January 30, 2018

Jan. 30, 2018

Dear Colleagues,

I look forward to the start of spring semester at Luther College next week!

Strategic Plan
The January 2018 draft of the Strategic Plan is now available on the Luther website for your review. This draft incorporates the feedback we received during the November and December forums, from discussions with the Board of Regents and in work sessions with the Action Plan Task Force. The Board of Regents will review and vote on the plan at the Feb. 9-10 Board meeting. I will share more information about next steps for implementing the multi-year plan following the Board meeting.

Midyear Update and community discussion
I look forward to seeing you on Tuesday, Feb. 6, at the Midyear Update scheduled for 1-3 p.m. in Valders 206. I will give a brief update on our priorities and then we will spend the majority of our time together engaging in small group discussions about the common calling of colleges and universities affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. This will be the first of several conversations about the identity and values of Luther College and how they influence our future and the implementation of the Strategic Plan.

For this conversation, we will discuss the ELCA’s recently endorsed statement titled, "Rooted and Open." The document outlines the shared commitments of ELCA colleges and universities that shape our distinctive education and experience: excellence, education rooted in the liberal arts, freedom of inquiry, focus on vocation and preparation to serve the common good.

We are very fortunate that Luther College Religion Professor Wanda Deifelt, who was one of nine faculty from ELCA colleges and universities who drafted the document, will facilitate this conversation during our meeting.

Prior to the small group discussions on Tuesday, please take a few minutes to review the ELCA document.

I look forward to conversations exploring the ideas and commitments set forth in "Rooted and Open" as we move toward achieving our Strategic Plan's goal to understand and express how our Lutheran identity shapes our curriculum and community in the 21st century.

Please join me in welcoming Sonya Malunda, president of the Associated Colleges of the Midwest, to campus for the Spring Convocation Thursday, Feb. 8. President Malunda, who began as ACM president in October, will give the Convocation address, “Will Anything Grow in Your Comfort Zone?"

Paula J. Carlson,
President, Luther College