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Wisconsin Lutheran College m a g a z i n e

God’s plan to connect WLC with Grenada – through His people’s gifts and actions – with education, service, and research Summer 2013

from the president

Dear Friends, In January we celebrated WLC’s 40th anniversary, reflecting on the many blessings that have graced the college’s history. As much as we treasure the magnificent journey of the past four decades, the WLC family also has been focusing intently on our vision for the future. The WLC mission is all about Jesus and preparing Christian servant leaders who will influence and impact their communities, workplaces, churches, and families. Opportunities abound, as do very real challenges that affect WLC and higher education in general. Now, more than ever, we must be strategic, resolute, realistic, and committed to advancing the mission of Wisconsin Lutheran College. We initiated our most recent strategic planning process in 2011. We focused on developing a comprehensive road map that would ensure outcomes of growth and sustainability and achieve our objectives of delivering excellence in Christian higher education and providing a superior student experience. Prospective students today have many choices. Within a crowded marketplace, our vision is to be the Christian college of choice, preparing Christian servant leaders. Thus, we’ve created Vision 2020. We call our strategic plan Vision 2020 because it is our heartfelt goal and prayer that God will grant us the opportunity to impact 2020 students with our Christ-centered mission by the year 2020. We share a brief summary of our plan on pages 22-23.* It is essentially a three-year action plan that we will follow, implement, and with God’s help … accomplish. This is the framework for WLC’s future direction. However, no strategic plan executes itself. The real work and heavy lifting begins now as we implement Vision 2020. May God bless this strategic plan. We want to maximize our institutional capacity so that more WLC graduates – like the awesome young men and women who graduated in May – can be God’s hands and feet throughout a world in desperate need of moral, ethical, Christian leaders across all career sectors. What an exciting time to be a part of the WLC mission! Thank you for your encouragement and partnership with us in this plan to advance God’s kingdom. In Christ’s service with you,

Dr. Daniel W. Johnson President * A complete version of Vision 2020 is available for viewing online at 8 or by requesting a print copy via the enclosed envelope.

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table of contents

Ephesians 2:10

“For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” MISSION STATEMENT Wisconsin Lutheran College, affiliated with the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, is a Lutheran liberal arts college for Christian men and women. The college is committed to providing quality teaching, scholarship, and service that are rooted in Holy Scripture; promoting the spiritual growth of students, faculty, and staff; and preparing students for lives of Christian leadership. Executive director of Marketing and Communication Jason Van Acker ’00

Wisconsin Lutheran College Magazine

Vol. 25, No. 2


4 Grenada: God’s plan to connect WLC and Grenada

2 From the President

Executive editor Vicki Hartig Editor and photographer Melanie Gohde Buellesbach Contributing writers Sarah Malchow Katie Steinegger ’13 Curtis Wech ’09 Contributing photographers Bill Scharf Rev. Dan Schroeder Jeffrey Wilson Designer Jennifer Rueth Wisconsin Lutheran College Magazine is published for and distributed free of charge to students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends of the college. All correspondence, letters, news, corrections, and comments are welcomed and should be directed to:


8 On Campus

7 Teacher education marks 25th year

11 Student News 12 Christian Leadership 15 Faculty & Staff

14 Academic highlights

16 Fine Arts 17 Athletics

20 Celebrating 40 years of God’s grace

18 Alumni 19 Development

22 Vision 2020

Jason Van Acker Wisconsin Lutheran College Magazine 8800 West Bluemound Road Milwaukee WI 53226

ON THe cover

Shown are some members of the WLC “paint crew” after completing a home on a steep hilltop in the Cherry Hill area of Grenada.

PRESIDENT Dr. Daniel W. Johnson, Germantown, Wisconsin BOARD OF REGENTS 2012-2013 James Fischer (chair), Waukesha, Wisconsin Ryan Barbieri ’00, Sussex, Wisconsin Steve Boettcher, Mequon, Wisconsin Matt Burow, Slinger, Wisconsin Gary Drska, Muskego, Wisconsin Dr. Gerald Fischer, Bethesda, Maryland Rev. Kenneth Fisher, Milwaukee, Wisconsin Stephen Granberg, Jackson, Wisconsin Justin Gregorius, Watertown, Wisconsin Dr. Terry Gueldner, Manitowoc, Wisconsin Rev. Jeff Gunn, Phoenix, Arizona Paul Hartwig, Appleton, Wisconsin Rev. Mark Henrich, Milwaukee, Wisconsin Rev. Dennis Himm, Grand Blanc, Michigan Charles Kluenker, Roseville, California

Dr. R. Bowen Loftin, College Station, Texas Scott Mayer, Franklin, Wisconsin Tom Plath, Collierville, Tennessee Kent Raabe, Brookfield, Wisconsin Dr. William Raasch, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin Rev. Gene Sims, Grove City, Ohio C. Daniel Stefferud, Redondo Beach, California Dr. Gary Stimac, The Woodlands, Texas William Treffert, Naples, Florida Matt Trotter, Cudahy, Wisconsin W. Andrew Unkefer, Phoenix, Arizona Dr. Ronald White, Fort Myers, Florida Kerry Woody, Muskego, Wisconsin George Zaferos, Watertown, Wisconsin Wisconsin Lutheran College | 3

international impact

God’s plan connects WLC and Grenada S ince January 2006, WLC has been sending dozens of its campus family members to the island country of Grenada at least once a year. Faculty and staff members – as well as students – have put in time, energy, effort, and lots of heart during each journey. These volunteers claim, though, that they’re the ones who’ve been enriched by serving the people of Grenada.

Board member and WLC supporters Dr. Gerald and Kay Fischer had decided to fund a newly created international service learning/marine biology research program. Fellow board member and WLC donors Dr. Gary and Susan Stimac already were financially supporting Grace Church, a mission in Grenada. The Stimacs were thrilled about WLC’s new involvement with Grenada, and soon joined the Fischers with additional program support for the marine biology component. Within one year, WLC was providing an annual presence on the island, helping Grace Church but also providing humanitarian, educational, and environmental assistance.

“Providing WLC students (such as this 22-member team from January 2013) with regular opportunities for international education and service projects is critical for their ‘leadership’ development and will expand their vision of God’s creation. As we face the future global realities regarding Christian ministry and health care, we believe our WLC graduates should be equipped with portfolios that include meaningful international experiences.” Dr. Gerald and Kay Fischer, Bethesda, Maryland

Humanitarian efforts ramp up “From that first exploratory trip to Grenada in 2006 forward,” said campus pastor Nathan Strobel, “we realized that this beautiful, friendly, but needy island would be a wonderful setting in which we could serve others. Thankfully, Grenada’s official language is English, so lots of WLC students could be involved. We’ve completed projects like rebuilding homes lost in the hurricane of 2004, painting a nursing home, visiting orphanages with gifts of toys and time, providing structural repairs, and conducting health clinics and Bible, science, or music camps. One program has led to another. It’s been a fantastic experience for our students, including not just seniors – but now mostly sophomores.”

Construction or repair projects receive the vast majority of the WLC team’s time and effort.

sets. In Grenada, they learn to function out of their comfort zone. It’s amazing to see them grow and develop as team members, Christians, and servant leaders.” Don Huber, a friend of Strobel’s, is an owner of Concrete & Masonry Restoration, Milwaukee, and has served as the WLC team’s construction manager in Grenada for the past four years. “I appreciate being able to work with the students and witness the strength of their faith,” he said. “Because of our fast-paced life in the States, being in Grenada puts things in perspective – like what’s really important in our lives – our faith and helping others less fortunate.”

