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Scholarships

Roberta’s Reflections

Dear Alumni, Augsburg Community,

In 1973-74, Dr. Leland B. Sateren had a dream. He asked Professor Robert Karlén to attend a National Association for Music Therapy conference in Athens, Georgia, to check out this new field of music therapy.  It was there that Professor Karlén was advised to contact me. In February 1974, I was at home with a three-week-old baby, and Professor Karlén came to my house. It was during that first meeting that we discussed starting a music therapy curriculum at Augsburg College. In September 1974, I taught the first classes in music therapy, meeting in the old church building across from Murphy Square (now the football field). I was new to teaching college, but I received incredible support from the amazing music faculty who were there at the time – Jim Johnson, “Gabe” Gabrielsen, Diana Lee Lucker, Leland Sateren, and later joined by Auggie alums Merilee Klemp, Bob Stacke, and Peter Hendrickson. We were operating on a shoe string budget, teaching in a building lacking heat and air conditioning, but we were a happy, forward-looking group. Through perseverance and donations, we were finally successful in building a new Music Hall. The Music Hall was designed with a “state of the art” music therapy studio, observation/electronic studio, office spaces and the “John and Vera Thut Music Suite” to build on the community feel of the department.

Music Therapy at Augsburg and as a profession continued to thrive. In the 1970s, three local music therapists met in my basement, drafted a constitution and created one of the first state chapters in the country. With the support of new part-time faculty, we started practicums in the community, eventually creating 30 community partnerships, supervised over the years by Kathy Michelson (Cartwright), Dawn Miller, and Bridget Doak (who started the first on-campus practicum). We hosted federally funded “Very Special Arts” festivals in Murphy Square. With support from the United Board of Christian Higher Education in Asia, I introduced music therapy in China. This, combined with previous visits to China by Professor Karlén, brought Hu QiuXia to Augsburg.  She was the first Hognander scholarship recipient. We hosted two international symposia at Augsburg. After 12 years of working towards a personal dream of mine, a graduate degree (Master of Music Therapy) was approved by the college, AMTA, and NASM. In 2014 The Music Plaza (outdoor music instruments), which was the dream of Doug Schmitt, Vice-President of Schmitt Music Company, was installed outside of the Music Building. The contributions of the music therapy alumni are numerous. They include but are not limited to opening internships and new programs, publishing in scholarly journals, and opening the first hospice home for children in the Midwest.

To continue this 45-year legacy, I invite your support in one of the following ways:

  • Contribute to the Professor Roberta Stewart Kagin Scholarship, started by my late husband Craig Alexander.
  • Support the Music Plaza (located outside of the music hall, donations would support the upkeep and potential addition of new instruments).

“If you don’t have a dream, how you gonna have a dream come true?”  Let’s keep the dream alive!

Professor Roberta S. Kagin
Founder, B.S. and M.M.T. degrees

I would like to donate today!

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Fine Arts Scholarships

The Fine Arts Scholarship (FAS) program recognizes incoming first–year or transfer students who have excelled in art, film, music, or theater—including vocal and instrumental performance, acting, design, and production—and who plan to actively participate in the fine or performing arts at Augsburg.

Each year, faculty may select Fine Arts Scholarship recipients for the renewable $3,000 award. Applicants need not major in art, film, music, or theater, but are required to participate in Art Club (for art scholarships) or a performance group (for music and theater scholarships). Additionally, music recipients must take lessons on the instrument for which the scholarship is awarded. For more information, see the Fine Arts Scholarship page.

Music Exploration Day

Music Exploration Day is your opportunity to discover Music at Augsburg, meet our highly talented and caring instructors, and learn more about your individualized opportunities in the music program. If you are considering majoring in music, it is vitally important that you attend this full-day event.  Should you be unable to attend one of the dates below, contact the music office as soon as possible to assure that your application and FAS receives full consideration.

Dates for 2019-2020
To be added soon!


Named Scholarships

Through the generous support of our donors, Augsburg is proud to offer music-related scholarships that can help our students achieve their academic goals. Check out the full list and descriptions below!

I would like to donate today!

  1. Select the scholarship name in the Designation field.
  2. Or simply select Music Department, and notate in your Comments how you would like your donation designated.

Orville and Gertrude Hognander Family Fund

Established in 1997 through a gift from the estate of Orville Hognander, this scholarship provides merit awards to juniors or seniors in recognition of exceptional music performance and academic achievement.

hognanderThe Hognander Music Scholarships were established by Orville and Gertrude (Lund) Hognander, both 1936 Augsburg graduates. As a student, Orville Hognander was the Augsburg Choir’s first business manager who launched the choir on its first tours and national radio broadcasts. Gertrude Hognander’s love of music included choral singing and her years as a church music director and organist.

