Update from Guatemala

The El Fuego Volcano in Guatemala erupted this past weekend causing 70+ fatalities and missing persons, damage to towns near the volcano, and the closing of highways and the international airport (now reopened) in Guatemala City.  See recent updates as of June 6.

CGEE programs and staff were not impacted by the eruption. There were no programs running at the time, and our program base is in Quetzaltenago (Xela) which is located over 100 miles from El Fuego.

INGUAT (The Guatemalan Institute of Tourism) made the following statement: “All of the major tourist destinations – such as Tikal National Park, the Semuc Champey Natural Monument, Lake Atitlan, Quetzaltenango,and the Pacaya Volcano, among others – are fully operational and are not under any restrictions….”

Augsburg University’s Center for Global Education & Experience stands in solidarity with those impacted by this tragedy. PBS has compiled a short list of organizations taking donations for the aid of the local people affected.

 

April 2018 Update: Nicaragua

April 2018 Update: Nicaragua

Despite emerging indications that the government of Nicaragua may work out a peaceful resolution to the civil unrest affecting the country, we have decided to err on the side of caution and end our semester program early. Students have returned to the United States.  We are working with our faculty to develop a plan that will allow students to finish the remaining three weeks of classes from the Nicaragua segment of the program through virtual means.

For organizations with planned custom short-term May programs to Nicaragua, we are discussing possibilities for each on a case by case basis.

While it is entirely possible that the situation in Nicaragua will improve later this week or next, making the decision to end the program early seem unnecessary, student safety—our top priority—requires us to favor current information over speculation.

For questions please contact globaled@augsburg.edu

Update (Evening of Sunday April 22)

President Ortega has held a press conference announcing the revocation of the social security increase that triggered the street protests, and has invited the business sector and the church to a dialogue. We are not clear if this will be enough to unwind the protests in the coming days, but we are optimistic that the dialogue will bear fruit within a few weeks, restoring calm over the summer.

Update (Morning of Tuesday April 24)

Semester students all confirmed at their gates at the airport, awaiting flights home. Mark Lester, Site Director for CGEE Central America, is with them until all have safely left the country.

CGEE staff and their families remain safe and accounted for.

CGEE Pride Award Recipients

Pride Award for CGEE on rainbow paperWe are happy to announce that the Center for Global Education and Experience was selected as one of the recipients of the 2017-2018 Augsburg Pride Award!

This award is given annually to a staff, faculty, department, and/or student organization at Augsburg that has shown a commitment to advocacy, visibility, equity, and justice for LGBTQIA+ individuals at Augsburg, and in our case, at all of our locations around that world that serve students and participants from multiple institutions!

The nomination was anonymous. It described CCGE’s efforts to train its employees to be culturally competent in working with LGBTQIA+ communities. It also discussed CGEE’s efforts across its programming to provide equitable accommodations to LGBTQIA+ students and incorporate issues of gender and sexual justice in curricular and co-curricular programs.
Thank you for the recognition from Augsburg and our anonymous nominator!

Congratulations to Dr. Lamont Slater

Lamont Slater

 

Congratulations to Dr. Lamont Slater on completing his Ph.D. in History!

On April 6th, 2018, Doctoral candidate Lamont Slater successfully defended his dissertation, “Reframing the Herero/Nama Genocide: An Examination of the Genocide Through the Theories of Foucault and Athens” at Salve Regina University in Rhode Island.

Dr. Lamont Slater is an instructor and program coordinator at Augsburg CGEE’s Study Center in Namibia and teaches the course “The Politics of Development in Southern Africa.” He joined Augsburg CGEE in 2016.

Congratulations to Dr. Lamont Slater!

 

Now Hiring: Instructor and Project Coordinator

Augsburg University invites applications for the position of Instructor and Project Coordinator for its program in Nicaragua with a proposed start date in May 2018. This position combines teaching and providing support to students from various universities in the US, with field work overseeing rural projects in an alliance with the Winds of Peace Foundation (WPF), based in Managua, Nicaragua.

The Instructor responsibilities involve working with the Director and Central America team to maintain and expand quality programming for Augsburg University, principally by teaching in its Social Change and Community Engagement Semester program and the Xavier University semester program in Nicaragua.

The Project Coordinator responsibilities involve working with a WPF team doing grassroots research and action in support of territorial development. The specific focus will be to provide oversight and follow-up on projects involving indigenous peoples and rural women in Nicaragua.

The combination of the two responsibilities is to promote the internationalization of Augsburg University, and other US universities, by facilitating mutual learning with rural communities in Nicaragua, and then jointly working on the issues that affect them. Current efforts the Nicaragua team is working on include a relationship with the Mathematics Department to calculate impact on the forest of a coffee cooperative on carbon capturing; WPF financing to allow six Augsburg faculty to explore connection between their teaching and rural communities in Nicaragua; and building a video library of local resource people in Nicaragua on topics of interest to the US classroom.

The Instructor and Project Coordinator must be able to work effectively with other members of the Central America team, the WPF team, as well as the different offices of Augsburg University to meet the financial and strategic goals of Augsburg University.  She/He must be an excellent collaborator, both in the classroom and with the rural populations.

