Urban Debate League Tackles Real Life Challenges

2014 Mayor's Challenge.
2014 Mayor’s Challenge.

Minnesota Urban Debate League (MNUDL), a program of Augsburg College, is charged with the mission to empower students through competitive academic debate to become engaged learners, critical thinkers, and active citizens who are effective advocates for themselves and their communities.

Under the leadership of Executive Director, Amy Cram Helwich, and with the support of faculty advisor, Robert Groven, MNUDL currently serves more than 750 students at 39 partner schools and has seen sustained growth in student participation and academic growth since its inception in 2004.

This year, Urban Debate League has expanded their programming to include Spanish and Somali debate. May 27, 2015, Urban Debate league will pilot a Somali Debate Initiative with a Community Forum including Representative Keith Ellison and other community leaders. The topic is facilitating remittances from the United States to Somalia. This legislation affects many of our current Somali students—the debaters will engage in a high-level conversation to determine possible solutions for this community challenge.

Several alumni are also involved in the Mayor’s Challenge: The Great Water Debate, Wednesday, May 13, 2015. Registration is at 7:30 a.m., and the program begins at 8 a.m. This year’s national high school policy debate topic is “Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially increase its non-military exploration and/or development of the earth’s oceans.” Students at the breakfast will present an informative debate specific to Minnesota lakes and rivers.

Alumni are invited to attend! If you are interested, please sign up here to attend the May 13 fundraising event for Urban Debate League.

  • The Urban Debate League currently has sites at 39 schools serves 700 students.
  • 100% of debaters graduate on time and 99% have been accepted to college.
  • In the Twin Cities, debaters are 40% more likely to graduate than non-debaters.

To learn more visit the: Minnesota Urban Debate League home page.

 

Young Alumni Service Saturday: May 16 at Bethany Lutheran

bethanyContinuing community engagement and volunteering are important parts of being an Auggie, even after graduation. The Augsburg Young Alumni Council invites other graduates from the last 10 years to volunteer on May 16 at Bethany Lutheran Church in Seward, where young alumnus Rev. Mike Matson ’06 serves as pastor.

soup for youYour help is needed! Augsburg volunteers are needed to serve meals in the Soup for You Cafe, and assist with the rummage sale and clean-up.

Sign up for a volunteer shift by emailing Katie Radford ’12 at radford@augsburg.edu. Two time slots are available, and we need Auggies for both:

  1. 10 a.m.- 2 p.m.
  2. 2 p.m.-6 p.m. (If you have a truck or large vehicle that can be used for deliveries, sign up for the 2-6 p.m. time slot.)
  3. Have more time to volunteer? If you’re available to help out on Friday, 5/15, please contact Sherry Reagan at 936-443-5650.
  4. Donations to the rummage sale are welcome. Bethany accepts furniture, appliances, decorations, clothing, children’s clothing, toys, backpacks, hygiene items, blanketsm bikes, and more. Please, no old TVs. Drop off items at 2511 E. Franklin Ave., Minneapolis, M-F 11 a.m.-1 p.m.

mikePlease come together with other Auggies and family members to help further the good a fellow Auggie is doing in the community. Matson was just featured in local media for his good work at Bethany. Read the StarTribune story.

The weekend of May 16 is a busy one for this well-known Seward neighborhood church. The annual rummage sale takes place on Friday, May 15, from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. and Saturday, May 16, from 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m.

For more information about this event, volunteering, or joining the Young Alumni Council, contact Volunteer and Alumni Engagement Manager Katie Radford ’12 at radford@augsburg.edu or 612-330-1329.

 

Auggies Give and Share Thanks

staff thank you note writingCelebrate Philanthropy Week March 30-April 2

Did you know that 95% of Augsburg students receive financial aid? Or that student support services like tutoring, the Writing Lab, and the CLASS office are available to all students at no extra cost? Financial aid, student support programs, faculty-student research and more are all made possible thanks to generous donors to Augsburg. Each year, more than 2,400 alumni, parents, and friends give more than $1 million to The Augsburg Fund. Philanthropy Week is an opportunity to teach current students about how their education is supported by donors, and thank current donors for their generosity. Come to the Christensen Center to write a thank you note. Staff will be tabling at the following times: Monday, March 30, 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.; Tuesday, March 31, 11 a.m.–1 p.m.; Wednesday, April 1, 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.

