For the first time ever, Augustana College has hired someone to raise money for its athletic department.
Kyle Ekberg comes from a head coaching position at Rockford University and says he wants to tap into an already existing network of former 'Augie' athletes. He himself ran track for Augustana before graduating in 2009.
"We have a lot of former successful athletes. How do we create an environment where that support is received how do we drive that support, whether it's financial, or expertise, or a professional connection?"
Ekberg says the rising cost of education and the changing nature of college athletics prompted Augustana to create his job.
"To travel a team, to have a certain facility--those costs are rising and we're trying to figure out how exactly we can match that without tapping into the raw university resources."
Ekberg says raising money for a new weight room is one of his first priorities. Before hiring him, Augustana used general funds or donations for athletic expenses.