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COVID-19: Updates and Plans ›

Sabo Scholars 2022-2023

Yearlong student seminar exploring civic and public life.

The Sabo Scholar program provides a unique opportunity for students to engage in civic life, study the political process, work on public policy, and explore careers in public service. The cohort meets on Thursday nights for academic seminar and civic engagement project work with the cohort.

Current Augsburg students (any level) who plan to study on campus both fall and spring semester next year and who have an interest in politics, community, and civic life are encouraged to apply. To be enrolled in the Sabo Scholars course you must plan on studying on-campus for the entire school year (i.e. not going abroad or student teaching for part of the year) and be available for the class period on Thursday nights. Any eligible student is welcome to enroll in the course whether they receive the scholarship or not.


  • Unique opportunities to explore civic engagement and politics as a cohort
  • Earn upper-division credit (4 credits) in the Political Science Department
  • Seminar setting that is small and supportive
  • 2500 scholarship (this has been increased from the previous $2000 amount)
  • Opportunities to formally develop civic leadership skills

Apply here to be a member of the 2022/2023 cohort.

Ask your recommenders to fill out this recommendation form.

The Sabo Scholars is one of three public leadership scholars programs at Augsburg. Email Professor Andy Aoki with questions about Sabo Scholars.

Also, please check out the Christensen Scholars and the Interfaith Scholars.

Campus Kitchen receives grant for food security

Grocery bags filled with fresh produce, ready to be delivered to community partners.
Grocery bags filled with fresh produce, ready to be delivered to community partners.

In November, Augsburg was awarded a grant through the Minneapolis Health Department’s COVID‐19 Community Food Security Supports program, for Campus Kitchen in partnership with People’s Center and West Bank CDC!

Campus Kitchen at Augsburg is a food access program that is part of the Sabo Center. The program addresses food access on our campus and in our surrounding neighborhood. We’ve worked with our community partners in Cedar-Riverside since 2003, serving, eating, and growing food with neighbors. In March 2020, the Sabo Center launched the Neighborhood Food Initiative in partnership with M Health Fairview. The Neighborhood Food initiative brings together a variety of community partners to support collaborative approaches that increase access to healthy food in the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood. Our ability to quickly respond to the City of Minneapolis grant opportunity is a great example of how collaborative efforts supported by the Neighborhood Food Initiative can result in positive outcomes for the community.  

Boxes of diapers and other household supplies stacked up in the Sabo Center/Food and supply hub storage.

In response to COVID-19-driven food insecurity, Campus Kitchen has expanded our partnerships with Health Commons, West Bank CDC, and People’s Center. This summer, we began distributing food weekly to the West Bank CDC and People’s Center. We regularly receive feedback from our neighbors and partner organizations that the groceries we provide make a difference for residents’ ability to access high-quality, healthy foods. Over recent months, Augsburg’s food distribution program with West Bank CDC and People’s Center has strengthened and grown. Many households in Cedar-Riverside now see this service as a key piece of meeting their basic food needs.

In order to expand this work, we sought funds to purchase food and personal hygiene and household items, as well as refrigerators and other infrastructure to support this ongoing work. Because our program operates on a small budget, we rely primarily on recovered food items, which limits choice and thus our ability to meet residents’ specific needs. This new funding has enhanced our ability to provide our neighbors with the specific staple foods and other items that they request on a regular basis. New equipment, including shiny new refrigerators and freezers, will allow Campus Kitchen, People’s Center, and West Bank CDC to expand our respective capacities so that we can continue to work together to provide basic food and supplies to our neighbors in the long-term.

Campus Kitchen: Student Experience

Photo of Yamile

My name is Yamile Hernandez, I am a junior pursuing a degree in Finance. I came into Augsburg as a transfer student my sophomore year. I was completely new to campus and to the city, I’m from a small town called Northfield, so it was a bit nerve racking moving to the cities, but I was excited for the change. I wanted to make sure I got involved in programs that allowed me to engage with the community that I now live in. That is exactly what I found and was able to do with Campus Kitchen. 


I started working with Campus Kitchen in fall of 2019. Right off the bat I felt very welcomed by all the staff members, it didn’t take long for me to become comfortable with them. Through Campus Kitchen I was able to engage with other students, staff, and community members. I started off with produce distribution, which was a weekly event where we would set up in Christenson Center with boxes of produce that students and staff could come choose from. I enjoyed this very much. It was always nice to hear about the new recipes folks were going to try, or see their excitement when we had a fruit they had been craving. 


