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California Lutheran University

California Lutheran University

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California Lutheran University (CLU also known as Cal Lutheran) is a university
A university is an institution of higher education and research, which grants academic degrees in a variety of subjects. A university is an organisation that provides both undergraduate education and postgraduate education...

 of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America is a mainline Protestant denomination headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. The ELCA officially came into existence on January 1, 1988, by the merging of three churches. As of December 31, 2009, it had 4,543,037 baptized members, with 2,527,941 of them...

 located in Thousand Oaks
Thousand Oaks, California
Thousand Oaks is a city in southeastern Ventura County, California, in the United States. It was named after the many oak trees that grace the area, and the city seal is adorned with an oak....

, California
California is a state located on the West Coast of the United States. It is by far the most populous U.S. state, and the third-largest by land area...


Mission statement

The University's mission statement is as follows:

"California Lutheran University is a selective institution offering undergraduate and graduate degrees in the liberal arts and sciences and professional fields. Rooted in the Lutheran tradition of Christian faith, the University encourages critical inquiry into matters of both faith and reason. The mission of the University is to educate leaders for a global society who are strong in character and judgment, confident in their identity and vocation, and committed to service and justice." http://www.callutheran.edu/about/quick_facts.php


CLU was founded in 1959 as California Lutheran College (the name was changed to University in 1986) on farmland donated by the Pederson family, who were among many Scandinavian immigrants populating the hills of Thousand Oaks. The Scandinavian influence has stayed with the school since its founding. Every spring, a cultural festival is held on campus to celebrate the Scandinavian heritage of the school and the Conejo Valley. Many buildings on campus and streets in the area are named for prominent Scandinavians who helped establish CLU.

Orville Dahl, Ed. D. was the first president of the College from 1959–1962. Dahl had many ambitious dreams for what the college was to become. He originally thought that the Pederson and Thompson dormitories would be hotels for on campus guests and families of students. These residence halls are still in use for present day freshmen. Dahl had dreamed of developing a North campus near Mount Clef. He also brought the university's first football coach, Robert Shoup, to the campus in 1962. Shoup used an orange orchard for football practice and used the local high school stadium for home games for the first two seasons. He won 13 NAIA District 3 Championships in 17 years. The Kingsmen appeared in the playoffs five times, winning the NAIA National Championship in 1971. He was named NAIA Coach of the Year in 1971.

In 2010, California Lutheran University was ranked 18th among Regional Universities in the West by U.S. News and World Report.

Chris Kimball, Ph.D., became the seventh President of California Lutheran University in April 2008 and was officially inaugurated into that position on April 26, 2009. Dr. Kimball became President after serving as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.

In October of 2011, the Huffington Post Los Angeles said in an article that economists on staff at the University's Center for Economic Research and Forecasting thought that the state of California was becoming a "post-industrialized" state, according to the director of the center, Bill Watkins.

Accreditations and Affiliations

CLU is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities of the Western Association of Schools and
Colleges. The School of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. The Financial
Planning Program has been registered with the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. CLU is one of 28 colleges and
universities affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and is a member of the National Association of Independent
Colleges and Universities, Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities, and Council of Independent
Colleges. CLU’s intercollegiate athletic programs compete in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, NCAA
Division III.


The 225 acres (91.1 ha) campus occupies a gently sloping hillside amid the rolling hills of Southern California. http://www.callutheran.edu/directory/map.php
Currently, the CLU campus is in the midst of an expansion. A new athletics complex, Gilbert Sports and Fitness Center, nearly doubled the size of the developed campus with its completion in 2006. Along with the new athletics center there is Samuelson Aquatic Center and an adjacent community pool. Two new residence halls – Grace Hal and Trinity Hall – were opened on the southwest side of campus.

The former chicken coops of the Pederson Ranch were converted into classrooms by Jefferson A. Elmendorf, the same architect who designed The Centrum and other campus buildings. Elmendorf worked with Dr. Dahl in planning the campus. Elmendorf's architecture is quite distinctive and may be seen throughout Ventura and Los Angeles counties.

A new academic building, Swenson Center for the Social and Behavioral Sciences opened in Fall 2010. This new facility, CLU's first LEED Certified building,is located where the tennis courts were situated on the South side of campus. A new Poulson Tennis Center opened on the North side of campus in 2008.

The 50th Anniversary Year

The 2009–2010 academic year at CLU represented the school's 50th anniversary as an established university. New facilities include a new building for the KCLU radio station and an Early Childhood Center. These new facilities will be located on the rapidly expanding North Campus. Trinity Hall, a new 220-bed residence hall, is located on the west side of campus near all the other upperclassmen residence halls. It is the largest residence hall on campus since the construction of the 180-bed Grace Hall in 2005.

Campus Layout

The campus of CLU is primarily organized by the four cardinal directions, with the North side, located across Olsen Road and backed up against Mt. Clef Ridge, serving as the primary center for athletics. Some North side facilities include: Gilbert Sports and Fitness Center, Samuelson Aquatic Center, Ullman Baseball Stadium and George Sparky Anderson Baseball Field, Hutton Softball Field, William Rolland Stadium (opened Fall 2011), Facilities Building and Yard, and a community pool for the City of Thousand Oaks.

The East side is the primary location for freshmen residence halls and some administrative offices. Some East side facilities include: Mt. Clef Residence Hall, Thompson Residence Hall, Pederson Residence Hall, University Dining Commons, Alumni Hall, Study Abroad Office, Centrum Cafe, Hanson Business Center and Pederson Administration Building.

The South side, also known as the Academic Core, is the primary location for the academic buildings on campus. Southside facilities include Soiland Humanities Building, Ahmanson Science Center, Spies-Bornemann Center for Education and Technology, Jamba Juice, Nygreen Hall, Peters Hall (School of Business), and Swenson Center for the Social and Behavioral Sciences (opened Fall 2010).

The West side is the primary location for upperclassmen housing. Some West side facilities include: Grace Hall Apartments, Mogen Hall Apartments (with the Mogen Market facility), Old West Complex (Afton, Janss, Rasmussen, and Conejo Residence Halls), New West Complex (North, South, West and Potenberg residence halls), and Trinity Hall (completed in 2009).


California Lutheran University claims to be a progressive liberal arts institution which encourages diverse programs of study, well-rounded student learning outcomes, and a commitment to learning about social, economic, and political justice. CLU boasts 36 academic majors and 31 minors, and students are allowed to double-major if they have the time. Students may earn a Bachelor of Arts degree or a Bachelor of Science degree, depending on their field of study. http://www.callutheran.edu/academics.php

College of Arts and Sciences

A vast majority of the school's academic departments are in the College of Arts and Sciences, with offices and classrooms in Soiland Humanities Center, Ahmanson Science Center, Swenson Center for the Social and Behavioral Sciences, Spies-Bornemann Center for Education and Technology and other buildings throughout the campus. There are 36 majors, including all the core academic subjects. Non-traditional majors include Bioengineering, Computer Information Systems, and Theology and Christian Leadership, to name a few. Students also have the option of selecting an Interdisciplinary Studies major which allows them to explore many different academic fields while at the same time earning a degree with an emphasis. The Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences is Dr. Joan Griffin. http://www.callutheran.edu/schools/cas/

Graduate Programs

For graduate students, the College of Arts and Sciences contains Master's degree programs in Psychology, Computer Science, Marriage and Family Therapy, and Public Policy and Administration. Some undergraduate students who intend to enter one of these programs upon completion of their undergraduate studies can choose to enroll in some graduate courses as an undergraduate, and obtain graduate-level course credits.

Graduate Programs in Computer Science

California Lutheran University keep Excellence and Service Computer (TOP+SPECIAL) Course Here
The work of computer scientists combines creativity with technological savvy to make the world more livable and convenient. California Lutheran University offers its Master of Science in Computer Science to enhance the skills and knowledge of computer professionals, and enable them to reach new heights in technological advancement.

