Class of 1981 Spring 2019 Letter

Spring 2019

Hi Classmates!

As I write, we’re just coming out of the Big Frickin’ 2019 Polar Vortex Event, with icy temps that closed down schools, businesses, the U.S. Mail, and most college campuses in the Upper Midwest – except for our own Luther College. I have to say, though, I thought Luther made some pretty good calls on how they dealt with those really, really, REALLY cold days. A residential school has to think a little differently about such things than schools that have mostly commuter students. For instance:

· Luther ran two free van shuttles around campus continuously during the coldest days and times;

· They made grab-and-go breakfast items available in the evenings so students could take food home and not have to venture to the cafeteria for breakfast;

· They made arrangements for facilities and security staff to stay overnight on campus if needed.

In other, less weather-related Luther news of interest:

· Luther’s Jazz Orchestra tours South Dakota and Minnesota starting April 12. Coming to a venue near you? (

· The celebration of the Black Student Union’s 50th anniversary, which kicked off at 2018 Homecoming, will culminate in an alumni reunion April 26–28, 2019.

· Nordic Choir performs with the Des Moines Symphony April 27 and 28. (

· Commencement is May 26. Any of your kids or other family members graduating?

·  President Paula Carlson plans to retire at the end of the 2018–19 academic year.

· Luther’s second annual Dorian Choral Retreat for Adults ( is happening June 28–30. I sure heard good things about the first one.

· Here’s an idea: you can actually host your own event on Luther’s campus! Are you planning a work – or family – or other type of gathering or event in the coming months? Check out opportunities at They love having alums use the campus.

There are plenty of ways to stay connected to Luther – those above are just a few. Sometimes the best connecting just happens when we see one another, catch up, share a few memories, and part with warm feelings, knowing we share a particular bond that doesn’t go away, even after many years. That has a lot to do with why I put some financial support toward Luther College every year, according to my means. I invite you to do so as well – and thank you for what you’ve done in past years.

Soli Deo Gloria!

Mary Sundet Jones


1981 Class Agents:

Mary Sundet Jones
8015 N. Walnut Creek Dr.
Urbandale, IA 50322
[email protected]

Pat (Graetz) Jensen
1458 Steeplechase Lane
Eagan, MN 55122
[email protected]


Deb Olson retired as superintendent for the Clinton (Iowa) Community School District and is academy superintendent at Pangaea International Academy in Clinton.

We are pleased to announce Dr. Jenifer K. Ward as the 11th president of Luther College! For more information about President-elect Ward, visit

As you may remember from your Fall 2018 Class Agent letter, Luther has recently completed an extensive brand strategy research process.


As a result of our research and in collaboration with members of the Luther community, we have developed several statements that will guide future communications.

We know that you, our alumni, are often asked about your alma mater. What you say to prospective students and their families about Luther College can have a huge impact on their decisions to visit campus, apply and, hopefully, enroll.

You know Luther well. You matter to us and we’re interested in hearing from you.

We invite you to take a few minutes to preview some of our new statements and share your thoughts. The example statements, as well as a response survey, are available online:

Many thanks!

If you have any questions please email Catherine Dyer, Brand and Marketing Director at [email protected]