The Augsburg Podcast features voices of Augsburg University faculty and staff. We hope this is one way you can get to know the people who educate our students to be informed citizens, thoughtful stewards, critical thinkers, and responsible leaders.

Season 2

Episode 1: Paul Pribbenow: Putting Students First

Paul Pribbenow
President Paul Pribbenow explores family, faith, and prioritizing the student experience of present and future Auggies.



Episode 2: Sonja Hagander: The Future of Faith

Sonja Hagander
Pastor Sonja Hagander recalls her path to the ministry, explores Augsburg’s tradition of Interfaith excellence, and considers how the practice of faith evolves in response to its circumstances.



Episode 3: Bob Groven: The Power of Constructive Debate

bob groven
Associate Professor Bob Groven (Co-Chair of the Department of Communication Studies, Film and New Media, and the Director of the Minnesota Urban Debate League) breaks down the power of constructive debate as a force for positive change, understanding, and empathy in our society.



Episode 4: Terrance Kwame-Ross: Empathy in Education

Terrance Kwame-Ross
Terrance Kwame-Ross, Associate Professor of Education, unpacks language, power dynamics, and our sense of “Place” as major forces of influence in our worldviews — both as students and as educators.



Episode 5: Doug Green: Self-Discovery in Literature and Drama

Doug Green
Some stories were meant to be read aloud. Doug Green, Professor of English, recalls his path to Augsburg and reflects on the capacity of the spoken word to give new life to the roles we play: both those performed in dramatic literature and those that we embody, ourselves, in our everyday lives.



Episode 6: Katie Bishop: The Many Meanings of Success

Katie Bishop
Katie Bishop, Chief Student Success Officer, discusses the multiple pathways Augsburg is working to build systems for student success all the way to graduation, inclusive of identity, cultural competence, affordability, and a meaningful degree.

Episode 7: Jennifer Forsthoefel: The Exercise of Writing

Jennifer Forsthofel
Jennifer Forsthoefel, Assistant Professor of English, recalls her early experiences with poetry and English, considers the evolving needs of modern writers learning their craft at the University level, and shares her vision for an expanded Writing Lab at Augsburg.


Episode 8: Jeremy Myers: Pathways in Public Theology

Jeremy Myers, Associate Professor of Religion, explores how early encounters with the wonder and mystery of faith led him to his work with youth, current coursework in public theology, and involvement in the Riverside Innovation Hub.


Episode 9: Vivian Feng: Chemistry & Curiosity

Vivian Feng
Vivian Feng, Associate Professor of Chemistry, is eternally curious about the world around her. She reflects on formative experiences with chemistry, shares student stories, and explores the impact and importance of research and experiential learning in the sciences.


Episode 10: Jill Dawe: The Connectivity of Music

Jill Dawe
Jill Dawe, Associate Professor of Music, shares her fascination with the connective power of music: its capacity to share, express, and bring together communities across cultures and centuries.


Episode 11: Lori Brandt Hale: Lived Theology

Lori Brandt Hale
Lori Brandt Hale, Associate Professor of Religion, believes all questions have answers: that curiosity and inquiry across traditions can bring about insight that informs, inspires, and activates.


Episode 12: Ankita Deka: Lifelong Learnings in Social Work

Ankita Deka
Associate Professor of Social Work Ankita Deka guides her students to new insights about society, privilege, and the unique position of social workers to be agents of positive change in their communities.


Episode 13: Sarah Degner Riveros: Language for Life

Sarah Degner Riveros
Language is so much more than vocabulary and grammar. For Sarah Degner Riveros, Lecturer in Spanish, languages are inseparable from their history, community, and culture. In this discussion, we explore many ways the teaching and learning of Spanish opens doorways to a wider world and into the deeper self.


Episode 14: Stacy Freiheit: Applied Psychology

Stacy Freiheit
Stacy Freiheit, Associate Professor of Psychology, trains the next generation of mental health care providers to be inquisitive researchers, sensitive observers, and keen auditors of evidence-based practice.

Episode 15: Lamont Slater: Decolonizing the Mind

Lamont Slater, instructor and program coordinator for the Center for Global Education and Experience
Lamont Slater, instructor and program coordinator for the Center for Global Education and Experience, remotely joins the Augsburg Podcast from Windhoek, Namibia to discuss the perspective-altering value of study abroad programming — and how it changed his own life as well as the lives of current students studying abroad with him in Namibia.


