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Concordia Transforms Couple's Lives

Gerald '58 and Lois '59 Olsen have fond memories of Concordia. Gerald toured Norway with The Concordia Choir under the direction of Paul J. Christiansen and the experience proved to be life-changing.

While on tour, Gerald enthusiastically embraced his Norwegian heritage and decided to apply for a Fulbright scholarship so he could return. He received the scholarship and the couple, who met at Concordia, lived in Norway for a year.

But the experience offered more than an opportunity to live abroad. It also prompted him to change his vocational plans from seminary to medicine.

"That decision allowed me to live out the mission of Concordia through my work in ophthalmology," he says. He's never regretted the decision.

Lois transferred from Concordia after 1957 and pursued her RN degree at the University of Minnesota.

Concordia's ability to transform lives like theirs is just one reason the Olsens support the college through annual gifts. They also have listed the institution as a beneficiary of an IRA.

"We want to validate institutions like Concordia that have ties to the Lutheran church," Gerald says. "That means supporting them now and when our lives are over."

They trust the college will use their undesignated gifts where they are most needed. And with support like theirs more students will have transformative college experiences.