Designing Sustainability

Glover-for-webWhen Stephanie Glover ’98 was only five, her mother gave her a copy of Shel Silverstein’s The Giving Tree—in French—another of many attempts by her parents to expose her to other cultures and encourage her to try new things. Throughout her childhood, many of her friends came from different backgrounds, and diversity of experience became a given.

That way of life was reinforced at Augsburg, where she discovered that the wide cultural swath of her classmates’ backgrounds was a significant enhancement to her education in International Relations, as was her study abroad, in Aix en Provence, France.

Later, after a four-year stint of teaching in France and South Korea, Glover decided to volunteer in the Republic of Georgia—an experience that she now views as life-changing. Armed with very little knowledge about the country, she spent about a week in foreign language training, then made her way to the home of her host family, high in the Borjomi Mountains. They spoke little English, and Glover’s Georgian was shaky at best, so early days were challenging. But transformation lay ahead.

Trips down the mountain took about an hour, and consequently were infrequent. The host family owned cows, chickens, and pigs—and they grew some crops, so the food Glover ate during that year was primarily homemade and natural. She came to an appreciation for an organic lifestyle, and felt a growing concern for the impact that eating and buying habits have on the environment. Her experience in the Borjomi Mountains would eventually inform her career choice.

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Parent Update: Financial Services

Registration for the spring term is now open. Students who have unpaid fall charges, or are not up-to-date on their payment plans, will be unable to register.

All students are eligible to enroll in Augsburg’s Online Payment Plan; enrollment will open on December 8. Students must log in to www.augsburg.edu/studentfinancial/ and select ‘Make a Payment/Account Activity’ on the right hand menu. Click ‘Payment Plans and Discounts’ and follow the instructions under ‘Augsburg Online Payment Plan’. To ensure 5 monthly payments, the application must be completed by December 26.

All spring tuition and fee charges are due by January 5, 2016; any remaining balance after that date is subject to finance charges. The spring 2016 billing statements will be electronically sent to all registered students on December 8. Students will have reminders sent to their Augsburg email account during the first week of each month reminding them to view their online monthly bill. All students are encouraged to give parents/guardians access to view these statements. Students must log in to www.augsburg.edu/studentfinancial/ and select ‘Make a Payment/Account Activity’ on the right hand menu. Click ‘View your online student account’ and follow the instructions under ‘Parent/Third Party Access Instructions – Make a Payment’.

Please be advised that our office is unable to communicate with anyone besides the student on financial issues unless they have completed the online ‘Information Release’ form. The student must log into their Augnet Account at augnet.augsburg.edu or inside.augsburg.edu  and click on ‘Records and Registration’. Under ‘Information Release’ they need to ‘Add an Authorization’. They will enter the full name and email address of the party/parties they are giving permission for us to communicate with. Next, select ‘Financial Aid/Finances Release’ and then click ‘Save’.

Alumna Chalks Up Another Patent

Audrey Sherman pictureAs a girl, Audrey Sherman ’97 loved science classes so much that there was no hesitation when her college-student mother asked for help with her own science classes. Going to local lakes and ponds together to collect water specimens, examining them under microscopes, and then recording the findings gave Sherman a taste of what her own college experience might be like. But she didn’t expect to someday become an inventor!

One day in her junior year of high school, Sherman heard a pitch about a program that tickled that love of science—a program that would lead her to the career of her dreams. The speaker was describing the STEP program, a science encouragement program sponsored by 3M, the global St. Paul-based company famous for innovations such as Scotch tape, Post-It Notes, and over 60,000 other products.

Sherman was told that, in a 3M classroom, she and other high school students would learn from 3M scientists about chemistry, math, and polymers; learn how to do research; and at the end of the sessions, have an opportunity to interview for a full-time paid summer job in the 3M laboratories.

Becky Kreckel, the woman introducing the STEP program, described the joy of cooking with chemicals and making new molecules, outlined the opportunities that science could offer, and—the clincher for Sherman—talked about the sports car she owned. Sherman liked the idea of making new things, and being rewarded for it, and she was hooked. Continue reading

Helping the Young to Do Better and Be Better

Joshua HarrisGrowing up in Chicago, Josh Harris ’08 hadn’t heard of Augsburg before, but when Auggie Coach Aaron Griess recruited him to play basketball, he discovered a smaller school in a big city, diverse, with a sense of community—and it all appealed to him. What he ended up taking with him upon graduation, however, was beyond his expectations.

Today, Harris is working with other community leaders in Baltimore on many initiatives, including one to build a network of individuals, businesses, and organizations who can provide internships, scholarships, and mentorship opportunities for high school students, many of whom may be less than hopeful about their future. He believes that young people who have already enjoyed some level of professional success are those who can best effect change in the likelihood of success for other young people, particularly African-Americans.

Working primarily through Alpha Phi Alpha, a community-service-oriented fraternity, Harris serves as managing editor of The Sphinx, the APA’s journal about what is happening in the African-American community, and how their members impact the world around them. APA has 703 chapters worldwide (both undergraduate and alumni). The fraternity is noted as historically the first inter-collegiate fraternity founded by African-American men. Harris joined while still a student at Augsburg. The fraternity claims alumni such as former Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall and the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and currently has eight members in Congress. Continue reading

Velkommen Jul is December 4

Velkommen Jul scholarshipVelkommen Jul is Augsburg’s annual Christmas celebration for all. Attend Chapel featuring Scandinavian Christmas music at 10:40 a.m. At 11, head to the Christensen Center lobby to shop in the boutique for unique gifts and goodies. All proceeds benefit student scholarships. Join us for a festive celebration in the Commons with Scandinavian treats, holiday music, and traditional Norwegian costumes and sweaters. Gift baskets will welcome donations for Augsburg scholarships. Add to the celebration by wearing your Norwegian sweater! 

For Parents Only: Nov. 12

Just a reminder, parents! For Parents Only is happening Nov. 12, Oren Gateway Center, Room 100, 7-8:30 p.m. Chat in small groups with Augsburg’s departmental leaders from Academic Advising, Residence Life, the Center for Wellness and Counseling, Augsburg Abroad, the Vice President for Student Affairs, and others! This is a great way to get to know other parents and spend quality time with some of Augsburg’s leaders! R.S.V.P. to herron@augsburg.edu.

Julia Blixrud ’76 Honored with Memorial Scholarship and Lecture

JuliaBlixrudAlumna Julia Blixrud ’76 was honored in Washington, D.C., on October 8, 2015, with a memorial scholarship and annual lecture by the Association of Research Libraries. A number of family members attended the fall forum in which the inaugural Julia C. Blixrud Scholarship was awarded and the Julia C. Blixrud Memorial Lecture was delivered. Blixrud, of Lawrence, Kansas, was a longtime staff member of the Association of Research Libraries, most recently as assistant executive director for scholarly communication. She passed away in October, 2014.

Her mother, Eileen Blixrud, shared that in her role as a research librarian, she promoted access to information to libraries locally and all over the world, visiting Turkey, Malaysia, Australia, Saudi Arabia, and Canada, as well as land grant colleges in the United States.

In a post after her passing, her employer noted: “Julia’s greatest professional legacy is likely her work dedicated to opening up access to information for all. Her personal legacy includes the effervescent energy and uncommon kindness that she generously gave to her family, friends, and colleagues with her enduring optimism, resilient character, and contagious smile. These personal and professional legacies are intertwined in many ways, perhaps illustrated most powerfully in an interview Julia gave to NBC News in 2004, discussing the importance of open access to information in the context of her own serious health challenges.”