Want to get involved?

  • Share what you love about Augsburg and why you support the College on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #auggiesgive.
  • Join us for a special Philanthropy Week lunch on Thursday, April 2, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. in East Commons to help thank donors for their support and encourage them to make a gift this year (RSVP to Ben Krouse-Gagne ’11 at 612-330-1179 or krousega@augsburg.edu)
  • Become a donor to Augsburg! Make your gift online at augsburg.edu/giving.

Latin@ Networking and Professional Panel Event

Alumni are coming back to campus on March 25 to meet current Latino and Latina students for the first Latin@ Networking and Professional Panel Event, sponsored by Latin@ Student Services, directed by Dulce Monterrubio ’12, Alumni Relations, the Strommen Center.

This event is the result of the self-advocacy skills of current Latin@ students who one year ago voiced their strong interest to connect with Latin@ alumni. The profile of Latin@ students at Augsburg has changed drastically over the last fifteen years. Today, there are 177 self-identified undergraduate and graduate Latin@ students compared to only 29 students in 2000. Most of these students are the first in their family to go to college, identify as Latin@ and Americans, fund their own education, commute from inner-city as well as suburban communities, and are uncertain about what the future holds after graduation.

This first-ever event offers great potential for current students to learn from the personal experiences of other Latina and Latino alumni balancing college, family and other responsibilities as they discover their interests and navigate their path. Alumni and mentors can open doors for many of the students in attendance—from sharing internship and job opportunities, to professional advice, and mentoring. The event will reassure students that it is within their reach to achieve their goals, to give back to their community, to one day serve as role models themselves, and to know they are not alone in their journey. If you have any questions, please contact Volunteer and Alumni Engagement Manager Katie Radford ’12 at radford@augsburg.edu or 612-330-1329.

Join the Augsburg Centennial Singers in Arizona

The Auggie Spirit is headed south this winter, following the Centennial Singers Arizona Tour. Join President Paul C. Pribbenow and Augsburg Alumni and friends in Arizona for the following events:
Reception at La Casa De Cristo Lutheran Church
Tuesday, February 175 p.m. Reception

7 p.m. Centennial Singers Performance

6300 East Bell Road, Scottsdale, AZ 85254

Hosted by Arne ’49 and Jean ’52 Markland,

Pastor Joel ’68 and Sue Bjerkestrand

 

Reception at American Lutheran Church

Wednesday, February 18

4:30 p.m. Centennial Singers Performance

5:15 p.m. – Congregational Dinner

6 p.m. – Ash Wednesday Service

17200 N. Del Webb Blvd., Sun City, AZ 85373

Hosted by Don ’60 and Violet Anderson and Stella Rosenquist ’64

 

Luncheon at King of Glory Lutheran Church

Sunday, February 22

10:45 a.m. Service

2 p.m. Centennial Singers Performance

12 p.m. Augsburg Alumni and Friends Luncheon

2085 East Southern Avenue, Tempe, AZ 85282

Register at augsburg.edu/alumni or by calling 612-330-1085.

 

Continue reading “Join the Augsburg Centennial Singers in Arizona”

In Mentorship, the Journey Never Ends

Dani Bonilla
Dani Bonilla on graduation day, 2013

When Dani Bonilla ’13 was a sophomore at Augsburg, TRIO/Student Support Services led her to discover Scholastic Connections, a scholarship and mentorship program for high-achieving undergraduate students of color.

She realized that she met most of the requirements, and could be matched with a mentor who would provide extra support and guidance during her college years. Five new recipients are selected for the program each year. Each receives a $5000 scholarship and is paired with a mentor who is a successful Augsburg graduate of color.

After Bonilla was selected to participate, Cindy Peterson, director of Scholastic Connections, searched to connect her with a professional living the life and career that would be a perfect match. Bonilla was looking for a mentor she could relate to—someone who had overcome obstacles, whom she could trust and turn to for guidance. She was eager to learn how to achieve her academic goals and find her career path.

Martha Quick MSW '10
Martha Quick MSW ’10

She found Martha Quick MSW ’10,  who was excited to offer mentoring to someone interested in social work. Once she and Quick connected, they worked together over the next three years before Bonilla graduated with a psychology major in 2013.

