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Augsburg Professor William Green Interviewed in PBS Story on the Chauvin Trial

William Green, M. Anita Gay Hawthorne professor of critical race and ethnic studies, was one of the experts interviewed in a PBS NewHour story on the Chauvin trial. 

Green commented that, while he was hopeful, he also was concerned that there may not be lasting change, even if Chauvin is convicted. “The very nature of a trial narrows down the issue to a focus that may not deal with any kind of systemic change at all,” he said. 

The story is available as a video and transcript at “Minneapolis on edge as the trial in the police killing of George Floyd approaches.”

About Augsburg
Augsburg University offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and 11 graduate degrees to 3,400 students of diverse backgrounds at its campus in the vibrant center of the Twin Cities and nearby Rochester, Minnesota, location. Augsburg educates students to be informed citizens, thoughtful stewards, critical thinkers, and responsible leaders. An Augsburg education is defined by excellence in the liberal arts and professional studies, guided by the faith and values of the Lutheran church, and shaped by its urban and global settings. Learn more at Augsburg.edu

Professor Emeritus Mark Engebretson Surpasses 300 Publications

Professor Mark EngebretsonMark Engebretson, professor emeritus of physics at Augsburg University, recently surpassed his 300th publication when three articles to which he contributed were published earlier this month: 

  • “Observations of Particle Loss due to Injection-Associated Electromagnetic Ion Cyclotron Waves” in Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
  • “Magnetic Conjugacy of Pc1 Waves and Isolated Proton Precipitation at Subauroral Latitudes: Importance of Ionosphere as Intensity Modulation Region” in Geophysical Research Letters 
  • Nighttime magnetic perturbation events observed in Arctic Canada: 3. Occurrence and amplitude as functions of magnetic latitude, local time, and magnetic disturbance indices” in Space Weather 

With the publication of these papers, he is now the author or co-author of 303 publications. In addition, another of his articles, for which he was lead author, was recently accepted for publication.

In October, Engebretson received his 30th grant from the National Science Foundation.

Scientific research is usually collaborative, so most of Engebretson’s publications were written in collaboration with several colleagues from around the world. Augsburg undergraduates have been co-authors of 27 of these publications, and five students have been lead authors. Engebretson’s publications have included articles in Annales Geophysicae, Nature, and Sun and Geosphere and a chapter in “The Dynamic Loss of Earth’s Radiation Belts,” among many other journals, conference proceedings, and books.

About Augsburg

Augsburg University offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and 11 graduate degrees to 3,400 students of diverse backgrounds at its campus in the vibrant center of the Twin Cities and nearby Rochester, Minnesota, location. Augsburg educates students to be informed citizens, thoughtful stewards, critical thinkers, and responsible leaders. An Augsburg education is defined by excellence in the liberal arts and professional studies, guided by the faith and values of the Lutheran church, and shaped by its urban and global settings. Learn more at Augsburg.edu.

Professors Margit Berman and Mark Carlson-Ghost Receive the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology President’s Award

Margit BermanMark Carlson-Ghost

Margit Berman, program director for Augsburg University’s PsyD program in Clinical Psychology, and Mark Carlson-Ghost, clinical associate professor at Augsburg, received the 2021 President’s Award from the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology.

The award was given to recognize their outstanding leadership during the closure of the Minnesota School of Professional Psychology, ensuring that their students and faculty found an educational home at Augsburg.

Learn about the association.

Professor William Green Featured in Star Tribune Column About Facing Racism

William Green
William Green

How can Minnesotans face the truth about racism, past and present?  Columnist Myron Medcalf explored that subject recently in the Star Tribune and interviewed Augsburg History Professor William Green.

Green said reading a wide range of material about Black history is the key to knowing the steps that have led to this critical moment.  Many Minnesotans were surprised that George Floyd could happen here in part because so many hadn’t grappled with the state’s true history of race relations. “Some people throw their hands up and say, ‘What am I supposed to do?’ ” Green said. “The conclusion is they do nothing. But that’s not the solution.”

Read the full article at the Star Tribune website.

Mill City Times interviews Professor Joseph Underhill about River Semester

Joe UnderhillMill City Times recently interviewed Augsburg Professor Joseph Underhill about River Semester. Underhill teaches courses in Environmental Politics, International Relations, and Political Methodology, and regularly takes students off campus for experiential and interdisciplinary learning. An experiential education is a hallmark of an Augsburg education and Undehill has been key to helping Augsburg live it out. He has directed the International Relations Program and Model United Nations programs at Augsburg since 1998 and taken students to New Zealand, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Egypt, and Tanzania.

For the past fifteen years, Underhill has taken students out on the Mississippi River to study the impact of human activity on the river ecosystem. Students in the program earn a full semester of college credits with a customized curriculum focused on environmental justice and social change in the Mississippi Joe Underhillwatershed. The River Semester is a regular part of the programming offered by Augsburg University’s Center for Global Education and Experience (CGEE).

Read the interview at the Mill City Times website.

For more details about River Semester, visit the River Semester site.

