A recent report airing on WCCO radio noted that as students of all ages returned to school this fall, “Augsburg welcomed the class of 2020, with staff greeting students as they walked into the chapel for convocation. However, the class of 2020 had a special distinction – they are the most diverse class the college has seen, with more than 45 percent of them being students of color.”
As Augsburg College President Paul Pribbenow explained, ““For Augsburg, that means that our commitment to diversity, to inclusion and [our] commitment to justice is actually being lived out by the students who come here to be part of our community,”
Andy Aoki, professor and department chair of political science at Augsburg College, recently spoke with WCCO-TV about the implications of Britain’s decision to leave the European Union, a move now referred to as “Brexit.”
Aoki noted that visitors to the United Kingdom may benefit from the devaluation of the pound, but Britain’s unexpected political move also had far-reaching negative effects on financial markets around the globe.
“If you’re going this summer, you’ve kind of hit the lottery because the pound doesn’t look to recover much in the near future,” Aoki told reporter Rachel Slavik.
Economic and immigration issues were in the spotlight as the British debated whether or not to pull out of the European Union, and Aoki also provided Slavik with background on how these issues are influencing the 2016 presidential campaign in the United States.
Members of the Augsburg Choir sang backup for Barry Manilow during the Grammy-award winning performer’s farewell tour. The choir sang three encore songs with Manilow including “I Write the Songs,” “Miracle,” and “Copacabana (At the Copa).”
The Augsburg Choir was selected to perform by Barry Manilow’s choir director, Doug Hollenback. The ensemble is recognized for its high level of musicianship and performs a diverse repertoire under the direction of Peter Hendrickson ’76.
The performance by the students drew media attention from Twin Cities media outlets including:
WCCO recently sought counsel from Andy Aoki, professor and department chair of political science at Augsburg College, to answer a viewer’s question about the timing of the New Hampshire Primary and the Iowa Caucus.
“Why do Iowa and New Hampshire vote first?” was the focus of the recent Good Question segment.
Aoki provided a straightforward answer.
“Today, they’re first because they want to be,” he said before explaining the history of the events in more detail. The segment goes on to explain how the advent of television turned the previously ignored New Hampshire primary into a nation-wide media spectacle. This prompted the state to pass a law requiring that they remain the first to select a candidate.
How did Iowa end up voting earlier? “Technically, New Hampshire is the first primary and Iowa is the first caucus, so they’ve worked out a little agreement,” Aoki explained.
This month, Minnesota Public Radio and WCCO Radio sought input from Jeanne Boeh, professor of economics at Augsburg College, on the economic outlook for 2016. First she appeared on the “John Hines Show” to discuss the impact of a recent drop in the Chinese stock market on the U.S. economy.
Earlier this week, she joined Louis Johnston, a professor of economics at the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University, on MPR’s “News with Kerri Miller and Tom Weber” for a conversation about U.S. and Minnesota economics in the new year. The professors discussed the apparent discrepancies between stock market losses coinciding with higher employment rates. Boeh points out that while the overall employment rates are rising, some groups, such as African-American Minnesotans, have seen employment rates drop.
A retail and affordable housing development founded by Augsburg College alumnus and former NBA player Devean George ’99 was featured on a recent WCCO-TV broadcast.
The segment included several statements by George about his desire to help revitalize the area near Penn Avenue and Golden Valley Road in Minneapolis, which is often cited as an impoverished neighborhood with high crime rates. George also discussed his childhood connection with the neighborhood and the importance of affordable housing.
History Professor Bill Green spoke with WCCO-TV about why Minnesotans are quick to defend their state’s image.
A recent Washington Post article identified Red Lake County, Minn., as the “absolute worst place to live in America,” and Minnesotans immediately sought to set the record straight. In the news station’s Good Question segment, Green explained that part of the reason why Minnesotans reacted strongly to the article is because of the major investment they make in ensuring that the state offers a favorable quality of life.
“We work hard to have good government, we work hard to create a society that attempts to include everyone,” he said. “We work hard to invest resources into making this place look beautiful.”
The story also showed images of Augsburg’s traditional undergraduate Commencement event on May 2, noting that approximately 30 percent of the undergraduate Class of 2015 is comprised of students of color.
Bridget Robinson-Riegler, cognitive psychology professor at Augsburg College, was included on a list of 10 “must-take” psychology professors in the Twin Cities.
Robinson-Riegler began her teaching career at Augsburg in 1994. Students describe her as firm-yet-fair, kind, and intelligent. She said she is thankful to have been a part of the list and that she draws her inspiration from students.
“I am so grateful to the Augsburg students who inspire me and remind [me] every day how truly lucky I am,” Robinson-Riegler said.
Robinson-Riegler is skilled at making complex psychology concepts comprehensible for a general audience. She recently contributed to one of WCCO’s “Good Question” segments about memory in the human brain.
Bill Nye addressed 1,800 people at Augsburg College on Valentine’s Day 2015 and shared his love for science. The sold-out event, titled “How Science Can Save the World,” was part of Augsburg’s annual Scholarship Weekend.
Scholarship Weekend happens every spring and gives prospective students the chance to meet with future classmates and professors, and to interview or audition for the President’s Scholarship and for Fine Arts Scholarships.
Local media outlets that covered Bill Nye’s appearance include: