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Inside Out Rendering
A rendering of what part of the installation may look like.

Let’s celebrate the faces of current and historic members of the community with this ambitious “Inside Out” public art installation that Augsburg has commissioned as part of the sesquicentennial.  Your face could be part of the finished product that starts going up on campus this summer.

Led by Kristin Anderson and Christopher Houltberg, this is a participatory art project that will cover four city blocks and showcase hundreds of faces of people who are part of the Augsburg community. An “Inside Out” photographer has been at many events so far, including Commencement, to capture the faces of Augsburg community members willing to pose.

Woven together, each black and white portrait will create a mesh of faces celebrating, recognizing and honoring the core of the institution: its people. This textile of woven portraits will be a unique opportunity to take part in an international art project empowering community actions.



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The best poetry and fiction by Augsburg students will be featured in “Murphy Square 1975-2015: An Anthology of Creative Writing by Augsburg Students,” to be published next year in honor of the sesquicentennial.
This volume will provide an overview of some of the best poetry and fiction from the Murphy Square Literary and Visual Arts Magazine, the university’s longest-running student-led literary publication established in 1974.
English professor Doug Green and 40 students from recent creative writing keystone classes will select and edit the anthology. The volume will be available both in print and online, so that selections can be shared digitally at university events, celebrations, and reunions.


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Wonder what the lights and cameras are about? The Famous Group is shooting two videos at Augsburg that will debut at the Sesquicentennial Gala on September 27.

The “Origins” video will tell the story of the university’s past, present, and future. The “People” video will celebrate distinction among current students as well as alumni.

These videos will be shared during other events at Augsburg and will be available at this Inside Augsburg Sesquicentennial Planning site in fall.


Social work’s rich history at Augsburg

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In the early years of the social work major, students from St. Olaf College joined Augsburg students in the 1970s to live in a version of a “Jane Addams house” on campus and concentrate on urban field work.

Similar milestones will be documented in a history of social work timeline, one of the faculty-led projects to celebrate Augsburg’s upcoming 150th anniversary. This visual timeline will examine how social work has impacted Augsburg, the surrounding community, and the profession of social work.

The timeline is researched by Professor Emeriti Anthony Bibus who identified documents, interviewed previous faculty and students, and searched for photos to mark the important milestones.  A student, marketing major Chendamonee Hing, is developing a digital version of the timeline that will become a visual display.  The timeline will be unveiled in the winter of 2020 at an alumni gathering and will be transportable to various events.

The timeline starts in the 1960s when social work begins in the sociology department with the help of Joel Torstensen and Paul Steen.  The major was created in 1974 – and began as a joint program with St. Olaf.  Also documented is the launch of the Master of Social Work program in the 1990s. Highlights include the development of international study options, curriculum developments such as Intergroup Dialogue, and the growth of the program over the years.

Sesquicentennial Key Dates — Subscribe to the Calendar

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Augsburg’s community-wide events will include a gala, reunions, convocations, art shows, concerts, book readings, theater performances, and lectures.

Subscribe to the Sesquicentennial calendar for easy access to event details.

Here are some of the signature events so you can start planning for this historic year.

    September 23–28, 2019
    New events along with traditional favorites make Homecoming one of the most festive times on campus all year. The majority of this year’s events will occur Saturday, September 28, and special reunions will honor the classes of 2009, 1979, and 1969.
    September 27, 2019
    Kick off Augsburg’s sesquicentennial at this once-in-a-lifetime event in downtown Minneapolis. This gala will acknowledge Augsburg’s history of pursuing the call to serve the community, and it will rally energetic support for the next 150 years of Augsburg University. Current employees are able to purchase tickets at $75 each (limit two). Limited quantities available. Purchase tickets.
    September 25–26, 2020
    This all-inclusive gathering is for Auggies from every class, every degree program, and every decade—Augsburg athletes, musicians, artists, scientists, student leaders, and everyone in between. Learn how to coordinate a reunion for a specific area of interest or identity by emailing Katie (Koch) Code ’01 at codek@augsburg.edu.

Join the Sesquicentennial Musical Theater Production

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Want to be part of a musical theater about the Augsburg University community, past and present?

The new work, to be performed in spring 2020, is one of the faculty-led projects to celebrate the 150th anniversary. Members of the community are invited to take part in every step of the process, from creating material to performing in the production.

Sonja Thompson, assistant professor of music and university organist, is leading the project. Malick Ceesay ’17, company manager at the Children’s Theatre Company in Minneapolis, has signed on as stage director, and Aaron Gabriel ’99 is composing music and lyrics for the production. Meanwhile, team member/writer Leah Cooper of Wonderlust Productions is busy structuring the play around the stories of real Auggies that were gathered in story circles during fall and winter. The Augsburg Music-Theater Club is also contributing to stage direction, musical direction, and choreography, as well as performing in the cast.

Audition dates have not been set, but alumni and friends of Augsburg interested in performing or otherwise being a part of the production can learn more at engage.augsburg.edu/sesquicentennialmusical.

Contact Sonja Thompson, assistant professor of music/university organist at thompso2@augsburg.edu, for questions or comments.

McNair Scholars Success Stories Highlighted in Video Debuting During Sesquicentennial

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Magaly Ortiz Aucapipa ’14, is pursuing her doctorate after graduation from Augsburg.

A video celebrating the success of Augsburg’s TRIO McNair Scholars alumni will be released during an event from 3 to 5 p.m. October 23.

More details are to come about the video release event during Augsburg’s sesquicentennial celebration.

The alumni featured are Trevor Rodriguez-Sotelo ’13; Magaly Ortiz Aucapipa ’14, and Diamonique Walker ’16.  Rodriguez-Sotelo went on to complete a Master of Science degree in automotive engineering from Clemson University. Ortiz Aucapipa is pursuing a PhD in Hispanic & Lusophone Literatures, Cultures & Linguistics at the University of Minnesota.  Walker is pursuing a PhD in Educational Psychology Quantitative Methods at the University of Minnesota.

Annually, 26 Augsburg students participate in the McNair Scholars Program, a federal TRIO program funded by the U.S. Department of Education. The goal is to increase graduate degree awards for students from underrepresented segments of society; either first-generation college students with financial need, and/or members of a group underrepresented in graduate education.

McNair participants demonstrate strong academic potential and prepare for graduate study through involvement in research and other scholarly activities. The McNair Scholars Program was created by the U.S. Congress in honor of Dr. Ronald E. McNair, the astronaut and physicist who was among the first African Americans in the space program. McNair lost his life in the Challenger space shuttle disaster.

Seeking 150 Auggie Stories

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Augsburg is soliciting at least 150 stories from Auggies for our 150th anniversary next year!

We are hoping for students to share what is means for them to be an Auggie, along with a photo of them on campus (or doing something in the community related to Augsburg).

These stories and photos will be featured at Augsburg’s social media sites throughout the 2019-2020 academic year. To qualify, you must be planning on attending Augsburg at some point next year. Day, AU, and Graduate students are all encouraged to submit stories and photos.

Submissions can be entered through this online form. Submissions are due Friday, May 3.