Prime Minister of Norway to visit St. Olaf
Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre will visit St. Olaf College on September 18, where he will deliver a speech focused on the ties between Norway and the United States, their joint commitment to security in Europe, and the consequences of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Gahr Støre’s visit to campus is part of a brief trip to Minnesota that will also include a stop at Camp Ripley in Little Falls. At St. Olaf he will meet with students, faculty, and staff, including students from Norway and members of the college’s Norwegian Department. Following his speech, students will be invited to ask questions. The event is limited to invited members of the campus community and is not open to the public.
“Prime Minister Støre’s visit will enhance students’ understanding of the relevance of their academic studies and our Norwegian heritage to a pressing international security issue. We are delighted that Prime Minister Støre will celebrate the long-standing Norwegian and American bond here at St. Olaf,” says St. Olaf President Susan Rundell Singer.
“Prime Minister Støre’s visit will enhance students’ understanding of the relevance of their academic studies and our Norwegian heritage to a pressing international security issue. We are delighted that Prime Minister Støre will celebrate the long-standing Norwegian and American bond here at St. Olaf.”St. Olaf President Susan Rundell Singer
Gahr Støre has served as the Prime Minister of Norway since 2021 and has been the leader of the Labour Party since 2014. Before developing a career in politics, he completed naval officer training at the Royal Norwegian Naval Academy and studied political science at Sciences Po in Paris. His trip to the U.S. comes on the heels of his August meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kyiv. Following that visit, Gahr Støre announced that Norway — which shares a land border with Russia — will send anti-aircraft missiles and mine clearing equipment to Ukraine and help the war-torn country secure its gas and power supply.
St. Olaf College was founded in 1874 by Norwegian immigrants and has hosted a number of Norwegian officials over the years. Her Majesty Queen Sonja of Norway visited campus in October 2022. She had previously traveled to the college with King Harald V in 2011 and 1995, and first visited in 1978 as Crown Princess of Norway. Other Norwegian royal visits include Princess Astrid in 2008; Princess Märtha Louise in 2006, Crown Prince Haakon in 2005, and King Olav V in 1987.
The St. Olaf Norwegian Department offers the largest number of Norwegian language courses in North America, and St. Olaf is one of few U.S. higher education institutions where students can study Norwegian to complete their foreign language requirement and also be able to further develop their knowledge of Norwegian language, literature, culture, and history. For nearly a century, St. Olaf has also hosted the Norwegian-American Historical Association (NAHA) on campus.