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AU in the Neighborhood Newsletter

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July 2016

Neighborhood Movie Night August 19

KAM2016-07-01 Movie Night

Mark your calendars now for August 19 and plan to picnic with the whole family on campus while catching an outdoor screening of the animated soon-to-be classic Zootopia.

From the largest elephant to the smallest shrew, the city of Zootopia is a mammal metropolis where various animals live and thrive. When Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin) becomes the first rabbit to join the police force, she quickly learns how tough it is to enforce the law. Determined to prove herself, Judy jumps at the opportunity to solve a mysterious case. Unfortunately, that means working with Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman), a wily fox who makes her job even harder.

The movie will be screened at the Woods-Brown Amphitheatre at 8 p.m. Free popcorn will be provided and all are welcome to attend. Rain location is the Mary Graydon Center Tavern.

For additional information, contact Andrew Huff, Director of Community Relations at 885-2167 or

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How to Contact Us

Office of Community Relations
(202) 885-2167

Public Safety
non-emergency: (202) 885-2527
emergency: (202) 885-3636
Community Incident Reporting Form

Dean of Students
(202) 885-3300

Parking & Traffic Office
(202) 885-3111

Farmers' Market Returns at New Location

KAM2016-07-01 Farmers Market

Rain or shine every Wednesday from 12 – 4 p.m., the AU Farmers’ Market will be at its summer location at the Washington College of Law at 4300 Nebraska Avenue, NW (near the Warren Building Entrance). Students, faculty, staff, and neighbors can browse goods ranging from farm fresh vegetables to homemade breads and desserts.

The market is a coordinated effort between American University and Pennsylvania-based Agora Farms, an intermediary for bringing Amish and Mennonite and “English” farm goods to AU’s campus, as well as to DC’s historic Eastern Market on Saturdays and Sundays.

Upper Crust Bakery also offers a variety of fresh breads including raisin pecan, harvest grain, pain de campagne, jalapeno cheddar, sourdough, challah, whole wheat, focaccia, black Russian, NY rye, artisan baguettes, and tea breads, as well as chocolate chip cookies, mini pies, and cobblers.

In addition to supporting locally grown food, the convenience of having fresh food right on campus makes it a great benefit not only to the campus community but to the surrounding neighborhood as well.

For additional information, please visit

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Community Audit Program Gears Up for Fall

KAM2016-07-01 Audit

If you are looking for a rewarding way to enhance your professional skills, take a class with popular professors, delve into a new hobby, or simply pursue a commitment to lifelong learning, then consider enrolling in a class during the fall semester as part of American University’s Community Audit program.

Modeled after the Alumni Audit Program, the program offers adults ages 60 and older, who live in the 20016 zip code, the opportunity to attend university courses on a noncredit basis. For a modest fee of $100, $75 of which serve as a donation to the Alumni Association Scholarship Fund, auditors may listen to the same lectures and work from the same texts as enrolled students.

“The community audit program is another great benefit for those who live close to the University,” said Andrew Huff, AU’s Director of Community Relations. “Our neighbors have some very interesting experiences and life stories, so I believe our students and professors will learn just as much from the neighbors as our neighbors will learn from the class.”

The Community Audit program is coordinated by the Office of Alumni Relations in conjunction with the Office of Community Relations.

Registration for the fall semester opens on August 1. For additional information, please visit or contact Emily Walrath at 202-885-5962.

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AU Sponsors Make Music Day in Tenleytown

KAM2016-07-01 Music Day

Make Music, a free celebration of music around the world, was observed on June 21 for the first time in Tenleytown. Multiple venues throughout the neighborhood hosted free live music performances including America University Washington College of Law, the Tenley-Friendship Branch Public Library, Fessenden Park & Recreation, Whole Foods, Middle C Music, City Bikes, Coffee Nature, Burger Tap & Shake, and others. The event featured large and small ensembles and solo artists who performed music from various genres.

Launched in 1982 in France as the Fête de la Musique, it now is held on the summer solstice in more than 700 cities in 120 countries. When it first started in France 34 years ago, organizer Jack Lang and his staff at the Ministry of Culture dreamed up an idea for a new kind of musical holiday. Different from a typical music festival, Make Music is open to anyone who wants to take part. Every kind of musician – young and old, amateur and professional, of every musical persuasion – is encouraged to take to the streets, parks, plazas, and porches to share their music with friends, neighbors, and strangers. All of it is free and open to the public.