School of Management

Containing all of CLU's business-related programs, the California Lutheran University School of Management employs many distinguished professors who have earned respect in their chosen fields prior to becoming professors. In addition, some professors have come from senior executive backgrounds and offer real-world experiences. The School of Management is based in Peters Hall. Students in the School of Management can major in Business Administration, Economics, or Accounting. The School of Management is headed by its dean, Dr. Charles T. Maxey. http://www.callutheran.edu/schools/business/

Graduate Programs in the School of Management

The School of Management at CLU offers a range of graduate programs including a traditional (part-time) Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree, a 12-month International Master of Business Administration (IMBA) degree (full-time, accelerated), a fully Online MBA, an MBA in Certified Financial Planning, an MS in Economics, an MS in Information Systems and Technology, and an MS in Computer Sciences. The MBA program offers professional tracks in Entrepreneurship, Finance, Information Technology, International Business, Management and Organizational Behavior, Marketing, and Non-Profit and Social Enterprise. The School of Management also offers a Post-MBA Certificate program. All programs are accredited by WASC and enjoy a solid reputation in the regional economy. Many graduate students come to CLU from around the world to study in the IMBA Program and to work in the United States. California Lutheran University School of Management's MBA program was ranked 66th in North America by the The 2010 QS World University Rankings.

School of Education

California Lutheran University's School of Education is a integrated scholarly community of educators, administrators, and like-minded learners who all desire to cultivate teachers for the betterment of all children's schooling, either at the elementary, secondary, or post-secondary levels. It is based out of the Spies-Bornemann Center for Education and Technology in the Academic Quarter. While primarily a graduate school, CLU undergraduate students can major in Liberal Studies, which qualifies them to teach elementary school and prepares them for the multiple-subject examinations (the CBEST and CSET) required by the State of California. While in this major, students take a Career Decisions in Education course that expose them to various facets of the education world, and allows them to participate in field studies at local elementary schools. The School of Education is headed by its dean, Dr. George Petersen. http://www.callutheran.edu/schools/education/

Graduate Programs in the School of Education

There are multiple Master's degree programs within the School of Education, as well as the Teacher Preparation program for California teachers. Students are able to obtain a Teaching Credential while at the same time earning credit toward their Master's of Education (M.Ed) degree. In addition to the Teacher Preparation program, students can obtain a Master's of Science in Counseling and Guidance or Educational Psychology, and a Master's of Arts in a wide variety of education-related administrative career fields, including Educational Technology, Educational Leadership, or School Site Leadership.

New to the California Lutheran University accredited curriculum is its first-ever doctoral program, introduced in 2006. Graduate students can obtain a Doctor of Education (Ed.D) degree in Educational Leadership from the School of Education. This program requires extensive field work and a dissertation defense, and graduates of the program usually go on to obtain careers in higher education or public school district leadership.

Residence Life

California Lutheran University maintains a policy of guaranteeing on-campus housing for all four years if students elect to do so. On-campus housing or living at home is required for freshmen and sophomores; however, juniors and seniors may elect to live off campus with friends. http://www.callutheran.edu/student_life/res_life/

Upperclassmen Housing

Once students move on to their sophomore, junior and senior years at CLU, they are allowed to choose which residence hall to live in on the "upperclassmen side" of campus, which is the West end of campus. This area contains the New West Complex (comprising four buildings: North, South, West, and Potenberg Halls), the Old West Complex (comprising four buildings: Afton, Janss, Rasmussen, and Conejo Halls), the Mogen Hall Apartments, Grace Hall, and Trinity Hall. Traditionally, New West attracts much of the sophomore housing, Old West the juniors, and Mogen and Grace the seniors. However, in recent years there has been a virtual complete mixing of sophomores, juniors and seniors all throughout Old West, New West, Mogen, Grace, and Trinity.

Special Housing Options and Graduate Housing

Kramer Court is a special housing option for undergraduate students. They are on the East side of campus and come fully furnished with a living room, two bedrooms, a backyard, and many other features not common to other on-campus housing. These units are application-based, and usually juniors and seniors occupy them. Recently, the third floor of Grace Hall has been converted to graduate student housing.

