Miss-Know-It-All: A Tricky Triangle

Q: Hey! I’ve got a tricky situation. Just to preface, it takes a lot for me to drop someone so that’s not an option here. I have two friends, Ay and Bee. Bee and I have had the same class schedule without planning, so we’ve become good friends. Ay and I became friends through Bee, but I formed my own really good friends with her too. Ay and Bee had some problems, and are no longer friends (Ay is very hurt by Bee’s actions). Bee has also messed up kinda big for me, but I am still a friend of hers. Anyways, how do I stay friends with both, without making Ay uncomfortable and/or Bee sad or left out?

On a lighter note, how can I manage to find time for self-care (showers, teeth brushing, etc) with such a busy exam and class schedule?

A: Hey there! This does indeed sound like a tricky situation. But every problem has a solution! I propose an idea: how about you voice out how you feel to both Ay and Bee? It seems like Bee has been quite salty to you as well, so maybe let them know that this is the situation and try to have them make amends. I know there’s no way to ensure that this will occur without any awkwardness, but if this friendship is worth salvaging, then in a couple of months this will be nothing but a laughing matter. As for your relationship with Ay, you don’t need to compromise how you treat them because of her fallout with Bee. While they may have introduced Ay to you, you shouldn’t feel obligated to take Bee’s side.

On the note about self-care: while grades are very important, that is no excuse to forego your personal hygiene dude! I know it’s difficult, but your health comes first and you could potentially jeopardize it if you don’t take care of yourself properly. Not making time for hygiene and self-care will only make your stress and busy schedule worse, so you’re not helping anyone by putting it off in favour of homework. I know this probably sounds repetitive, but create a schedule of what time you want to do each activity. Exam stress is next level, but please give yourself time to just relax and breathe for a bit. Meditation usually helps me personally, so you could try that too!

Hope this helps!

Miss Know-It-All

Have questions for Miss-Know-It-All? Send them in anonymously here, or email augmissknowitall@gmail.com.

Let’s Talk Stats


If you’re considering enrolling in Augustana’s Introductory Statistics course offered in the upcoming Winter 2023 semester, this article is for you! Featuring an interview with Dr. Marentette, it will provide you with information right from the source. Following the interview are tips from senior students who have already conquered the course to help you do the same–especially if you’re already feeling discouraged by the infamy of Statistics as a challenging course.

Dr. Paula Marentette, AUSTA 153 Instructor.

The Dagligtale: Do you think students can pass your course?   

Dr. Marentette: Yes, if they work towards it. Students worry that they cannot do it. That stops them from putting in the effort. Statistics is a class where you must do a little work every lecture. We do not teach calculations, but we use computers and programming techniques. We use numbers to interpret real-world problems, like mask-wearing and so on. Don’t wait for midterms to start being attentive in class. And do not worry about support. You will have student mentors and work with a group of peers to solve research problems. And the student mentors are not just for those who struggle, but are open to everyone.  

Dag: Do you believe that statistics is difficult? If so, what is your advice for students that do not think they are good at statistics?

Dr. Marentette: No, I do not think statistics is difficult in general. In this class, we will all get things wrong, but persisting will help students get them right.  

Dag: If you could give advice to first year students, what would it be? 

Dr. Marentette: It would be that if you wish to pass, you must keep pushing. 

Husna Usman, second year Law, Crime, and Justice major. Photo submitted.

Dag: When did you take Statistics? 

Husna: Winter semester, 2022.

Dag: If you could give advice to first year students, what would it be?  

Husna: Attend your classes because not doing such can reduce your marks. Also, I believe in working in teams and being on good terms with your group as it’s a fairly group work intensive course.

Ana Garcia Beltran, second year Business major. Photo submitted.

Dag: When did you take Statistics? 

Ana: Winter semester, 2022.

Dag: If you could give advice to first year students, what would it be?  

Ana: Keep your group in check! Make sure the work gets divided equally, everybody does their part well, and manage your time well! 

Adachukwu Chimaobi, third year Psychology Major. Photo Submitted.

Dag: When did you take Statistics? 

Adachukwu: Winter semester, 2022.

Dag: If you could give advice to first year students, what would it be? 

Adachukwu: I say be open-minded. Don’t box yourself in, and always be ready to be challenged. A lot of the work is teamwork, and if your team member says you did not attend, your marks will be reduced. So, it’s best to stay consistent with coming to class and contributing to group work and you will see it’s fairly doable. [Dr. Marentette] is pretty open and available, and I suggest talking to her more in person if you find yourself struggling with the coursework.

