Julian Kritz ’16 recounts international interfaith experience in article published by the Jerusalem Post

Jerusalem Post - LogoThe Jerusalem Post website recently published an article by Julian Kritz ’16, Interfaith Scholar and vice president of Students Supporting Israel at Augsburg College. In the piece, Kritz discussed his experience traveling to Israel with a diverse delegation of Minnesota legislators and community leaders.

He remembered the diversity of the group — which was bipartisan, interfaith and intergenerational — as being particularly impactful as they toured sites of importance to Christians, Jews, and Muslims.

“As a Jew, seeing Israel through the eyes of the Christian members of our delegation was a moving experience which greatly added to my understanding of why so many people care about this small piece of land,” he explained.

Kritz was selected for the trip due to his work as an intern with the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC) and his travel was sponsored by a grant from the Minneapolis Jewish Federation. The JCRC was asked to plan the trip, which included meetings with key figures in Israeli and Palestinian politics and tours of religious sites, centers of business, and locations of political importance.

Read Minnesotan State Legislator Delegation Travels to Israel on the Jerusalem Post site.

Jennifer Jacobs and Rob Harper ’16 interviewed on diversity in college athletics

Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder - logoThe Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder recently included comments from Jennifer Jacobs, assistant athletic director at Augsburg College, and student athlete Rob Harper ’16 in an article on the struggle to increase the diversity of coaching and administrative staff at NCAA schools. The article is a response to pro-diversity resolutions passed at the league’s annual conference last month.

In the article, Jacobs acknowledged that the drive for inclusion and diversity must start at the top. “Athletic directors and assistant athletic directors can’t feel empowered unless it comes from the presidents,” she said.

Jacobs added that “…people in general will hire people that look like them. The only way to counteract that is [that] you have to be intentional in your hiring practice.”

Harper, a sociology major and member of the Student Athlete Advisory Council, discussed his experience attending the conference and interest in observing the league’s voting process.

Read Moving from talk to action on diversity and inclusion on the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder site.

KARE 11 airs interview with Olivia Maccoux ’18

Kare 11 - logoNBC affiliate KARE 11 recently aired an interview with Augsburg College student Olivia Maccoux ’18, who will undergo brain surgery this week — her 121st procedure. Maccoux suffers from a condition called hydrocephalus, which causes excess fluid to pool around her brain.

“I trust my neurosurgeon, obviously with my life,” she said. Maccoux went on to explain that the upcoming procedure will replace an infected shunt. Maccoux has made the Dean’s List every semester that she has attended Augsburg, an accomplishment she intends to repeat this semester despite the surgery.

“I am going to try to do classes from the hospital when I can Skype into classes,” she said.

Read and watch: Augsburg student prepares for her 121st brain surgery on the KARE 11 site.

MPR News interviews political volunteer Natalie Shaw ’16

mprNEWS - logoMinnesota Public Radio News recently published an article and audio interview with Natalie Shaw ’16, a student at Augsburg College who has been volunteering for Hilary Clinton’s presidential campaign. Shaw recently went door-to-door in Des Moines, Iowa, encouraging voters to turn out in support of Clinton at the state’s Democratic caucus slated for February 1.

Despite the cold weather, Shaw says she receives a warm welcome from nearly everyone who opens their door. “Iowans are just such amazing people,” she said. “You call them up… and they’re like, ‘Oh yeah, come over, have dinner.'”

Shaw credits her father’s volunteer work during John Kerry’s 2004 campaign as the impetus for her love of politics and political organizing.

Read and listen: Iowa in January? You bet, says 21-year-old political volunteer on the MPR News site.

Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder recaps Augsburg College’s MLK Convocation

Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder - logoThe Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder recently published an article and photo gallery covering Augsburg College’s 2016 Martin Luther King Jr. Convocation, which was held January 18 and featured a speech by legendary rapper and author Chuck D.

The event began with performances by a number of local artists, much to the delight of the keynote speaker. The article states that, “His excitement was noticeable as he jumped to his feet and snapped photos of the acts smiling from ear to ear.”

The article also included interviews with Augsburg students Erickson Saye ’16, Robert Harper ’16, and Reis Francisco Romero ’16. Romero was instrumental in organizing the event; he is the president of Augsburg College’s chapter of Save the Kids, a student group that co-sponsored this year’s convocation.

“It’s going to take me a while to conceptualize everything. I’m glad we did it, I’m glad it’s over, but now the real work starts,” Romero said of the event. “We have to work together to end this miserable condition on this earth.”

Read and view: PHOTOS | Rapper Chuck D refocused MLK Day from past to present on the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder site.

People magazine covers Olivia Maccoux’s triumphs over adversity

people - logoPeople magazine recently published an article about Olivia Maccoux ’18, an Augsburg College student who has endured 120 brain surgeries due to a condition called hydrocephalus, which causes excess fluid to accumulate in the brain. Despite this, Maccoux has found success and solace by participating in a number of sports.

