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Acknowledge Feb 2017

February 2017

Field Notes

Augustana juniors Ninna Mendoza ’18 (pre-med, Spanish) and Mary Therese Thomas ’18 (biology, neuroscience) are co-presidents of Augustana’s chapter of Campus Kitchens, which they launched in November. They co-authored this update on their organization’s recent work and future plans.

Campus Kitchens is a national nonprofit organization that takes unused food from donors and repurposes it into nutritious meals for food-insecure populations. There are multiple chapters across the nation, and Augustana’s is one of the most recent.

Each Campus Kitchen is tailored to each community’s needs, so our chapter focuses on helping Augustana students with limited access to nutritious, affordable food. According to the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment, 5-10% of Augustana students are at risk for food insecurity.

Monthly operations run on this schedule: The Gerber Center kitchen staff save and freeze unused food throughout the course of a week; over the weekend, student volunteers led by one of our ServSafe Certified Leadership Team members transports the food from the freezer, plans a menu, and shops at HyVee for any additional ingredients needed. HyVee graciously donates some leftover produce to reduce costs of creating these meals. Later in the week, student volunteers prepare the meal in the kitchen and serve it to students in Brew by the Slough, for free. So far, we have served more than 300 hot meals at three events, using about 285 pounds of recovered food.

Based on the number of meals served just this year, the need on campus is much greater than we expected. Multiple students have reached out to us looking for food, or thanked us for the only real meal they were able to eat that week. 

Early in spring term, Campus Kitchens will host a faculty/staff training on how to identify and handle situations involving students with food insecurity. Next year, we hope to open a new part of our chapter called the Campus Cupboard—a pantry that will provide free frozen meals, canned food, basic hygiene products, and an assortment of other items.

The most rewarding part of our journey has been watching our project grow from our initial idea into a fully functioning operation that is slowly making an impact in the lives of our fellow classmates. We are grateful for all the support we have received, and for the fact that we get to play a role in helping end hunger on campus while fighting to #starvethestigma of food insecurity.

2016-17 Financial Progress Report

Campus Community – Like other higher educational institutions in Illinois, Augustana has been facing the challenges of enrollment competition, affordability, state funding (especially MAP) and increasing operational expenses. To balance these factors, execute our Augustana 2020 strategic plan, and sustain an ongoing balanced budget, the college has had to tighten the availability of our financial resources.

For 2016-2017, budgeted spending levels decreased $1.6 million from the prior year to account for a portion of the MAP funding loss. 2017-18 and 2018-19 budgets will not provide any relief, as revenue generation and expense reductions will need to generate an incremental $.8 million each year to fully offset the anticipated loss of Illinois MAP funding ($3.2 million per year). As we navigate this three-year period, it is crucial that we meet budgeted expectations each year.

The business office recently completed a month-long review of current revenue and expense trends to forecast the 2016-17 year-end results—predicting a year-end deficit of approximately $.55 million. Cabinet members have been notified and are working with faculty and staff to correct this matter for the remaining four months of the year. We need everyone’s commitment in assuring the college’s financial resources are being used for top priorities. 

The business office has developed a guideline of ways we can immediately reduce or eliminate spending:

Please do not look for ways to spend money at the end of the year just to spend the budget. Surplus dollars are used for key strategic initiatives that fund building expansion and improvements.

Gift cards should not be issued to employees or students. They are technically considered income and are required to be captured on an individual’s W-2, and so amounts issued without the notification of payroll are in non-compliance. If you would like to recognize employees or students, we can discuss alternative means of rewarding.

• Payment requests for your department’s support/donations to outside organizations must be approved by the business office.

Reduce or eliminate food expenses. Over the last 12 months, we have spent $400,000 on food bills within the Rock Island area, outside of Augustana dining services/catering). Campus events that require food should work through dining services to ensure best pricing, and food for internal events/department meetings should be kept to a minimum.

Please do not purchase toner from department budgets to support printers/copiers outside the OMC network. Three years ago we entered into an agreement with OMC, which provided the college with 187 printers/copiers. The cost justification of the project was reliant on the absence of individual printers around campus, ultimately reducing the cost per printed sheet.

Of course, we welcome your ideas and actions regarding additional ways to save within your office or department. If you have questions or concerns related to the budget or financial condition of the college, please feel free to reach out to the business office for guidance.

Thanks to all for your concern and efforts in working through these challenging times.


50 words in your language of love

This contest in honor of Valentine’s Day received eight entries from employees across campus, speaking from the heart in a language they understand. Congratulations to Lendol Calder for his winning entry, selected by a vote among staff in communication and marketing. Mary Windeknecht’s entry was a close second.

First, from an administrative support employee who pretends he might remain anonymous, a plan:

The meeting must occur, but it defies scheduling. He has a 15-minute window Tuesday, but she’s flying back from a conference. Still, if we move the Inconsequential Outrages Committee to Wednesday and then postpone the Negligible Earnestness meeting, they’ll have just enough time to gaze into each other’s eyes.

Shawn Beattie in ITS sent a poem in “pseudo computer code” (and with a nod to ee cummings):

define love()
while (alive) do 
    provide (all);
    cherish (always);
    protect (always);
    sacrifice (all);
until { death() or jesus() }

Chris Beyer, who directs residential life, admitted:

Love is making crafty personalized name tags for every student’s bedroom door, responding to duty calls at 3 a.m., making nice bulletin boards even though we know someone is going to get drunk and tear them down, and mediating conflicts between people who only communicate with each other via snarky texts.

From Lendol Calder, a brief history of love:

Love has a past. Eros and Chaos lay deep in the Abyss. Then polygamy, monogamy, polygyny, polyandry, arranged marriage, the Boston marriage, celestial marriage, shotgun marriage—a hundred nets of wedlock thrown on feral, insane, unsafe love. But between my love and I, “’Neath the flesh, impalpable fire runs tingling.”

