Pacific Lutheran University student-athletes find inspiration across campus from both faculty and staff. As a part of D3Week, several PLU student-athletes shared their favorite leaders in academic department and support staff positions across campus. This week also launched the department's giving campaign "Celebrating the Lutes Championship Experience." To learn more about the campaign or to donate click HERE.
"During an 8 a.m. class he brought so much energy to the table. He was honest and truthful. He worked so hard through law school and talked about his experiences to us. He applied law and ethics to life in general. He pushed all of us to work hard and challenge ourselves. I learned more from that class than any other class. Ralph inspired me to push myself and try something difficult even if you have doubts, but have a positive attitude when doing it."
-Accounting major Neely Harding (women's track and field)
"Ralph's class was very enjoyable and I appreciated how much effort he put into his in-class activities and he enjoyed doing it."
Business major Cole Weaver (men's soccer)
"Professor Maeng has always been an extremely caring and thoughtful professor. I took two classes from him during two separate semesters. He took time to learn each student's name as well as bringing in treats for the class on Valentine's Day to make sure everyone had a small gift. It seems that often in business, people expect individuals to be focused only on profit or growing their company. Professor Maeng taught my class the importance of taking care of those around you. He reminds me that in any company, people are your most important asset."
-Business major Garrett Hittner (men's track & field)
"Mark inspires me because of the excellence he achieves in all areas of his life. Teaching, research, family, and his relationships with students. He is very dedicated to his work but even more dedicated to making sure he has a great relationship with all of his students and colleagues. I had the pleasure of taking multiple of Mark's classes and I can assure you he is one of the best professor's at this university and most definitely the school of business. He is always open to talking with students about life and even had my capstone class over to his house for breakfast with his family. Mark is a true inspiration to me."
-Business major Carson Barnett (football)
"As Chemistry Club advisor and my research mentor, he has challenged me to stretch my knowledge while giving me clear guidance on how to reach our goals as a club and in our research."
-Chemistry major Kasey Johnson (men's basketball)
"He believes in his students and works extremely hard to make his students feel like they can succeed in his class, and in all aspects of their lives. He is always available to chat about any difficulties in learning or about anything in general. He also follows PLU athletics. He encourages his students to step out of their comfort zones and achieve higher than they thought they could. He will do anything he can to help a student succeed, and is very inclusive and open-minded,"
-Biology major Ethan Kromberg (football)
"Sean is a fantastic teacher who understands and supports his students. He connects with his students on personal levels, and I appreciate it. I missed class one day because I had to put my dog down. The next time I showed up to class, he shared his condolences and his experience going through the same situation. Sean is very passionate and empathetic, and it is a joy being in his class."
-Communications major Madison Buhl (softball)
"He inspires me because I relate to him so much. I want to be able to act like him. He is also a genius writer and I have learned so much from him and I'm not even half way done with this class. Utmost respect for my man, Professor Robinson!"
-Communication major Wesley Nixon (baseball and football)
"Dr. Wells looks for and finds potential in every student. He made my J-Term class my first year fun and meaningful, which ultimately helped me decide on my major of Journalism. He saw in me an ability to write and has never stopped pushing me to get better. Sometimes he's been hard on me but always honest and always extremely helpful. He has put his foot in the door for me at publications around Tacoma that I've wanted to intern at and with his help I've been able to write for the Peninsula Gateway, the Olympian, and the Tacoma News Tribune as well as attend a videography workshop at Duke University. Dr. Wells has is dedicated to helping his students reach success after graduation. His work ethic, expertise, and ability to believe in others inspires me to believe in myself."
-Communication major Camille Lemke (women's rowing)
"Dr. Peterson inspired me by the way he treated his students and the way he delivered his course content to us. In his class I always felt that I was treated with respect and that I could ask questions and participate in discussion that helped further my learning and understanding of the subject. The way in which Dr. Peterson lectured the class and delivered material was always incredibly engaging and pushed me to truly understand the major concepts before moving on to the next topic. My experience in Dr. Peterson's class was one of my best at PLU and really set me up well for success in my future courses."
-Financial mathematics Kyle Rapacz (men's cross country and track & field)
"Wendy Gardiner has opened my eyes to the need of diverse books in our classrooms today. Before taking Wendy's classes I was skeptical of my choice of getting an endorsement in education, but due to her excitement and love for literature, my increased excitement and love for literature has changed my idea of my choice. She believes that classrooms need to have books that act as windows into other worlds, mirrors into your own world, and doors to step into other worlds for all students,"
-Education major Connor Bates (men's cross country and track & field)
"Alex brings such a contagious positive attitude and passion to class everyday, and it makes staying engaged so much easier during lectures. I hope to find the same passion in whatever career I end up in after PLU."
-Geosciences major Kyle James (men's basketball)
"Claire is not only a fantastic professor that brings energy and enthusiasm to every single class, but she is also a very understanding if athletes have conflicts and need to miss class or lab for athletic activities. She was very supportive and helpful when I had to miss our first two lab sessions because of games and I have seen her do the same thing for other athletes too. Professors like Claire need to be recognized more often because it means a lot to student-athletes to not have to worry about missing class or labs for their athletic activities."