“I don’t know if it’s sports that distract me or if it’s just because I love playing them, but for whatever reason, when I’m on the field, in the pool or on the rink, I let my pain wash over me,” she said. “It’s like it doesn’t exist.”

Maccoux’s mother, Cathy, said that her daughter is known for her courage and strength.

The article concludes by stating that Maccoux has made the Dean’s List every semester that she has attended Augsburg. She is majoring in communication studies, with plans for a career in nonprofit fundraising in the health care industry.

Read: College Athlete Won’t Let 120 Brain Surgeries Stand in Her Way: I Don’t Want to Be the ‘Sick Girl’ on the People site.

KSTP airs story on Bill McKee and Augsburg Women’s Basketball team

ABC 5 Eyewitness News - logoMinneapolis-St. Paul ABC affiliate KSTP recently aired a story on its Eyewitness News program about the ways in which Augsburg College’s Women’s Basketball team is mourning and honoring beloved coach Bill McKee, who passed away in August. The segment shares that the team has been remembering Coach McKee with patches on their jerseys, bracelets, and moments of silence before each game.

The segment features statements from Ted Riverso, the team’s new head coach and friend of McKee, and Allison McKee ’16, who is one of the team’s captains and the late coach’s daughter.

“It’s important to me because I want to keep him as much a part of this season as I can,” she said. “He was the most important person in my life.”

Watch Augsburg Women’s Hoops Honoring Former Coach McKee on the KSTP site.

Audrey Lensmire and Salah Ali contribute to MinnPost article on Somali-Americans choosing careers in education

MinnPostAudrey Lensmire, director of Augsburg College’s East African Student to Teacher (EAST) program, and program participant Salah Ali ’17 were interviewed by MinnPost for a report on Minnesota’s growing number of Somali-Americans working toward careers in education. The article notes that the number of Somalis resettling in the state has more than tripled in recent years, which has caused an influx of Somali students and created a need for teachers, counselors, and socials workers with a deep understanding of Somali culture.

The EAST program is funded by the state’s Collaborative Urban Educator program and seeks to graduate and license K-12 teachers of East African origin. In the article, Lensmire is quoted as saying, “Typically, becoming a professional teacher has been available only to people who have money and the means to get the license.” The EAST program offers financial assistance by providing students with full tuition scholarships as they seek licensure.

Augsburg’s program is one of several made possible by the CUE program. In the article, Ali notes that he knows many Somali students in similar programs at Hamline University and the University of Minnesota. “A lot of us are in the education field right now. Many are doing social studies and ESL programs and counseling licenses,” he said.

Read: More young Somali-Americans are choosing careers in education on the MinnPost site.

Augsburg College project named recipient of Alice Smith Prize

(SIOUX FALLS, SOUTH DAKOTA) — Augsburg College History Department faculty members Kirsten Delegard and Michael Lansing were presented the Alice Smith Prize for best public history project completed in the previous calendar year by the Midwestern History Association.

The Historyapolis Project (historyapolis.com and facebook.com/TheHistoryapolisProject) was created when Delegard, a current scholar-in-residence at Augsburg College, realized that her hometown of Minneapolis was blind to its own tumultuous history, more comfortable planning for the future than confronting the past. Augsburg students are deeply involved with the project, which aims to make the city’s history accessible and helps catalyze community dialogue around challenging aspects of local history.

Delegard holds a doctorate in history from Duke University and is the author of “Battling Miss Bolsheviki: The Origins of Female Conservatism in the United States” (Penn, 2012).  Delegard was also the co-editor, with Nancy A. Hewitt, for the two-volume textbook “Women, Families and Communities: Readings in American History (Longman Publishing, 2008). As part of the Historyapolis Project, Delegard is at work on a new history of Minneapolis, which is tentatively titled “City of Light and Darkness: The Making of a Progressive Metropolis in Minneapolis.”

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River Semester media attention grows as class travels down-river

Screen Shot 2015-09-02 at 2.35.52 PM[Updated November 13] — The Augsburg College River Semester, created and led by Joe Underhill, associate professor of political science, departed from St. Paul’s Harriet Island on September 1. As part of the kickoff, the River Semester class was joined by a group of nearly 100 students, parents, high school students and members of the Augsburg College community who paddled in a flotilla of 24-foot voyageur canoes from St. Paul to South St. Paul. Students participating in the semester-long program will earn as many as 16 credits in the arts, humanities, and sciences as they travel nearly 2,000 miles of the 2,350-mile Mississippi River.

The River Semester kickoff garnered a range of attention. Gov. Mark Dayton proclaimed September 1 “Augsburg College River Semester Day” and many media outlets covered the launch of the class.

Since the students and faculty departed on their voyage, print and broadcast media have been sharing the story of this hands-on, interdisciplinary program. In fact, multiple stories have been picked up by the Associated Press and shared through the AP’s member media throughout the nation.

A snapshot of the ongoing media coverage is below. As additional coverage occurs, it will be added to this post.

November 9

October 16

October 15

October 8

September 29

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