As Martha’s mentee, Bonilla was responsible for setting personal and academic goals each semester. They met twice a month, for coffee or sometimes dinner, and Quick met with other mentors monthly. They shared stories with each other. “I truly enjoyed spending time with Dani, and we were able to exchange meaningful experiences,” Quick says. “I continue to watch Dani grow in her life as I did when she was in college. Being able to witness a young lady transform professionally gives me great pleasure.”

“Martha made me feel as part of her family—there were times she even invited me to family outings,” Bonilla says. Between their monthly visits, Bonilla checked in with Martha by phone at least once a week. “As I got closer to graduating, my schedule got busier with classes, work, and internships, but Martha and I made it work, even if our meeting was short.” Continue reading “In Mentorship, the Journey Never Ends”

Auggie Wants You … On the Alumni Board

auggie in suiteThe Augsburg Alumni Association is looking for volunteers to serve on the board of directors. All alumni are welcomed and encouraged to apply. The Alumni board is a governing body of the Alumni Association. The board exists to guide the Office of Alumni and Constituent Relations of Augsburg College in serving the valued alumni, parents and friends of the College by providing resources and opportunities to engage alumni with the college and each other through consistent communication, inclusive programming, and intentional relationship building. To apply or find out more, contact Sara Schlipp-Riedel ’06 at schlipp@augsburg.edu.

State Grant Advocacy Day at the Capitol

capitolAugsburg College had 1,054 State Grant recipients on campus this past academic year — more than 34 percent of all Augsburg undergraduates. In total, the college received more than $3.4 million in State Grant awards made to Augsburg students.

The impact of those funds on students, a high percentage of whom come from low-income households or are first-generation college students, cannot be overstated.

Yeng Vang ’14 says the state grant program helped him attend Augsburg. “I wouldn’t be here if not for grants and scholarships. Things like the State Grant allow you the opportunity to go to college, opening the door to future possibilities.”

This spring, students are heading to the Capitol again to advocate for the State Grant program and meet with their respective representatives.  STEP-UP, EAST, financial aid, Multicultural Students Services and Athletics are partnering to recruit and train students before the big day.  Students will embark to the Capitol on February 25 for a day that begins with grassroots organizing training, led by members of the Minnesota Private College Council, and ends with a reception at Augsburg College with affiliated representatives and student leaders.

Students – Please register here for Day at the Capitol, February 25, 2015.

Help us advocate for the State Grant program!  Sign up for alerts at http://mnstudentaid.org/.  If you are interested in volunteering as a Advocacy Champion, e-mail Amanda Scherer, assistant director of corporate and government relations, at scherera@augsburg.edu.

Meet a Super Velkommen Jul Volunteer

Lee FurmanYou might know Lee (Dyrud) Furman ’61 from her time teaching in the social work department at Augsburg, or you might recognize her as one of the delightful Augsburg Associates dressed up in a bunad or traditional Norwegian costume at Velkommen Jul each year. She’s also the recipient of an Augsburg Distinguished Alumni Award in 1989. Furman is among the many fantastic Associates volunteers you will see if you stop by campus on Friday, Dec. 5. Velkommen Jul begins with chapel service at 10:40 a.m. and moves to the Christensen Center from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Furman fondly remembers the beautiful singing and enthusiasm of chapel, and the fellow alums she has known through the years. She has been a part of the Augsburg Associates for approximately 12 years, since she moved back to Minneapolis for the first time since college. She still remembers going to Velkommen Jul when she was a student. “It was quite splendid. I was very much in awe,” she says. Continue reading “Meet a Super Velkommen Jul Volunteer”

You Gave to the Max, and We’re So Grateful

Give to the Max Day was Nov. 13, and we’re still beaming with pride. We came in #1 for giving among all MN colleges and universities again this year, but we’re even more proud to say that 1,300 Auggies near and far—including students, alumni, parents, friends, faculty, and staff—donated more than $432,000 to support The Augsburg Fund and 34 excellent Auggie projects. If you supported Augsburg on Give to the Max Day this year, we thank you for your generosity. Please enjoy our sincere, campus-wide appreciation for the good work we all did together.