It’s A Great Day To Be A Viking

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As the year is winding down, ASA is welcoming in new leadership. On Monday, our new Senate, President, and Vice President were formally inaugurated. Brittany Dardis and Elliot Blue have big plans for ASA this coming year and we are excited to welcome them as our new leaders. The team is already off to a great start working to organize POD summer storage and plan for the coming school year. I invited Brittany and Elliot to share their goals for next year if you were unable to meet them during their campaigning.

Elliot Blue, ASA Vice President:

Brittany and I have a lot of goals for next year. Our major goal is to make ASA more relevant and transparent by strengthening the student, faculty, and administrative relationships. Additionally, we want to work toward better informing the student body of what is going on with the Senate through “Fireside Chats”, the Augustana College Mobile App, and personal communication. Updating facilities around campus is another major focus of ours. All of this, of course, will only be possible with input from the student body. We really want to make changes that the students want to see.

- Elliot Blue

Brittany Dardis, ASA President:

In addition to what Elliot mentioned, we want to continue progress that the ASA Senate has made this year. This will entail revisiting the budget if any issues arise, revising procedures stated in the ASA Constitution by making them more clear and specific, and continuing to work on projects that have not reached completion during this academic year. We also want to enhance the student experience by increasing sustainability on campus. One way we can do this is to host forums on the topics of recycling rules and what Augie students can do in their daily lives to create a smaller impact on the environment. As Elliot stated, we want to increase communication between faculty/staff, the ASA Senate, and the student body so that we can effectively work towards achieving these goals.

- Brittany Dardis

This blog is just one of the ways ASA hopes to communicate with the student body, faculty, and administration. We want you to know who we are and how to contact us so your voice can be heard. Be on the lookout for information about storing your belongings with ASA over the summer and updates from Brittany, Elliot, and the Senate. Please stay connected with us on Facebook and Twitter, visit our website, or send us an email at asa@ole.augie.edu!

It’s A Great Day To Be A Viking!

-Aimée

A Year In Review

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Having spent many hours working in collaboration with this year’s ASA President and Vice President, I felt it was only fitting to invite them to speak about their year working alongside the Senate, faculty, and administration at Augustana College. Matt Anderson and Krista Youngberg are two of the most dedicated and hard working individuals I have had the chance to work alongside. ASA made huge strides this past year in terms of communication and the energy senators put into their work. Matt and Krista’s passion for Augustana is inspirational. I am excited to share their thoughts on their year in office and excitement for the future of ASA.

Krista Youngberg, ASA Vice President

The Senate this year has been one of the best groups of people I have had the opportunity to work alongside. They are passionate and intelligent individuals that strive to do their best for Augustana. Looking in to the future, I would love to see the Senate take part in more activities off campus and go out into the Sioux Falls community. I am excited to see how the new budget will enhance student group activities on campus next year. The Senate’s ability to make larger projects for the student body feasible with new budget is exciting. Getting the mobile app up and running was a tremendous hurdle to overcome, and I am happy to have that out and functioning. One of the most rewarding parts of this position has been working alongside Matt Anderson. He is a great guy and together we have been able to communicate with students and make sure their voices are heard. I hope next year’s Senate keeps up the same passion and drive and continues to make Augustana the great community that it is.

- Krista Youngberg

Matt Anderson, ASA President:

This past year on the senate was a huge success. I could not be more proud of the energy and effort that each and every senator put in. We were able to rework our budgeting process to ensure equity and efficiency for student groups. I am confident this change will be a positive one for all students on campus, as the money we distribute effects everybody — from individual students to our largest campus organizations such as UBG and Viking Days.

This year also saw the maturation of several long-term projects that were several years in the making. Last year, we worked to secure funds to do updates to electrical access in the Huddle, but did not see the work completed until Easter Break. This change has given students more flexibility in terms of study spaces on campus. I am also excited to see what changes are made as we look to possible future expansion in the Morrison Commons. It is likely that students will be seeing updated and expanded spaces for student use, which will only enhance the areas we already have to offer. Another major project that was spearheaded by last year’s ASA Executive Committee was the commissioning of the Augie Mobile App. Several months of brainstorming and planning went into the initial concept, which was then given to Robert Mikhayelyan for the development of the app. He has done amazing work, and I am excited to have been able to help see the project to its initial release. I am eager to see the app developed more in the future, as it can play a major role in spreading Augie’s message to prospective students and the greater community.