WCCO Report: Augsburg’s Bridget Robinson-Riegler on the Psychology of Voting

WCCO logoAugsburg Psychology Professor Bridget Robinson-Riegler was recently featured on WCCO to discuss the psychology of voting and how can we filter out false claims, conspiracies, misinformation, and lies.

“I don’t think that we do,” said Robinson-Riegler about filtering out false claims.

“So even if it’s inaccurate, there’s research that’s shown the more we hear it regardless of even if we know it’s true or not, the more likely we are to have it influence our behavior,” she said.

Watch the full report at WCCO’s website.

Allen Burton Award goes to Augsburg faculty member Carol Enke

Carol receiving her awardAugsburg University faculty member Carol Enke won the 2020 Allen Burton Award. The award is given to elementary, secondary, or higher education teachers by the Minnesota Developmental Adapted Physical Education Leadership Committee to honor and recognize outstanding efforts and contributions given to students with disabilities in the area of developmental adaptive physical education.

Enke received the award in recognition of her 20 years of work and dedication to hosting Sports Extravaganza at Augsburg. Sports Extravaganza is an annual one-day event that brings children with physical, cognitive, and learning disabilities to campus to play games and compete in activities such as bowling, soccer, relay races, and dancing. It gives Augsburg students the opportunity both to apply what they’ve learned in the classroom and to work with students with disabilities. Enke co-founded the event in 1999 and has directed it ever since.

Professor William Green named inaugural Hawthorne Professor

William Green, professor of history, has been named the inaugural holder of the M. Anita Gay Hawthorne professor of critical race and ethnic studies, effective September 1.William Green headshot

The M. Anita Gay Hawthorne Professor of Critical Race and Ethnicity Studies was created on the recommendation of a working group of students, faculty, and staff who advanced, simultaneously, a vision for the creation of a new academic department in critical race and ethnicity studies at Augsburg University. The professorship aims to honor senior faculty with an extensive record of achievement as well as a deep commitment to critical race and ethnicity studies. It seeks to embody the student and community orientation embedded in critical race and ethnicity studies. It aims to make concrete Augsburg’s commitment to critical race and ethnicity studies as a formal and significant component of Augsburg’s undergraduate and graduate curricula. It honors the legacy of Margaret Anita Gay Hawthorne (“Anita”) who drew upon the concept of Pan-Afrikanism to create a program at Augsburg unique to any college in the country.

Anita Gay Hawthorne was the only child of Roscoe E. and Josephine L. Leonard. She held a bachelor of science degree in psychology from Southern University and a master’s in counseling and psychology from Howard University. She moved to Minnesota in 1977 and met her husband Kevin Hawthorne in 1994. At Augsburg, she taught courses such as “Black in America” and “Introduction to Women’s Studies.” She was active in the community, serving on many boards and committees, including African American Social Services, the NAACP, and Excelsior Chorale Ensemble. She co-founded the Asili Institute for African Women in the Diaspora, was active in the Pan African Student Leadership Conference, and served as an officer for the Association of Black Psychologists.  

The professorship is anticipated to rotate among faculty with demonstrated commitments to the pedagogical approaches, research strategies, and thematic interests of critical race and ethnicity studies as well as the intentional design of the CRES department as an interdisciplinary locus. The Hawthorne professor will teach courses in subjects directly related to critical race and ethnicity studies.

President Paul Pribbenow commented on the appointment: “I have known Professor Bill Green for 15 years, beginning when he served on the search committee that brought me to Augsburg in 2006. I have witnessed Bill’s remarkable scholarship, publishing important books that shine a bright light on Minnesota’s historic racial inequities. At the same time, I have watched him bring a classroom to life, mentor students with care and respect, and lead his faculty colleagues in shared governance, not to mention serve the wider community as superintendent of Minneapolis schools. It is this distinguished legacy of scholarship, teaching, and service that we honor with the inaugural Hawthorne professorship.”

A prolific scholar and public intellectual with a long history of community engagement, Green is regularly invited to speak on race, education, civil rights, and Minnesota history. He joined the Augsburg faculty in 1991. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from Gustavus Adolphus College and a master’s degree, doctorate, and law degree from the University of Minnesota. From 1993 to 2002, he served on the Minneapolis School Board, and as chair for three terms. From 2006 to 2010, he served as superintendent of Minneapolis Public Schools. Between 2010 and 2019, Green served on the Executive Council of the Minnesota Historical Society (vice president, 2016-2018). In addition, he has published numerous articles, op-ed pieces, and book chapters on history, law, and education, as well as books on race and civil rights in Minnesota history: “A Peculiar Imbalance in Early Minnesota: 1837-1869,” “Degrees of Freedom: The Origin of Civil Rights in Minnesota, 1865-1914,” (winner of the 2016 Hognander Minnesota History Award), and “The Children of Lincoln: White Paternalism and the Limits of Black Opportunity in Minnesota, 1860-1876,” recognized with the 2020 Hognander Minnesota History Award. Green is presently working on several new book projects: “Nellie Francis, Fighting for Gender Equality and Racial Justice,” will appear in January 2021; “Strike!: Twenty Days in April When Teachers Broke the Law,” expected to appear in Fall 2021; and “Uncertain Brethren: When Liberals Gathered Under the Bright North Star, 1847-1860,” expected to appear in Fall 2022. He is presently working on “The Case of William R. Morris.”