Student body

Cal Lutheran strives for a diverse student body of varying backgrounds, faiths, and ambitions. The current student body consists of approximately 3,931 students. CLU maintains close ties with several foreign organizations and educational institutions, and hosts exchange students from a variety of nations. Originating from 39 states and 56 countries, CLU’s student body represents a diversity of faiths and cultures. The University maintains its residential emphasis with 61 percent of traditional
undergraduate students living on campus. Average class size is 16 students. http://www.callutheran.edu/student_life/

ASCLU-G Student Government

The student government of California Lutheran University is, as of the 2009–2010 academic year, divided into three branches, all which possess different responsibilities. The ASCLU-G (Associated Students of California Lutheran University Government) comprises the Senate, Programs Board, and Executive Cabinet. For Senate and Programs Board, there are four elected positions available per class level as well as a transfer student, recorder, and commuter student position. The Executive Cabinet is made up largely of students who have served on ASCLU-G for one or more years, and contains the offices of the ASCLU President, Programs Board Director, Senate Director, Executive Recorder, and ASCLU Controller. Meetings are held Monday nights, and the entire student body is welcome to attend. Elections are held in Spring (for all positions for the next academic year), and in Fall (to elect the four freshmen positions and any unfilled spots from Spring). http://www.callutheran.edu/student_life/asclu/


The ASCLU Senate is primarily responsible for the financial needs of the students. Some of their duties include (but are not limited to): approving and allocating funds to new campus clubs, purchasing equipment for residence halls, and discussing and/or changing campus dining policies. The Senate is usually divided into three or four committees, headed by a committee chair (who has usually served on Senate for one or more years), and each has a specific jurisdiction regarding campus policies.

Programs Board

The ASCLU-G Programs Board is primarily responsible for planning, organizing, financing, and running many of the on- and off-campus events that go on throughout each academic year. The principle event that Programs Board is responsible for is known as Club Lu, a free event for traditional undergraduate students every Friday night. Each Club Lu is different; in the past, some Club Lu events have included rollerskating, on-campus dances, iceskating, bowling, movie nights, the Homecoming carnival, Christmas festivals, and talent shows. Programs Board is also responsible for planning larger off-campus events such as the Homecoming Dance and Spring Formal. Like Senate, Programs Board is divided into three or four committees, each headed by a committee chair (who has usually served on Programs Board for one or more years), and each is assigned specific events to plan throughout the academic year.

Scholarships and Financial Assistance

The Financial Aid Office offers helpful resources on how to bridge the gap between the cost of education and a family’s ability to pay. Awards of financial assistance to CLU students may include institutional scholarships, university grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, State Cal Grants, Federal Pell Grants, Academic Competitiveness Grants, SMART Grants, low interest Federal Stafford and Federal Perkins loans, and Federal Work-Study.

Kwan Fong Gallery of Art and Culture

The Kwan Fong Gallery in the Soiland Humanities Center was established by the Kwan Fong Charitable Foundation, co-founded by Maria Lee and Katie Yang, with the participation of Dr. Ed Tseng, Professor Emeritus of Political Science of California Lutheran University and Dean of International Education. Established in 1984, the foundation has supported hospitals, schools, and homes for the elderly and mentally challenged.

Maria Lee was a member of the California Lutheran University Board of Regents, and is a prominent artist combining traditional Chinese techniques with certain qualities of Western art to produce large canvases of great expression and freedom. Katie Yang is a celebrated diva of Cantonese opera, and also a painter who uses quotations from famous Cantonese opera as subjects for her work. She is well-known for her rendition of peonies.

Recognizing her contributions to international business and philanthropic work, Maria Lee received a Doctor of Law degree from California Lutheran University, and Katie Yang, for her work as a businesswoman, artist, actress, and eminent performances in Chinese opera as well as film, received a Doctor in Humane Letters from the university.

