Posted on May 1, 2015 by Tia Lalani

Three Augustana students – who graduate at the end of the month – are running in the May 5 provincial election.

“Our emphasis on civic engagement is taking root and paying dividends, if you don’t mind the mixed metaphor from botany and business,” said Dr. Allen Berger, Dean of the University of Alberta’s Augustana Campus in Camrose at the Spring Soiree on April 30. “Three of our students who will graduate next month are already running for seats in the upcoming provincial election!”

IMG_9031Catherine Harder (BMus ’15), NDP candidate for Lac La Biche-St. Paul-Two Hills

Catherine made her first public appearance at the April 28 debate at Portage College, according to the Lac La Biche Post. “I felt really good about it,” she said about the evening. “I thought that the response was really good and everyone is really well informed in this community and asked excellent questions.”

Cole_Kander-HS_600pxCole Kander (BA Political Studies ’15), Wildrose candidate for Edmonton Southwest

“I am running because I want to make a change in the world around me for the better. Politics is the one way I can affect every aspect of life,” Cole shared with the Edmonton Journal.

“His interactions in class and everything he’s been able to learn have seemed to allow him to get a strong grasp on the practice of politics,” says Augustana Political Studies instructor Dr. Jérôme Melançon. “He displays the mix of realism, bordering but never falling into cynicism, and of idealism, based on values he shares with those who surround him, that make for politicians who can do great things.”

IMG_8257Katherine Swampy (BA Economics ’15), NDP candidate for Drayton Valley-Devon

Katherine Swampy is a mother of five who was able to manage multiple roles as a mother, student, and a citizen that gives back to her community, reports the Drayton Valley Western Review. She is running for the position so she can provide a better future not only for her children but all of Alberta’s children.

“Katherine Swampy has been a leader on campus, where she has been working quietly in and outside the classroom to make other students’ lives better,” says Jérôme. “Her work is always at once personal, and turned toward others, so never in a self-serving way. She embodies leadership, never taking credit for her achievements, always looking for the next step.”

Many Augustana Campus alumni have embraced political lives, including incumbent Wetaskiwin-Camrose MLA Verlyn Olson, former Wetaskiwin-Camrose MLA LeRoy Johnson, and incumbent Athabasca-Redwater MLA Jeff Johnson.

“Whatever your politics,” Dean Berger concluded, “I trust you can join me in feeling proud that these young people are engaged in the civic arena and attempting to influence the direction of our province.”

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One response to Graduating students run in Alberta election

  • Neil Haave said:
    May 1, 2015 at 5:12 PM

    So pleased to see our graduates becoming involved in our communities!