A C I F I C L U T H E R A N U N I V E R S
I T Y
I N T E R 2 0 0 1 - 2 0 0 2
Parents Council members, PLU is truly a family affair
Peter and Mary Ellen Gulsrud
If you referred
to it as "Gulsrud University" probably half the people
you talk to would know you meant PLU. There are more Gulsruds
and friends of Gulsruds with a PLU connection than you can count.
as volunteer members of the PLU Parents Council, Peter '76 and
Mary Ellen (Ezell '77) Gulsrud are part of a clan that is Lute
to the core. Among them is daughter Natalie, a PLU junior who
was recently awarded the prestigious Udall Scholarship for her
work in environmental policy. Peter's father, Ernest, was a PLC
regent in the 1940s and later a founder of California Lutheran
University. "PLU has been a perfect fit for my family for
generations," Peter said. "Maybe it's our Scandinavian
heritage, I don't know. But I do know that at PLU we have just
fit right in."
Mary Ellen were high school sweethearts who went their separate
ways to college. After a visit to see Peter at PLU, Mary Ellen
realized that the California state school she was attending was
the wrong choice. She soon transferred.
amazed. There was a real strong sense of support and caring for
each other at PLU. It just felt right," Mary Ellen said. "And
it's still true. Natalie is experiencing the same atmosphere, the
same combination of challenge and support that we did."
discovered that the Parents Council really does make a difference
feeling fully prepared for the world of nursing," said Mary
Ellen, a registered nurse in IV therapy now studying for a credential
as a legal nurse. "My education has never let me down and
I am proud that Natalie will feel the same." The Gulsruds
say that is the reason why they are staying involved at PLU as
all of the PLU activities held in their hometown, Spokane. At recruiting,
alumni or fund raising events, they answer questions and relay their
and Natalie's experiences at PLU.
When recruiters from PLU come to the high school where Peter teaches
science, he meets with students who have shown an interest and gives
them his insider's perspective.
"On the Parents Council we are able to support other parents
and offer the university advice on how things might be improved
from a parent's perspective," Peter said. "Mary Ellen
and I can also bring the perspective of a long affiliation with
PLU to the council and that is something the other members appreciate."
is the Parents Council?
by the Office of Alumni and Parent Relations, the PLU Parents
Council is comprised of parents or families of full-time
undergraduate students at PLU. Their objective is to generate
and maintain the goodwill and support of parents of the
university. Members serve as a vehicle to inform other parents
about all aspects of the university, strive to promote the
welfare and advancement of the university, and to encourage
participation in PLU activities. Activities include serving
as hosts in residence halls and hosting question/answer
session for parents during orientation, phoning new parents
to the university in the parent-to-parent calling program,
and serving as resource persons in local communities.
have served on the PLU Parents Council for three years.
discovered that the Parents Council really does make a difference,"
Peter said. "In the past we have raised concerns about lighting
on campus and Mary Ellen has requested changes in health care information
provided by the university. In every case the university has followed
family makes it a point to visit campus about twice a year. "Homecoming
has become a real family tradition for us," Mary Ellen said.
"We attend the game, stop by Afterglow, and stop by the bookstore
to pick up PLU hats and shirts for our boys. They love coming to
It seems that
sons Philip, 12, and David, 10, are getting an early taste of "Gulsrud
University." Look for them in the classes of '10 and '12.
and Carol Abodeely
and Kathryn Baerwald
and Susan Berentsen
and Anne Buck (chairs)
and Jeanne Castello
and Ann Hockert
and Donald Greetan
'76 and Mary Ellen
(Ezen '77) Gulsrud
and Linda Jamieson
Berg and Marylou Knudsen
Eagle River, Alaska
'68 and Shirley '69 Oakley
and Lynn '77 Olson
Port Orchard, Wash.
and Mary Renne
West Linn, Ore.
and Linda Spiedel
and Cynthia Stabbert
and Rosemary Stewart
and Karen Takenouchi
'75 and Martha '75 Teigen
and Yvonne Van Nostran
and Wendey Weathers
and Sue Wolbrecht