“Grace Church serves as such an integral part of our programs in Grenada,” Strobel said. “We were happy to help with the beginning of the construction for its new school in 2012 – which under the direction Of the eight days spent on the island in January, of Jenelle Bullen is flourishing as a premier “We decided to involve and challenge only one was taken to explore the rainforest, elementary school in Grenada. And Pastor waterfalls, beaches, and local harbor and sophomores – students who aren’t marketplace. Each evening, however, the WLC Steve Soukup and his wife, Ellen, do a experienced role-model leaders … yet,” team held “some of the most faith-filled devotions fantastic job of coordinating our projects, I’ve ever witnessed,” according to Strobel. explained Adam Volbrecht ’04, which are really all about reaching out in assistant director of residence life and the colleague Strobel love – bringing humanitarian aid and also the Word of God asked several years ago to assist him with the growing to the people of Grenada.” Grenada program. “We want a diverse group of students WLC’s efforts have been deeply appreciated according to each year, representing both genders and a variety of Dei Sylvester, a native Grenadian and leader at Grace geographic and educational backgrounds, interests, and skill 4 |

international impact

Church. “Pastor Nathan Strobel and the WLC students have been coming to Grenada every January for over seven years to give of their time and gifts by painting, building, roofing, and laying of tiles for Grace Church members,” he said. “This humanitarian exercise is such a good example of God’s love for mankind. We look forward every year to their visit.” Teacher education team builds relationships Dr. Sharon Burow, associate professor of early childhood education, has headed up the college’s teacher education team efforts in Grenada since 2006. She’s traveled to the island 11 times, taking teacher education students and sometimes fellow WLC faculty members or other WELS elementary teachers with her.

Last July Dr. Leanne Olson, associate professor of psychology, and two students accompanied Burow to Grenada to teach fifth graders during a Bible and science camp. They created a heart on the day they studied the cardiovascular system. Next year a high school camp will begin.

regarded, private K-12 schools. “The contribution made to Beacon by Wisconsin Lutheran College is immeasurable,” she said. “We see it as a tremendous blessing from God. The resources, professional development sessions, and summer camps have elevated the academic capital of our people. Our love and appreciation will always be extended to the college.” Children attending a summer Bible and science camp in Grenada (led in part by WLC education students) learned to celebrate and focus on God’s greatest creation – themselves! “It’s indeed humbling to be an ambassador for Christ and for WLC,” said Dr. Sharon Burow, who took this photo of the students’ one-of-a-kind circle.

How could WLC have the most positive impact on the country of Grenada and also help Grace Church to grow? Her response was to create summer educational sessions in which children could learn from Christian teachers. “In 2006 we began a summer Bible and science camp, and we run it every other July,” she said. “We usually take about 120 boxes of materials with us, often compiled by our WLC education students. We invite Grenadian teachers who send students to our camps to come and observe. Then they become familiar with new teaching practices. We give them the boxes of teaching materials to use in their classrooms in the fall.” This help is welcomed by the Grenadian educational community according to Cheryl Bernabe, principal of the 500-student Beacon School, one of Grenada’s most highly

Burow’s devotion to Grenada grows deeper each year. “It is exhilarating to have had the opportunity to create a personal history with professional educators within another culture,” she said. “And each time I take students there I gain a new perspective of Grenada through their awe-filled eyes.” A few years ago Burow asked Dr. Joyce Natzke, dean of the College of Adult and Graduate Studies, to participate in the Grenada effort by providing a professional development element and continuing education courses for Grenada’s upper elementary teachers. Natzke has led sessions on literacy and assessment since 2010. Though she and her colleagues present at various educational sites on the island, Grace Church remains an important home base. “Helping Grace Church serve as the ‘hub’ for Christian outreach on the island is key,” Natzke said. “We want to help ‘teach the teachers’ there, and also encourage Grace to be seen as a place for learning many things – professional development for teachers but also for nurses, business owners, and other occupations. We know God will work the ‘faith’ part of the plan!” Wisconsin Lutheran College | 5

international impact

Marine biology research program helping to monitor and preserve coral reef Grenada’s government is striving to educate its people on the importance of protecting the island’s coral reef. That’s one reason the help offered through WLC’s marine biology research program has been gratefully embraced, said Dr. Clare Morrall, professor of biology and director of the Marine Biology Program at St. George’s University in Grenada. “The research conducted by the WLC group in Grenada over the past six years has made a critically important contribution to the knowledge of the condition and changing status of Grenada’s coral reef ecosystem,” she said. “We cannot thank them enough.”

At Costa Rica’s Association of Marine Laboratories of the Caribbean Conference last year, the president of Junior Katie Musser, WLC’s first marine Mote Marine Laboratory biology major, adjusts a transect tape in Flamingo Bay, Grenada. Musser was one told Anderson, “I never thought I’d be saying this of two students who presented the results of four years of WLC’s Grenada to someone from the study at the Association of Marine Biology Labs International Conference Midwest, but based on held in Jamaica on June 18, 2013. your students’ work in Grenada, we’d like you to be a contributor to the Caribbean Coral Reef Scientific Database.” “The fact that we, as a small Christian college located in the upper Midwest, have been able to make a significant contribution regarding the coral reef life of the Grenadian coastline – a contribution that is recognized by the international coral reef community – has been very gratifying,” Anderson said. “And it’s good that Grace Church members know our students are helping Grenada protect its coral reef.” Christian servant leadership in action

The May 2013 WLC marine biology student research team celebrated the completion of 1,440 data collection points at six sites along the southwest nearshore waters of Grenada. L to r: Katie Musser ’14, Heather McLain ’15, Nick Goldner ’14, Ashley DeVos ’16, Jacob Schedler ’16, Emily Malsack ’16, Emily Bolda ’13. This completes the sixth year of Marine Protected Area monitoring by WLC in Grenada.

“I will be forever grateful that the Fischers funded WLC’s exploratory trip to Grenada and for our ongoing involvement there,” said Dr. Robert Anderson, professor of biology and head of WLC’s marine biology research program. “Since May of 2006, our students have been able to conduct research and identify, track, and establish trends regarding the health of the island’s coral reef and fish populations. We’re happy to provide this valuable research data to Grenada and others – including recent presentations at international scientific conferences in Costa Rica, Australia, and Jamaica. “Every year, in May, we meet with Grenada’s minister of fisheries and present our results to his division – findings that are now used to manage Grenada’s Marine Protected Area,” Anderson said. “We’re conducting one of the longest-running biological monitoring programs in Grenada; transecting six different locations, then measuring, recording, and comparing data year after year, at the same time, in the exact locations.” 6 |

Whether in the humanitarian, educational, or environmental research realm, WLC’s assistance in Grenada is focused on following Christ’s example of servant leadership. Help and teach. Build and repair. Evaluate and share findings. Lead by serving. Show Jesus’ love and tell his story. “It was God’s plan to connect the college, Grace Church, and Grenada,” Gary Stimac said. “Grenada is not the United States. It’s a developing country with a lot of needs. It’s a great experience for WLC students to help in a different culture. When they first came to help our mission, they also wanted to reach out and assist other people in Grenada. The humanitarian work … Bible and science, music, and volleyball camps … the biology program … all are connected by Christian love for others.” At the conclusion of the January 2013 trip to Grenada, Strobel and his team created a slideshow with photos of their experiences and special memories. The final slide, though, contained words only – direct, meaningful words that urge more service trips to Grenada and points beyond:

“Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me – put into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4:9


ince May 1988 when its first seniors graduated, WLC’s teacher education program has purposefully placed “servant leadership” at its philosophical and structural core. “That ‘teacher as servant leader’ concept has remained at the center of our program, and is the model we seek to inspire in our students,” said Prof. Jim Holman, director of teacher education at WLC. “We also want them to see themselves as Christian educators who are knowledgeable in all aspects of the profession, who can successfully communicate and lead instruction, and who are reflective life-long learners. But the conceptual framework is centered on Jesus Christ, the greatest example of teaching!” One reason for the program’s consistent, long-standing focus is due

to the tenacity and commitment of Dr. Joyce Natzke, dean of the College of Adult and Graduate Studies and director of teacher certification and licensure. She began her WLC tenure in 1987 as one of the first directors of WLC’s teacher education program. Although Francis Roeder was called to WLC in 1986 to begin the department, he died early in 1987. Natzke, then teaching English at Wisconsin Lutheran High School, Milwaukee, already was instructing evening courses for WLC and helping Roeder develop the curriculum. She was called to the college in 1987, charged with heading up the teacher education program. Four students graduated that first year, and all found teaching positions. Over the years the program has grown and

Faculty and some staff members of WLC’s teacher education programming, both undergraduate and graduate, gathered together in front of the Divine Servant sculpture on campus. L to r: Cindy Gut, Dr. Sharon Burow, Dr. David Brightsman, Prof. Marty Miller, Dr. Joyce Natzke, Prof. Joe Du Fore, Prof. Alan Bitter, Dr. Rhoda Wolle, Prof. Mark Murphy, Larry Collyard, Prof. Kristen Schulz, and Prof. Jim Holman.

gained momentum. Elementary education was added in 1992, followed by early childhood education in 1999. The Center for Urban Teaching was created in 2002, an important offshoot of the program. WLC’s teacher education program received an extremely rare perfect review from the State of Wisconsin’s Department of Public Instruction in 2011. In 2012 special education was added as another emphasis area program, and WLC also became accredited to offer master’s degrees in education. “We’ve made certain that the same conceptual framework – teacher as servant leader – shapes our post-baccalaureate and master’s programs too,” Natzke said. “We’ve graduated approximately 550 students into the teaching profession since 1988,” Holman said. “Nearly 95% of them have had a teaching position in their first year out of WLC. Our students continue to amaze and impress me with their passion to make a difference with the diverse population that makes up America’s public schools … whether urban, rural, or suburban. These students aren’t discouraged by the scrutiny that the profession continues to receive in today’s media. And they continue to see themselves as ‘agents of change’ who will one day make a difference in the lives of the children they teach.”

Oasis 2013 Conference will encourage and inspire teachers to thrive


asis 2013, a conference being held Friday, August 2, hopes to reach out to all Christian educators as well as reconnect with WLC’s graduates of the teacher education program. “Our sessions and speakers are focused on one goal – to renew and reinvigorate attendees about teaching, especially as Christians,” said Prof. Martin Miller ’94, assistant professor of education and conference coordinator. Keynote speaker Dr. Rhoda Wolle, educational psychologist, assistant professor of education, and director of the Center

for Academic Excellence at WLC, will discuss “Moving from Surviving to Thriving.” Her talk will share the latest research regarding how educators can transition from merely surviving to truly thriving in the classroom by incorporating practices such as spiritual resiliency, gratitude, and guilt-free rest. An anonymous donor has underwritten the costs of the conference, resulting in a per-person fee of only $30. For more information on the Oasis 2013 Conference visit 8 Wisconsin Lutheran College | 7

teacher education

Teacher education program marks 25th year

on campus

Master’s degree recipients

Graduating Christian leaders


n Saturday, May 18, the Class of 2013 participated in Commencement exercises in the Recreation Complex. In the ceremony’s keynote address, Rev. Dr. Paul Kelm sent the college’s newest alumni into the world with several examples of the competitive edge Wisconsin Lutheran College has given them. “This is a comprehensive college rooted in the liberal arts,” Kelm said. “Even the most intense professional curriculum is balanced by the requirement that you learn about history and the fine arts. You graduate with more than expertise; you’ve been given an integrated approach to life. You’ve been taught how to think, how to communicate, and how to relate. That’s a competitive edge.”

The college celebrated a milestone with the conferring of its first Master of Arts in Education degrees at this year’s Commencement. Two of the four graduates participated in the ceremony and also received hoods, a traditional element of academic regalia for those earning graduate-level degrees. Michael Bruckner (left) of Downers Grove, Illinois, and Joshua Johnson of Waco, Nebraska, both focused on instructional technology, one of four areas of study in WLC’s master’s program.

Tim Demuth, who earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration and communication, is from Franksville, Wisconsin. A four-year member of the Warriors men’s basketball team, he started all 25 games his senior year. Demuth led the Warriors in scoring in 2012-2013 and was selected to the Northern Athletics Conference Honorable Mention Team.

Kathryn Hendee, Rockton, Illinois, graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in biology. A four-year member of the Warriors women’s tennis team, she received the Roger Fleming Senior Scholar Athlete Award at Honors Convocation in May. Hendee, principal chair for the French horn section in WLC’s Concert Band, also received the Fanfare Award, presented to a student in recognition of musical talent and contributions to the Music Department. She will be

pursuing a Ph.D. in biomedical science from the Medical College of Wisconsin.

BSN graduates

Rebekah Hovey (left), who earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication and English, and her sister Sarah Hovey, who earned a Bachelor of Arts in communication, are from New Berlin, Wisconsin. Both graduated summa cum laude and for three years served the college as a first point of contact for campus visitors as front desk receptionists. Sarah is the current Waukesha County Fairest of the Fair.

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Nursing faculty members (from left) Lisa LeBlanc, Sheryl Scott, and Amanda Passint congratulated the 17 graduates receiving Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees, including Stephanie Pankratz (center) of Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, who will be pursuing a doctorate in nursing practice from Marquette University, and Abigail Vogel of Jackson, Wisconsin.

on campus

Kelm honored

Student speaker Leah Bilitz, of Burlington, Wisconsin, graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in theology and English. She served the college as team leader of the writing tutors, editor-in-chief of the student newspaper, The Sword, and as a member of the Ambassador Club. She was the 2012-2013 recipient of the James P. Schaefer Award, presented to a student who demonstrates Christian leadership, intellect, and service. Marilee Gloe of Mukwonago, Wisconsin, graduated with academic distinction and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in interdisciplinary studies. She traveled with the college’s research team and Dr. Robert Anderson (left), professor of biology, to Grenada in May 2012. Gloe presented a poster of her research results at the Second International Conference on Food Studies at the University of Illinois in October 2012.

President Daniel W. Johnson (right) presented the Pro Gloria Dei Award to Rev. Dr. Paul Kelm at Commencement. Kelm, who retired from WLC as campus pastor in 2012, served WELS in many capacities since 1970. The Pro Gloria Dei Award recognizes an individual for a life of distinguished service to God and his people. Read more about Kelm on page 13. Michael Paprocki of Waukesha, Wisconsin, was congratulated by Dr. Joyce Natzke, dean of the College of Adult and Graduate Studies. He graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in business management and leadership through the college’s adult degree completion program.

Wisconsin Lutheran College | 9

on campus

Google Education Summit returns F

ollowing the success of last year’s conference, the second annual Google Education Summit took place June 17-21 on campus. Educators attending this conference focused on enhancing their teaching skills through the development of dynamic, innovative, and interactive Google projects. The Google Education Summit provided educators an opportunity to directly impact student engagement in their classrooms by acquiring 21st century instructional design skills. Conference participants studied more than 20 Google applications in a creative and experiential environment. In addition to earning graduate-level credits, educators attending the conference received a Google Chromebook laptop. By the time they left the conference,

they had transformed a traditional classroom lesson plan into a media-rich project centered on Google educational technologies. Participants experienced an intense week of hands-on learning and innovation at this year’s conference, but also enjoyed a Milwaukee Food Tour and visited the Discovery World Labs. Plans are under way for an off-campus mini-summit conference July 16-18 at St. Croix Lutheran High School, West St. Paul, Minnesota. For more information visit 8

Christian Women’s Leadership Circle hosts Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Kleefisch


early 250 women attended the 2013 Butterfly Brunch, the annual flagship event sponsored by WLC’s Christian Women’s Leadership Circle. Keynote speaker Rebecca Kleefisch, Lt. Governor for the State of Wisconsin, shared anecdotes as a wife, mother, cancer survivor, and Christian leader.

Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch was joined by many annual and lifetime members of the Christian Women’s Leadership Circle for a quick photo opportunity after she spoke at the March 2013 Butterfly Brunch event.

CWLC provides the Sharon A. Schoeneck Christian Women’s Leadership Scholarship annually to a female WLC student; sponsors Christian speakers, workshops, and leadership summits on campus; and offers grants and additional scholarships to female WLC students, faculty, and staff who are engaged in programs or projects that promote or encourage Christian leadership. For more information on CWLC visit 8

10th Gary’s Gallop sets record


ary’s Gallop held its tenth run on April 13, hosting a record turnout with 486 attendees and participants. It also had the most sponsors and financial supporters ever, thus raising more money to help fund WLC athletics than in any previous year. “This also was the first time runners and walkers were allowed to participate remotely on race day, submitting their times online for awards placement,” said Lisa Leffel ’98, director of alumni relations and organizer of the event. “In addition to acknowledging the Greenfield family, we publicly thanked alumnus Brian Volkman ’86, founder of the event, for his ten years of dedicated service to this great WLC tradition.” 10 |

The starting line at the 2013 Gary’s Gallop officially marked the 10th running of the 5k run, named after WLC’s first full-time president, Dr. Gary Greenfield. The Greenfield family was honored after the race with a presentation of a commissioned painting. For more photos and race results visit

Studying in Italy, England, & Zambia

s part of the Office of Campus Ministry’s Adopt-AGrandparent program, WLC juniors Sam Dunham (left) and Brandon Heider visited with Clarence Holman, who volunteered at WLC in the 1980s. Holman now resides at The Lutheran Home in Wauwatosa.

LC students have many opportunities to take courses abroad, led by WLC professors. In January, Dr. William Braun, professor of music, and Dr. Martin Moldenhauer, associate professor of English, traveled with 17 students (below) to Italy. In May, as part of his biennial “Best of Britain” study abroad trip, Moldenhauer took 11 students to authors’ homes and points of interest in Great Britain.



Holman, who was known as the “master plasterer,” still fondly remembers his days volunteering at WLC and shared stories with the visiting students. Holman (left) and three friends from Mt. Lebanon Lutheran Church – Carl Engel, Ron Krane (kneeling), and Wally Heiners – regularly painted, plastered, and repaired WLC’s original campus buildings.

Junior nursing students, as part of their Global Health studies, traveled to Zambia in May, where they gave health education seminars at local schools including the Lutheran seminary. They also observed surgery and medical procedures in hospitals and clinics. Rebekah Carey and Sheryl Scott, assistant professors of nursing, accompanied the students. Find links to travel blogs at 8

Students make an impact


tudents who make a difference and an impact on campus were honored at the 2013 Impact Awards Luncheon May 1. Senior John Klein, a nursing major from West Allis, Wisconsin, was the 21st recipient of the award. Klein (center) has served the college through his work in Campus Ministry, his contributions on the football field, and as the student director of Warriors at Work. Other finalists for the Impact Award were (left to right) junior Kelsi Daffner, junior Lachrisa Grandberry, junior Anna Biedenbender, and senior Jamie Valerio.

Student Notes Honor society members: For the first time, students from WLC were inducted into the Sigma Theta Tau International nursing honor society (Phi Beta Chapter). The ceremony was held April 13 at Concordia University Wisconsin. Those inducted were seniors Rachel Borchard, Katie Kronebusch, Kaili Markgraf, Leanna Miller, and Kayla Wiechman. Servant leaders: Four students from WLC (junior Anna Biedenbender, senior Peter Buschkopf, freshman Erica Ellington, and junior Sam Wessel), and four from Martin Luther College traveled to New York in March through WELS Christian Aid and Relief to assist with cleanup after last year’s Superstorm Sandy and to help Sure Foundation, Queens, conduct its Easter canvass and weekly English as a second language (ESL) class.

State awards: WLC’s Future Teachers’ Education Association received five state awards. The awards included Outstanding Teacher Educator of the Year award to Prof. Jim Holman and Outstanding Student Leader Award to FTEA president Liz Calhoun.

Undergraduate research presenters: Students gave 20 presentations during the 13th Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium in April. Topics chosen were from the academic areas of biology, chemistry, physics, English, theology, computer science, philosophy, and digital cinema production. Juniors Dylan Applin, biochemistry major, and Steven Alt, environmental science major, co-authored a presentation titled “Ozone Source Development.” Senior Kathryn Hendee, biology major, presented her research on “Diabetes, Exercise, and Muscle Regeneration in Mice.” Wisconsin Lutheran College | 11

student news

Student volunteers visit volunteer

christian leadership

The Center for Christian Leadership


LC’s Center for Christian Leadership has a core mission: to provide teaching, experience, models, and mentors that develop Christian servant leaders who will positively impact home, church, business, and community for their Lord. The Center has several distinct components that advance its mission. Undergraduate Christian Vocation and Leadership “We’ve revised our First Year Experience course for freshmen,” said Dr. David Brightsman, dean of the College of Professional Studies. “Its intention is to orient students to life at a Christian college and establish a context for understanding how academics, vocations, and leadership

courses intersect. The Sophomore Experience course will purposefully encourage students to explore the various aspects of leadership within their selected course of study. We also will be extending this theme to junior and senior level courses.”

Certificate in Christian Leadership program to launch expanding their knowledge of effective leadership,” he said. “This year we’ve completed a draft of our guiding principles and all documentation for the certificate program,” said “The ultimate goal of the program is for the communities in Adam Volbrecht ’04, assistant director of residence life. “I’ve which our students serve to be positively impacted – and for been working with two faculty members, Drs. Stacy Hoehl ’01 Christ to be proclaimed to the world. and Rhoda Wolle, who have been invaluable in creating the “I think this is probably the most exciting new initiative for structural framework for this program. our students in recent memory,” Volbrecht added. “It has “What really separates our program from similar programs at the potential to make a real difference in terms of their other institutions is the emphasis on Christian leadership and student experience and preparation for life beyond college.” the opportunity students have to grow their faith while Christian speakers and conferences WLC’s Christian Leadership Speaker Series accomplished its first-year goals according to Lisa Leffel ’98, director of alumni relations, who also served as coordinator of the series and a simulcast Brian Anderson, television announcer event. After networking breakfasts held in for the Milwaukee November, February, and May, three Brewers Baseball successful Christian leaders, Christine Club, spoke on “Being Faithful in Your Specht-Palmert, president and COO of Career” in February. Cousins Subs; Brian Anderson, television announcer for the Milwaukee Brewers Baseball Club; and Paul Wessel, inventor and entrepreneur, each spoke to more than 100 attendees. The series was sponsored by Thrivent Financial and the Christian Women’s Leadership Circle.

expand college’s impact In May, WLC also served as Milwaukee’s official host site for the annual Chick-fil-A Leadercast. Broadcast live from Atlanta and organized by leaders at GIANT IMPACT, the global simulcast event featured speakers such as Jack Welch, Condoleezza Rice, John Maxwell, Andy Stanley, and others. WLC will serve as the 2014 Chick-fil-A Leadercast site, scheduled for May 9. “We were thrilled with the attendance and feedback regarding our speaker series as well as the Leadercast,” said President Daniel W. Johnson. “Both events support our Vision 2020 strategic plan to ‘intentionalize Christian leadership’ by serving people beyond our campus. We want to provide opportunities for members of the community to hear Christian leaders who have inspiring stories and thoughts to share.”

