Karen came to MLC after serving the Lord in a variety of ways: a teacher at St. Mark-Citrus Heights CA and Trinity-Waukesha WI, a ChristLight editor/writer at Northwestern Publishing House, an administrative secretary at Christ-Pewaukee WI, and a paraprofessional at Wisconsin Lutheran High School and New Ulm public schools.
She also led women’s Bible study in a local county jail as a volunteer for Wisconsin Lutheran Institutional Ministries for ten years. “It was a great blessing to me,” she says, “and I still keep in touch with a dear Christian friend whom I met in the jail through the ministry.”
Now Karen works with graduate and continuing ed students at MLC, scheduling, processing applications, and overseeing tuition payments. While summer brings a general slowing-down for many at MLC, it’s Karen’s busiest time of year as she helps coordinate the enrollment of 500+ students in 60+ courses.
“It’s a privilege and honor to serve the Lord among the service-minded campus faculty and staff at Martin Luther College,” she says. “It’s a joyful encouragement to meet and communicate with our many dedicated students—teachers, staff ministers, and laypeople—from near and far. I also enjoy finding new ways to use technology to increase efficiency in our office.”
Karen is married to David Schroeder, an MLC history professor. They were blessed with two sons. “Parenting our two beautiful sons was a most profound lesson in trust of our loving, gracious Lord,” Karen explains. “Carl and Jeff are now safely home with Jesus after being afflicted with leukodystrophy, a rare genetic disorder. This brain development abnormality robbed them of much of their motor abilities and eventually their lives.” She and David continue to enjoy their parents, brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews and, more recently, grandnieces and grandnephews.
Karen loves traveling, having visited Ukraine, the United Kingdom, Amsterdam, northern France, and many places in the United States. She’s a reader, explaining that after reading many classic novels in her earlier years, she now enjoys the books of the Bible, Christian History magazine, and occasionally the Wall Street Journal. Her favorite movie is Seabiscuit, which reminds her of riding horses in her youth, and her favorite composers are Bach, Brahms, and Martin Luther. She also enjoys exercising and recently completed New Ulm’s 4.2-mile Jingle Bell Jam. “It was a challenging, exhilarating experience!”
We’re blessed to have Karen on our staff, and she is happy to be here as well. “After many years of trying to find the ‘perfect career,’” she says, “I continue to rejoice that the Lord’s plan and place for me is always best.”