This year saw huge changes in how ASA markets itself. The mobile app is just one way that we have worked to strengthen communication on campus. We overhauled Augustana’s calendar system last year to include activities from all of our student groups. This calendar — initially an “ASA Campus Calendar” — has now been adopted as the major calendar system for the College. The biggest catalyst in improving ASA’s communication has been Aimée Fisher, ASA’s first Director of Communications. She has done a phenomenal job developing new creative outlets for getting information spread to our students and community. I am extremely proud of the work she has done.

I am eager to see what is in store for ASA in the coming year. Brittany Dardis and Elliot Blue have great ideas and are in a good position to be making some more big changes for students. I expect to hear more about housing in the coming year, as those are recurring concerns each spring that need to be addressed. But perhaps the most exciting changes that are to come are those that cannot be anticipated. Brittany and Elliot will be actively seeking feedback from students about what they want to see changed at Augie. It is through those conversations that great progress can be made.

Although the year is winding down for the Senate, ASA is poised to keep the momentum going into next year. Again, I am thankful to have had the opportunity to work with such an invested Senate this past year. The work we did will continue to impact students for a long time.

- Matt Anderson

On behalf of the Senate, I would like to thank you for all of your support this past year. As always, it is hard to say good bye to our seniors as they venture out into the world. We are excited to welcome in the new Senate and continue the work we have started. I anticipate next year will be full of positive progress and change. Keep an eye out for Brittany and Elliot’s first announcement as the official ASA President and Vice President for the 2014-2015 academic year. Be sure to like us on Facebook, Twitter, visit our website, or send us an email at asa@ole.augie.edu!

Cheers!

-Aimée

Meet Your Co-Curriculum Committee Chair!

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Meet senior Biology major and Psychology minor from Windom, MN, Emily Grandprey. Besides her involvement on ASA as a Senator and Co-Curriculum Committee Chair, Emily was the Viking Days Co-Chair with Shelby Kontz. She is also in Tri-Beta, Augustana’s Biology Honors Society, Angelus, one of the Augustana choirs, and works at the Elmen Center for Recreational Services.

What does the Co-Curriculum Committee do?

Emily: The Co-Curriculum Committee is responsible for addressing student concerns in regards to issues outside of the academic realm. Basically if there is an issue outside of the classroom, we address it! This year, we have made an effort to focus specifically on Housing, Dining, and miscellaneous concerns like fixing the clocks in Humanities, outlets in the Huddle, printing in the commons, etc. We also serve on the faculty/administrative co-curriculum council that addresses similar issues. Our mission is to ensure  the students’ voices are heard in regards to issues that affect student life.

What are your duties as the Co-Curriculum Committee Chair and why did you decide to become part of the committee?

Emily: I organize the Co-Curriculum Committee’s meetings, set goals for the committee, and make sure issues are being addressed. The Co-Curriculum Committee meets bi-weekly.

I wanted to be a part of this committee because, through my own experiences, I have become aware of the impact that problems outside of the classroom can have on student happiness and well being. Yes, academic issues can be a struggle, but things like your dining options, housing placement, and study spaces can affect your Augustana experience just as greatly.

What has your committee been working on this year?

Emily: Our committee has been very busy. We have worked with housing all year to address student concerns such as the stress that accompanies housing selection, the need for more apartments, and communication between students and administration. We have also researched upgrading our laundry facilities on campus so they would no longer be coin operated. Additionally, we have looked into the possibilities of adding a printer in the commons, and there was one placed in the Siverson Lounge during fall semester finals week because of our committee! We are now starting to work on a student activities brochure to offer to first year students to help them find ways to be involved on campus, and we are working on making an off campus newsletter to help students who no longer live in residence halls become aware of on campus events. Recently, our committee formed a dining services task force called the Kitchen Cabinet to address the future of dining services and its everyday practices.