The Hognander Scholarships are prestigious music scholarships at Augsburg and recognize students with exceptional music performance and academic achievement. Past Hognander Scholars now enjoy careers as jazz and film score composers, opera and music-theater performers on international stages, administrators of music nonprofits, and music teachers, among many other activities. Hognander Scholarships provide up to full tuition to encourage and support highly qualified music students in voice and instrument. Two recipients, preferably a junior and senior, are selected each year based on a résumé, academic transcript, and performance audition.


Max David Bassinson Music Scholarship

Established in 2015 as a memorial to Max Bassinson ’16, the purpose of the Fund is to honor Max’s achievements, to share the “unparalleled joys that music brings,” and to support students studying music at Augsburg University. It will be awarded to one or more students who have a major in music based on musical talent, academic achievement and financial need.

Max David Bassinson walked the bridge from this life to the next on March 7, 2015. Max was born on July 10, 1991 to his parents, Scott and Meg Bassinson, at Albany Medical Center, New York. He was sweet, kind, funny, smart, musical, creative, hard-working, gentlemanly, and generous. He studied classical piano from the age of five, was in the school musicals, and sang in choir. He traveled to Europe with American Music Abroad in 2008. He played baseball from the age of six and was an excellent pitcher. He graduated from Bethlehem High School in 2009.

He was currently attending Augsburg University in Minneapolis, Minnesota on a scholarship as a piano performance major, where he was also a participant in the university’s innovative Step-Up Program. Max battled substance abuse and was victorious. He had built a productive, spiritual, and happy life and was two and a half years clean and sober. In a cruel irony, he was taken suddenly in his sleep by a severe, undiagnosed heart disease.

Max loved Mary, music, animals, road trips, the beauty of nature, and life itself. He lived a life of service. He is a shining light who beamed on many lives in his short time here. As a way to honor Max’s life, his family has established the Max Bassinson Scholarship in his honor.


Albert and Solveig Birkeland Scholarship

Established in 1993 by Dr. Birgit E. Birkeland ’58 in memory of her parents, this scholarship is awarded annually to a student of any class who is majoring in Music or Theater. The award is based upon academic achievement and financial need.

Jane Burkleo Fund of the Minneapolis Foundation

Jane Burkleo had a life-long interest in music. In 1985 she established The Jane Burkleo Scholarship Fund of The Minneapolis Foundation for the assistance of talented persons aged eighteen years and over in the active pursuit of education or training in music.

Jeroy C. and Lorraine M. Carlson Scholarship

Awarded annually to students of any class, based upon academic achievement, financial need, and service to others. Preference is given to to students studying music and students studying physical education. Established in 1991 by friends, alumni, faculty, and staff of Augsburg University in honor of Jeroy ’48 and Lorraine Carlson and in appreciation for their commitment to and expression of the highest ideals of the college.

Grace Carlsen Nelson Scholarship

Awarded to one or more students studying music with demonstrated financial need and academic achievement. Preference will be given to students studying voice. Established in 2000 by Rev. LuVerne L. (Red) Nelson ’43 and family in memory of Grace ’45.

Centennial Singers Scholarship

Awarded annually to students of any class or major, based upon academic achievement and financial need. The recipients must be involved in the vocal music program of the University, with preference given to members of an Augsburg University Gospel Quartet. Established in 1996 by the Centennial Singers to help revive and maintain the evangelical tradition of the Augsburg Gospel Quartets and to foster excellence in singing songs that touch the heart and strengthen faith.

Sam Coltvet Memorial Choral Music Scholarship

Awarded annually to a student of any academic class who is a choir member not majoring in music. Established in 1985 by Dr. Kenneth and Mrs. Linda Holmen, in memory of Mr. Sam Coltvet, who believed in the value of Christian higher education and choral music.

Leonard and Anabelle (Hanson) Dalberg Scholarship

Established in 2001 by Leonard ’52 and Anabelle (Hanson) ’51 Dalberg, awards are given to one or more students with demonstrated financial need and academic achievement who study music, with preference given to those interested in church music, including organ and choral music.

Robert Ellingrod Scholarship

Awarded annually to a student of any class who participates in the music program at the University, but is not a music major. The award is based upon academic achievement, with preference given to a science major. Established in 1996 by Mrs. Avis Ellingrod in loving memory of her husband, Robert, as an expression of appreciation for the scholarship assistance given to their daughters, Vicki ’89 and Amy ’95, when they were students at Augsburg.

