Go Viking: Spring 2015

a message from president rob oliver

As graduation nears, there is much excitement for the Augustana Class of 2015 and great anticipation for what’s ahead. Like thousands who have come before them over the last 154 years, members of the class have left their mark on Augustana, becoming permanent threads in the fabric of this special place. We are grateful for all they have contributed to our community, our region, and even our world. It is a joy to imagine how they will use their knowledge and skills in service to their professional callings, communities, and families.

A recent survey of alumni affirmed that an investment in Augustana brings lasting returns. In this issue, you will read about young alumni who are pursuing their passions, living their dreams and imagining a future filled with possibilities. They told us their Augustana education was the launching pad to their success because here they received:

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  • Personalized mentoring and small class sizes (12:1 student-to-faculty ratio) led by talented and passionate professors, 83 percent of whom have terminal degrees in their field. Note: Classes taught by professors – not TAs. We’re proud of the fact that our most valuable resource is our people.
  • Unmatched hands-on learning opportunities, such as our undergraduate research program, access to choice internships, quality student teaching and practicum experiences and the opportunity to participate in service-learning projects.
  • Academic support, such as that offered through our new Student Success Center, a hub for job and internship opportunities and a place to build resume and interviewing skills; and a center for academic support, such as that provided through our Writing Center and Tutoring Center.
  • Cultural opportunities, such as lectures, exhibits, concerts and readings by nationally and internationally known leaders, scholars, authors, artists and advocates.
  • Social, health and wellness opportunities, such as recreational clubs and campus events that build and foster friendships and bonds among students.
  • Proven successful outcomes, as evidenced by the 99 percent placement rate of our May 2014 graduates.
  • A four-year commitment. 86 percent of our graduates earn their degrees in four years – this adds to our value when you consider the percentage of other institutions whose students routinely take five or more years to graduate.

The reality is that students have continued to choose Augustana for 154 years because they want more than a diploma. They want to learn from the best and the brightest in classrooms that encourage discussion, debate and discovery. They want advisors and mentors who can help them identify their talents and passions. They want to learn from individuals who are committed to helping them succeed academically and socially. They want to build an educational foundation that will enable them to find and build rewarding careers that allow them to use their God-given gifts.

While there’s no doubt about the value of an Augustana education, we also recognize that cost is a real concern for today’s families. Parents want their children to achieve their dreams of higher education at a cost that’s affordable; where the return on investment is guaranteed. 

At Augustana, we understand return on investment. It’s why we choose to invest in our students every day – young men and women from around the world who, even in high school, already exhibit leadership, academic aptitude, social responsibility and a commitment to service.

We invest in them because we believe in their potential. We believe they have what it takes to make our world a better place.

Today, 100 percent of full time Augustana students receive scholarships and financial aid. In its recent report, “How to Find a Generous College,” Money magazine ranked Augustana among the top 20 private colleges nationwide who offer the largest merit scholarships to the greatest percentage of their students. In addition to merit aid, financial aid is also awarded for financial need and talent.

Choosing a college will likely be the first major decision you’ll make as a young adult – and it’s a decision that couldn’t be more important. The four years you’ll spend earning your bachelor’s degree will create the foundation for your future. College is where you will learn how to chart your course; where you’ll learn the skills necessary to navigate through stormy seas; and where you’ll find the inspiration and motivation to reach new frontiers.

I invite you to visit Augustana to learn more about how we will support you in achieving your academic, social, and career goals. We welcome the opportunity to partner with you and your family in your education and in creating your bright future.

Yours, for Augustana,
Rob Oliver, President