Luther College, Decorah, Iowa, won a 2012 Climate Leadership Award from Second Nature. Ten awards were given nationally, only two of which went to baccalaureate colleges. Given by the lead organization of the American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment, the award recognizes steps taken to reduce an institution's carbon footprint. Luther's climate-friendly actions include teaching sustainability within the academic curriculum; producing a third of the college's electricity via a 1.65 megawatt wind turbine; constructing a $1.2 million solar energy field; biodiesel-powered vehicles; and state of the art recycling, composting and locally grown food practices.
Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, Wash., alumnus William Foege received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama May 29 for playing a crucial role in the eradication of smallpox in the 1970s. Foege was one of 13 people awarded the Medal of Freedom — the highest civilian honor in the country. Other recipients included astronaut John Glenn, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and singer Bob Dylan. "These extraordinary honorees come from different backgrounds and different walks of life," Obama said on the White House website. "But each of them has made a lasting contribution to the life of our nation."
The Chapel Choir of Capital University, Columbus, Ohio, competed against more than 100 other groups at the World Choir Games in Cincinnati in July. Its choir was invited to participate at the "Champions" level of competition based on qualifying appearances, recordings and musical artistry. It was the group's first appearance at the World Choir Games. Capital won gold medals in the categories of mixed choirs and sacred music.
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