Nine years ago, the Fête de la Musique crossed the Atlantic with the debut of Make Music New York. Starting as a grassroots initiative by a team of volunteers, the event quickly became a critical and popular success. Since then, other cities across North America have launched their own Make Music celebrations. Last year, 22 North American cities organized 2,714 free concerts at 839 locations on this day. This year, more than 35 U.S. cities participated in the celebrations.

Many thanks to the Tenleytown event sponsors, without whom this event would not have been possible. In addition to AU and the AU Washington College of Law & Urban Investment Partners, sponsors included the DC Department of Small and Local Business Development and the DC Main Streets program. The performance at Washington College of Law was sponsored by Valor Development and Sonia A. Ntuk State Farm Insurance.

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AU Music Ensembles Welcome Community Participants

KAM2016-07-01 Music Ensembles

The American University music program is pleased to invite community members to audition for the university’s orchestra, bands, and choirs. Each group meets weekly starting the first week in September and continues through the academic year.

For more information, please email the ensemble directors below. Auditions will be held the week of August 29.




AU Symphony Orchestra – Every Monday & Wednesday, 8:10 – 10:40 p.m.
Contact: Yaniv Dinur (
AU Symphonic Band – Every Tuesday, 5:30 – 8 p.m. 
Contact: NJ Snider, Director Music Program (
AU Chorus – Every Tuesday, 7:30-10 p.m. and select Mondays 8 - 10 p.m. 
Contact: Casey Cook (
AU Jazz Orchestra – Wednesday, 5:30 – 8 p.m. 
Contact: Joshua Bayer (


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International Art and the U.S. Immigrant Experience

KAM2016-07-01 Immigrant Art

This summer, the AU Museum at the Katzen Arts Center features a number of exhibits that highlight art from all over the world as well as art that originated domestically but is permeated with international influences and experiences.

Contemporary North Korean Art: The Evolution of Socialist Realism, the first exhibit of its kind in the United States, seeks to broaden understanding of North Korean art beyond stereotypes of propaganda and kitsch to show sophisticated and nuanced expressive achievements. It investigates previously unrevealed evidence of North Korean artistic experimentation, and the nation’s particular evolution of Socialist Realism within its own culturally homogeneous context.

Special focus is given to the development of Chosonhwa, North Korea’s predominant painting medium that is revered as the nation’s most refined. Chosonhwa is traditional Oriental ink-and-brush painting on rice paper that absorbed Socialist Realism influences in the 1950s and has since progressed to become its own distinct art form. While working within prescribed thematic bounds, artists often succeed in conveying profound human emotion. On view will be important Chosonhwa works from the 1960s through the present.

Examining Life Through Social Realities documents and examines life and the social realities of people living on the Korean peninsula through the Realist paintings of 10 South Korean contemporary artists. As explained by exhibition curator GimChoe Eun-yeong, definitions of Realism have changed over time, but the Realism of South Korea closely approximates 19th-century French Realist painter Gustave Courbet’s use of the term: to manifest artists’ perspectives of the world through expressive techniques and methods.

Bandits & Heroes, Poets & Saints: Popular Art of the Northeast of Brazil explores how the ancient cultures of Africa blended with indigenous and colonial Portuguese traditions to form the vibrant and complex cultural mosaic of modern Brazil. Photographs and works of popular art, including sculptures, paintings, prints, religious objects, toys, and booklets of poetry will draw visitors into the complex and vibrant culture of the Northeast of Brazil and introduce the festivals, heroes, and spiritual traditions that give shape and meaning to the daily lives of the Nordestinos, common people of Brazil’s Northeast.

The Looking Glass: Artist Immigrants of Washington features the work of 10 artists who left Latin America for many different reasons over the last 60 years – primarily for safety, freedom, and opportunity – and made their homes, and their artistic careers and contributions in the Washington, DC region. They include Joan Belmar and Juan Downey from Chile; Carolina Mayorga from Colombia; Ric Garcia, Lenny Campello, and Jose Ignacio Bermudez from Cuba; Muriel Hasbun from El Salvador; Frida Larios from Honduras; Irene Clouthier from Mexico; and Naul Ojeda from Uruguay.

ART CART: Honoring the Legacy ties together two cities – Washington, DC and New York City – in an inter-generational, inter-disciplinary project. The exhibition includes paintings, photography, printmaking, sculpture, mixed media, and installation by ART CART artists that highlight turning points in the artists’ lives and careers, including the Civil Rights and Women’s Movements. Eight D.C.-based professional visual artists aged 62 and older are matched with students in art, healthcare, and aging disciplines to document and preserve their artistic legacy. The artists are: Alonzo Davis, Cheryl Edwards, Annette Fortt, Cianne Fragione, Pauline Jakobsberg, E.J. Montgomery, Annette Polan, and Terry Svat. The exhibition is curated by Pamela Lawton and Adjoa Burrowes and sponsored by the Research Center for Arts and Culture at the Actors Fund.

