Alan Nolte MS
MS Ed Graduate
It’s not often that a person’s vocation and avocation – occupation and hobby – are the same. But according to Alan Nolte, his career in Lutheran education is balanced by his outside interest in, well, Lutheran education.
“I have a passion for education and enjoy exploring new trends and techniques,” Nolte says when asked about his hobbies. “I have also been blessed to serve on the WELS StEM (Strengthening Educators for Ministry) committee for the last few years, studying ways to improve and strengthen our synod's educational system.”
Nolte, a 2000 MLC graduate with a secondary math degree, served as principal for five years at Zion-Toledo OH before being called to Fox Valley LHS as a math and computer instructor. After a year, he became FVL’s assistant principal, charged with overseeing curriculum.
As a person who follows educational trends and takes his role as a Lutheran educational leader seriously, he found MLC’s Master of Science in Education program to be the right fit.
“The courses I took were very applicable to my ministry,” he says. “I was able to connect with teachers in other Lutheran elementary and high schools just like myself. We were able to learn together and grow together with the unique kinds of ministry challenges that we have facing us as Lutheran, Christian educators.
“I’m very impressed and tremendously pleased with the quality of the MLC faculty,” he continues. “They have a number of professors, not only from Martin Luther College, but across the country, who teach us younger professionals in the ministry how to conduct our work on behalf of God’s kingdom.”
As almost every grad student attests, the flexibility of MLC’s program was a plus for Nolte. “As both a grade school principal and a high school administrator, it was hard to take courses in person with a teacher. Being able to take online coursework throughout the school year and summer allowed me to focus my time on my ministry during the day and do study work on the side.”
The most important thing to Nolte, though, was that MLC’s program is Christ-centered. “It was critically important as I continued my education to remain connected to God’s Word, to grow in my knowledge of how to apply God’s Word, keeping in mind that my students’ spiritual welfare and eternal wellbeing were the keys and the goals of my ministry.”
Nolte hopes others feel the same: “For anyone considering becoming a part of the Martin Luther College graduate program, I would encourage them to know and hold dear to their hearts the value of God’s Word and the importance of continuing to grow, not only in teaching and teaching instructional practices, but also in Christian, Lutheran teaching instructional practices.”
And when that growth occurs not only individually but with other Christians, the result, Nolte says, is “a future generation of leaders for our synod and for God’s people.”
Alan Nolte is married to Melissa Townswick Nolte, a graduate of Bethany Lutheran College and Martin Luther College ’99. They have three daughters, Emma, Elise, and Greta. The family enjoys camping, swimming, and traveling.
written by Laurie Gauger