Extending Verdier week this year is Augustana College’s new core value: Recruitment.

Previously, the college has had five core values, including Christian Faith, Liberal Arts, Excellence, Community and Service. Recruitment was introduced as the sixth value at Monday’s Covenant Award for Christian Faith in the Chapel.

“We know how important recruiting is for a small liberal arts college in the Midwest,” Sandi Vietor, coordinator of the Covenant Awards, said.

According to Nancy Davidson, vice president for enrollment, and mentioned in almost every issue of The Mirror this year, enrollment has been up, then down, but then up again.

“It’s a rollercoaster in admissions,” Davidson said. “High school seniors have a hard time making up their minds.”

Davidson and Vietor met for lunch in the commons one day at the faculty and staff table, and inspiration hit.

“We talked to President Oliver, and he was delighted with our idea,” Vietor said about adding recruitment as a core value.

Sticking with the Verdier theme, a week at Augustana dedicated toward recognizing students who embody the core values, students were nominated for Recruitment.

Student nominations can be made by anyone associated with Augustana, including students, faculty, administrators and staff. For this core value, admissions staff contributed both of the two nominations.

Senior Patrick Brende said he was shocked when he found out he was nominated.

“Recruitment is such a wonderful addition to the core values at Augustana,” Brende said. “And as it’s basically my whole life, (other than playing bocce ball and going to awesome dress-up theme parties). I am honored to be nominated.”

Brende, who works in the admission’s office as an advancement ambassador, is going head-to-head for the Covenant Award with senior Krista Youngberg, known around campus for her long board skills and unhealthy obsession with Ole.

“Pat and I both embody the Recruitment value, but when it comes down to it, I get more people to come to Augie,” Youngberg said.

Her charismatic personality and “Woo” StrengthsFinder strength are traits Youngberg cites that help her in the recruitment battle.

Brende, however, says he brings more to the table.

“My striking good looks help a lot when I’m giving college tours,” Brende said. “I know everything about the college, and can give the students all the facts, but it’s really my dashing smile coupled with my thrift shop style that reels them in.”

As Recruitment is a new value, only two students, Brende and Youngberg, were nominated this year, but Vietor said she hopes more students embrace this value and live up to it’s potential.

“It could help the college a great deal if students work hard to win this Covenant Award,” Vietor said.

Davidson said enrollment numbers vary throughout the year, but students should especially try to recruit high school seniors before the National Candidate’s Reply Date on May 1.

Youngberg said tips for recruiting students include always wearing Augie gear, talking to visiting students on campus, and occasionally painting your face in blue and gold.

“It shows your commitment,” Youngberg said. “Basically, eat, sleep and breathe Augie.”

The Recruitment Covenant Award will be given to Youngberg or Brende at 3 p.m., Friday, April 11, in Siverson Lounge. Coffee and face paint provided. Invite your high school friends.