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Star Tribune profiles Augsburg history professor Phil Adamo

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The Minneapolis Star Tribune recently published an article about the life and career of Phil Adamo, professor of history at Augsburg College and 2015 Minnesota Professor of the Year.

The article focuses on Adamo’s engaging approach to teaching history and his personal history with academia. As a young man, he decided to forgo a college education in favor of a career as a clown with the Ringling Bros. Circus. Eventually, the constant demands of performance wore him down. “I was exhausted by performing so much, and I started to think that I wasn’t funny,” he said. “That’s a bad thing for a clown.”

Returning from the circus, he enrolled as a medieval studies major at Ohio State University, where a senior project involving a summer in a monastery led to an award-winning dissertation and propelled him toward a career in academia.

The article also depicts Adamo as an ardent supporter of having a liberal arts education, which he says “gives the benefit of having a better life, a more interesting life, a better understanding of who you are as a human.”

Read Augsburg professor left circus to bring history to life on the Star Tribune site.

Auggies in the Fringe

fringeMolly Miller ’11, a Medieval studies major with a concentration in theatre history, is one of several Auggies whose acting, directing, and/or writing talent is featured in the 2011 Fringe Festival.

The festival, now in its 17th year, the Minnesota Fringe Festival includes 168 shows from a variety of different artists, and all shows are selected at random. This year, the festival features Levi Morris ’10 in Son of a ____! (that is the actual title, read about it in the StarTribune), Amber Davis ’09 with Savage Umbrella in Ex-Gays, and Miller’s show, Even the Gods Dream, which she wrote, directed, designed, and stars in as Boann, the Water Spirit.

Shows run August 4-14 in venues in Uptown, Downtown, the West Bank (including two stages at Augsburg College), and in St. Paul. Continue reading “Auggies in the Fringe”

How to arm a knight — and graduate in Medieval Studies

armorNot many senior projects require countless hours spent shaping steel with a hammer. And sandpaper and steel brushes aren’t often used to finish one of the most significant assignments in a student’s undergraduate career.

But Josh Davis’ project isn’t like most. For more than two years, Davis has spent the vast majority of his free time working to construct a full suit of armor. Based on armor of the late 1400s, Davis’ work is currently on display on the Link Level of Lindell Library.

On Thursday, Davis, a senior who will graduate with a degree in medieval studies, will don the suit and put on a demonstration on the green space between Lindell Library and Oren Gateway Center. The 3:30 p.m., presentation entitled “How to Arm a Knight” is part of the two days of Zyzzogeton, which celebrates the creativity and scholarships of undergraduate students. Continue reading “How to arm a knight — and graduate in Medieval Studies”

Focus on Medieval Studies

patrickAugsburg student Patrick Wendel ’08, traveled to France in the summer

of 2006 as part of the History 440: Religious Experience in Medieval

France course. He reflects on the experience:

“It is hard to convey in words my experiences during three weeks in France, walking a medieval pilgrimage, praying in a cathedral, studying as monks did in the twelfth century – especially since I did these things in the twenty-first century.

Upon arrival, I still carried a remnant of the United States in my head. This doesn’t surprise me at all, but what does surprise me is how quickly my modern sense of time and lifestyle left once we started the pilgrimage.” Continue reading “Focus on Medieval Studies”