The announcement on the facing page about the $10 million gift to name the Center for Science, Business, and Religion certainly ranks as our most exciting news. The momentum to break ground on this signature academic building is now palpable on campus and beyond as we imagine its transformational impact on our community for generations to come.
And this issue of Augsburg Now is full of many other examples of the good news of this academic year. News of national recognition for community engagement and interfaith initiatives. News of special events featuring Bill Nye the Science Guy (a fellow bow tie lover!) and Nobel Peace Prize Laureates U.S. President Jimmy Carter and The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. News of more than 100 Augsburg students and faculty from five academic departments collaborating to create an interactive exhibit to engage people in the topic of peace. News of student and faculty achievements on and off campus. News of generous alumni and friends supporting the mission-based work of the Augsburg community—including more than 1,300 donors who, for the second year in a row, helped Augsburg surpass every other Minnesota college or university in fundraising on Give to the Max Day. And much, much more to celebrate.
For me, all of this good news points to a core value at the heart of Augsburg’s identity and character—we are a community of abundance in a world of scarcity.
What do I mean by abundance? It is a way of life that calls our community to live and work together with a focus on our common wisdom, experience, and aspirations. It is an ethic that challenges us to believe that we can do more and better together than on our own. It is a vision that says we are small to our students and big for the world.
As I near the end of my ninth year as Augsburg’s 10th president, I am more and more struck by the abundance of our lives together, the many ways in which the students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends of our community aspire to embody a way of life that links faith, learning, and service to the neighbor.
I also am struck by the abundance of our place, the remarkable work of Augsburg as an institution and community in this neighborhood, city, and world, and our firm resolve to send our students out into the world as educated and faithful citizens, to be good stewards of our environment, and to embrace hospitality and generosity for our fellow humans.
Finally, I am struck by the abundance of the promise we make each and every day to each other as we dedicate ourselves to collaboration, to doing things differently, and to working together to meet the needs of students and neighbors. Where others say there is not enough, we say there is more than plenty if we believe and bring resolve, courage, and imagination to our efforts to educate, to feed the hungry, to clothe the poor, and to meet the needs of strangers.
What a deep privilege it is to be a partner in this work of abundance at Augsburg College. Thanks to all of you for your abiding support and passion for this good and faithful work.
Yours in Augsburg,
PAUL C. PRIBBENOW, PRESIDENT