Two spoke from the heights and depths of admissions. Erin Hoover lists:

In Admissions, love is courtship.
In Admissions, love is longevity.
In Admissions, love is maintenance.
In Admissions, love is follow-through.
In Admissions, love is saying yes and saying no.
In Admissions, love is advocacy.
In Admissions, love is discovery.
In Admissions, love is connection.
In Admissions, love is renewal. 

And Wendy Kelley describes:

The relationships I build with students and their families are time-consuming, yet very fulfilling. I know I'm blessed to work at a great college that makes a difference in the lives of all our students. And I have hard-working, dedicated, funny colleagues who make coming to work a pleasure!

Can you read this one from Forrest Stonedahl of computer science? It translates to “Love is an amazing puzzle.”

01001100 01101111 01110110 01100101 
00100000 01101001 01110011 00100000 
01100001 01101110 00100000 01100001 
01101101 01100001 01111010 01101001 
01101110 01100111 00100000 01110000 
01110101 01111010 01111010 01101100 
01100101 00101110 00101110 00101110

First-year advising director Mary Windeknecht has the last words:

An ear for the anxious. A hand for the struggling. An eye for the lonely. An encouraging word for the weary. A mirror for the searching. A smile for the challenge met. Joyful witness to your new discoveries. A hug and handshake as you leave. Great hope for your future.

New Face on Campus

Connor Kealey

Connor Kealey, manager of performance tours and arts promotion
B.A. in communications with a minor in theatre performance, Susquehanna University in Selinsgrove, Penn.
Master’s in arts leadership and cultural management, Colorado State University

From his first role as Prince Charming in eighth grade, to singing at the Vatican in high school, followed by a year of studying and working at the University of Cape Town, Connor Kealey continues to love the performing arts. Now his passion brings him to Augustana as the new manager of performance tours and arts promotion.

Connor is responsible for the scheduling, travel arrangements and public relations before, during and after the tours. “It’s the whole gamut of communications and planning,” he said.

Through the process, “it’s also exciting to meet with alumni—especially choir alumni. They always have lots of stories to tell,” he noted.

Hailing from Philadelphia, Connor jokes that the cold, Midwestern weather brought him to the Quad Cities. But Augustana “felt very warm and welcoming” upon his arrival for an on-campus interview.

“And that continues to be true,” said Connor. “I think the people at Augustana are great—the students, faculty, staff and parents, too. It’s really nice to be able to have people who all view working at Augustana and being a part of this community as an exercise of teamwork and collaboration.” 

When he is not traveling, Connor hopes to cultivate relationships with student workers and reach out to the greater community about Augustana’s fine arts programs. He currently judges grant applications with the Quad City Arts committee, while looking to join a local choral ensemble.

“And as far as theatre auditions go, maybe by fall I’ll be rehearsed and ready,” he said.

This summer, Connor will return to Europe on a site tour in preparation for the Augustana Choir’s upcoming adventure in 2018.

From the Cabinet

Evelyn Campbell, Dean and Vice President of Student Life

As we complete winter term 2016-17, I am reminded of how different Augustana is today than it was when I arrived 25 years ago. I know the heart of the college is the same, but the way in which we engage students is different no matter where you look. 

In the classroom, professors no longer solely lecture inside four walls. Instead, the classroom might be an office at John Deere or an operating room at a world-renowned hospital, and students often talk and listen to their peers as much as they listen to their professors—by design! We do not merely find students jobs; we prepare them for a career that will change perhaps 10 times in their lifetime. 

Things have also changed outside the classroom. In the past, student life staff members worked hard to enhance what happened in the classroom by offering educational opportunities outside the classroom. Today, we work alongside faculty members to create learning experiences in the residence halls, in Gävle, overseas, and the list goes on. 

The collaboration that occurs between coaches and the faculty mentors to our athletic teams has created new learning opportunities for our students. Kathy Jakielski, serving as our first “faculty-in-residence,” has touched the lives of students in ways that simply did not happen before. Students sitting on the floor eating popcorn or playing with her cat while discussing serious topics have turned the residence hall corridor into a classroom.

We did not have our stated college-wide learning outcomes 25 years ago, but they shape the learning that occurs here today. Leadership, intercultural competence, communication and citizenship are four learning outcomes which, I believe, are being taught much more successfully through an integrated effort across campus than could have been achieved by one office or department. 

In fact, “Integrated Experiences” forms the second of four strategic directions in Augustana 2020. Bringing faculty and staff together to design programs; offering those programs in the environments where students spend most of their time, whether that be a playing field or a residence hall; and combining resources across campus to integrate experiences such as the International House—these have contributed to an educational experience that is more complex than in the past. 

As the world becomes increasingly more interconnected, and change occurs more quickly, I am proud to be working at an institution that is setting the standard.

Seen & Heard

“Look around you—this is how the world is. This is who we are.”
—Amy Rowell, World Relief Moline

international fashion
On Feb. 3, the college community enjoyed a fashion show as part of the International Street Fest hosted by the Office of International Student Life. Amy Rowell, director of World Relief Moline and wife of Eric Rowell in admissions, was an opening speaker.

Acknowledge is published by the Office of Communication and Marketing at Augustana College, Rock Island, Illinois. Contact Beth Roberts, editor. Rachel Reiter ’18 of the Augustana Writers Bureau is the author of New Face on Campus. Photographers are Emma Stough ’17 of the Augustana Photo Bureau, Paul Colletti and Quan Vi.

If you have news, send it to! We love hearing about the achievements of our alumni, students and faculty.