-Environmental Studies and Politics and Government major Zac Webb (men's basketball)
"He has influenced me to believe in my abilities and continue to challenge myself academically. He has pushed the boundaries of what I thought I could accomplish as an undergrad and continues to share his passion for geology with all his students."
-Geosciences major Britt McCracken (women's cross country and track & field)
"Doreen inspires me with her unconditional kindness and care to every student that enters the health center."
-Psychology major Benjamin Blakely
"Dr. Farrar helped me find my vocation as a future PE teacher. I aspire to be as knowledgeable and motivating within our field as she is. I have taken many classes with her and she is my advisor. She is always there to help me and push me to be the best that I can. I am extremely grateful for her contributions to my education here at PLU."
-Health and fitness education major Bailey Plumb (softball)
"Without Dr. Farrar I never would have found my passion for becoming health and fitness educator. She inspires me to be the best teacher I can be, and is the best role model that a young teacher could hope for. She works her tail off to make sure that me and other Lutes will go out into the real world and be competent and effective teachers."
-Kinesiology major Charene Stovall (women's track and field)
"She has achieved so many things because she is such a hard worker. She believes that every student can achieve great things if they put in the work as well."
-Psychology major Mackenzie Harris (volleyball)
"She pushes me to challenge myself in new ways that I haven't before. She is the most intelligent, hard working women that I have ever met and it is a pleasure that I have her as one of my professors. She has impacted my life in such a positive way that there are no ways that I can repay her."
-Kinesiology major Anthony Gosline (baseball)
"Dr. Hacker inspires students day in and day out not just to be good students, but to be good human beings in the professional field. She pushes students to continuously educate themselves and to stay on top of research so that we can always be the best professional we can be. Day in and day out Dr. Hacker comes with the enthusiasm to make students passionate about their education."
-Kinesiology major Machaela Graddy (women's soccer and track & field)
"Dr. Hacker is one of the top sport psychologists in the nation. She has won multiple gold medals at the Winter and Summer Olympics, as well as national championships at the college level. Her professional accolades speak for themselves, but beyond that, she is one of the most inspirational professors I have gotten the opportunity to study under. She brings excitement to every topic that is covered in class and makes sure that every student is engaged. Her energy radiates throughout her classes and you can't help but be in awe of her desire to help others. Personally and professionally, she embodies the PLU spirit and truly changes the lives of people she encounters."
-Biology major Sarah Burns (women's soccer)
"Dr. Katica comes to class every single day with a mission to inspire my classmates and myself to learn the the material he has to share. He always has a smile on his face and is pumped up about what we are talking about in class, which makes me excited to be actively involved in his classroom each and every day. Dr. Katica also does amazing work outside of PLU in adapted sports. He is an incredible coach of a local wheelchair basketball team and inspires me to treat all people with respect regardless of their situation in life."
-Kinesiology major EJ Hurt (men's soccer)
"Dr. Katica always makes an effort to help others; whether it is his students, other faculty, or members in the community."
-Kinesiology major Sarah Stafford (women's swimming and rowing)
"He is always there for his students and student-athletes and takes pride in what he teaches. He teaches with meaning and real life application in order to make you a better specialist in the real world setting,"
-Kinesiology major Anna Lennox (softball)
"Lynn always has a smile on her face and is able to bring a positive light into the classroom and in the hallways. She inspires me to be positive and to always have fun!"
-Business major Lauren Furu (women's basketball)
"Constant enthusiasm, always trying to be the best she can, always will notice is someone is having a bad day. She is the energy, and light of the room."
-Social work major Kristin Sturdivan
"She inspires me to be the best nurse I can be. She makes me think critically about what I do in the nursing field and as a nursing student. She is fun, spunky, easy going, very willing to work and engage with students. She is caring and tells the best stories during class. She is a role model nursing instructor that cares deeply for her students.
-Nursing major Marri Kutz (women's swimming)
"Professor Cooper is the faculty adviser for athletics and makes sure that everyone's voice is heard in regard to any academic issues that may come up. He is a dedicated professor who seeks to inspire his students and make them think very hard at the all the philosophical discussion in his classes. He is at almost all of the home athletic events and it shows how supportive and dedicated he is towards the students at PLU outside the classroom as well. His hard work, dedication, kindness, and passion has inspired me ever since I met him my freshman year."
-Environmental Studies and Politics and Government major Zac Webb (men's basketball)
"Although I am not in a course with Dr. Trelstad this semester (or even this year), she takes time and has genuine interest in my welfare. Dr. Trelstad is one of the people on campus who exemplifies the "care" part of the mission statement at PLU, and has taught me through her example the value of upholding this principle."
-Communication major Hannah Peterson (women's rowing)
"By being a good trainer"
-Business major Rainier Schlekewey (men's soccer)
"Todd has one of the kindest hearts out there and exceptional charisma. He not only inspires student athletes of all kind but inspires me to walk with a smile on my face. He reminds us to have fun in what ever sport I or others are involved in."
-biomedical engineering major Alina Nussbaum (women's cross country and tennis)