LEADLIVE serves churches coast to coast

Risen Savior Lutheran Church, Chula Vista, California, was the site for the LEADLIVE teleconference for church council members from both Risen Savior and Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church. Board of education members (right) at Faith Lutheran Church and School in Anchorage, Alaska, also participated in the conference. 12 |

The 2013 Leadership Conference, LEADLIVE, also held in May, was sponsored by the Center for Christian Leadership and planned in cooperation with the WELS Commission on Congregational Counseling. The conference provided pastors and lay leaders with best practice models and tools that they can adapt to their own ministry. Another goal was to demonstrate technological capacities in facilitating leadership development. The simulcast format of the conference allowed congregations from around the nation to participate.

Pass it on…


ev. Dr. Paul Kelm retired in January. He spent most of his 43 years in the public ministry helping provide, define, or develop “Christian leadership.” Recently he reflected not on his various calls and roles served, but rather on the need for Christian leadership – both in and out of the church – and especially through the recently created Center for Christian Leadership at WLC.

“WLC’s mission – to graduate Christian servant leaders – is so crucial because there are churches failing for lack of visionary and innovative young leaders, and because America has lost its moral and spiritual mooring,” Kelm added. “Our country needs passionate and articulate spokespersons for truth. “Christian leadership is really about loving people – loving people and making a difference – wherever God has a plan for change to happen,” Kelm said. “You have to care a lot … to be a Christian leader. And you need to be willing to accept risk, because there’s a lot of risk involved in leading.”

A brief bio: Paul Kelm received his bachelor’s degree from Northwestern College in 1966, graduated in 1970 from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, and began his ministry in New England, launching three new mission churches. He has served as a campus pastor at UW and at WLC, initially as dean of students. He has served WELS as its administrator for evangelism and adult discipleship, and as a church consultant. He was a pastor of a large church in De Pere, Wisconsin, a long-time contributing editor for the Northwestern Lutheran, the author of two books, and a preacher on the syndicated radio broadcast Message from the Master for more than a decade. Kelm earned a doctor of ministry degree from Concordia Seminary in 2002. He and his wife, Lynne, a teacher at the elementary and high school levels, have three married children and five grandchildren.

There are three things Kelm always has been passionate about throughout his ministry: beginning new mission churches, working with college students, and helping the church carry out its mission most effectively. That list made his most recent position, serving as a WLC campus pastor and as the founding director of its Center for Christian Leadership, such a meaningful role from which to retire. It combined his three passions.

“I’ve always enjoyed and appreciated working with college students,” Kelm said. “The WLC students I’ve interacted with during my three separate stints here have been amazing. That’s a little because of us – as a college culture – but it’s mostly because of a great mom and dad, and some very good elementary and high school teachers. “At WLC we can help create the motivation and provide the opportunities to become Christian leaders,” he said. “Ultimately … it’s up to the individual … to embrace those opportunities. But as a Christian institution we have an obligation to pass on the deep truths of the Christian faith to people who will make a difference in the lives of others and in the direction of our society.

There is risk for a college that is leading – and growing – too. Yet Kelm clearly believes WLC will continue to succeed – through more broad-based program offerings, increased collaboration with community partners, and creative, practical ways to share its theology and its commitment to Christian service. He said, “I credit WLC’s incredible growth to several things: divine blessings that could not have been anticipated, the power of the Gospel as it is taught and lived here, the leadership of Gary Greenfield and now Dan Johnson, dedicated faculty and staff who care tremendously about students and about the college’s mission, and committed Christian students from wonderful families who remain the core of the student body. “I hope that the Lord’s faithfulness to his people will inspire bold vision, passionate commitment, and continued loving service,” he added, “and that the college will keep exploring new ways to provide Christian higher education while remaining true to its roots in historic Lutheran theology.” Wisconsin Lutheran College | 13

christian leadership

We need Christian leadership.

academic highlights

Adjunct music faculty recognized

Intercultural connections


djunct professor of percussion James Sewrey was the subject of a feature article titled “A Passion for Percussion” in the November 2012 issue of Teaching Music. The magazine is published by the National Association for Music Education. Sewrey, who has taught for more than 60 years, is a founding member of the Percussive Arts Society. In the article, Sewrey stated, “My advice to students is for them to keep their minds open to learning, pursue innovative ideas in the creative process with music making, and stay involved with the profession of being a music educator.”

WLC faculty members Dr. Dan Ebeling ’98 and Prof. Kevin Fedewa ’08, Cynthia Fitzsimmons, assistant director of the Center for International Education, and a few WLC alumni spoke to a group of secondyear students from Jiangxi Normal University (JXNU) who are currently studying within the School of Intercultural Studies in Nanchang, China. The WLC representatives discussed the advantages and opportunities available to international students who choose to attend Wisconsin Lutheran College. Ebeling and Fedewa spent the past semester teaching at Jiangxi as part of the partnership between WLC and JXNU.

In November 2012, Jerome Franke, an adjunct violin instructor, received the 2012 Teacher of the Year award from the Wisconsin Chapter of the American String Teachers Association. Adjunct instructor Jeremy Zima ’07 presented a paper at the American Musicological Society’s Midwest Chapter meeting in April titled “Strauss’s Intermezzo: A New Look at the German Artist-Opera.” Zima was awarded a Vilas Travel Grant by the University of Wisconsin, which he used to conduct archival research at Yale University. He also was awarded an Ora Frishberg Saloman Fund grant by the American Musicological Society to conduct research in Germany for his dissertation. 14 |

Real world learning at a high level


wenty-one WLC students traveled to Chicago with business faculty members Prof. Gregg Pfarr and Prof. Heather Stelzer with high expectations – expectations that were exceeded.

presentation from Jeff Korzenik, Fifth Third’s chief investment officer and a regular guest on various national media outlets, was a great experience for all of us.”

“The purpose of the trip was to provide an off-campus learning experience for our new Warrior Investment Club members and our upper-level finance students,” Pfarr said. “Our hosts from Fifth Third Bank made the trip an exciting day – loaded with tremendous learning opportunities. Having the chance to meet and hear a

In addition, Fifth Third hosted an interactive lunch with the bank’s money management team, and conducted a panel discussion in which WLC’s students participated. “Throw in a personalized tour of the Chicago Board of Trade, and it was just an awesome day,” Pfarr said. “I think our students consider it a memorable experience.”

Dr. Paul Beck, professor of history, had his most recent book, Columns of Vengeance: Soldiers, Sioux, and the Punitive Expeditions, 1863-1864, published by the University of Oklahoma Press. Dr. Juanita Becker, associate professor of music and a founding member of the Lake Cottage Duo, had a CD released on the Centaur label in October 2012. The CD is titled “Dutch Music for Oboe and Piano.” The Lake Cottage Duo, with Becker at the piano and guest artist Dr. Sheri Mattson of the University of Central Missouri on oboe, has several performances scheduled this fall. In November they will be featured on Wisconsin Public Radio’s statewide broadcast “Live from the Chazen.” Becker played piano with the Kenosha Symphony Orchestra for two concerts in fall 2012. In October she was on a collegiate faculty panel at the Wisconsin Music Teachers Association State Conference in Appleton, Wisconsin. The panel’s topic was “What Every Incoming Freshman Music Major Should Know.” In April, Paul Burmeister, associate professor of art, participated in the postHaus FATE 2013 National Conference in Savannah, Georgia. He presented a paper “Tempo giusto: Helping Students become Critically Aware of a Natural Pace for Thinking” as part of a session titled “Teaching Strategies for Ideation and Problem Solving in Foundations.” Sandra Butz-Siebers, an adjunct art faculty member, completed a mural for David’s Star Lutheran Church in Jackson, Wisconsin. Rebekah Carey, assistant professor of nursing, was named to the advisory board of the Lutheran Health Alliance, a new global health collaborative of Kingdom Workers, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Dr. Aimee Lau ’03, assistant professor of communication, successfully defended her dissertation in May 2013 and has been awarded a Ph.D. in communication from the University of WisconsinMilwaukee. Her dissertation was titled “Facebook as a facilitator of organizational identification in colleges and universities: Exploring relationships among educational institutions, student tenure, and interaction with multiple organizational targets.” Sibylle Krause ’83, assistant professor of German, will be co-leading a tour to China in March 2014. Email for information about the trip. This spring, James Matson, professor of art, had a one-person show of his hand-colored photographs at Regus International in downtown Milwaukee. In December, he exhibited in “Beyond Vision,” a sculpture exhibition for the visually impaired at Cardinal Stritch University, Milwaukee. Dr. Joel Pless, associate professor of theology, presented the paper “The Lutheran Who Reached for the Stars: The Life, Legacy, and Lapses of Dr. Wernher von Braun” at the Lutheran Historical Conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in October 2012. He gave the presentation “Geography of the Holy Land” to the Metro Milwaukee Lutheran Teachers’ Conference at Mount Calvary Lutheran Church, Waukesha, Wisconsin, in February 2013. Pless also authored a week of personal devotions for Meditations, which will be published in January 2014.

