Shucking corn stalks, shooting marshmallows, old person bingo and dance after dance.
You know the role Lori Couch has played in packing your college years with games and events. But that’s all about to change. For years Couch has been the go-to gal for organizing weekend entertainment in the small college town in which we live.
“She is great at planning events that students want,” said senior SAC Leadership Team member Courtney Drenth. As the director of student activities, Couch is in charge of events like Dancing with the Profs, Northwestern’s Best Dance Crew, Bingo Night, Speed Dating and Clash of the Classes.
In her 13 years at Northwestern, Lori has worn many hats. Starting off as the resident director of Hospers Hall, she then switched gears and headed up the women’s soccer team as head coach. Planting her feet in the department of student life, she worked with retention before finally landing the role she currently has.
Beyond knowing what activities the student body might find interesting, Couch knows how to plan the activities and delegate her duties to help her leadership team gain skill. “SAC has given me a lot of experience,” Drenth said. “It has been great working with Lori and being able to help with all aspects of an event from planning to marketing to the event itself. Lori has given the staff a lot of opportunities to be in charge of events, which has helped me with my leadership skills.”
Couch attended Colorado Christian University before getting her master’s degree in higher education at Azusa Pacific University in California. Returning to the Midwest, she joined the staff at Northwestern. Lori met her husband, Charlie Couch (registrar and director of institutional research), during her time at here and has raised her four children in the community of Orange City and Northwestern.
The time has come for the Couches to move on and, after years of service, it will be hard for the Northwestern and Orange City communities to see them go. “I have really loved my time here and will really miss spending time with the students – encouraging them to dream big and think outside of the box,” Couch said.
Drenth agrees. “It will be interesting to see what SAC looks like after she leaves, but I think they have a great leadership staff for next year that is ready to help the new staff member. He or she will have some big shoes to fill, but I feel that the SAC staff for next year is ready to take on the challenge.”
That’s not to say that Couch won’t have new and exciting challenges of her own. Upon moving to Colorado, Couch will devote herself to becoming a stay-at-home mom for their children – a passion she has had on her heart for quite some time. Charlie will become the university registrar at the University of Northern Colorado.
Immediately following the conclusion of the school year, the Couch family will gather their belongings and wish Orange City farewell before moving into a residential area in northern Colorado. The Couches feel that God has called them to move on and, though the move will be bittersweet, they are sure that it is the right choice for them.