Jerome and Winifred Formo Scholarship

Awarded to one or more students with demonstrated financial need and academic achievement who have an interest in choral music directing and/or who are majoring in music with a strong interest in choral music. Established in 2009 through the estate of Jerome and Winifred Formo.

Rev. Clement A. Gisselquist Church Music Scholarship

Awarded annually to a musically gifted student, with preference given to a student of organ and/or choral music who desires to serve, professionally or otherwise, in the ministry of music of the Lutheran Church. Established in 1986 by the Gisselquist family.

David Gronner Scholarship

Awarded annually to two or more students participating in athletics or music, who have demonstrated financial need and are of high Christian character. Established in 1975 by Mrs. David Gronner and children Richard, Carol, and Paul, and Mrs. Ethel Gronner in memory of David Gronner, Augsburg College alumnus.

Marjorie and James R. Gronseth Jr. Memorial Music Scholarship

Established in 1992 by gifts from family and friends in memory of James R. Gronseth, Jr, ’42, this fund will be awarded annually to junior or senior students, based upon academic achievement and financial need. Preference will be given to those who demonstrate an interest and proficiency in instrumental music education.

Kay Halverson Scholarship

Awarded annually to a student who has demonstrated, through academic program and/or extracurricular activities, interest in and talent for either music or foreign languages. Established in 1990 by Dr. and Mrs. Halverson.

Hanwick Thanksgiving Scholarship

Awarded annually to a student at or above the sophomore level who demonstrates high academic achievement and is preparing for a career in some form of therapy (e.g., physical, occupational, speech, music, psychological, etc). Established in 1986 by Dr. Theodore J. and Mrs. Fern S. Hanwick.

O. I. Hertsgaard Scholarship

Awarded annually to junior/senior students who show promise of academic success and have financial need. Preference will be given to those who have demonstrated proficiency in choral and/or instrumental music and interest or potential in conducting. Established in 1966 by O. I. Hertsgaard.

Catha Jones Scholarship

Awarded annually to upper class women of high moral character, with preference given to students transferring from Waldorf College who are in music and/or elementary education. Established in 1975 in memory of Catha Jones ’70, by her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Jones, other family members and friends, and the Augsburg University Senior Challenge Program.

Robert Karlén Chamber Music Scholarship

Established in 2001 and is awarded annually to a music student with preference given to those who demonstrate exceptional promise as a woodwind and/or brass chamber music performer.

Bernice Kolden Hoversten Memorial Choral Scholarship

Awarded annually to a freshman student member of an Augsburg University choir, based upon suitable academic performance and financial need. Preference will be given to a choir member who is a minority. Established in 1990 by Garfield Hoversten ’50, family and friends, in loving memory of Bernice Kolden Hoversten ’50, a soloist with the choir.

Susan H. and Dean C. Kopperud Scholarship for Excellence in the Field of Music

Established in 1999 by the Kopperud Family, this scholarship provides personal encouragement and financial assistance to one or more students who are interested in preparing for a career in music.

Ruth Krohn Kislingbury Choral Music Scholarship

Awarded annually to a female senior majoring in music, based on academic achievement and financial need. Preference will be given to a woman in a University choir who plans to work for a graduate degree in music, with a special interest in vocal music. Established in 1992 by Ruth Krohn Kislingbury as an expression of her desire to help college women and in appreciation for good choral music.

Leonard and Sylvia Kuschel Scholarship

Awarded to upper-class students seeking to acquire musical and performance skills in instrumental music with preference given to those who have shown proficiency in keyboard instruments. Established in 1975 by Leonard and Sylvia Kuschel.

Nicholas Lenz Memorial Scholarship

Established in 1993 as a tribute to Mr. Lenz, this scholarship is awarded annually to a student of any class or major who participates in the vocal music program of the University. Awards are based on musical and academic achievement.

Dorothy Lijsing Kleven President’s Scholarship in Choral Music

Established in 2001 in loving memory of Dorothy, who had a life-long love of Christian choral music, this scholarship provides merit awards for a President’s Scholar in recognition of exceptional choral music performance, academic achievement, and leadership in the church.

Kenneth O. Lower-Nordkap Scholarship

Awarded annually to an upper-class student majoring in music, based upon academic performance and financial need, with preference given to a male chorale student. Established in 1986 in memory of Kenneth O. Lower ’28 and in recognition of the heritage of the Nordkap Male Chorus.

Arthur Carl Mammen Scholarship

Awarded annually to a music student of any academic class or major, based upon academic achievement and financial need. Preference will be given to instrumentalists. Established in 1991 through a bequest of the late Arthur C. Mammen ’74, an accomplished instrumentalist in the San Francisco Bay area.

