Luther College receives $10 million gift from Michael and Nicole Gerdin for athletics and wellness center renovations
“We work hard to provide an environment where we exercise our minds in classes and labs, and we stress and push and exercise our bodies as part of overall wellness and a strong tradition of NCAA Division III athletics,” said Athletic Director Renae Hartl.
During the day on Nov. 16, student-athletes from each sport reached out to alumni, family members and other supporters of Norse athletics through text messages. Lara Welter, a senior Norse softball player and mathematics major with a concentration in secondary education, had the chance to connect with alumni who played softball, in addition to her former coaches.
“Athletics is what brought me to Luther,” said Dennis Birkestrand. “They showed an interest in me when I was a high school player, and without that, I probably wouldn’t have gone to college. I feel strongly about encouraging Luther to always have a very strong athletic program.”
Gifts made on Nov. 16 will be matched dollar-for-dollar by more than $130,000 in matching funds pledged by One Team Day challenge sponsors. In 2022, Luther raised $310,000 from more than 1,100 donors on One Team Day.
Tom Altier, who graduated in 2023 with a double major in computer science and mathematics, was the first Norse athlete to earn this achievement since 2017 and the fifth cross country and track and field runner in the program’s history.
Beginning in the 2023-24 academic year, men’s and women’s bowling will become the 20th and 21st sports in Luther’s athletic department.
Four Norse football players receive All-Conference honors after a historic season.
The campaign raised more than $310,000 from 1,189 donors to support student-athletes.