Not only was I able to engage with the Augsburg community but also the community outside of campus. One example is delivering meals to seniors at Ebenezer Tower apartments. We would start off by packaging meals from surplus dining hall food, we would then head over to Ebenezer and go door to door delivering their meals. This would always take me awhile because I loved hearing about the residents and their day or a new story they had to tell me, and I could never miss heading out on the balcony once I reached the 15th floor and just enjoy the view for a second. This is definitely one of the places I miss most. 


Due to covid we had to change and adjust a lot of ways we used to distribute, but our mission and goal to give to the community never changed. We are still able to give groceries to students such as non-perishable goods, produce, hygiene products and more. We no longer get the interaction with students, it is now an order online and delivery system, but it still feels just as good knowing that we are helping in any way possible. These deliveries also go to those in Ebenezer. Although it is very different I still enjoy the work I do, it allows me to get out and move around after sitting on my laptop all day, while still being engaged with the community from a distance.

Student Experience: Campus Kitchen

Photo of Nick with mask on
Nick Keener (2020), Campus Kitchen Student Leadership Team member.
The Campus Cupboard and Food Distribution During the COVID-19 Pandemic

By Nick Keener


In late March, when quarantine shut down school and businesses, food sourcing for students and families became more difficult. With our resources and partnerships throughout the Twin Cities, we’ve been able to help provide dozens of families with donated produce from Mill City Farmers Market and Twin Cities Food Justice, as well as surplus essentials and groceries from the Loaves and Fishes warehouse and the North County Food Alliance on a weekly basis for the past few months of quarantine. 

Our outreach starts with our students who remained on campus during quarantine with twice-weekly grocery drop off, then to students and staff living in the Twin Cities with a weekly grocery home delivery, finally out into the community with weekly produce drop-offs and collecting surplus donations, groceries, and self-care products to the neighborhood community center and food shelf, Brian Coyle, as well as The People’s Center Clinic, West Bank CDC, and Health Commons.

We’ve had to adapt and grow how certain elements of our program operate in order to stay safe on all ends. We have been committed to wearing masks, gloves, and sanitizing our hands and surfaces throughout the process. We developed an online ordering system for students on campus to use to request groceries– one we hope to continue using as classes resume and students move back onto campus. Our goal is to make healthy food safely accessible to everyone, be it at our university, in the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood, or throughout the Twin Cities.  

On a personal level, I couldn’t be more thankful for the opportunity to keep busy and be able to work and help during this confusing and anxiety-inducing time. Thankfully. most of our work takes place outside so we’ve still been able to make connections with new volunteers and community members. In Campus Kitchen, we tend to think of food as a way of bringing people together and connecting with one another. I think this is more important now than ever.


Produce from community partners Loaves & Fishes to be distributed.


Local Engagement Opportunities for Fall 2020

Augsburg’s commitment to community service and engagement is long-standing and deeply held. Since 1992, day undergraduate students have participated in service projects on City Engagement Day, even before they’ve had their first class. The COVID-19 pandemic requires us to press pause on City Engagement Day this year, but our commitment to community building is unwavering. Instead of sending hundreds of incoming students out to serve Minneapolis neighborhoods and organizations, we are encouraging students, faculty, and staff to engage with their local communities in ways that are meaningful to them personally. 

For those looking for local options for engagement, Sabo Center staff members have compiled this list of local opportunities for community service. We will update this document as we learn of new opportunities, and we have not vetted every one, so take care in considering COVID-19 safety practices, the organization’s capacity to host groups, and other key questions.

If you’d like to suggest an addition to this list, please email us at

Augsburg student with pitchfork in garden



Summer Sustainability Update!

Though school has been rather quiet since shut down in march, the Environmental Stewardship Coordinators has been busy this summer taking action that will direct sustainability related goals in the fall… and beyond.

laptop screen with man in white sweatshirt giving peace sign on the screen and three other virtual meeting attendees

For readers who are not familiar, the Environmental Stewardship Coordinators is a small group of interns whose goal is to promote a campus culture of sustainability, in partnership with the Environmental Action Committee and Environmental Stewardship Committee. The sustainability model at Augsburg encompasses personal wellness, social systems, natural environment, and economics so there is a wide possibility of action steps and angles to approach work from. This summer the group has been focusing on institutional commitments, community outreach, and student organizing. Here is a short summary of current projects and future planning.

