Class of 1965 Fall 2018 Letter

Fall 2018

Dear Luther ’65 Classmate!

Summer is nearing its end – and I am NOT ready for that yet! We had 22 inches of snow on April 15th, so we got a very late start to summer! But isn’t fall grand and glorious?  And Luther still has the beautiful view from Main that I so fondly remember. 

Indian Proverb


            All the flowers of all the tomorrows are in the seeds of today.

(What we enjoy tomorrow is a result of how we start today, so whatever we put in now – study, work, kindness, money – will have positive results in the future.) 

The Luther College founders began sowing seeds in 1861.  We benefited from the flowers of those seeds as we experienced our years at Luther in the 60s. That tradition continues in the 2000s for the current and indeed the future Norse!   

Every seed needs time to grow, so we need to plant hopes and dreams now, and be patient, but also remain focused.

Luther will highlight the products of seeds sown 50 and 40 years ago, during Homecoming 2018 on October 26 – 28.Two milestones to celebrate – Black Student Union and Nursing Department!

1.LUTHER’S BLACK STUDENT UNION – 50th Anniversary.

This group was established in 1968, with the purpose of celebrating black culture, black accomplishments, and the lifting up of black struggles. There will be special events in October, November, January, March and April this year to commemorate this milestone. This was finalized after our graduation, after the exchange student program with southern black colleges in the spring of 1964. Our classmate, Mary (Shafland) Hutson, was one of the participants that sowed the seeds leading to the creation of the BSU 4 years later. The subsequent flowers continue to bloom today.        


Luther students have now had the opportunity to pursue a nursing career at Luther for 40 years. Seeds and flowers.

When it comes to planting seeds that invest in our children’s/grandchildren’s future, the right time and the right season is now.

A.  Homecoming Week October 23 - Farwell Distinguished Lecture presentation.

Social Psychologist Jonathan Haidt will deliver “The Coddling of the American Mind:  How Good Intentions and Bad Ideas Are setting Up a Generation of Failure”.  He argues that recent social and cultural trends are setting children up to fail as healthy, autonomous, adaptable adults. 

What do you think about Haidt’s thoughts?  Planting hopes and dreams today makes a difference for future generations. Our college challenged us with seeds of critical thinking about good for all the world and we continue to sow seeds of our hopes and dreams for the betterment of all – for those near and those far away – now and in the future!

B. President Paula Carlson presides over her last Homecoming festivities in

October as she is retiring in the spring of 2019.  Dr. Carlson leaves her legacy of sowing seeds she brought to us as she began her duties on July 1, 2014.  During her time at Luther College these are some of the seeds/ideas that have become blooming flowers for today and the future:

1.  Added several academic programs to Luther

2.  Renewed outdoor facilities

3.  Expanded Luther’s Career Center services

4.  Developed and launched “Next Steps for Sophomores”

5.  Added a Dean of Institutional Equity and Inclusion staff position

6.  Achieved the goal of reducing Luther’s carbon footprint 50% by the end of 2015.  

YOU can make a difference in Luther College students’ lives – the flowers of tomorrow

Join the Alumni Ambassador Program – help recruit future Norse! As we remember and honor the amazing experiences we had at Luther, how can we find ways to help support the lives of Luther students of today? If you refer a student that decides to enroll at Luther, you will be giving them a $1,000 scholarship each year they attend, for up to four years.

Also, please remember Luther College by sharing a financial gift or providing a gift in your estate planning.  Any amount is welcome and makes a difference!

Changes continue to occur at our alma mater but Luther also holds tight to its valuable traditions.  We are the seeds of today that encourage, challenge, and support the flowers of all the tomorrows we see – or maybe won’t see!

Nurture and enjoy the flowers from seeds we sowed in the 60s.  Staying in touch with those special Luther friends is a gift we give each other.  Send an email or text, plan a gathering, or reconnect with a classmate or two!  I treasure those opportunities and know you do too!  My hope is that we continue to sow and reap beautiful benefits for many years to come!

I wish you a fall as beautiful as those we remember in the Oneota Valley at our dear Luther College in Decorah, Iowa! 

Soli Deo Gloria!

Lori (Wogen) Haaland
1965 Class Agent
12245 Edison Street NE
Blaine, MN 55449-5719
[email protected]


Dwight Backman of Sparta, Wis., is a retired mathematics teacher.



Julie Mae Anderson of Minneapolis, formerly of Houston, Minn., died May 9, 2018, age 74.

Eric Norland of Palm Springs, Calif., died Oct. 21, 2017, age 74.

Samuel Matthew Olson of Dawson, Minn., died March 22, 2018, age 74.

Stephen Sit of Portland, Ore., died Jan. 28, 2018, age 82.

The full obituaries of classmates listed in this letter can be found on the Luther College website at: 

If you would like a printout of the obituaries listed above in their entirety mailed to you, please contact us at: [email protected], or 563-387-1509.