

Please give your child “roots and wings.” Support the Annual Fund through the Luther College Parents Association and enhance learning opportunities for all Luther students.