Chapel chair upholstery project woven into local economy

Tonya DuRoche, owner of All About Upholstery

Tonya DuRoche lives in the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood, employs local workers, and sources nearly all her materials from local vendors.

At first glance, the choice to refurbish the chairs in Hoversten Chapel is just good financial management. The move to refresh versus replace the chairs saved the College more than $40,000.

But that’s only the surface of the decision.

What really went on gets to the heart of what it means to be a good steward. It makes exceptional what could be written off as a one-dimensional, mundane decision. It is a concrete example of how the College can live out its mission to be an engaged member of the community, a thoughtful steward, and a responsible leader. Continue reading

Creating an inclusive campus

inclusivecampusThe Augsburg mission affirms that the College community is committed to intentional diversity in its life and work. The fourth annual “Creating an Inclusive Campus” conference, which will be held May 22-24 at Augsburg, calls us to ask what this commitment means, to celebrate what we are doing right, and to engage in dialogue about how we can continue to improve.

The opening session on Tuesday, May 22, is “Transformative Conversations: The Art of Building Bridges and Civil Spaces.” In this session, a student panel will share their experience of dialogue across differences. Participants will explore concrete skills that can support the authentic connections necessary for creating an inclusive campus community. The session will also provide an opportunity to apply the concepts of intergroup dialogue in conversations about political and religious issues that often become divisive in an election year. Continue reading

Serve the community at Multicultural Dinner

multicultural_dinnerAugsburg’s Thrivent Leadership Fellows, a group of students working to engage the Augsburg community in service, need your help for the Multicultural Dinner at the Brian Coyle Center on Monday, Apr. 2. Up to 40 volunteers are needed for this event, so all faculty, staff, and students are welcome to participate.

This annual event will be coordinated this spring by the Thrivent Fellows in cooperation with West Bank Community Coalition, CHANCE (Cedar-Humphrey Action for Neighborhood Collaborative Engagement) from the Humphrey School, and the Trinity Lutheran congregation. Augsburg’s Campus Kitchen program is providing food for the dinner. Continue reading

Jane Addams School youth learn from neighborhood elders

bakermuralStudents from the Jane Addams School for Democracy, a program founded in part by staff from Augsburg’s Center for Democracy and Citizenship, have been organizing around issues in their neighborhood—the West Side of St. Paul—for many years. This past year, a group of teens took on the issue of racism, especially as it affects new immigrants in the community. In the process of meeting neighborhood elders and sharing a meal, the youth learned a surprising lesson.

With a grant from the Minnesota Historical Society’s Legacy Campaign, the students carried out an intergenerational project to produce a permanent piece of art at the Baker Community Center, home of the Jane Addams School. Continue reading

Augsburg College earns Presidential Award for service learning and community service

honor_rollAugsburg College is one of six higher education institutions in the nation to receive the 2010 Presidential Award for Community Service, the highest honor in the annual President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. This is Augsburg’s first time receiving the top award in this program, making Augsburg the only Minnesota college or university to receive this honor. The College has been named to the Honor Roll with Distinction three times in the past.

The President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll recognizes institutions for their commitment to and achievement in community service. The President’s Honor Roll increases the public’s awareness of the contributions that colleges and their students make to local communities and the nation as a whole. Continue reading

Fine Arts Keystone presents 'Crossing the Street'

finearts_keystoneThe Fine Arts Keystone integrates graduating seniors from the film, theatre, music, and visual arts programs to provide particular skill sets they will need as artists upon graduation from Augsburg. Because the Keystone examines vocation in this course, the Fine Arts students have utilized the concept of vocation by creating an art project working with and giving back to the community.

For six weeks the students have done research on the East Riverside neighborhood and created artwork that reflects their research. Initially students created flyers advertising a “neighborhood block meeting” and placed them in the four block radius between 6th Street and Riverside and 20th Avenue to Cedar. A meeting was held, students conducted interviews, attended an annual meeting, and created artwork based on their findings. Continue reading

No summer break for hunger

ck_bikeDespite having fewer students on campus during the spring and summer months, work for the Campus Kitchen Project continues. Nearly 2,000 meals are served monthly to help meet the hunger need in the surrounding community. There are several challenges and opportunities that the program faces during this time. Solutions to these challenges include using pedal power and utilizing donated regionally grown produce. Continue reading

Care beyond the basic need

nursing_center On a chilly spring morning, a man enters a room on the lower level of Central Lutheran Church in downtown Minneapolis. He leaves with a trial-size bottle of shampoo, a new pair of white tube socks, and access to a healing community.

This is the Augsburg Central Nursing Center, a place that provides instruction and practice for nurses as well as much-needed health care for members of the community. According to Dawn Bowker, a graduate nursing student at Augsburg, the center also provides growth for the nurses and their clients. Continue reading

Potter Builds a Bridge to the Community

potter1While walking through the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood one day, Robert Tom, professor of sculpture and ceramics, detected an invisible wall between Augsburg and the rest of the community. When expressing his concern to another professor, he was asked, “Well, what are you going to do about it?”

After much thought, Tom came up with a solution. He applied for and received a grant from Forecast Public Arts and the Minnesota State Arts Board, and thus the Augsburg College-Cedar Riverside Pottery Cooperative was born. Continue reading