How can students ensure their voices are heard?

Emily: If you want your voice heard, just talk to one of us! The members of this committee are Jesse Fonkert, Crystal Ortbahn, Scot Missing, Leah Murfield, Brittany Dardis, Kirsten Titze, and Katie Romano. We start all of our meetings by first discussing concerns that we have been hearing around campus. Our committee loves working hard for you. If you have a concern, please tell us so we can work to solve it.

What is your favorite meal at Augie?

Emily: I typically make my own stir-fry when I eat in the commons, but my favorite thing to eat is ice cream.

What is your favorite memory at Augie?

Emily: My favorite memories at Augie are around Viking Days. It is the one week where you can put aside the stress of being a college student and just have fun with your friends. This week is especially fun for the Viking Days committee because you can see your hard work pay off.

Where is your favorite place to study?

Emily: My favorite place to study on campus is the library in a study room with a few friends.

If you had a superpower, what would it be?

Emily: If I had a superpower, I would want to have the power of teleportation. I would be able to travel the world instantly!

If you have any other questions for Emily be sure to contact her at elgrandprey10@ole.augie.edu or at 507-822-3250. We hope you enjoyed getting to know Emily a bit more, and  have a better idea of what the Co-Curriculum Committee is all about! Be sure to contact us at asa@ole.augie.edu, or via our websiteFacebook and Twitter.

Cheers!

Meet Your Curriculum Committee Chair

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Meet Kat Van Gerpen, your Curriculum Committee Chair! Kat is a sophomore Nursing major from Pierre, SD. In addition to participating in ASA, Kat is a PA in Solberg and a member of the Viking Ultimate Club. She also enjoys intramurals and  helping out at chapel.

What is the Curriculum Committee? 

Kat: The Curriculum’s Committee’s mission is to better the academic lives of students by improving Augustana’s Curriculum. The committee does that by having two representatives attend Curriculum Council meetings. Facilitating the Faculty Recognition Award is one of the committee’s main tasks.

What has your committee been working on recently?

Kat: Our committee is currently running Faculty Recognition Week and in the process of looking through the nominations for the Faculty Recognition Award.  We have also been discussing Curriculum Council Global Education Committee matters.

Why did you choose to  become part of this committee?

Kat: I chose to become a part of this committee because last year I was a part of the Co-Curriculum Committee, and I was interested in seeing what the Curriculum committee does.

How can students ensure their voices are heard on campus?

Kat: Every student should know that this committee has a voice in academic matters on campus (changes made to graduation requirements, new courses, and study abroad opportunities.) Your voices can be heard and expressed by contacting any member of our committee.

What is your favorite meal at Augie?

Kat: I don’t really have a favorite meal at Augie, but I do love all the delicious soups!

Where is your favorite place to study?

Kat: My favorite place to study on campus is either the Huddle or the ASA office.

If you had a superpower, what would it be?

Kat: If I had a superpower it would be reading people’s minds using their body language and facial expressions.

If you have any other questions for Kat make sure to contact her at kjvangerpen12@ole.augie.edu or at 605-280-4592. We hope you enjoyed getting to know Kat a bit more, and  have a better idea of what the Curriculum Committee is all about! Be sure to contact us  at asa@ole.augie.edu, or via our websiteFacebook and Twitter.

Cheers!

Meet Matt Bell, Your Personnel and Development Chair

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So now that you’ve met our four officers, it’s time to meet the committee chair for Personnel and Development. Matt Bell, a sophomore Biology major from Sioux Falls is in charge of this committee. In addition to his ASA Senatorial duties, Matt is involved in the Bio and Pre Med clubs. So what exactly is P&D? Matt was happy to share his thoughts on his involvement as committee chair this past year.

What does the P&D committee do and why did you choose to become part of ASA? 

Matt: My committee works to harbor and support leadership on the Augustana campus. Each year we select the leaders for the major student groups on campus, making sure that our student groups and campus continue to have success in all of their endeavors.

I think student leadership is one of the most powerful and important aspects to having a successful college both in the present and looking into the future. I wanted to be a member of a committee that seeks out and selects the future leaders of our major student groups.

What has your committee been working on this year?