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President Obama Honors AU Students with Service Awards

KAM2016-07-01 Service Awards

Two American University students were recognized recently by President Obama for their volunteer work with the non-profit MEANS Database (MEANS). MEANS’ mission is to divert excess food bound for landfills into the hands of people who need it nationwide. One of the award winners, College of Arts and Sciences student Maria Rose Belding, is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of MEANS. The other award winner, Zoey Jordan Salisbury, is a School of Communication strategic communication student who serves as the Director of Communications of MEANS.

Both women received the President's Volunteer Service Award, which bestows recognition from the President for their hundreds of hours of service over a 12-month period or cumulative hours over the course of a lifetime. Belding received the President’s Lifetime Achievement Award for completing more than 4,000 hours of service. Salsbury received the Gold Award for performing more than 250 hours of service in a year.

MEANS is a website that allows grocery stores, restaurants, and businesses to donate excess food easily to food pantries and other groups feeding the hungry. When groups have food to donate, they post to the website and nearby emergency feeding systems are notified instantly. Belding said, "I grew up volunteering at my local church food pantry where I saw that, despite our best efforts to distribute food, considerable amounts were going to waste. I realized that there needed to be a better system to communicate the availability of food for donation.”

Salsbury describes the work that she does for MEANS as the most rewarding activity in her life. “I’ve volunteered at my local food bank, but I never understood the scale of hunger until I worked with MEANS. I realized how important and meaningful our work was when we received a donation for a family of six who had zero food in the house.”

Since its creation, a year and a half ago, MEANS has rescued food nationwide. They have users in 42 states and DC, representing more than 4,000 partner agencies.

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AU's Energy and Engineering Staff on Net Zero Energy

KAM2016-07-01 Net Zero Energy

As part of its myriad efforts to be a leader in energy management, the Energy & Engineering (E&E) department at American University currently has a number of initiatives to work towards a net zero energy status. A building, facility, or campus reaches net zero energy when the sum of energy it consumes is equal to the renewable energy it generates.

Net zero energy is important for ecological, social, and monetary reasons. Currently, most energy is generated from dirty fuels that come with costs that far exceed their price. They result in biodiversity loss, global deforestation and desertification, and ocean and air pollution, all of which, if left untended, affect global societies and economies with increasing severity. As global population and development continue to increase at rapid rates, it becomes imperative to drive human activities towards net zero energy solutions expeditiously.

The three strategies that make net zero a possibility are energy reduction, energy efficiency, and green energy utilization. Although achieving net zero energy is challenging, as there are always competing priorities in an organization, a dedicated team with an understanding of net zero strategies and how the building is or will be used can make it possible.

Energy Reduction

To achieve energy reduction in the buildings at AU, E&E engineers have installed sub-meters campus-wide that measure energy consumption for domestic water, process water, electricity, and steam production. The data collected from the various meters are input into the Department of Energy’s Energy Star’s Portfolio Manager (ESPM) energy benchmarking software tool and AU’s energy analysis software. They provide E&E’s Energy Conservation Team with analytics for an overall picture of a building’s energy performance, and allow them to make real-time comparisons with other similar buildings nationwide.

AU has tens of thousands of sensors all around campus that feed building data into an intelligent building automation system (BAS) database. The energy analytics software helps the E&E team ensure greater energy efficiency in buildings throughout the campus. Intelligent programming includes optimizing HVAC systems’ run times to match building activities, and installing demand control ventilation to ensure that systems are not operating or conditioning spaces when they are not needed. The energy analytics also inform the E&E team about how much and when the university can shave electrical consumption to support utility load reduction initiatives during peak usage periods during the summer. The university’s electrical load curtailment efforts have resulted in energy savings and performance payments from its utility provider, PEPCO.

Another important component in energy reduction is education and outreach. Educating the campus community to take simple actions as part of their daily routines – such as turning lights off in favor of natural daylight – can save up to 40 percent on lighting energy expenses.

Energy Conservation and Efficiency Manager Juan Allen shared his strategy noting, “In our Facilities offices, my co-workers and I manually shift our lighting sources between daylight from our windows, overhead lights, and task lighting (a desk lamp) to use only the amount of light required for the task at hand.”