The Kwan Fong Gallery inaugurated its role in providing a venue for art in the Conejo Valley
Conejo Valley
The Conejo Valley is a region spanning both southeastern Ventura County and northwestern Los Angeles County in Southern California, United States...

 by an exhibit of the paintings of the sisters, as well as resplendent costumes worn by Ms. Yang on stage.

Since its establishment the gallery has become an important center for art in Ventura County, exhibiting works by Cyn McCurry, Gary Palmer, Christophe Cassidy, Morgan Alexander, Christopher Marshall and many others. Recently the gallery has seen residencies by artists become part of its programming, the first in 2007 by Dallas / Fort Worth based figurative painter Cyn McCurry.

Student Research and Publications

CLU is a research-intensive campus that strongly encourages all students to present and possibly publish their original undergraduate research. Multiple opportunities exist throughout the year for students to align with their professors in their chosen field of study to get research published in notable ways. Because of the wide variety of publication options, CLU students who participate in original undergraduate research are highly encouraged to attend graduate school in their chosen field.


CLU is a member of the NCAA
National Collegiate Athletic Association
The National Collegiate Athletic Association is a semi-voluntary association of 1,281 institutions, conferences, organizations and individuals that organizes the athletic programs of many colleges and universities in the United States...

 at the Division III level, playing as part of the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
The Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference is a college athletic conference that operates in the NCAA's Division III. The conference was founded in 1915 and it consists of twelve small private schools which are located in Southern California and organized into nine athletic programs...

. The following sports are offered for intercollegiate play on campus:
  • Men's teams (Kingsmen): Baseball
    Baseball is a bat-and-ball sport played between two teams of nine players each. The aim is to score runs by hitting a thrown ball with a bat and touching a series of four bases arranged at the corners of a ninety-foot diamond...

    , basketball
    Basketball is a team sport in which two teams of five players try to score points by throwing or "shooting" a ball through the top of a basketball hoop while following a set of rules...

    , cross country
    Cross country running
    Cross country running is a sport in which people run a race on open-air courses over natural terrain. The course, typically long, may include surfaces of grass and earth, pass through woodlands and open country, and include hills, flat ground and sometimes gravel road...

    , football
    American football
    American football is a sport played between two teams of eleven with the objective of scoring points by advancing the ball into the opposing team's end zone. Known in the United States simply as football, it may also be referred to informally as gridiron football. The ball can be advanced by...

    , golf
    Golf is a precision club and ball sport, in which competing players use many types of clubs to hit balls into a series of holes on a golf course using the fewest number of strokes....

    , soccer
    Football (soccer)
    Association football, more commonly known as football or soccer, is a sport played between two teams of eleven players with a spherical ball...

    , swimming
    Swimming (sport)
    Swimming is a sport governed by the Fédération Internationale de Natation .-History: Competitive swimming in Europe began around 1800 BCE, mostly in the form of the freestyle. In 1873 Steve Bowyer introduced the trudgen to Western swimming competitions, after copying the front crawl used by Native...

    , tennis
    Tennis is a sport usually played between two players or between two teams of two players each . Each player uses a racket that is strung to strike a hollow rubber ball covered with felt over a net into the opponent's court. Tennis is an Olympic sport and is played at all levels of society at all...

    , track and field, and water polo
    Water polo
    Water polo is a team water sport. The playing team consists of six field players and one goalkeeper. The winner of the game is the team that scores more goals. Game play involves swimming, treading water , players passing the ball while being defended by opponents, and scoring by throwing into a...

  • Women's teams (Regals): Basketball, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, track and field, volleyball
    Volleyball is a team sport in which two teams of six players are separated by a net. Each team tries to score points by grounding a ball on the other team's court under organized rules.The complete rules are extensive...

    , and water polo.

In all, there are 10 men's sports and 10 women's sports.


