Skip to main content

Symposium Days

Symposium Days involve learning experiences beyond the classroom.

Once per term, Augustana devotes a full day to an alternative approach for learning and opens the process to the entire campus community.

The college believes this multidisciplinary approach to discuss a “theme” truly exemplifies the rich value of liberal learning.

Symposium Days include invited speakers, alumni, advising sessions and opportunities to practice the liberal arts and be involved with our community.

Fall Symposium Day has a rotating theme connected to Augie Reads; Winter Symposium's theme is Social Justice; Spring Symposium is Celebration of Learning featuring original research and scholarship by Augustana's students and faculty.


Fall Symposium Day, Oct. 17: "What is Truth?" See complete program.

This will be Augustana's first ever virtual Symposium Day!  All sessions can be accessed by Augustana users via the devoted Symposium Day 2020 Moodle Site.  Log in via that link and self-enroll in order to gain access to each session.

The four keynote presentations will be delivered live on Saturday, Oct. 17.  Links to the live Zoom feeds are available in the Moodle site.  The keynote schedule includes:

  • 10:00AM, Rev. Lenny Duncan, "Truth to Power: A Black Pastor's Calling amid White Christian Supremacy," sponsored by the Augustana Presidential Center for Faith and Learning
  • 11:10AM, Ted Teros, Augustana '12, shares the annual Featured Alumni presentation titled "How America's Adversarial Legal System Values Truth: Lessons For Our 'Post-Truth' Politics"
  • 12:20PM, Dr. William Tsutsui, "Godzilla and Japan: Hiroshima, Fukushima, COVID 19," a Special Talk Sponsored by the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission and the Northeast Asia Council of the Association for Asian Studies
  • 1:30PM, Julie Otsuka, Author of the 2020 Augie Reads text When the Emperor Was Divine, will engage in an interdisciplinary panel discussion with Augustana scholars representing our English, History, Religion, and First Year Inquiry departments.

Audience members will have the opportunity to pose questions to the keynote speakers via Zoom's Q&A feature. Devoted Moodle forums will provide another avenue for ongoing engagement with the speakers' ideas.

In addition to the live keynote speakers on Saturday, eight pre-recorded sessions created by Augustana students and faculty are available on the Moodle site.  You are encouraged to view these on your own time, and contributed to each sessions devoted Moodle forum for continued engagement.


Fall Symposium Day, Oct. 9:  "What is a Life Well Lived?" See complete program.


Fall: Relationships, Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018

Programming will include three concurrent sessions from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. See complete program.

In addition to programs led by individuals across campus, there will be three featured speakers: Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Leonard Pitts Jr., Juaquin Hamilton of the Sac and Fox Nation of Oklahoma, and Augustana graduate and current fellowship Instructor Simone Roby.

The afternoon is reserved for learning through the advising relationship.

Winter: Social Justice, Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019

Symposium events from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. include three featured speakers—Rebecca Ginsburg, director of the Education Justice Project at the University of Illinois; Dr. Scott Warren, a cultural geographer; and Lizeth Tamayo '16, a doctoral student in genetic epidemiology at the University of Chicago—plus faculty/student presentations and drop-in events. See complete program.

The afternoon is reserved for students to meet with advisors.

At 7 p.m., artist/activist Fury Young with musicians BL Shirelle and Maxwell Melvins lead a keynote presentation/performance about a music-recording project with former and current incarcerated artists.

Spring: Celebration of Learning, May 1, 2019

Celebration of Learning is an opportunity to share original scholarship and creative work by students, faculty and staff.

This annual event gives students the opportunity to show their work and be a part of a campus-wide community of learners. Student presentations and performances will run concurrently with faculty and staff panels on scholarship and teaching. Featured student, faculty, and alumni speakers will be scheduled throughout the day.

Students from all disciplines are invited to submit proposals for presentations, posters, and performances from Senior Inquiry projects, Honors capstones, funded research or creative work and the like. 

Past dates and themes


Fall: Transformations, Thursday, Sept. 28

Winter: Privilege, Wednesday, Jan. 17

Spring: Celebration of Learning, Wednesday, May 2


Fall: “Crossroads,” Tuesday, Sept. 20

Winter: “Privilege,” Wednesday, Jan. 18

Spring: “Celebration of Learning,” Wednesday, May 3


Fall: “Perspective(s),” Thursday, Sept. 17

Winter: “Social Justice,” Wednesday, Jan. 20

Spring: “Celebration of Learning,” Wednesday, May 4


Fall: “Identity,” Wednesday, Sept. 24

Winter: “Social Justice,” Tuesday, Jan. 20

Spring: “Celebration of Learning,” Wednesday, May 6


Winter: “Social Justice,” Monday, Jan. 20

Spring: “Celebration of Learning,” Wednesday, May 7