Energy Efficiency

Another way that AU approaches net zero energy is to design for efficiency and smart energy use in its building renovations and new construction. Through AU’s commissioning program, the Facilities Management staff ensures that energy-efficient design is the basis for all university construction with its methods utilized, tested, documented, and taught to the operating staff.

Even if a building is already net zero energy, chances are that there is still room for improving operational efficiency. It is important to keep in mind that buildings need continual maintenance and testing to ensure that optimal efficiency is not lost. Systems that are maintained poorly waste energy, have increased operating costs, and can be a source of customer dissatisfaction. To ensure optimal efficiency, AU’s E&E team combines government and industry best practices to establish preventative maintenance tasks.

The E&E team also has led many LED lighting retrofitting efforts to replace less efficient metal halide, fluorescent (contains mercury), and incandescent light fixtures. Bender Library, Sports Center Garage, Katzen Art Garage, and the Butler Pavilion Tunnel all have benefitted from retrofitting efforts.

Green Energy Utilization

The third component of AU’s energy strategy is to buy both renewable energy generation equipment and renewable energy. AU’s onsite renewable energy generation equipment includes solar panels and solar hot water tubes. Where possible, AU also has taken advantage of more efficient and economical means to source renewable energy. Since January, AU has sourced 50 percent of its electrical power from a solar farm in North Carolina via a power purchase agreement with Duke Renewable Energy. AU also purchases renewable energy credits (REC) wherever switching power suppliers is not an option, and where electricity does not come from renewable sources.

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2016-2017 Basketball Season Ticket Deposits Now Accepted

KAM2016-07-01 Basketball

The best seats in Bender Arena for the 2016-17 basketball season are just a phone call away. Call the AU Athletics ticket office at 202-885-TIXX today to place your $50 deposit for 2016-17 season tickets to see the AU Eagles basketball team’s aim to return to the NCAA Tournament. Season tickets are the only way to secure the best sideline-reserved, chair-back seats, all season long.

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Calendar of Events

Bandits & Heroes, Poets & Saints: Popular Art of the Northeast of Brazil

Now – August 14, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Katzen Museum

The exhibition explores how the ancient cultures of Africa blended with indigenous and colonial Portuguese traditions to form the vibrant and complex cultural mosaic of modern Brazil.

The Looking Glass: Artist Immigrants of Washington

Now – August 14, 11a.m. – 4 p.m.

Katzen Museum

The exhibition celebrates ten artists who left Latin America during the last sixty years and made their homes and their artistic careers and contributions in the Washington, DC area.

Contemporary North Korean Art: The Evolution of Socialist Realism

Now – August 14, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Katzen Museum

This exhibition, the first of its kind in the U.S., seeks to broaden understanding of North Korean art beyond stereotypes of propaganda and kitsch to show sophisticated and nuanced expressive achievements.

South Korean Art:Examining Life through Social Realities

Now – August 14, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Katzen Museum

Coinciding with the exhibition of North Korean art, Examining Life Through Social Realities documents and examines life and the social realities of people living on the Korean peninsula through the Realist paintings of ten South Korean contemporary artists.

Art Cart: Honoring the Legacy

Now – August 14, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Katzen Museum

This exhibition ties together two cities – Washington, DC and New York City – in an intergenerational, interdisciplinary project, featuring eight DC-area professional visual artists aged 62 and older who were matched with students in art, healthcare, and aging disciplines to document and preserve their artistic legacy.

Yoga In The Galleries

July 6,13, 20, 27, 10 a.m.

Katzen Museum

Led by certified Kripalu Yoga teacher Eva Blutinger, this yoga class provides mental clarity and relaxation in the peaceful surroundings of art. Participants are required to bring mats. $10 per class and free for museum members. Cash, credit, or check accepted:

Free Parking: Salon Style Conversation at the Alper

July 14, 5:30 – 7 p.m.

Katzen Museum

Free Parking is a series of salon-style conversations in the Alper Initiative space. See the extraordinary work and hear the powerful stories of artists from Chile, Colombia, Cuba, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico, and Uruguay who are featured in The Looking Glass: Artist Immigrants of Washington. Space is limited. This event is free, but RSVP required:

Young Patrons' Happy Hour

July 28, 6 – 7:30 p.m.

Katzen Museum

Young Professionals and AU Young Alumni are invited to a Brazilian-themed happy hour in the museum. Enjoy refreshments and music while checking out the exhibition Bandits & Heroes, Poets & Saints, Art of the Northeast of Brazil.

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