Season 1

Episode 1: Katie Clark: A Passion for Progress

Katie Clark, Assistant Professor of Nursing and Director of Augsburg Central Health Commons, looks back on her own transformative education in healthcare and how her experience informs a transcultural nursing emphasis in her courses.



Episode 2: Reinaldo Moya: Composing the Future


Reinaldo Moya, Assistant Professor of Music Theory and Composition, empowers his students to trust in their own creative potential and dig deep into musical discovery.



Episode 3: Dale Pederson: Science and Faith

For Dale Pederson, associate professor of biology, the two terms [OR science and religion] are not mutually exclusive standpoints, but rather sympathetic traditions that can coexist in harmony — each offering their own rich and valid perspective on our human experience.



Episode 4: Marc McIntosh: From Wall Street to Cedar-Riverside

Marc McIntosh, Professor of Finance, views finance as an ethical, humane tool for improving the public good. He works to promote financial literacy and equip his students and community with the means to create positive change through responsible, community-focused financial understanding.



Episode 5: Tim Pippert: Empathetic Learning

Tim Pippert, Professor of Sociology and Director for the Center for Teaching and Learning, has dedicated many years to researching inequality and understanding how and why such disparities in wealth, opportunity, and access exist in our communities. In these stories, Tim reflect on inequalities found very close to home — and how sometimes the smallest kindnesses can make the greatest difference.



Episode 6: Meghan Peyton: Coaching the Spirit

Meghan Peyton, Cross Country Head Coach and Track & Field Assistant Coach, trains Augsburg’s runners with equal parts bold vision, strong leadership, and personal connection.



Episode 7: Marty Stortz: Interpreting the Unknown

Marty Stortz, Bernhard M. Christensen professor of religion and vocation, guides her students as they ask powerful questions and find neighbors in our world’s many faith traditions.




Episode 8: Bob Cowgill: Explorations in Cinema

For Bob Cowgill, Associate Professor of English, cinema is not an escape, but rather a potent reflection of our reality. He challenges his students to reevaluate their world through the lens of film —and read beyond the script.



Episode 9: Jeff Swenson: To Excellence and Beyond

For Athletic Director Jeff Swenson, every day is an opportunity to improve, move forward, and become better—a high standard that resonates throughout Augsburg’s 20-sport athletics program.



Episode 10: Merilee Klemp: The Power of Improvisation

Augsburg has a long history of attracting talented entrepreneurs and self-starters—no small number of whom gravitate to the music department. Professor of Music Merilee Klemp ’75 tells the stories of some of Augsburg’s most musical (and motivated) alumni.



Episode 11: Stephan Clark: Dead Ends and New Directions

Associate Professor Stephan Clark, Director of Augsburg’s MFA program in creative writing, guides students to discover the story-worthy value of their own day-to-day plot twists.



Episode 12:  Amanda Case: Exploring the Fundamentals

Amanda Case, assistant professor of chemistry, teaches her students the fundamentals of both science and learning: how to investigate the world around them and ask the questions that lead to insight.



Episode 13: Dixie Shafer: A Passion for Teaching and Learning


Providing the right support can make all the difference in a student’s education. Dixie Shafer, Director of the Office of Undergraduate Research and Graduate Opportunity (URGO), speaks to the many ways in which URGO helps students unlock their fullest potential.



Episode 14: John Cerrito: The Business of Thinking Big


John Cerrito, Professor of Business Administration
John Cerrito, Professor of Business Administration, reflects on the growth, community, and alumni of Augsburg’s largest department.



Episode 15: Christopher Houltberg: Design & Agency


Chris Houltberg in the design studio
Christopher Houltberg, assistant professor of art, brings together community and classroom to create change, celebrate diversity, and empower his students to discover their own creative agency.



Episode 16: Rebekah Dupont: STEM Stories


Rebekah Dupont
Rebekah Dupont, director of STEM programs, shares a few of her most memorable student stories.



Episode 17: Michael Wentzel: Teaching Excellence


Mike Wentzell
Even as he teaches chemistry, professor Michael Wentzel also teaches persistence: the drive to try, fail, and try again. To be better than yesterday… and even better tomorrow.



Episode 18: Diane Pike: The Sociologist’s View


Diane Pike
Diane Pike, Professor of Sociology, explores the social nature of learning and the interchanges between the disciplines of sociology and teaching.