President Erik Ankerberg has been the president of CUWAA for 100 days. To honor these first days on campus, President Ankerberg writes to the Concordia community about his experiences.
I am humbled and honored to serve as the ninth President of Concordia University Wisconsin and the seventh President of Concordia University Ann Arbor. On my 100th day in this role, I would like to take a moment to express my gratitude for the warm welcome I have received. The outpouring of support and encouragement has been overwhelming, and I feel blessed to be part of such a caring and committed community.
Listening and learning
During my first 100 days, I’ve had the opportunity to meet with many of you on both campuses and to listen to your ideas and concerns, and your hopes and frustrations. These conversations have been invaluable in helping me better understand the ethos of our uncommon community.
I don’t have to tell you that CUWAA is filled with passionate, faithful, and mission-minded men and women who are committed to the flourishing of our students. Every single faculty and staff member I’ve met is here for the same reason: to prepare our students in mind, body, and spirit for service to Christ in the Church and the world.
And our students recognize the unequaled care and support they receive here and are grateful. They’re quick to share stories about professors who go out of their way to help them, campus pastors who have spiritually guided them through a rough time, coaches and leaders who push them to be braver and stronger than they ever imagined, and staff members who know them personally.
We’ve had much to celebrate these past three months.
Let’s start with the Concordia Invitational Tournament at Concordia University Nebraska.
There are very few opportunities for our Falcons and Cardinals to be together. A mere two weeks into my role, I had the pleasure of sitting among the fans from both campuses and taking in how complex and remarkable this “two campuses, one university” truly is. This year marks the 10th anniversary of this bold idea to become one, and we took a little time to recognize that fruition during the tournament.
My wife, Jennifer, and my sons, David and Peter, were by my side during the afternoon of my installation service in the Chapel of Christ Triumphant on the CUW campus on February 5th. I am grateful to Rev. Dr. Matthew Harrison, President of the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod, my home pastor, Rev. Dr. Mark Nuckols, who is pastor at Our Father’s Lutheran Church in Greenfield, CUW’s Kammerchor and student instrumentalists, and all the people who came to participate and witness that moment in CUWAA’s history.
This year also marks the 60th anniversary of the Concordia University Ann Arbor campus and the 40th year since Concordia University Wisconsin moved to Mequon. We also dedicated new spaces on both campuses.
While there is much to celebrate, there is also deep work to be done. I’ve identified the following priorities as our focus for the next 100 days.
- As a CHRIST-CENTERED university, we are creating a new Vice President for Mission and Identity position. This individual will coordinate activities related to the university’s mission and identity and lead our Pre-Seminary program.
- Because of our commitment to TRUTH AND INTEGRITY, we are reviewing all policy and practice through our mission and identity lens.
- As a university that cares deeply about EXCELLENCE, we are embarking on a comprehensive strategic planning process that will allow us to develop, prioritize, and live out a select number of initiatives over the next 3-4 years.
- Because SERVICE is foundational to our life and works, we are exploring the intersection of the Christian faith, vocation, and culture to prepare our students faithfully to live boldly in our contemporary world.
As a Lutheran university community, we strive to make our students and world whole through teaching and preaching His holy inspired Word and through the caring pastoral hands, rigorous academic coursework, and faithful and firm guidance that our faculty and staff provide.
I continue to welcome your questions and concerns and crave your prayers for our Lord’s continual blessing in our work.
Grace and peace,
Erik P. Ankerberg, Ph.D.
Save the date!
The public inauguration activities of President Dr. Erik Ankerberg will be held Friday, September 29 at Concordia University Wisconsin and from October 1-3 at Concordia University Ann Arbor.
Concordia University Wisconsin and Ann Arbor is an uncommon community of students, faculty, staff, alumni, and supporters who are gifted by grace and ever-preparing to live out their purpose to serve Christ in the Church and world. The university serves more than 6,000 students at two residential campuses in Mequon, Wisconsin, and Ann Arbor, Michigan, and globally, through online programs. Click on the link below to learn more.