Institutional Commitments

Augsburg became a charter signatory to the Second Nature Presidents’ Climate Commitment in 2007. This means that we are committed to taking climate action as a university. For us, this action looks like a climate action plan (CAP). The goal of a CAP is to lay out specific goals to help mitigate climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This is a daunting task that requires time and input from our community. The previous CAP was called “Green By 2019” which has groundbreaking initiatives but fell short in completion which is why it is so important to rewrite and shift our energy towards new goals.

Community Outreach

Connecting to our community is extremely valuable to our students… and our university. The Sabo Center, Campus Kitchen, and the Environmental Stewardship Coordinators are working on crafting a campaign that will help students see the importance of supporting local businesses and shifting personal purchasing habits as well as looking at how the university supports the community. This summer there has also been food/supply drives which provided a list of donation items that had sustainability sourced options to help shift personal purchasing towards more ethical options.

Student Organizing

Having a platform for our students to be engaged within sustainability is important to us! We are working on completing more social media posts for how you can be involved around campus, modeling specific handouts for first year students, co-creating a food justice class for 2 credits, and planning ahead for how we can stay connected even if we can’t be in person. We even reached out to alumni of the university to ask them to share their insights on sustainability to make an interview series. This plethora of knowledge would help us create a roadmap for sustainability at Augsburg.

Now what?

As one of the ESC members, I would say this summer work has been uplifting. In such troubling times it is good to be reminded of what Augsburg is about and why I want to continue to go to education here. Sometimes some of these projects seem bigger than me or very out of reach… but that is the exciting part! In our current times we are called to make systemic changes, we need to go farther than we have ever gone before to ensure sustainability- because that means social justice, environmental care, community wellness and economic prosperity. The time is NOW to make change and being a part of this group I feel like we are making meaningful change and paving a way to get there.

connected circle model of sustainability, with three circles that say wellness, economic, and social, embedded in environmental circle. Text says "Basically, everything we do and care about is connected with sustainability somehow!"

Meet Our Student Community Garden Coordinators!

The Medtronic Foundation Community Garden at Augsburg University is in full swing, despite a slow start as we navigated how to safely grow food together through COVID-19. Our student workers have been invaluable in helping prepare gardens for planting – both their own communal student plot and plots for some neighbors who needed support – and in making sure health and safety measures like washing shared tools are happening regularly. The garden gathers an inter-generational, intercultural group of neighbors each year, and our student workers have been an invaluable part of making this space available this summer!

Tulela Nashandi woman in a blue shirt smiling in a selfie

woman in red shirt leanign into a storage bench with signs sitting on top of the neighboring bench(She/her/hers)

Senior Biology major

Where are you from?

  • I was born and raised in Namibia.

What have you learned in the garden so far?

  • I have learned that having a green thumb is more than just natural talent, a lot of research goes into the success of gardening.

What has been challenging or surprising?

  • The most challenging part has been figuring out what plants that grew from previous years were food or weeds.

What do you wish more people at Augsburg knew about the garden?

  • I wish more people knew how relaxing and rewarding it is. You really feel like you are part of a community that is doing something really cool. Yep that’s it I wish people knew plants are cool 🙂 It is amazing to see how beautiful some of the gardens look so organized and full of produce.

Soyome Moyawoman in jean vest standing in a vegetable garen holding a trellis and smiling


Biology, Class of 2020

Where are you from?

  • Oromia/Ethiopia

What have you learned in the garden so far?

  • I have learned about the importance of gardening for your mental health. It is a great way to meditate and appreciate nature.

What has been challenging or surprising?

  • The most challenging part of gardening is the work that has to be done during the planting season.

What do you wish more people at Augsburg knew about the garden?

  • The garden is a great place to come together as a community and build relationships.

Francesca Saviowoman with long black hair standing in front of a tall cathedral


First-year Biology major and Chemistry minor

Where are you from?

  • I’m from Italy

What have you learned in the garden so far?

  • I have learned that spending time growing new plants helps me relax and connect with nature.

What has been challenging or surprising?

  • The most challenging part is to learn how to distinguish the different types of plants from the weeds.

What do you wish more people at Augsburg knew about the garden?

  • I wish more people knew how rewarding it is to see grow plants and have the opportunity to eat something that you harvested. I also wish people knew how good of an opportunity is to spend time in a garden together connecting not only with nature but also with the community.

Reyna Lopezwoman with a blonde ponytail and blue shirt taking a selfie


Sophomore, Double major: Psychology, and Marketing; minor: Creative Writing

Where are you from?

  • Saint Paul MN

What have you learned in the garden so far?

  • Patience is key. Things take time, work, and effort.

What has been challenging or surprising?