Main article: KCLU-FM

KCLU-FM Radio, an award-winning National Public Radio station located on California Lutheran University's campus. The station services Ventura County, California
Ventura County, California
Ventura County is a county in the southern part of the U.S. state of California. It is located on California's Pacific coast. It is often referred to as the Gold Coast, and has a reputation of being one of the safest populated places and one of the most affluent places in the country...

 at a radio frequency
Radio frequency
Radio frequency is a rate of oscillation in the range of about 3 kHz to 300 GHz, which corresponds to the frequency of radio waves, and the alternating currents which carry radio signals...

 of 88.3 MHz and Santa Barbara, California
Santa Barbara, California
Santa Barbara is the county seat of Santa Barbara County, California, United States. Situated on an east-west trending section of coastline, the longest such section on the West Coast of the United States, the city lies between the steeply-rising Santa Ynez Mountains and the Pacific Ocean...

 at a frequency of 102.3 MHz.

University presidents

  • Orville Dahl
    Orville Dahl
    Orville Dahl was an American academic. Orville Dahl, Ed. D. was the first president of California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, California from 1959-1962.-Biography:...

    , Ed.D., 1959–1962
  • Raymond Olson, D.D., 1963–1971
  • Mark Mathews, D.B.A., 1972–1980
  • Jerry Miller, D.D., 1981–1992
  • Luther S. Luedtke, Ph.D., 1992–2006
  • John R. Sladek, Ph.D., 2006–2007
  • Chris Kimball, Ph.D., 2008–

Notable alumni

  • Hank Bauer – retired special teams player San Diego Chargers
    San Diego Chargers
    The San Diego Chargers are a professional American football team based in San Diego, California. they were members of the Western Division of the American Football Conference in the National Football League...

    , 1977–82
  • Jacquelynne Fontaine
    Jacquelynne Fontaine
    Jacquelynne Fontaine is an opera singer and beauty queen from Oxnard, California. She held the title of Miss California 2006, finished in the top 10 and won a preliminary talent award at Miss America in 2007.-Biography:...

     – 2006 Miss California.
  • Kevin Gross
    Kevin Gross
    Kevin Frank Gross , is a former Major League Baseball pitcher who played from 1983 through 1997.Gross played for five different teams during his career: the Philadelphia Phillies , Montreal Expos , Los Angeles Dodgers , Texas Rangers , and Anaheim Angels...

     – retired Major League Baseball
    Major League Baseball
    Major League Baseball is the highest level of professional baseball in the United States and Canada, consisting of teams that play in the National League and the American League...

     All-Star pitcher.
  • Rich Hill
    Rich Hill
    -Places:* Rich Hill, Arizona, an early gold mine near Weaver, Arizona* Rich Hill , listed on the NRHP in Maryland* Rich Hill , listed on the NRHP in Maryland* Rich Hill, Missouri, a city in Missouri...

    – Former Head Baseball Coach.
  • Jason Hirsh
    Jason Hirsh
    Jason Michael Hirsh is a starting pitcher in Major League Baseball who is a free agent.Hirsh was a dominant minor league pitcher in 2005–06, winning the Double-A Texas League Pitcher of the Year Award and the Triple-A Pacific Coast League Pitcher of the Year Award in successive seasons, as he went...

     – Major League Baseball pitcher.
  • Brian Kelley
    Brian Kelley (football linebacker)
    Brian Lee Kelley is a former American football linebacker in the National Football League who played his entire career for the New York Giants after being drafted in the fourteenth round of the 1973 NFL Draft.Kelley grew up in Fullerton, California, where he was an outstanding athlete at Sunny...

     – retired linebacker New York Giants
    New York Giants
    The New York Giants are a professional American football team based in East Rutherford, New Jersey, representing the New York City metropolitan area. The Giants are currently members of the Eastern Division of the National Football Conference in the National Football League...

    , 1973–83.
  • Rod Marinelli
    Rod Marinelli
    Rodney Marinelli is the defensive coordinator and assistant head coach of the Chicago Bears. He is the former head coach of the Detroit Lions...

     – Former Head Coach of the Detroit Lions
    Detroit Lions
    The Detroit Lions are a professional American football team based in Detroit, Michigan. They are members of the North Division of the National Football Conference in the National Football League , and play their home games at Ford Field in Downtown Detroit.Originally based in Portsmouth, Ohio and...

    , 2006–2008.

External links