Matt: My committee  finished up the bone marrow registry drive here on campus. I love that event simply because it educates our students about opportunities for donations, but also emphasizes the beauty in selfless service. We are currently working to nominate the best leaders into positions of influence on our campus.

What can students do to make sure their voices are heard on campus?

Matt: Encourage strong leaders you know to apply and pursue leadership opportunities. A better Augustana starts with its students, and we need strong leaders to continue to lead us on our path to improvement.

What is your favorite meal at Augie?

Matt: I love the thanksgiving meal at Augustana.

If you had a superpower what would it be?

Matt: If I had a super power it would definitely be invisibility.

If you have any other questions for Matt make sure to contact him by email at mgbell12@ole.augie.edu or at 605-331-5341. We hope you enjoyed getting to know Matt a bit more, and now have a better ideas of what P&D is all about! Be sure to contact us  at asa@ole.augie.edu, or via our websiteFacebook and Twitter.

Cheers!

Meet Your Director of Communications

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So who is behind all of the social media, blogging, emailing, and note taking for ASA? Meet Aimée Fisher, a junior Art and Education major from Montgomery, MN. She does a lot of the behind the scenes work for ASA to ensure the senate and the student body stay connected. In addition to working as the Director of Communications for ASA, Aimée keeps busy as a student ambassador,  an events coordinator for PRSSA, as part of the UBG Big Event committee, and helping people pronounce her name (it’s A-May). The Director of Communications position is new to ASA this year and has really helped us grow as an organization. Aimée was excited to share her thoughts with you today…

What do you do as the Director of Communications?

Aimée: It’s a pretty long list, but to keep it short and simple, I am in charge of ASA’s social media outlets, our email account, website, and the meeting minutes. I work alongside Matt, Krista, and Seth to brainstorm ideas weekly and communicate between the senate and student body.  Additionally, I take care of the marketing needs for ASA and keep an eye on the student calendar. I get to work with some pretty awesome students, faculty, and administrators here at Augie. It’s been a great year so far!

Why did you choose to become part of ASA?

Aimée: I was extremely involved in student government during high school, and was looking to become more involved here at Augie. I love that ASA is the voice of the students, and I’m constantly gauging what students are thinking and talking about. Augie is full of so many amazing people who want to make a difference. When the position for the Director of Communications opened, I felt this was the perfect opportunity to help further connect ASA to the student body and create the change students want to see. I was especially interested in the position because I have an interest in marketing and wanted to put my creative skills to work. ASA didn’t have a large online presence in past years and I’ve watched the number of followers grow throughout this year. It’s been an extremely rewarding experience.

What have you been working on this past year?

Aimée: At the beginning of fall semester I did a lot of work just learning more about ASA and the vision Matt and Krista have for it. I did a lot of work on the Facebook and Twitter pages for ASA and recently started up a blog. I’ve had to do a lot of learning on the job, like how to do some simple coding for the ASA website. I also work hard to make sure what happens at meetings is translated through the minutes to the student body. A lot of my work is anonymous, but I’ve worked hard to streamline some of the processes that ASA goes through to communicate with the campus.

How can students make sure their voices are heard? 

Aimée: I would love to have more emails sent to our asa@ole.augie.edu account and messages via Facebook and Twitter. We want to to hear what students have to say! Also, I would like to get 600 likes on Facebook. We are at 557 right now and who knows, there could just be a prize for the 600th like…

The best way to make sure your voice is heard on campus is to check out our Facebook and Twitter and comment or send us a message. I always have the ASA email and Hootsuite accounts up on my phone so I can usually respond within a few hours to any questions, comments or concerns. Feel free to contact me by email at affisher11@ole.augie.edu, by phone (507) 779-8505, or take a stroll through the art studio and come chat!

What is your favorite meal at Augie?

Aimée: I would have to say stir fry with rice, crab, oranges, peas, peppers, broccoli, and general tso sauce. I’m also a huge fan of the chocolate chip cookies.

What is your favorite memory at Augie?

Aimée: I don’t know if I could choose! My trip to India with Dr. Looney and Dr. Pennington is one of my favorites, but there are a lot of little things like the slip n’ slides we created freshman year outside of Berg. All-nighters in the art studio are also pretty memorable.