Asking Around


If you were ruler of your own country, which law would you introduce first?

“Free university tuition.” – Pastor Craig

“No harming others.” – Lisa

“I would introduce a law about income disparity: something like, the highest earner in a company cannot earn more than twenty times the lowest earner. I believe income disparity is a key factor in the breakdown of community.” – Dr. Paula Marentette 

“Free prescription drugs for everyone, but especially seniors, as they have to take a lot of medication but often cannot afford them.” – Emmalee

“I would take at least 60% of funding meant for the police and put it towards social work and mental health programs.” – Kai

“Free food to end world hunger.” – Parfaite

“Universal housing and healthcare.”- Abby

Considering the Meaning of Talent


Contemplations after attending “Augustana’s Got Talent” and a word from the 1st place winner.

This year’s “Augustana’s Got Talent” was fabulous. The lineup of acts was a joy to watch, and I was pleasantly surprised by the range of talent on stage. What made attending this event especially interesting was witnessing the remarkably talented and creative side my peers possessed, something I would not have deduced simply passing some of them in the halls of Augustana.

The deceptively simple act of even getting up on stage in front of a large crowd warrants substantial courage, let alone feeling confident enough to perform and reveal parts of oneself under bright lights and entranced gazes.

During the show, I started to contemplate on the manifold meanings of the word “talent.” When I think of talent, I often think of a concept outside myself. Most of the time, I associate that word with possessing a tangible, visible ability—such as playing an instrument, singing, or dancing. I think, to have talent is to be able to do something well, to stand out. If talent can be defined as a special quality that makes you stand out, then there are so many ways one can be “talented.” 

To gain a deeper appreciation for what it’s like up on the AGT stage, I wanted to ask the first-place winner, Lemuell Pagulayan, what his experience was like. I asked Lemuell the following series of questions: “How do you feel about having won? Were you surprised, and how nervous were you to perform in front of a large audience? Lemuell’s response was:

“Winning unexpectedly gave me a feeling that was not that easy to comprehend. Yes, it gave me a sense of appreciation and a moment of fame, but it did also add a sense of responsibility. The main reason I decided to perform was because someone asked me to. I changed the songs I performed last minute because I wanted to dedicate them to someone. So I’ll take this win even if it was not what I had originally anticipated to come out of the evening. It was fun, I was a bit nervous when I went on stage, but once I got the first note right, it was all a matter of confidence.”

Lemuell Pagulayan, AGT Winner

Lemuell’s statement gives me some valuable insight, and knowing the motivation behind his performance is especially inspiring. After learning about the feeling of nervousness Lemuell had before going on stage, I was all the more impressed by his performance because he indeed came across confident, and it radiated in his singing. As it turns out, changing the songs last minute paid off, $1000, to be exact. Congratulations to Lemuell! 

I would like to thank the Augustana Students’ Association and all those who performed and were otherwise involved in making “Augustana’s Got Talent” so memorable. Overall, talent comes in so many forms, and it was great seeing such a wide array of it. Who knows, maybe I’ll participate in AGT next year? I’ll start practicing my juggling.


Students of Augustana! Prepare to welcome our newest recruit: Miss Know-It-All. And yes, she does know all. Uni stress? Partner troubles? She’s got it all! If it’s advice you need, it’s advice you’ll get. 

If you have problems that you absolutely need to spill, but you don’t have anyone to turn to, she’s here for you. You can rest assured that whatever you share will remain safe with her – her lips are sealed (confidentiality agreement and whatnot). 

So go ahead, tell her what’s on your mind, whatever’s troubling you, secrets that you need to spill – anything you want to vent, but feel like you can’t tell anyone you know. 

Reach out to her at: augmissknowitall@gmail.com.

Achieving Presentness and Focus in the Digital Age


Whenever Tik Tok reminds me that we are indeed living on a floating rock in the middle of space, my mind can’t help but spiral. This happens at least once a week, and I am constantly full of existential dread (don’t fret, this piece is meant to be encouraging, not nihilistic).

