A Transformative Experience Abroad, At No Additional Cost
This fall St. Olaf College celebrated the grand opening of the new Smith Center for Global Engagement.
The center, launched with a transformative $10.7 million gift from Louis and Mary Kay Smith, supports students in developing global and intercultural skills through study abroad and study away programs in the U.S. and around the world, as well as through Academic Civic Engagement (ACE) courses in local communities.
In addition to establishing an endowment that will fund the center’s operations, the gift from the Smiths will provide generous financial aid to students studying abroad and away from campus.
This is the latest in a series of gifts that have provided powerful support for students to study abroad and away.
In recent years St. Olaf alumni have made transformational gifts that have enabled Oles to participate in two of the college’s signature study abroad programs for the same cost as studying on campus, as well as tour internationally with St. Olaf music ensembles at no cost.
Since the fall of 2017, St. Olaf students have been able to participate in the faculty-led Global Semester — which takes 20 students to multiple countries around the world — for the same cost as studying on campus. This incredible opportunity is made possible by Lynn Seifert Stranghoener ’76 and Larry Stranghoener ’76 and the Larry Carlson Global Semester Endowed Scholarship.
SEMESTER IN JERUSALEM AND ATHENS
Students also have the opportunity to participate in a new faculty-led semester-long program titled Religion, Politics, and Society in Jerusalem and Athens for the same cost as studying on campus thanks to a generous gift from Lisa Nave Buck ’77 and Greg Buck ’77. The biennial Semester in Jerusalem and Athens will first run from February to May 2023. Twenty students will study for two months in Jerusalem and a month in Athens, with separate excursions to Petra (a UNESCO World Heritage site) in Jordan and Galilee in Israel.
INTERNATIONAL MUSIC TOURS
Beginning this year, members of the St. Olaf Band, St. Olaf Choir, and St. Olaf Orchestra are able to tour internationally with the ensembles at no expense thanks to a $4.2 million endowment established by two anonymous donors who have long supported and been inspired by music at St. Olaf. The gift has made St. Olaf one of very few institutions that provide international tour opportunities for its premier ensemble members cost-free.