Campus Life

Oles are all about community.

Oles are connected in everything they do, from teams and ensembles, to residence hall corridors, to learning cohorts like the Conversation programs and faculty-led study abroad groups, to clubs and organizations, to the worldwide alumni community. We have designed the campus, the curriculum, and the extracurricular programs to connect people and build friendships that last. Oles live, learn, and play together.

of students living on campus or in college-owned houses nearby


on the "Best Campus Food” list according to the Princeton Review


student organizations and clubs

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Whether it’s Hawaiian night in Stav Dining hall where a kiddie pool full of ice cream ready to be eaten can be found, the annual outdoor opera every spring, or intramural broomball competition that happens every January, St. Olaf students have a clear passion for continuing the traditions of those who have come before them.

From the annual St. Olaf Christmas festival which brings five choirs and the St. Olaf Orchestra together that exemplifies the vibrant musical community on St. Olaf’s campus while welcoming thousands of alumni and concert-goer’s each year, to Homecoming week with the football game and annual King of the Hill competition, to sledding in the winter down Old Main Hill on trays borrowed from our singular campus dining hall, it’s obvious that traditions are one thing that make St. Olaf stand out from other colleges.


The tight-knit community at St. Olaf come together three times a day to dine together in Stav Hall and unlike larger colleges or universities, St. Olaf prides itself on our singular dining hall with a family dining room feel.

100% carbon-free electrical power

100% carbon-free electrical power

The college has worked to achieve a significant reduction in both per capita and total annual carbon emissions and has been able to achieve very low carbon-per-student rate of 5.5 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalencies.

Local and sustainable food sources

Local and sustainable food sources

Bon Appétit, the St. Olaf food service provider, purchases from 15 local producers of fruits and vegetables, beef, lamb, pork, and dairy. STOGROW, the student-run organic farm, provides food products directly to Bon Appétit.

Restoring our Natural Lands

Restoring our Natural Lands

More than 325 acres of restored native tallgrass prairie, wetlands, and woodlands adjoining the campus — provide an ideal outdoor laboratory for the sciences and environmental preservation.

Recycling and Composting

Recycling and Composting

The college’s recycling program is directly tied to the county’s co-mingled system. Recycling bins are provided for each student room and are present in every office or department on campus.


We encourage the exploration of faith, values, and personal fulfillment. St. Olaf is grounded in its Lutheran tradition, but you’ll find students and faculty from all of the world’s great religions, as well as people who may not claim any faith tradition. About a quarter of our students identify themselves as Lutheran. We all share a commitment to respect others’ beliefs, and a willingness to explore the role religion and faith play in all cultures. Those conversations take many forms and lead in many directions in and out of the classroom.

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The flags in Boe Memorial Chapel represent the home countries of our international students and U.S. citizens who grew up abroad. Faculty, students and staff collectively represent more than 80 different countries.