Monday, 12 September 2016

10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Augustana Campus

Augustana Campus

I’m often asked why I chose to go to Augustana — I grew up in Edmonton, and the easy choice was North Campus. Also, my grandfather was a former U of A Dean of Medicine, my sister had taken classes at North Campus, and campus was just a short 15-minute bike ride from my house.

I was accepted into a program on North Campus, and I was prepared to go along with the decision, unaware that there could be other opportunities. But one day, I had coffee with someone who had mentored me throughout high school, and she told me about Augustana.

I immediately researched it and found out as much as I could — then I signed up for a “Student for a Day” tour.

It may sound cliché, but I fell in love with Augustana the minute I arrived. There was - and still is - something so indescribable about the strong community vibe.

Now, over a year later, I’m heading to into my second-year here at Augustana. A lot of my Edmonton friends and people that I meet, have no idea where or what Augustana is.

So, if you’re in the same boat, here is a list of ten things you probably didn’t know about Augustana Campus:

1. Instead of campus squirrels or campus rabbits, we have campus deer.

Campus Deer

Last semester, I was walking to the student parking lot at around 7 a.m. to go to the gym. It was pitch black outside (ugh, Alberta winter). I came around a corner to where the lot was, and bam! A massive buck came out of nowhere and scared me so bad, I almost died. (It was a terrifying encounter, thankfully no one was around to hear me scream.)

2. Like CSJ, Augustana has the same signs as North Campus. (Yes, the same fonts and everything.)

It truly feels like the U of A because it is (…apart from the deer).

3. Our dean has an awesome name.

The Best Berger in Town (and yes, that's how to spell it)!

Dean Allen Berger (yes, like a burger), was just reappointed for another five-year term. He even had these really hilarious shirts made.

4. We are the Augustana Vikings!

Augustana Campus Vikings

Our mascot is a Viking, and everything is Viking themed! We’re all so crazy about Vikings! (Well, to be fair, only a select few actually have a serious Viking obsession, but the rest of us just go with it.)

5. Our campus is one of the only ones in Canada with a biathlon team and a luge course.

And yes, you can take luge for credit.

6. You can drive five minutes off campus and see the Northern Lights. 

The Middle of Nowhere

Yes, five minutes and you’re in the middle of nowhere.

7. We have around 1000 full-time students enrolled. 

Augustana is small. The student to prof ratio is 16:1. When I had a meeting with an academic advisor last year, he told me that the best and worst thing about Augustana are one in the same; the professors know your name.

8. Augustana used to be the Camrose Lutheran College – classes started in 1911. 

Founder's Hall @ Augustana Campus

Founder’s Hall was the first building on campus, and it is now an official historical site.
Last fall, Founder’s Hall reopened after extensive renovations. Dean Allen Berger told me that the old, un-renovated, version was “dark and felt like a rabbit warren.”

9. In the early years, students had quite a bit of fun. 

I had the opportunity to chat with Roger Milbrandt, a former English professor, and he told me a priceless story from Augustana’s past.

 “Sid Zorck” day started in the ’60s after students invented a fictitious student named “Sid”. They paid his tuition, registered him in classes and completed his assignments. It was a prank to see how long they could get away with “Sid” before administration found out he was fake.

Once “Sid” was discovered by staff as being fake, students wanted a way to immortalize him, so, a day was created in his honour. “Sid Zorck” day gave students a random day off once a year. It was a true holiday because no one knew when it was coming!

10. Our cafeteria has unlimited chocolate milk.
(If this causes you to transfer to Augustana immediately, I won’t judge you!)

Also, our cafeteria has options for any kind of dietary restrictions including paleo, vegan, gluten free, and dairy free.

Augustana is a great place to be, and I love the environment. The small town vibe isn’t for everyone, but if you ever have a chance, come visit our beautiful campus!

Melissa - YouAlberta Contributor

Melissa is a second year BA in Global and Development Studies at Augustana. Her favourite pastimes are drinking tea, eating chicken wings, rock climbing and playing her ukulele. Melissa loves wearing bright red lipstick to match her hair and her sarcastic personality!


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