 

Required Skills

A Master’s degree in a related field and fluent in both English and Spanish, experience in Spanish-English/English-Spanish translation and interpretation.

Desirable: Doctorate in relevant field. Experience in project identification and management, ability to analyze basic financial information, including income and expense and balance statements. Experience in relating to peasants and understanding of gender dynamics in rural Nicaragua.

Required Experience

Candidates should also provide evidence of intercultural competence and effective leadership in international and diverse settings. Excellent communication and organizational skills are essential. Experience teaching on the university level is also preferred.

Augsburg University Set in a vibrant, diverse urban neighborhood and centered on student success, Augsburg is deeply committed to civic engagement, experiential learning, undergraduate research, and global education.  The University embraces a distinctive vision of global learning rooted in cross-cultural understanding, social justice, environmental stewardship, and critical thinking.

How to apply Send a cover letter and resume in pdf format to lester@augsburg.edu Deadline for receiving applications is March 15, 2018.

Meet Our New International Resident Assistant Sophie

Sophie is from Queens, NY, and joined CGEE after completing a fellowship in Mendoza, Argentina. As a 100 Projects for Peace Fellow with the Kathryn W. Davis Foundation, she designed and implemented an orientation program for study abroad students in Mendoza to help foster intercultural friendships which she believe is central to fostering deep engagement in local culture. Before moving to Argentina, Sophie earned her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science at Amherst College. She is passionate about helping individuals create community in spaces that initially seem unfamiliar. This led her to found an organization for first generation college students at Amherst and then develop a program for students abroad. She is excited to get to the know the many diverse communities in Mexico and work alongside a wonderful group of colleagues.

Welcome Sophie!

Profile Photo of a Young Woman
Meet our new IRA in Mexico, Sophie!

Retirement Celebration for Kathy McBride

Please join the campus community in congratulating Kathy McBride on her 30  years of service to Augsburg University! Kathy is the Regional Co-Director of the Central America program for the Center for Global Education and Experience. In her time with Augsburg, Kathy has taught countless students from Augsburg and around the country on the Central America semester program as well as individuals learning about the region via short-term educational seminars. In addition to her service to Augsburg, all four of her children attended Augsburg, and two of them married fellow Auggies!

In all her work at Augsburg, Kathy has lead with a critical eye and a generous  heart, always holding her students and Augsburg to the highest standard. Kathy is a caring colleague whose impact on Augsburg and its’ legacy is far reaching.

Kathy will be on campus next week, so we will celebrate her in person! Students, staff, faculty and administrators are welcome.

Date: Thursday, October 26, 2017

Time: 3-4:30 pm

Location: Christensen Center, East Commons. 

cake and coffee will be served. 

Kathy Memories!

Calling all alumni of CGEE Central America semester programs and Nicaragua short term programs!

Kathy McBride is officially retiring after 30 years of dedicated service to the Center for Global Education and Experience. Yes – you read that  right – 30 years.

We want to send her off into retirement with fantastic memories of the students she has taught over the decades. We are looking for alumni to submit short videos or writings about their memories of Kathy.

How can you add your memories? Please use this survey link to add your memories. You can upload photos and videos at this link as well!

What do we want?

  • old photos of Kathy from previous programs
  • your written memories of Kathy
  • your written appreciation and/or goodbyes for Kathy
  • a video blog of your memories and/or goodbyes

 

Please do this by Friday, October 20th. 

Now Hiring: International Resident Assistants

Augsburg CGEE currently has two job openings for International Resident Assistants (IRA’s).

What do IRA’s do?

The International Resident Assistant promotes a healthy living/learning environment for semester students and participants in short-term educational seminars and assist in the operation of all educational programs. Proficiency in both English and Spanish is a must for both! These positions are suited well for recently graduated undergrads. See full job descriptions and apply at:

MEXICO IRA POSITION: Application deadline is November 1st.

CENTRAL AMERICA IRA POSITION: Application deadline is October 17th.

 

 

CGEE Donations for Mexican Host Families

On behalf of CGEE Mexico staff and Mexico Site Director Ann Lutterman-Aguilar, please consider donating to our earthquake relief campaign.

As many of you know, Augsburg has had presence in Cuernavaca, Mexico for over 35 years. Many Augsburg students along with other college students, non-profit organizations, businesses and others, have participated in our life changing programs year after year. Each experience had by our participants includes short stays with host families in the region. These families have expressed generosity, love, and support in hosting students throughout the years.

Many of our host families in the rural parts of Morelos were hit hard by the September 19th earthquake. These families and communities have lost homes in the devastation and are working to rebuild their lives.

Please consider donating to Ann’s campaign to help raise money for these families and communities in need. Even a simple $10 donation or a “share” on a facebook page can go a long way to helping those communities in need that have been so kind and generous with our students over the years.

https://www.gofundme.com/earthquake-relief-cgee-host-family

(*Note: all host families, staff, and current students are safe, none were physically harmed during the earthquake. Our study center in Cuernavaca was not damaged. You can follow our blog and/or social media pages for updates.)

CGEE Mexico Earthquake Relief Campaign