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Redeeming the (Summer) Time

Every other month we get an update on what’s been happening recently at our Immanuel Lutheran High School, College and Seminary in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

What happens at ILC during summer?

People might assume that faculty and staff spend the whole summer relaxing and rejuvenating, “nestled in the quiet beauty of the tall green pines.” (ILC alma mater) While there is definitely time for the needed blessings of rest and vacations, summer is actually quite a busy time both for the campus itself and for the ILC faculty and staff.

CLC Youth Camp attendees.

The campus is host to many events during the summer. The 35th CLC Convention, as well as the CLC Youth Camp and camps for volleyball and girls’ and boys’ basketball were held at ILC. The professors all participate as delegates at the convention, but the faculty, and especially the staff, put in work before and after the convention to ensure everything on the campus runs as smoothly as possible. It is always a pleasure to welcome delegates and visitors from across the synod to the beautiful campus with which we have been blessed, and it is also wonderful to participate together in the work of the synod. ILC coaches organize and run the various camps, which provide not only skills training but also a time for young people to enjoy fun and fellowship together.

The Immanuel Professorage Committee (IPC) takes advantage of the summer months to tackle large projects, utilizing primarily professors to carry out the work. This summer, professors have been hard at work completing two significant projects. In June, they finished the replacement of the windows and siding at both 507 Ingram (Ude), and 513 Ingram (Sippert). We are certainly blessed by all the support for and by the IPC (from prayers to offerings to volunteer labor); they have taken on an important role ensuring that the professorages are well-maintained. We are also blessed by faculty who dedicate their time and talent throughout the school year to maintain the professorages. It is truly remarkable to see how much high-quality volunteer work some of our professors are able to provide, especially for these larger projects.

In addition to the work on campus, faculty and staff also help with various camps and serve as guest preachers at different congregations. This time is also used every year to upgrade the computer labs. This summer work on expanding the campus wifi was also begun.

Faculty also take advantage of the summer months to prepare for new courses in the fall, or to work on improving and updating courses they have previously taught. Summer is an important time for faculty to work on their professional development, through studying in their subjects, taking online classes, or participating in workshops. This work culminates in an academic workshop two weeks before classes start. The workshop provides all the teachers a day that starts off with a Bible study and then moves into focusing on different aspects of teaching. Included in this day are also annual training on the Student Protection Plan and the school safety plan.

The empty dormitories and classrooms over the summer also provide our maintenance staff the ability to catch up on projects. In fact, our facilities manager, Paul Heinze, notes that summer is probably their busiest time of year. In addition to cleaning and regular maintenance, this summer the maintenance staff, including a part-time worker hired for the summer, completed major repairs on the east porch of Ingram Hall and replaced some carpeting in the boys’ dormitory. One project that may be especially interesting to new and returning students is that through a gift from Gethsemane Lutheran Church in Spokane, Washington, we have been able to replace some of the classroom desks.

While the projects that go on during the summer here at ILC are various and diverse, they are all focused on our mission of providing a Christ-centered education for our young people.

Dr. Daniel Schierenbeck is President of Immanuel Lutheran College in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.