About Augsburg
Augsburg University, celebrating its 150th anniversary, offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and 11 graduate degrees to 3,400 students of diverse backgrounds at its campus in the vibrant center of the Twin Cities and nearby Rochester, Minnesota, location. Augsburg educates students to be informed citizens, thoughtful stewards, critical thinkers, and responsible leaders. An Augsburg education is defined by excellence in the liberal arts and professional studies, guided by the faith and values of the Lutheran church, and shaped by its urban and global settings. Learn more at Augsburg.edu.

Augsburg University Names Inaugural Torstenson Endowed Professor

Timothy Pippert, professor of sociology, has been named the inaugural holder of the Joel Torstenson Endowed Professorship, effective September 1. Joel Torstenson headshot

The Torstenson professorship will be held by an Augsburg faculty member with demonstrated commitment to the pedagogy, principles, and practice that characterize the work and legacy of Joel Torstenson, professor of sociology at Augsburg from 1947 to 1977. The professorship is made possible through the generosity of Mark Johnson, class of ’75, who also supports the university’s Torstenson Scholars program. “I had the good fortune to participate in Joel Torstenson’s first Scandinavian Urban Studies term when I was a student at Augsburg. That experience was transformational, opening my eyes to a global context that has shaped my life,” said Johnson, who was named to Augsburg’s Board of Regents in 2018. “I’m interested in making sure that today’s Auggies have the same opportunities.”

Joel Torstenson ’38 returned to Augsburg in 1947 to develop programs in sociology and social work at the invitation of President Bernhard Christensen. He added courses in social problems, sociological theory, race and intergroup relations, and rural sociology. In the aftermath of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, he created opportunities for Augsburg students to live in North Minneapolis, learning from people who lived and worked in the community, in what became known as the Metro Urban Studies Term (MUST), the first academic program offered by HECUA (Higher Education Consortium for Urban Affairs) and one of the premier interdisciplinary experiential education programs in the nation. A sabbatical in Scandinavia led Torstenson to develop the Scandinavian Urban Studies Program (SUST) referenced by Johnson above. These programs offered the foundation for urban studies, which developed some 20 years later: “The more we became involved in urban affairs,” Torstenson observed, “the more we began to ask the question—what is the appropriate role of a liberal arts college located at the center of an exploding metropolis?”

The professorship is anticipated to rotate among faculty members with demonstrated commitments to place-based experiential learning; to engaging students and colleagues in interdisciplinary program-solving; to supporting partnerships with local communities that promote positive social change; and to advancing social justice through educational experiences.  

“We are so grateful to Mark Johnson for his generosity and vision in honoring the Torstenson legacy at Augsburg with this professorship,” President Paul Pribbenow said. “It is particularly meaningful to me that Professor Tim Pippert will be the first incumbent of the Torstenson Endowed Professorship. I have had the privilege to teach with Tim and to witness his commitment to our students. I also am deeply impressed with Tim’s scholarship, which extends the Torstenson legacy with rigor and creativity.”

Pippert joined the Augsburg faculty in 1999. He holds bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. His teaching interests center on family systems, juvenile delinquency, homelessness and affluence, statistics, and race, class, and gender. Recent research has focused on the impact of the recent oil boom in North Dakota on local residents, relationships and survival strategies of the homeless, and the marketing of higher education. Pippert directed the Augsburg Center for Teaching and Learning from 2014 to 2019. In 2011, he received the Distinguished Contributions to Teaching and Learning—Excellence in Teaching Award.

About Augsburg
Augsburg University, celebrating its 150th anniversary, offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and 11 graduate degrees to 3,400 students of diverse backgrounds at its campus in the vibrant center of the Twin Cities and nearby Rochester, Minnesota, location. Augsburg educates students to be informed citizens, thoughtful stewards, critical thinkers, and responsible leaders. An Augsburg education is defined by excellence in the liberal arts and professional studies, guided by the faith and values of the Lutheran church, and shaped by its urban and global settings. Learn more at Augsburg.edu.

Mother Jones Quotes Professor Michael J. Lansing in Article on Police Unions

Mother Jones logoAfter recently sharing his historical expertise on racial injustice in Minneapolis with several news outlets, Professor Michael J. Lansing, chair of Augsburg University’s Department of History, has been cited in “The Infuriating History of Why Police Unions Have So Much Power,” a story in the September/October 2020 issue of Mother Jones. 

In the article, Lansing shares historical information about the conflict between Minneapolis Mayor Arthur Naftalin and the Police Officers’ Federation of Minneapolis in 1967. The story ends on a note of hope that in the future police unions will no longer hamper the push for police reforms. In Lansing’s words: “Anything that can be created can be uncreated.”