That being said, how can we cope with so much new and readily available information seeping through our devices, yet still manage to remain focused on the tasks right in front of us? In my case, I am easily distracted by pretty much anything, and achieving a state of focus and presentness is not simple. I consider my phone a great distraction, and social media does not help either. Whenever I am trying to accomplish a task, I keep thinking about picking up my phone and cycling through my social media accounts as a distraction. Only, I look at this distraction as more than just a disruption of my workflow, but as an escape from the present.

By actively seeking media as a distraction, one is actively rejecting the present and the task at hand. Additionally, the information that appears in our algorithm often presents content far removed from our lives. This consumption of information foreign to one’s intended purpose at the moment subconsciously communicates that the present is not important. That being said, even if a particular present reality or task is not ideal, what I have learned to do is to actively remind myself why I’m doing said task. Also, imbuing every small component of your task with purpose helps reorient the narrative of the present. By recalling the necessity of the present moment as foundational in achieving a bigger goal or feeling, each small accomplishment becomes more fruitful.

When I am working on something particularly monotonous, I ask someone I trust to hold onto my phone and not give it back until a said amount of time elapses. By removing distractions, silencing notifications, and giving one’s mind a chance to focus on one thing, the practice of mindfulness in the present becomes easier each time. This practice can be extended to various moments, even ones where you are relaxing. I have even started implementing days where I do not permit myself to open social media for most, if not all, of that one day. This has helped me establish a sense of presentness and reduce the mental “noise” caused by too much consumption of transient digital information.

Hopefully, these somewhat scattered observations can encourage more consideration of the present, whatever that may look like for you.

Class Feature: AUHIS 121


“All of the courses have gone so well this year. I think the students are just so enthused about being back in person.”

Geoffrey Dipple, Professor, Social Sciences. Photo from web.

For this installment of the Dagligtale’s class feature, we’ll be taking a look at History 121 and its professor, Geoffrey Dipple. I had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. Dipple to shed some light on his background and teaching.

Dr. Dipple hails from Ontario, though he holds dual citizenship between Canada and the United States; his undergraduate studies in history were done in both Michigan and Indiana at Lutheran-affiliated institutions. While originally intent on studying medieval history, he became enamored with religious history surrounding the Protestant Reformation during his time at Queen’s University in Ontario and traveled as far abroad as Western Germany around this time for research. “About three months after I came back to Canada the Berlin Wall fell,” he remarked. He taught at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, for nearly two decades, but decided eventually to return to Canada and accepted a job posting for the University of Alberta shortly afterwards. “When I got the interview,” he joked, “I told them not to worry about business cards, because I could just cross the phone number off and write a new one.” It is only recently, in fact, that Dr. Dipple has worked solely in a non-administrative capacity. Up to and through 2021 he served as chair of the Department of Social Sciences here at Augustana, dealing with program development and personnel management. This year is the first in which he has taught more than only two courses in the entire year. Most of his research projects, many in collaboration with researchers from other universities, focus on the origins of Protestant theology and analyses of prominent Anabaptist figures.

When it comes to courses, it’s immediately clear where Dr. Dipple’s wheelhouse lies. The list of courses he is instructing this year include History 300 (a detailed study of the Protestant Reformation, theology, and its historical context), History 294 (one of the yearly trips abroad, offering in-person classics instruction in Italy and Greece), and History 121, the feature class for this article. This being said, his favourite course within the last few years–one of them, at least–has been his First Year Seminar, focused around the history and brewing of beer. “All of the courses have gone so well this year,” he admits, “I think the students are just so enthused about being back in person.” Indeed, History 121 has been nothing short of immensely interesting during my time within it, and ‘enthused’ is a word that I can confidently use to describe not just the students but the course’s professor. Dr. Dipple has an approachable and humorous manner within and outside of the classroom, varying his lectures with a wide array of pop culture knowledge and frequent queries to his students. A lecture on Rome and Christian persecution, for example, might prompt a whole host of references to Monty Python’s Life of Brian. He approaches questions about textual meaning and deeper concerns with ease and is perennially available with just an email for nearly any question. The actual content of the course is similarly engaging, broken up between well put-together group presentations and lectures; where other history courses might be name-and-date, the construction of History 121 urges students to get into the weeds (as it were) and analyze the reasoning behind the topics explored within. This year, these have been varying cultural and societal movements surrounding religious fundamentalism and violent religious conflict. Historical events discussed have been as wide-ranging as the Crusades, the Sri Lankan Civil War, Roman Judea, and American evangelicalism. As I understand, for those interested, in the winter term History 121 will include such topics as modern genocide and the history of utopian thinking.

