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Alumna finds good fit at PLU

June 28, 2010

Even after graduation, a way to stay involved – 65 years later

By Chris Albert

When Annabelle Birkestol ’45 was deciding which college to go to, her mother gave her an offer she couldn’t refuse. Check out Pacific Lutheran University and, if you go there, I’ll pay for it, Birkestol was told.

It was also a good fit for Birkestol, who describes her experience on campus as one of the happiest times of her life.

Annabelle Birkestol ’45

Annabelle Birkestol ’45.

Plus, she found her calling as a teacher. That value in education is something she still carries with her.

When I graduated it was the happiest day of my life and the saddest day because I knew I wouldn’t be able to live on campus anymore,” she said. But that didn’t keep her from supporting a place she enjoyed so much. For a number of years, Birkestol has contributed to the funding of Eastvold Hall, the Mary Baker Russell Music Center and much more.

She’s given an annual Q Club gift since 1979 and has also contributed to the Scandinavian Cultural Center. Most recently,she made a gift to Project Access.

I think they are doing good work in helping students find their way and training young people to go out into the world and make a difference,” Birkestol said. “I think the more young people that are exposed to an education that you get at PLU the better this world will be.”