In 2015, the College announced its intent to seek full membership in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) as a Division III institution. Since that landmark decision, the College has been working feverously to make their path to full membership a reality.
So, for a little less than 24 hours over a two-day period in the middle of October, there was a heightened awareness around the College. Representatives from the NCAA were on campus for a visit, and by all indications they left impressed.
Jean Orr, Assistant Director of Academic and Membership Affairs, Kayla Robles, NCAA Academic and Membership Affairs intern as well as Dr. Rob Larson, Vice President for Communications and Marketing at Luther College spent parts of two days touring athletic facilities, meeting with campus administrators and student-athletes.
The trio took in a women's volleyball match, both men's and women's soccer games before having dinner at President Rooney's home.
On the second half of their stay, they met with the athletics staff and select student-athletes and Orr gave a detailed presentation on some of the new rules coaches and administrators will have to adjust to as Dean makes it move to underneath the NCAA umbrella.
"The Dean College administration, coaches, and faculty have been progressing through the work that will lead up to full NCAA membership with a remarkable attention to the various required steps," said Dr. Larson, who serves as the College's mentor through the transition process. "The site visit went extremely well. In many ways we will use Dean's thoroughness and responsiveness to suggestions as an example and model for future applicants."
The next step for the College will be another meeting with the NCAA in January 2018 at the annual convention in Indianapolis.
It is the hope that the College will be approved for full membership in time for the 2019-2020 school year.