History & Mission


As the newest Faculty of the University of Alberta in 2004, Augustana is also one of the oldest educational institutions in the province. Augustana was founded as Camrose Lutheran College in 1910 by an association of Norwegian immigrant congregations.

In its early years, it was primarily a high school recognized for the quality of its academic program and its endeavour to provide an education that extended beyond the intellect to "the heart and its affections."

The College began offering university courses in the fall of 1959 as an affiliated college of the University of Alberta and added a second year of university transfer in 1969. It became a university college in 1985, when its first B.A. degrees were granted.

Augustana took its present name in 1991. The name refers to a Lutheran confession published in Augsberg in 1536, which became known more commonly in Scandinavia as "the Augustana."

Augustana Faculty teaches about 1000 undergraduate students on a picturesque residential campus in the small city of Camrose, 90 kilometres southeast of Edmonton. Its student body is drawn from across Alberta, Canada and the world.

Mission and Identity

Established in 1910 by Norwegian settlers, under the name Camrose Lutheran College, Augustana is still inspired by convictions that are part of its pioneer legacy: that personal wholeness emerges from a liberal education, that the proper end of leadership is service to others, and that the spirit of cooperation so crucial to rural life invigorates human endeavor.

As a Faculty of the University of Alberta, Augustana continues to build on its reputation for high-quality teaching in a friendly, caring, residence-based setting. In doing so, it provides a distinctive small-campus undergraduate experience within one of Canada's leading universities. Augustana remains mindful of its heritage, open to a diversity of perspectives and backgrounds, and responsive to the rural region in which it is located.

Augustana Faculty is characterized by a lively, collegial academic culture of research, creativity, and public engagement in which students are invited to participate. It values interdisciplinary inquiry, teaching, and learning. Augustana offers the opportunity of a memorable, life-changing education through small classes, personal attention from professors, a challenging, innovative curriculum founded on the liberal arts and sciences, experiential learning in wilderness and international environments, and a range of campus-life programs. In this academic community, students are more than narrow specialists, spectators, or strangers.

Augustana aspires to educate the whole person in an intimate, small-campus setting so that students and mentors alike are capable of engaging life with intellectual confidence and imaginative insight, equipped for leadership and service, and committed to the betterment of their world.

Read more about the origins of Augustana in How Augustana Began, by John Johansen PhD.