Where is the best place to study on campus? 

Aimée: Honestly I can’t stay in any one place for too long. Sometimes I’m in the library, other times in the Madsen Center or the Huddle. Usually I like to work in the Art and Children room in the Center for Visual Arts or the couch in the painting studio!

If you could have a superpower what would it be?

Aimée: I would love to have the ability to be in two places at once. I could get so much more accomplished!

Now that you’ve met our Director of Communications, please stay tuned to meet the chairs of our committees: Personnel and Development, Curriculum, and Co-Curriculum. As always, feel free to contact us at asa@ole.augie.edu, or via our websiteFacebook and Twitter.

Cheers!

Meet Seth Vogelsang: Your ASA Treasurer

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Ready to meet the guy in charge of all of the money (well some of it)? Fairmont, MN native Seth Vogelsang is the guy to talk to. He’s also our Treasurer and makes sure money is allocated to all the awesome student groups on campus. Seth is a senior majoring in Economics and Business Administration with a concentration in Finance – good thing he likes money. Seth keeps busy at Augustana not only with ASA, but as a member of Augieholics and working at an internship with First Premier Bank. Seth was excited to share with you what his job as treasurer is all about!

What is your role as Treasurer and the Administration and Planning Committee Chair?

Seth: The Administration and Planning Committee is here to dominate the world. We essentially review all concerns dealing with money and student groups, and we make allocations based on budgetary concerns of each group. We review each request and continually evaluate options. The Administration and Planning Committee is also assigned to make amendments to the ASA constitution as they see fit (of course the Senate must approve these amendments).

My position on the Committee is the Treasurer. It is an elected position on the Senate. This means I get to lead the Administration and Planning Committee meetings, review previous budgets, and meet with leaders from many organizations. Being the Treasurer also means I get to meet with Luanne in the Business office, and she is awesome, so that is a definite plus!

Why did you choose to become part of this committee?

Seth: I was forced to because of the position I was elected to….

All kidding aside, It’s the best position on campus. Matt can keep the presidency. I get to meet with every student group on campus and talk about their goals for Augustana and learn how I can help them accomplish those goals. It is truly remarkable to see how many people at this school are more creative, intelligent, and motivated than anything I could have imagined! That is why I am part of this committee.

What has your committee been working on this year?

Seth: We have been working on a new way for student groups to receive funding. This would increase the amount each group is eligible for while making the entire process more efficient. This would also take the stress off of the budget meetings, which makes life easier for many student groups that are involved in those meetings.

What should every student know about your committee?

Seth: Every student should know that if the Administration and Planning Committee had a bajillion dollars, we would fully fund every opportunity every student has. We never want to say no to a request. It simply comes down to the budgetary constraints that we have.

How can students make sure their voices are heard?

Seth: Every voice can be heard by emailing me, Matt, Krista, or any other senator. Your questions, concerns, smart remarks, and relationship advice are valuable to us. I appreciate it when people ask me questions, and I would really like more people to be involved in the process!

What is your favorite meal at Augie?

Seth: My favorite meal at Augie is a Buffalo Chicken wrap with carrots, celery, cheddar cheese, and a healthy dose of buffalo ranch. It’s probably the most awesome thing in the world.

What is your favorite memory at Augie?

Seth: I have so many favorite memories at this school. Ranging from a tailgate watching potential students hit a stuffed cougar with a bat to going to Thailand and playing frisbee on a beautiful beach with Dr. Nesiba. I think the majority of my college experience has been amazing.

Where is the best place to study on campus?

Seth: I like the upstairs couches of the Madsen Center to study. They are ridiculously comfy, and not many people know about them! I get too distracted with people while in the library.

Now that you’ve met our witty treasurer, stay posted to meet the rest of the crew! If you have any questions for Seth, or want to learn how he tamed the lion in his picture, be sure to call him at 507-236-3196 or send him an email at srvogelsang10@ole.augie.edu. As always, feel free to contact us at asa@ole.augie.edu, or via our websiteFacebook and Twitter.

Cheers!