I was able to talk to two other students in the course this term, both of whom requested to remain anonymous. Their answers to a few questions about the course are below.

Q: What do you like most about the class?

S1: “Probably the history… the lectures. There’s a lot I didn’t know before.”

S2: “[Dr. Dipple] is pretty good, he’s a good professor.”

Q: Would you recommend this class to others?

S1: “I would. It’s very interesting.”

S2: “Yes.” 

Q: Is there anything you’d like to tell people interested in taking it in the future?

S1: “Pay attention to the presentations other people do, they’ll be important.”

S2: “[Dr. Dipple] is going to ask a lot of questions about the readings in class, so just, like, be prepared.” 

I asked this same last question to Dr. Dipple at the end of our interview, seeing if he had any advice for newcomers. “Take everything I say with a grain of salt,” he said, “and I’ll try to push buttons, just to get interaction, so don’t be afraid.”

Augustana’s Festival of Lights


The festival of lights, known as Deepavali or Diwali, is the biggest and the brightest of all Hindu festivals. A festival marked by four days of celebration, Diwali is observed all around India and celebrated in different parts of the world. People in Northern India burn rows of clay lights to commemorate the legend of King Rama’s return to Ayodhya after defeating Ravana. It is marked as the day Lord Krishna vanquished the demon Narakasura in Southern India. The Western India festival commemorates the day that demon King Bali was appointed ruler of the underworld by Lord Vishnu, the Preserver, one of the three principal Hindu gods.

Diwali is beautiful, and one of the most pious occasions. It illuminates the country with its sheer magic and brilliance and dazzles people everywhere with joy and celebration. Diwali is usually celebrated over a number of days, and every day has a unique tradition that fills people with good hope, love and peace.

This year at Augustana, a Diwali celebration was hosted by the Augustana Chaplaincy in collaboration with the South Asian Club (SAC), who together planned an array of activities. Students dressed up in traditional Indian garments with their peers to commemorate the event. The occasion started off with captivating traditional Indian dances. The dance was inclusive to non-Indian students, demonstrating the union of different cultures. This was followed by a movie called the Ramayana, an explanation of the lore behind the Festival of Lights. This aided in describing the story of the diyas (lights) and their crucial significance, informing those in attendance of the different customs. The SAC also organized foodstuffs native to India to give the students a taste of the land. The menu for the night included Pav Bhaji, a fast food dish made of rich vegetable curry, and a soft bread bun. This was accompanied by the customary activity of modelling and lighting diyas

Overall, the entire event was well-arranged and quite lively and, more importantly, taught students about the relevance of the festivities and how they are honoured globally. As a native Indian, I would love to see more events like these at Augustana, as they respect my culture and bring back a piece of home, making worthwhile memories in my university years.

Dancers at the Augustana Diwali celebration in the chapel on October 23, 2022. Dancers from left to right: Adaeze Dike, Nguavese Ukange, Avolin Sen, Vanessa Kinesewich, Ninotchka Fernandez, Amelia Williams, Viktoriia Martseliuk, Angelina Tam, Ona Awogu. Photo and video submitted.

Asking Around


If you could have a superpower, what would you pick and why?

“Flight. It’s something that you can’t do naturally.” – Della.

“Stopping time. I get to do whatever I want, whenever I want.” – Mayowa.

“Super strength, so I can take all your girlfriends.” – Judah.

“I’d like to transform into any animal that I want. It would be useful when escaping a difficult situation.” – Ezra.

“I’d like to predict the future. It would help my financial investments and I would win all my bets.” – Elamin.

“Telekinesis. It’s a cool power to have.” – Katrin.

“Flight. ‘Cause I can go anywhere I want.”- Ona.

“Speed. I can perform tasks faster and my thinking speed increases.”- Ansh.

“Gravity manipulation. It’s convenient and I can do things easily.”- Hisham.

“Stopping time. I can finish my assignments easily.”- Lalight.

“Invincibility. Torment my enemies, cherish good times with friends, experience nostalgia, gain knowledge and transform society.”- Saim.

“Mind reading. Knowing what people think.”- Leon.

“Reading people’s minds. You can win people over easily and get whatever you want.”- Mirah.

“Teleportation. To run away from my problems easily.”- Husna.

“Teleportation. I’ve always wanted to travel around the world, and experience new cultures and life.”- Aishi.