  • Nothing

What do you wish more people at Augsburg knew about the garden?

  • That anyone can do it, it a resource for many here at Augsburg, and for the community surrounding Augsburg.


Campus Kitchen: Student Experience

Student in front of chalk board at farmers market
Campus Kitchen Student Employee, Chouneng (’22).

This entry is from Chouneng Khang, a Campus Kitchen student employee.  If you would like to support Campus Kitchen’s work, feel free to donate through Augsburg’s donation page. You can designate your donation to Other>Campus Kitchen.


Nyob Zoo and hello! My name is Chouneng Khang. I go by the pronouns He/Him/His and I am a Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Major with a Communications Minor. Today’s topic is my experience working with Campus Kitchen.

I’ve spent two years so far working with Campus Kitchen, and during that time I have learned quite a bit– especially about stepping out of my comfort zone and about the Cedar Riverside neighborhood.  I’ve also learned about the different communities and groups around and within the Cedar- Riverside neighborhood, such as the Soup-For-You Program that hosts free lunches for anyone. They even provide clothing donations for people who need clothes. 

I’ve always been a bubbly, talkative person who likes to ramble on and on about things.  However, when I started working with Campus Kitchen during my first year of college, all that bubbly, talkative energy had gone away.  I had to build it back up.  That’s where my involvement in Campus Kitchen comes in. Through my work with Campus Kitchen, I was serving meals in the neighborhood, helping run the Campus Cupboard, and hosting my own open cooking hours in the Food Lab.  All of these activities required me to talk to people and build rapport, because we want the people that frequent these activities to return week after week and feel comfortable.

Brian Coyle is a community center within the Cedar Riverside neighborhood that offers many programs for youth. They teach teens how to use different technologies, such as sewing machines, computers, cameras, printers, and more, help with homework, provide a safe space to hang out, helps prepare them for post high-school education, etc. Through my job with Campus Kitchen, I bring dinner to Brian Coyle a couple of times each week. 

You might be wondering,  how does this relate to helping me build up my bubbly, talkative energy? Well, part of the dinner delivery shift is that we would sit down with the community center members who attend and share a meal with them, which of course, means that we engage in conversation and build relationships.  At first, I was overwhelmed and afraid to speak because I no longer had the courage to.  However, most of those who attend our CK dinner deliveries are energetic teenagers who want to broaden their experiences with different people and have many connections.  So it really wasn’t that hard for me to start speaking when one of the teenagers asked about my ethnicity and if I could help them learn my native language. Through experiences like this, Campus Kitchen has not only provided me with a steady income as a college student, but has also helped me gain new skills.

Campus Cupboard and ShareShop provide needed resources

Alana Goodson portrait
Alana Goodson

by Alana Goodson

Ever since the shiny new Hagfors Center opened in 2018, the Old Science building at Augsburg University has been quiet and empty. This turned out to be good news for Campus Kitchen’s Campus Cupboard, which was previously tucked away in a tiny closet in Foss. 

A few students from Campus Kitchen and the Environmental Stewardship Committee sought out approval to turn one of the classrooms in the Old Science building into the new Campus Cupboard food shelf and Share Shop. The space has been transformed. Now, the Cupboard is much closer and more accessible to the students living in the residence halls. But, it is still in a remote location to accommodate for those who want privacy and do not feel comfortable utilizing the Cupboard. It also offers a more spacious environment for the Cupboard to grow and change.

In just one year, The Campus Cupboard and ShareShop have become spaces on campus we are proud of. With couches, string lights, and welcoming smiles at the front desk – it was definitely the upgrade the Cupboard needed. The Shareshop is a place where students can rent or buy items that they may not have space for or will only use once during the semester. Students can even do a test trial on certain items–appliances, utensils, skis, sleeping bags–to see if they will utilize them every day. Having resources like this can lighten the financial burden students may face while also enabling sustainability through sharing.

Overall, the Campus Cupboard has been able to provide nearly 7,000 pounds of food to students since moving to the old science building from October 2019-April 2020. During that time, Campus Cupboard served 438 unique individuals. Before the Cupboard moved there, Science Hall 8 had not seen activity in over a year. Now, students have a new reason to visit the space. 

Hunger does not discriminate, and utilizing a food shelf shouldn’t either. The Campus Cupboard is accessible to a wide range of people regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, income, etc. Whether you’re a religion major or chemistry major or athlete or artist, we are all hungry students. Before we can be hungry for knowledge, we must take care of the hunger in our stomachs. Since moving to Science Hall 8, the Campus Cupboard has done just that.