Pastor Red Nelson Scholarship

Awarded to one or more students with demonstrated financial need and academic achievement, preference given to students who play the tuba. Established in 2006 by Pastor LuVerne L. (Red) Nelson and family as an expression of appreciation for the education and the positive association the entire family has had with the Augsburg College community, alumnus, students, faculty and others. Red graduated from Augsburg College in 1943, continued onto Augsburg Seminary, graduating in 1946.

Edwin W. and Edith B. Norberg Scholarship

Awarded annually to upper-class student(s) preparing for careers in church music. Established in 1980 by Edwin W. Norberg to honor his wife’s lifelong career in the teaching and conducting of piano, organ, and choral music.

Lois Oberhamer Nye Scholarship

Awarded annually to a student of any class with a major or minor in music, based upon academic achievement and financial need. Preference is given to a student who is preparing for a position as a church organist. Established in 1992 by Lois O. Nye ’74 through her participation in the Senior Challenge Program.

Henry P. Opseth Scholarship

Awarded annually to a sophomore or junior student of outstanding promise in the field of music. Established in 1953 by his family to honor Henry P. Opseth, chair of the Augsburg Department of Music, 1922-1951.

Presser Undergraduate Scholar Award

This scholarship was established in 1998 and is awarded to an outstanding student majoring in music at or near the end of the student’s junior year. The award shall be given solely for excellence.

St. John’s Lutheran Church – John Norris Memorial Scholarship

Established in 1986 in memory of John Norris, this award is given to students at or above the sophomore class who are U.S. citizens majoring in music, based upon their financial need and satisfactory academic progress. Preference is given to racial minority students.

Curtis and Marian Sampson Music Scholarship

Awarded to one or more students who study music, with demonstrated financial need and academic achievement. Established in 1999 by Curtis A. and Marion Sampson to support and encourage students studying music at Augsburg University.

Leland B. Sateren Choral Music Scholarship

Established in 1984 and awarded to outstanding students who are participants in the Augsburg Choral Music Program.

Mabeth Saure Gyllstrom Scholarship

The Mabeth Saure Gyllstrom Scholarship is to provide encouragement and financial assistance to one or more students studying voice based on vocal musical talent and academic achievement. The scholarship is to be given to an incoming freshman and is renewable for four years upon application and demonstration of compliance with established criteria. Established in 1999 by Mabeth Saure Gyllstrom ’58 and Richard Gyllstrom.

Mayo Savold Memorial Scholarship

Awarded annually to a student of any class or major who participates in the Augsburg Concert Band, based on musical and academic achievement. Established in 1983 as a tribute to Professor Savold and endowed in 1996 by the Department of Music to perpetuate his fine reputation and enduring accomplishments.

Marilyn Solberg Voice Scholarship

Awarded annually to an Augsburg student whose major or minor is music and who shows outstanding promise for achievement in the art of singing. Established in 1955 by her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Iver Solberg, and her brother Dorvan to honor Marilyn Yvonne Solberg, member of the Augsburg choir from 1950-53.

Marolyn Sortland Halverson String Scholarship

Awarded to a student of any major who plays a violin, viola, cello, or bass in the Augsburg University Orchestra or chamber ensemble, this fund honors Marolyn Sortland Halverson ’51, who was a lifelong lover of classical and choral music. She was also a beloved wife, mother of five, grandmother of 13, and great-grandmother of two when she passed away in 2012.

Professor Roberta Stewart Kagin Scholarship

Awarded annually to a student of any class who is a music therapy major, based upon financial need and scholastic achievement. Established in 1997 by Craig J. Alexander, in honor of the professional accomplishments of Professor Roberta S. Kagin.

John and Vera Thut Scholarship

One or more scholarships are awarded annually to upper-class students who have achieved excellence in performance in voice or piano. Established in 1980 by John and Vera Thut, their family and friends.

Mary Roberts Wilson Scholarship

This fund will be awarded to one or more students with demonstrated financial need and academic achievement who are studying music and who are performing one or more of the following instruments in chamber music wind ensembles: bassoon, clarinet, flute, French horn or oboe. Preference will be given to flautists. This scholarship was started in 2016 by Merilee Klemp ’75 and Trudi Anderson ’77 in memory of Mary Roberts Wilson, an esteemed flautist, a long-time teacher of flute at Augsburg, and a pillar of the local flute community.

David R. Winsor Scholarship

This scholarship is to provide encouragement and financial assistance to one or more students pursuing a degree in Music. The award is based on academic achievement and financial need. Established in 1999 by John and Renata Winsor in memory of their son, David Winsor.