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About WLC

Wisconsin Lutheran College (WLC) is an independent, residential, nationally ranked Christian college in Milwaukee that serves 1,200 traditional undergraduate, adult, and graduate students through its on-campus and online programming. The college, which prepares students for lives of Christian leadership, is recognized for its academic excellence and superior student experience. Caring, Christian faculty work directly with students, who benefit from numerous research, service, and co-curricular opportunities designed to enhance academic and spiritual growth.


    Degree programs at Wisconsin Lutheran College are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission's North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, 230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604; 800.621.7440.

    Nursing: The baccalaureate program at Wisconsin Lutheran College is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, 655 K Street NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20001; phone: 202.887.6791; fax: 202.887.8476. 

    Exercise Science: The exercise science program at Wisconsin Lutheran College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) upon recommendation of the Committee on Accreditation for the Exercise Sciences (CoAES). CAAHEP; 9355 113th St N, #7709; Seminole, FL 33775; 727-210-2350.

    Education: The programs of teacher education are approved by the  Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction

    Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction Areas of Certification

    Education Majors: Early Childhood, Elementary, Secondary, Wide Range (cover all levels and are available in Foreign Language, Art, Music, and Theatre)

    Majors and Minors: Art, Broadfield Social Studies, Biology, Broadfield Language Arts, Chemistry, Communication, English, German, History, Mathematics, Music, Psychology, Spanish, Theatre

    Minors Only: Coaching, Language Art, Natural Science, Social Studies, Speech


    The students, faculty, staff, and alumni of Wisconsin Lutheran College (WLC) make a meaningful economic impact on the Milwaukee area and the state of Wisconsin. This impact can be measured in terms of jobs, government revenue, charitable donations, and volunteer service.

    In October 2014, WLC commissioned an independent third party, Tripp Umbach, to measure the economic, employment, and government revenue impacts of operations, research, and community service of WLC's Milwaukee campus and satellite locations. The overall economic and fiscal impact that WLC has on the vitality of the state and region includes the following elements:

    • Economic impacts.
    • The direct and indirect employment impacts of the college.
    • The government revenue impact of WLC at the local and state levels.
    • The impact of WLC alumni on the economy.

    The results of the economic impact study show that operations of WLC positively affect Wisconsin residents, generating $44.9 million annually, with an employment impact of 597 jobs. WLC's significant impact in the Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis metropolitan statistical area totals $40.4 million annually, supporting 529 jobs.

    State and local government revenues attributable to the presence of WLC totaled $2.5 million in the college's 2013-2014 fiscal year. Through WLC's local spending, as well as support of jobs, the presence of the college stabilizes and strengthens the local and statewide tax base. WLC is an integral part of the state's economy, generating revenue, jobs, and spending.

    A key component of WLC's mission is to prepare students for lives of Christian leadership, which is evident in the report. It is estimated that the college's employees and students provide more than $2.7 million annually in charitable donations and volunteer services.


    2021-2022 Fast Facts

    • Total enrollment: 1,104
    • Traditional undergraduate enrollment: 953
    • Undergraduate student-faculty ratio: 12:1
    • Average undergraduate class size: 17
    • Undergraduate student demographics: 30 states and 4 foreign countries
    • Percent of resident undergraduate students: 69%
    • Undergraduate student population: 97% are 18-22 years old
    • Freshman profile: 3.54 average high school GPA
    • Freshman profile: 24.6 average ACT (for those who submitted test scores)
    • Financial assistance: 99% of full-time traditional undergraduate students were awarded financial aid
    • Financial assistance: 100% of freshmen were awarded financial aid
    • Co-curricular activities: member of NCAA Division III and Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference; 19 varsity sports; intramural and club sports; concert band and six ensembles; three choirs; 40+ clubs and organizations

    Updated 10/22/2021


    Campus photo from 1977

    When a handful of dedicated Christian men gathered to organize this liberal arts college in the early 1970s, they had little more than a strong faith in God and great determination. They had no facilities and no faculty. By the grace of God they opened the junior college in the fall of 1973 with a part-time faculty and two dozen students. It wasn't until two years later that the school, affiliated with the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, had its first full-time president.

    Wisconsin Lutheran College purchased facilities in 1977: five buildings on an eight and a half acre campus. In 1982, the college purchased the library holdings from Milton College, which was closing. In 1983, the college purchased the science laboratory furnishings of the closing University of Wisconsin-Medford Center, another addition that helped the college pursue a dream: to become a four-year college.

    The Board of Regents approved a comprehensive curriculum plan in 1984, and an evaluation team from the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools concurred with the Board's decision, agreeing that the necessary planning and resources existed to enable Wisconsin Lutheran College to move toward accreditation as a baccalaureate degree-granting institution.