Prof. Joe Du Fore, director of digital education, presented at the International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation in Madrid, Spain, in November. He was elected to the International EDULEARN Board in January. In May, Du Fore presented at Milwaukee’s first TED conference. TED started in 1984 as a way to bring people together from three worlds: Technology, Entertainment, and Design. Du Fore, invited to discuss the conference on Milwaukee’s FM Public Radio station, WUWM, explained that economic success has had different meanings during different eras. “We used to have a ‘stuff’ economy where things mattered, and we had the Industrial Revolution,” he said during the radio interview. “The industry … grew communities and countries. Now it’s the innovation, the creativity, the ability to prosper from concepts … because we have this fast-moving, technological world where knowledge is harder to come by than plastic or steel.”

In January, during J Term 2013, two WLC students and two faculty members participated in a tour of Israel and Jordan. L to r: Dr. Joel Pless, students Lindsay Woebling and Jennifer Simdon, and Dr. Kristi Meyer ’01, associate professor of mathematics, enjoyed a morning at Qumran, Israel, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. They’re standing in front of Cave #4.

Karen Fischer ’06, director of health services, earned a master’s degree in professional counseling from Concordia University Wisconsin in December. She also organized a WLC Campus Leadership Summit in February along with Barb Wellnitz ’02, director of student programming. The summit was sponsored by the Christian Women’s Leadership Circle and attended by 52 WLC students.

Steven Zambo ’81, digital cinema production instructor, appeared on “The Morning Blend” on Today’s TMJ4, Milwaukee’s NBC affiliate television station, April 30 to discuss his upcoming projects and WLC’s digital cinema production major. He is president of Salty Earth Pictures, a nonprofit motion pictures studio located in Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin.

Wisconsin Lutheran College | 15

faculty & staff

Faculty and Staff News

fine arts

Choir performs in England and Ireland


he Wisconsin Lutheran Choir returned from a two-week performance tour through England and Ireland that culminated with a concert June 1 in Galway, Ireland, a Sister City of Milwaukee. The choir’s director, Dr. James Nowack, and President Daniel W. Johnson met with Galway representatives at the event. Several choir members wrote about their experiences performing abroad. Read their blog posts at 8 May 24: “We praise the Lord through our songs, and we – and our audiences – have our faith strengthened in turn. Our journey thus far has been truly aweinspiring, and I cannot wait for the rest. Soli deo gloria!” – Josh May 24: “When

we proclaim a powerful message in song. The faith in the words we sing is what unites us, not only as a choir, but with those who hear our music as well.” – Liz

WLC’s Dr. Nowack (left) and President Johnson met with two Galway representatives (right).

I come to a new place I like to learn about the people and the culture around me. … There are so many amazing places that God has given us to explore and experience, and we should take advantage of that.” – Courtney choir and our audience filled the small chapel with beautiful music and smiling faces. The energy in the room was absolutely incredible! Through our music, we serve as ambassadors. We are representing our college, our country, and our Savior as

June 3: “I saw sights … that literally took my breath away and left me standing in awe. I sang praises to God at nine locations, many of which have been used for worship for hundreds of years. I see the countless ways God has blessed me through this choir. … No matter what country we are in, this group sings their hearts out to the glory of God. We share our love for singing and our love for our Savior, and that is a bond that will never be broken.” – Charis June 4: “…

In Galway, Ireland, as we held hands, singing Abide With Me together, I was overwhelmed with the realization that this was my last song with the choir. I was filled with gratitude for the friendships I’ve made, the music I’ve been allowed to help create, and the direction I’ve received.” – Melody

May 27: “The

The Wisconsin Lutheran Choir gave an impromptu performance at the Cliffs of Moher in County Clare, Ireland.

Art exhibit to feature work of National Park Artists in Residence

Guest Artist Series begins September 20

he Schlueter Art Gallery will host an art exhibit celebrating the work of U.S. National Park artists in residence. Summer Arts: Inspired by the National Parks runs July 5 through August 2, with an artist reception on July 12. The exhibit will showcase the work of six past artists in residence, including Kristin Gjerdset, WLC associate professor of art. Visit 8 for details.

he 2013-2014 Guest Artist Series kicks off September 20 with Doc Severinsen’s Big Band. Tickets for the series are on sale now; individual tickets will be available August 1. Visit 8 guestartistseries or call 414.443.8802 for information or to order tickets.


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R The Wisconsin Lutheran College

Mary Erickson

women’s track & field team won six events en route to a second-place finish at the 2013 Northern Athletics Conference Outdoor Championships at Raabe Stadium in May. Sophomore Mary Erickson and junior Ellen Schwartz took the top two spots in the 800-meter run; Erickson also captured the 1500-meter run title. Junior Marya Haegler won the 5,000-meter run and the 10,000-meter run, and sophomore Jenny Ebeling was victorious in the heptathlon.

Women’s basketball undefeated in conference play


he women’s basketball team finished the 2012-2013 season with a 17-0 record in conference play and a third consecutive trip to the NCAA tournament. The team’s season ended March 1 as it fell to 22nd-ranked (and eventual national runner-up) University of Wisconsin-Whitewater in the first round of the NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship Tournament.

In April, Erickson set both school and conference records on her way to winning the 1,500-meter run at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Rex Foster Invitational. Erickson topped the field with a time of 4:45.98.

R Three members of the Wisconsin Lutheran College

men’s tennis team received postseason honors from the Northern Athletics Conference. Zach Birner was named the NAC’s 2013 Freshman of the Year, sophomore Lee Johnson earned All-NAC singles honors for the second straight season, and Johnson, along with junior teammate Ryan Sallmann, were named to the All-NAC Doubles Team. The team qualified for the conference tournament for the first time.

R The baseball team saw its run

through the 2013 Northern Athletics Conference Tournament end with a loss to top-seeded Concordia University Chicago in the championship game. The Warriors finished the season 20-17. The 20 wins set a single-season record, while the conference tournament appearance was WLC’s first in the seven-year history of the league. Sophomore shortstop Aaron Roeseler was a First Team All-NAC selection; he also was Aaron Roeseler named to the 2013 ABCA/Rawlings NCAA Division III Midwest All-Region Third Team.

R Freshman Sean Esenberg was named the 2013

Northern Athletics Conference Freshman of the Year in men’s golf. Sophomore Jake Gaudynski also received all-conference honors, while Adam Volbrecht ’04 was named NAC Co-Coach of the Year.

