Lisa Kramme ’87 Returns to Midland University as Director for Campus Ministry and Spiritual Wellness
Midland University is excited to announce the addition of Lisa Kramme ‘87 as its new Director for Campus Ministry and Spiritual Wellness.
Kramme arrives at Midland after spending the past 14 years as Director for Faith Formation at the Nebraska Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Prior to that, Kramme served as Director of Academic Support Services at Midland from 1997-2005, then was Assistant Dean of Students from 2005-08.
“I’ve been discerning for the past several months about what the next step in my career would look like,” Kramme said. “I had some wonderful conversations with Kristina Cammarano (Vice President for Student Affairs & Chief Diversity Officer at Midland) and it became clear to me that this position was the next step. I’m excited to get started and begin the process of meeting with the Midland community.”
Cammarano believes Kramme’s background and experience will be valuable assets to the university. “By adding spiritual wellness to the scope of the Director for Campus Ministry role, my hope was that we would find someone who could help Midland honor its ELCA roots, while expanding programming to meet the broader needs of whole person development,” she said. “Lisa is the right person, at the right time, to help us take steps forward in expanding service learning and our Warrior Cupboard program, while also helping us continue to grow in supporting spiritual wellness across campus.”
What is most appealing to Kramme about the role is all the different avenues in which she will be able to help individuals across campus. Through service learning days, the Warrior Open Cupboard pantry, and connecting with students about their spiritual well-being, Kramme believes there are many ways to impact students. “Everything we talked about sounded amazing to me,” she said. “When you begin to assess everything we need across campus, it’s exciting to think about all the possibilities.”
At her core, Kramme’s ambition is to help and support students in whatever capacity is needed. Whether that means helping them through spiritual guidance, or simply lending a listening ear. “One thing that has me so excited is that I will have the opportunity to support people every day,” she said. “Students are facing so many questions at this time of their lives as they transition into a new phase of discovering who they are. They are going to have questions and concerns, and I hope to be alongside them listening to their stories. I won’t have all the answers, but it’s important they have someone to talk to and listen to them. One of my favorite authors (Rachel Naomi Remen) has a quote that says ‘The most basic and powerful way to connect to another person is to listen, just listen. Perhaps the most important thing we ever give each other is our attention.’”
She is ready to begin the process of helping students through whatever their support system looks like. Kramme understands that a great deal of diversity exists within the Midland campus and there will be many opportunities to explore all avenues of faith. “I know we have students that come from all different faith backgrounds and traditions,” Kramme said. “What I want each of them to hear is that they are loved. I want to hear what students need to be spiritually-well and I’m looking forward to those conversations.”
“I became certified as a spiritual director which has allowed me to become trained to not only listen to the person talking, but hear God in the conversation as well. God has given me that passion to listen and be in tune with their stories. What happens when they’ve tried their best in the classroom, on the field, or on the stage, and it wasn’t enough? What I want to offer is a space through worship services and other opportunities where they can come in and just breathe, and that’s all they need to do.”
Kramme has remained connected with Midland throughout the years, both as an alum, and through her husband, Keith ‘87, who currently serves as the Director of Student Success and Athletic Student Achievement. “Even being away from Midland for the past 14 years, I’ve always referred to Midland as ‘we’ and having Keith here made me feel like I was still a part of it,” she said. “While I do have a wonderful history with Midland, there have been so many changes. Many of the people have changed and Midland is much larger from the time I left. So while there is a certain comfort zone, there are many new challenges that await.”
As challenges and new adventures await, Kramme is looking forward to being part of a supportive community for students, faculty, and staff. “It’s great to be back at Midland,” she said. “There is so much potential for people to gather around stories of Jesus, faith, struggle, and life, and make connections among those stories and people.”
Kramme earned her BA in Behavioral Science from Midland and achieved a Master of Arts in Educational Psychology from the University of Minnesota.