Students propose ideas for Old Main


Each year Augustana offers a unique class for Civitas students called “Reading Augustana.” 

The class focuses on studying how culture and environment interact, combining both social and sustainability aspects, according to the professor of the course, Jeffrey Miller. 

image1 (1)Miller says the course is based on the notion of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, an influential theological writer, about deputyship and how we serve ourselves best by serving others.

To incorporate this theme into the course, each class traditionally takes on projects that will in some way positively affect an element of Augustana. 

This semester, the Reading Augustana class has taken on Old Main as their project, noting the growing questions surrounding the building and its use as well as the recent creation of the Old Main Working Group, assembled by President Herseth Sandlin.

Similar to the Old Main Working Group, the Reading Augustana class has been compiling research throughout the year, leading up to a final proposal for what should be done with Old Main.  

“We look at the idea of your ecology of place and what a building says about Augustana and what we can bring to the building that can showcase our core values, what our culture is here on campus,” said sophomore Julia Megazzini. “You have kind of a cultural viewpoint on why you’re creating the building and it’s not just all engineering stuff. It’s bringing in social aspects and seeing how all that connects to the rest of Augie.”

Although the students have been working independently of the Working Group, the class plans to present their project proposal to members of the committee at the end of the semester. 

The hope is that some of the students may have continued involvement with the committee and that their impact will be seen on the project moving forward. 

“One of the biggest draws was that it would be a way for me to have some sort of lasting effect on campus, said junior Trey Waldrop. “Even if none of the plans were developed and implemented until after I was long gone, I could still look back and say ‘I was involved with that, I did something there.”

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