The crowd of 1,063 at Kachel Gymnasium contained many Warriors fans (pictured above) who traveled to Whitewater for the contest. “It was awesome the way our students and fans supported the basketball team,” said Coach Klay Knueppel after the game. “I cannot thank them enough. They touched the hearts of the players and coaching staff.” Seniors Krissy Day, Shavon Dillon, and Alyssa Allister were 74-10 in conference games and 90-24 overall in their career at WLC, the most wins in a four-year span by any WLC team. Dillon was named to the All-Central Region First Team and was chosen as the Northern Athletics Conference Player of the Year. She finished her career with 1,352 points scored. Knueppel was selected as the conference’s Co-Coach of the Year.

Murphy to lead football team


ollowing a program-record 7-3 season, 13th-year head football coach Dr. Dennis Miller has retired from coaching. The team’s fifth-year defensive coordinator, Ben Murphy ’04, has been promoted to head coach. Murphy returned to WLC after serving for four years as the defensive line coach and recruiting coordinator Ben Murphy at Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota. Miller will continue serving as WLC’s vice president of student affairs, a position he has held since 2005. He was WLC’s first head football coach, building the program from scratch. A formal celebration of Miller’s contribution will be held during Homecoming 2013. Wisconsin Lutheran College | 17


Spring sports successes

warriors on their way

Alumni pursue new horizons at

Milwaukee Regional Medical Center


or decades, WLC students have benefitted from the college’s proximity to the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center (MRMC) campus, as well as from the numerous academic and institutional relationships developed between professional colleagues at both entities. Dozens of science major undergraduates have worked, interned, and/or completed clinicals on the MRMC campus, which includes the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW), Froedtert Hospital, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, the BloodCenter of Wisconsin, and several other institutions. Nurses … researchers … former medical school students who now are doctors … these are descriptions of some WLC graduates who have traveled the short distance north of campus to MRMC, whether for the next step on their chosen career path or for a chance to work at their dream job. For example, Stephanie Kohler-Neuwirth ’00, Kurt Kolander ’06, Bill Hudzinski ’08, and Hannah Zhang ’11 are four biology majors whose post-baccalaureate paths led them to MRMC – specifically MCW.

As a technologist in the Department of Cell Biology, Neurobiology & Anatomy at MCW, Hudzinski researches eye development and disease using zebrafish as a model system. “I conduct a large-scale mutagenesis screen, which artificially produces mutations in zebrafish. Several fish from this screen have had eye mutations. We’re in the process of determining which gene or genes are causing these interesting defects.” Aside from this study, Hudzinski also is responsible for managing a 2,000-gallon-tank zebrafish facility and training undergraduate workers for various lab procedures. Prior to his current position, he worked for four years at MCW while he was attending WLC – helpful preparation for his role today.

After Zhang graduated from WLC, she worked in the MCW Department of Biochemistry as a research technologist. “We investigate the process by which new blood vessels grow in the avascular cornea as a response to pro- and anti-angiogenic growth factors and molecules.” This fall After graduating from WLC, Kohlershe will attend the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at Neuwirth completed medical school at Duke University. “Because of my WLC education and Rosalind Franklin University in North MCW experiences,” Zhang said, “I am well prepared to Chicago and a four-year residency in enter a profession where I am not only expected to psychiatry at MCW. She also held a understand the anatomical structure and functions of the fellowship in psychosomatic medicine for human body. I also will be able to empathize with people one year. Today Kohler-Neuwirth focuses of varying backgrounds, beliefs, interests, and opinions, on clinical work as an MCW consulting psychiatrist for the and to serve them with respect and understanding as a Marquette University Counseling Center. “I work together physical therapist.” with a large group of psychologists and social workers to provide short-term mental health services to college and “These outcomes for WLC graduates in the science programs graduate students,” she said. “I’ve also been involved in underscore the value received from an undergraduate teaching medical students and residents.” experience at WLC,” said Dr. Jarrod Erbe, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and professor of biology. “Our Kolander is employed as a research relationships with several of the MRMC institutions have technologist in the Department of positively influenced the career paths for many of our Biochemistry at MCW. His work is with graduates from several majors,” added Dr. David Brightsman, doctors focused on coronary vascular dean of the College of Professional Studies. “We have development. “My project investigates graduates in communicative arts, psychology, business, and how transcription factors in the English who are employed in a variety of positions on the epicardium, a layer of cells that covers the medical campus, whether in finance, marketing, technology, developing heart, direct the formation of the coronary development, or human services departments. And the vasculature,” he said. Kolander credits his inspiration to networking and connectedness continues to grow, so it’s pursue a Ph.D. in biomedical research to Dr. Rob Balza definitely a competitive advantage for many of our graduates.” ’98, his WLC biology professor.

18 |

A “

s we celebrate and reflect on our inaugural year,” said President Daniel W. Johnson at a recent gathering of Servant Leader Society charter members, “I thank God for moving the hearts of so many of you to support WLC. Because each of you has made membership in this society a priority, you’ve helped us make an excellent Christian higher education possible.”

Warrior Orientation and Welcome (WOW) team, mentoring the incoming freshman class; as a Peer Admissions Counselor; as a WLC Summit Leadership Conference participant; and as a Bible study leader.

She reflects her faith off campus as well, participating in ministry outreach projects, most recently as a volunteer on a service trip to Long Island and Queens, New York, It was this excellence, WLC’s location, and a Anna Biedenbender (right), 2013 following Hurricane Sandy. Through WELS Student Employee of the Year, with rainbow, that led Anna Biedenbender, a Christian Aid and Relief, Biedenbender and Ashley Schmidt ’10. Minnesota native, to WLC three years ago. three other WLC students spent several days “I actually set up a tour of WLC only to confirm in my hauling brush, cutting fallen branches, and distributing mind that I was not going to attend there. But a tour of the needed supplies to victims of the storm. beautiful campus – complete with a post-thunderstorm “Anna touches the lives of current and prospective students rainbow, the proximity to a vibrant arts community in and their families, donors, Board members, faculty and Milwaukee, and the caring professors changed my mind,” staff, and just about every visitor who is interested in she said. “I knew then that WLC was the best place for me.” learning about WLC,” said Ashley Schmidt, admissions Biedenbender, an art major, has made service to the WLC family a priority since her first day on campus. She has served as an Ambassador Club member and leader, assisting the admissions department with tours and events; on the

Anna Biedenbender (left), an art major who will begin her senior year at WLC this fall, was commissioned to create a painting commemorating the 10th Gary’s Gallop, a 5k walk/run race named after Dr. Gary Greenfield, WLC’s first full-time president. She presented her artwork to members of the Greenfield family at the Gary’s Gallop 2013 event, held on April 26.

tour and event coordinator. “She has had a positive impact on guests to our campus, highlighting the message that WLC is a quality educational institution.” In the past year, her excellence in servant leadership also has been acknowledged publicly. Biedenbender recently was named the 2013 Student Employee of the Year for the State of Wisconsin for her work at WLC, emerging first among nominees from colleges and universities throughout the state. She also was awarded the Gary and Sandra Greenfield Christian Leadership Scholarship at this spring’s Honors Convocation. “I feel very blessed to have received this scholarship,” she said. “I’m so thankful to the Greenfield family for providing it and continuing to support WLC students in this way. I’m proud of the school I’ll be graduating from next spring, and I’m thankful for those who see the importance of a Christian liberal arts education.”

Three additional ways to support servant leadership at WLC 1 Matching Gifts: Increase your impact Many employers have matching gift programs that will match all or part of your gift to WLC. Contact us at 414.443.8823 to see if your company has a matching gift program!



IRA Rollover: Thrivent Choice®: Individuals age 70 or older Give Back to Schools Take advantage of a limited opportunity to You can help WLC have a chance to receive make a tax-free gift to Wisconsin Lutheran a $2,500 grant through Thrivent Choice® College using funds transferred directly from Give Back to Schools campaign, May 1 your IRA, now through December 31, 2013. through September 30, 2013. For more information go to or call 414.443.8925.

