The beautiful central campus of Luther College in Decorah has been recognized with placement on the National Register of Historic Places.

Decorah News says Luther's distinction is rare because while many colleges have individual buildings placed on the Register, there are only three existing Iowa colleges with an "extensive historic district" and only a large handful of such districts in the upper Midwest.

The designation includes the historic district of the campus's original 32 acres of land, 24 buildings, and 9 outdoor sculptures.

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The college boasts 60+ majors, minors, and programs and it's no wonder why thousands of students take pride in doing their studies there every year. 1,800 undergraduates are currently enrolled, according to Luther's website, whose studies prepare them to "explore big questions and take action to benefit people, communities and society."

It's a great institution that clearly instills leadership skills in its students, but the National Register of Historic Places designation is more about the campus itself, its legacy and "curb appeal."

KWWL says that to earn the designation, a place must be locally certified, evaluated, and endorsed by the State Historic Preservation Office. It then receives final designation from the Federal Department of the Interior.

It won't impose any restrictions on Luther, but President Jenifer K. Ward spoke about what it does mean. "This designation creates new student, faculty, and staff opportunities for understanding the interplay between architecture, landscape, and history.”

The designation was a three and a half year process according to Decorah Historic Preservation Commission Chair Mark Z. Muggli.

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