Augsburg News

News Archives - 1996

Cindy Peterson Named Director of Augsburg College's American Indian Student Support Program

Aug. 09, 1996

Cindy Peterson has been appointed director of Augsburg College's American Indian Student Support Program after serving since 1987 as the education assistant for the program. Peterson, who is affiliated with the Mississippi Band, White Earth Reservation of the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe, has worked at Augsburg since 1981. She has a bachelor's degree in child psychology from the University of Minnesota.

Peterson began her duties on May 5, replacing Bonnie Wallace. Wallace accepted a position with her home tribe--the Fond du Lac Band of Ojibwe in Cloquet, Minn.--after 18 years at Augsburg.

Peterson said she looks forward to creating new opportunities for Indian students to share their cultural heritage on campus. She also seeks to build connections between Augsburg's American Indian Student Support Program and elders in the Twin Cities community.

As a one-person office since Wallace left, Peterson said she has been busy but not without support.

"Students have called and asked if I need help--it's been great," she said.

Augsburg's American Indian Student Support Program is a multifaceted office established in 1978 to recruit and retain American Indian students. It is a national model of success and continues to have one of the highest retention and graduation rates of Indian students in the state of Minnesota.

Through the program, American Indian students receive assistance in all aspects of admissions and financial aid procedures. A minor is offered in American Indian Studies, and students also have the opportunity to participate in the Intertribal Student Union, a peer support group that organizes and co-sponsors cultural events.

The Anishinabe Library Project provides students access to more than 1,000 books, a variety of journals and scholarly publications, research materials, American Indian magazines and newspapers and more than 125 VHS videos.

In addition, students interested in teaching can participate in the Minnesota Indian Teacher Training Partnership, a special grant and loan forgiveness program that is intended to increase the number of American Indian teachers in Minneapolis public schools.

Augsburg College is a private liberal arts college of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, located in the heart of the Twin Cities. Augsburg's 2,858 students come from diverse religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds. Founded in 1869, the college emphasizes intellectual freedom in the search for knowledge; responsiveness to the needs of society and the world; and preparation of students for service and leadership in church and society.