Go to or call 1.800.THRIVENT. Wisconsin Lutheran College | 19

servant leader society

Biedenbender portrays servant leadership

celebrating the past

Celebrating 40 years of God’s grace J

anuary 31, 2013, marked a WLC milestone. On that date 40 years ago – in 1973 – the college was founded by a group of businessmen and clergy who had a vision for Christian higher education. When WLC opened its doors that first year, it was in a rented facility, with part-time faculty, serving 24 students.

multimillion-dollar facilities were built. The college also purchased an additional 26-acre parcel from Milwaukee County for a nearby athletic complex. In fall 2012, for the eleventh consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report ranked Wisconsin Lutheran College as one of America’s Best Colleges. Today WLC grants multiple degrees, offers more than 36 traditional undergraduate majors, and its 125+ full-time faculty and staff serve nearly 1,100 students.

During WLC’s 40-year history, God showered On WLC’s 40th anniversary, President the college with miracles in the form of donors, Daniel W. Johnson visited with Duane Kuehl, one of the college’s original opportunities, and challenges. A permanent Board of Regents members. campus was purchased, and WLC transitioned from a junior college to an accredited four-year, baccalaureate degree-granting institution. Adjoining acreage for future For this brief but incredible history of WLC … to God be the glory. campus development was acquired, and seven major,

1984 – Purchase of 2.5 adjacent acres to campus (Wachtel property). 1983 – Acquisition of science lab equipment and furnishings from UW-Medford Extension campus. 1982 – Acquisition of library (60,000 volumes) from the closing Milton College.

1988 – Dedication of Marvin M. Schwan Library, first new building. Made possible by $3 million gift from Marvin Schwan.

1977 – Purchase of 8.5-acre, five-building property on Bluemound Rd. marks beginning of permanent campus. 1973 – Founders’ Day, Jan. 31. Classes begin in Sept. in rented rooms. Rev. Robert Krause is part-time president.



20 |


1987 – First (12) students graduate with baccalaureate degrees. Teacher education program begins.

1990 – Wauwatosa alderwoman Margaret Obradovich, seriously ill in hospital, gets to city hall and casts deciding vote to allow necessary rezoning for 322 construction of new recreation complex. She dies one month later.


1984 – Board of Regents approves four-year program of study. Approved for initial accreditation in 1985.

“I’m acting in recognition of the increasing importance of conveying a Christian perspective in the educational enterprise. My conviction is that Wisconsin Lutheran College has maximized the use of its resources to that end. The college has established a strong track record and promises to accomplish much more as its future unfolds.” – $25 million donor



1994 – $25 million gift received from anonymous donor, then the largest financial donation ever given a university or college in Wisconsin.


1975 – Dr. Gary J. Greenfield becomes first full-time president.


1992 – Dedication of Recreation Complex.


2005 – Dedication of Warrior Fields, a 26-acre Outdoor Athletic Complex. Made possible by $10 million gift from Krauss-Miller-Lutz Foundation.

2013 – First graduates (4) with Master of Arts in Education degrees. 36 traditional undergraduate majors offered.

2000 – Dedication of twin residence halls, both housing 125+ students; both with underground parking. 2004 – Dedication of science/academic building. Renamed Generac Hall in 2011.


706 1998 – Dedication of Campus Center (and remodeled chapel and administration building).







2009 – College of Adult and Graduate Studies is created within WLC. 2010 – WLC receives approval of master’s degree program and 100% online program delivery.

2001 – WLC is nationally ranked by U.S. News & World Report for the first of the next consecutive 11 years.

2011 – First graduates (10) of adult degree completion program receive Bachelor of Science degrees in business management and leadership.

2012 – First graduates (10) with Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees.

2003 – Dr. Timothy J. Kriewall becomes second full-time president.

1996 – Dedication of Center for Arts & Performance.

2005 – WLC receives its first 10-year accreditation.

2008 – Dr. Daniel W. Johnson becomes third full-time president.

1996 – Men’s basketball team wins conference; plays in NAIA Div. II national tournament in Idaho.




On January 31, 2013, WLC celebrated its 40th “birthday” with a special chapel service and reception for its campus family and visiting guests. A commemorative video was presented, and hundreds of photographs were on display highlighting significant moments from Wisconsin Lutheran College’s history. To view the video or find other WLC historic and archival material, visit 8 foundersday.


Wisconsin Lutheran College | 21

celebrating the past


welcoming the future

vision 2020

On mission, on message, and on track to reach 2020 goal W

isconsin Lutheran College’s recently created strategic plan, Vision 2020,* is named to articulate its goal – to be serving 2020 students with its Christ-centered mission by the year 2020. Throughout its history, WLC has been recognized for its commitment to mission and ministry through Christian higher education. The core of its mission states that the college … is committed to providing quality teaching, scholarship, and service that are rooted in Holy Scripture; promoting the spiritual growth of students, faculty, and staff; and preparing students for lives of Christian leadership. Beyond the need to reflect its historical perspective and mission, WLC’s strategic planning process also included time spent identifying key descriptors of the college that help define and explain its core philosophy in regard to achieving its mission and vision, according to President Daniel W. Johnson. “For instance,” he said, “we are a comprehensive college forever grounded in the liberal arts. We embrace the reality that our mission integration and application will be customized differently for undergraduate, residential, commuter, adult, and graduate students.”

the world and for such a time as this. As we pursue this vision, we do so focused on outcomes of growth and sustainability. Our objectives are clear: We strive to deliver excellence in Christian higher education while we provide a superior student experience. “In order to effectively deliver on our objectives and outcomes in our quest to realize our vision,” he continued, “we will implement five core initiatives that will transform WLC.” The five central initiatives that will drive the action and provide the forward momentum of the strategic plan Vision 2020 are:

, Intentionalize Christian Leadership: Align all campus initiatives to advance WLC’s mission of preparing Christian leaders, and serve as a valued church and community resource.

, Innovate: Commit support to a campus culture that fosters experimentation, innovation, and collaboration.

, Engage Community Partners: Collaborate with community partners – urban education leaders as well as those in immediately neighboring Wauwatosa and Milwaukee.

, Increase Awareness and Demand: Develop WLC’s brand and distinctive value proposition to effectively communicate with families, churches, and the community at large.

, Steward Assets: Purposefully use the institution’s capital and land, infrastructure, human and academic assets, and resources in ways that make the most powerful impact on WLC’s mission today and into the future.

President Johnson also noted WLC’s renewed commitment to innovation and best practices in teaching and learning – models including traditional face-to-face instruction as well as blended/hybrid course offerings and online delivery. “Our vision,” President Johnson said, “is to be the Christian college of choice, preparing Christian servant leaders for

“Vision 2020 will test our courage, discipline, and resourcefulness,” President Johnson said. “We place it at the foot of the cross, thanking Jesus for the opportunity to serve Him through this very special ministry.”

* A complete version of Vision 2020 is available for viewing online at 8 or by requesting a print copy via the envelope inserted in this magazine.

As we ‘intentionalize’ Christian leadership initiatives throughout the campus, we believe we will be instilling the core of our mission and identity into the heart and life purpose of each and every Wisconsin Lutheran College student.

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Dr. Daniel W. Johnson President Wisconsin Lutheran College

welcoming the future

The Christian College of Choice, Preparing Christian Servant Leaders

Growth & Sustainability

Excellence in Christian Higher Education Superior Student Experience

Intentionalize Christian Leadership


Engage Community Partners

Increase Awareness and Demand

Steward Assets

Wisconsin Lutheran College | 23


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Summer Arts in the Park • Through August 1

Warrior Open • August 10

Homecoming • October 19

God’s blessings to the Class of 2013!

Join the social media conversation by visiting


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Wisconsin Lutheran College Magazine  

Summer 2013 issue

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