Engaging with the local community
As you can see from the map below, right here in St. Olaf’s immediate neighborhood there are numerous civic and community organizations that help the community and its members thrive. Many of these organizations are working to address the same social challenges that appear in larger cities and elsewhere in the world–food access, educational equity, immigration and human rights, affordable and safe housing, racial justice, quality healthcare, and more.
- What are your responsibilities/duties to a community? Both ones that you identify with and ones that you do not?
- What are the implications of being welcomed into a community in which you have more privilege?
- What does it mean to interact with a community you do not identify with?
- What does it mean to be authentic in how you experience community?
- What it means to be a part of a community? What does community mean to you?
Explore the map and its different layers (you can add or remove layers using the toolbar arrow icon in the upper left hand corner of the map). Then reflect on how you want to engage with your new local community during your time at St. Olaf College. You might consider visiting the St. Olaf volunteering page to learn more about different pathways for contributing meaningfully to your new community.
- What do you think St. Olaf and its community members, like you, have in terms of responsibilities and obligations to the local community? How do we live into those responsibilities and obligations?
- Do you think Northfield is the land of “Cows, Colleges, and Contentment?” Why or why not?
- After exploring this map, how do you want to engage with your new local community during your time at St. Olaf College? What is one action step you’ll take to begin to engage meaningfully, responsibly, and ethically with the local community?
This page is for informational purposes only and was last updated on September 20, 2023. For updates or feedback, please email Alyssa Melby (melby1[at]stolaf.edu).