    In 1985, two and a half acres adjacent to the college were purchased for future campus development. In May of 1987, the first 12 students graduated from the new four-year curriculum with baccalaureate degrees, and the college was granted initial accreditation. Accreditation status by the Higher Learning Commission was reaffirmed in 2005 and 2015. From 1988 to 2004, seven buildings were constructed on campus. In 2005 the Outdoor Athletic Complex was developed on land near campus, and the Outdoor Athletic Center opened in 2011. A new residence hall with classrooms opened in 2014.

    Dr. Gary J. Greenfield served as the college's first full-time president; he retired in June of 2003. Dr. Timothy J. Kriewall was inaugurated as the second president in September of 2003; he retired in June of 2008. Dr. Daniel W. Johnson was inaugurated as the college's third president in April of 2009. In 2010, the college began offering an adult accelerated degree completion program and Master of Arts degrees.

    To God be the Glory!


    Mission of Wisconsin Lutheran College

    Wisconsin Lutheran College, affiliated with the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, is a Lutheran liberal arts college for Christian men and women. The college is committed to providing quality teaching, scholarship, and service that are rooted in Holy Scripture; promoting the spiritual growth of students, faculty, and staff; and preparing students for lives of Christian leadership.


    Wisconsin Lutheran College strives to establish a distinctive identity as one of America's finest liberal arts colleges characterized by faithfulness to the Scriptures and the Lutheran Confessions, rigorous pursuit of academic excellence, and dedication to preparing Christian leaders for the Church and the world.


    Wisconsin Lutheran College is a four-year liberal arts college affiliated with the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. It is located in Milwaukee. The college has a two-semester academic year and awards the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Bachelor of Applied Science, and Master of Arts degrees with liberal arts and professional majors and several pre-professional programs.



    Wisconsin Lutheran College is a Christian school of higher education offering a program in the arts and sciences. Realizing that in Christ "are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge," the college integrates God's truths into every discipline, helping students relate their faith to life in today's world. Its primary purpose is to provide higher education for students interested in the arts and sciences taught within the framework of Christian doctrine. Although Wisconsin Lutheran College programs are designed for job preparation and upgrading, they are all the more concerned with preparing young Christian men and women to face life and deal with it through the application of Christian principles found in God's Word.


    The college is owned and operated by a corporation whose members consist of WELS congregations from across the country. The Board of Regents directs the overall activities of the college in consultation with and through the administrative offices of the college including the college president and the various vice presidents.

    The academic offerings and student services described in the catalog represent a description of Wisconsin Lutheran College as it ordinarily operates. However, the college reserves the right to make changes as circumstances warrant.


    1. Declaration of Faith

      Wisconsin Lutheran College believes, teaches and confesses that the 66 canonical books of the Old and New Testaments--in all their words and all their parts--are the inspired and inerrant Word of God, that these Holy Scriptures are the only source and authority for Christian doctrine and life, that they are efficacious in presenting God's plan of salvation through Law and Gospel, and that they are sufficient and clear in revealing God's truth. Wisconsin Lutheran College believes, teaches, and confesses all the symbols of the Evangelical Lutheran Church as contained in the Book of Concord of 1580 without reservation, not insofar as, but because they are a correct presentation and explanation of the Word of God and a summary of the faith of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. These symbols are the three ecumenical Creeds (Apostles', Nicene, and Athanasian), Dr. Martin Luther's Small Catechism, Dr. Martin Luther's Large Catechism, the Unaltered Augsburg Confession, the Apology of the Augsburg Confession, the Smalcald Articles, and the Formula of Concord.

    2. Adherence

      All that is done or taught at Wisconsin Lutheran College shall be in accordance with the Word of God. Likewise, any controversies or disputes shall be settled by the norm of Holy Scripture.

    3. Confessional Affiliation

      Wisconsin Lutheran College shall maintain confessional fellowship only with a church body that holds to all the truths of God's Word in doctrine and practice and is bound to the confession of faith set forth in this philosophy if, and as long as, such a church body exists.

    4. Principles of Education

      Wisconsin Lutheran College accepts the principle that education is inseparable from religion, that all knowledge in all areas of human thought and endeavor is worthy of inquiry when viewed in the light of human sin and divine grace. It is also committed to the total development of its students, not just intellectually, but also spiritually, emotionally, physically, and socially. In this Christian college the main source of life and growth is God's Word. As members of the Body of Christ, all serve and are served, all teach and all learn. All recognize that the freedom of the Christian life lies within the bounds set forth in Holy Scripture.


    Wisconsin Lutheran College is a nonprofit entity and has tax-exempt status under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.