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Student of the Week

Name: Tess Halac ’15

Majors/Concentrations: Sociology and Anthropology, Womens and Gender Studies concentration

Activities: Team member and Captain of Fun for Durga Ultimate, Secretary for SOLAS St. Olaf Leaders Abolishing Slavery and Volunteer Coordinator for STOTalks

Tess Halac was the Volunteer Coordinator for the fourth annual STOTalks. STOTalks debuted in 2012 as the college’s version of TED Talks. Halac was an intricate part of STOTalks’ success this year, working tirelessly behind the scenes. She spoke to the Manitou Messenger about annual lecture series.


Q: What does STOTalks offer the St. Olaf community?

A: STOTalks gives St. Olaf a chance to hear some of our community’s most exciting and innovative ideas from a wide array of fields. It also provides a vehicle for Oles to give voice to an idea that they are passionate about or think the campus needs to hear.

Q: Why are you involved with STOTalks?

A: I am a member of STOTalks because I believe in its mission — connecting Oles around powerful ideas that stimulate thinking, reflection and action. I attended the very first STOTalks conference during my freshman year and was blown away by it; my goal as a committee member is to give that experience to other people.

Q: What future do you see for STOTalks?

A: In terms of STOTalks, I hope to see the conference grow – we have even discussed collaborating with Carleton and/or Northfield community members as a way to further diversif your talks and foster connectivity and collaboration. We hope to continue to familiarize students with the conference so that it can become a highly anticipated annual event. As for St. Olaf, I hope that STOTalks can initiate and encourage important dialogue and positive action throughout the campus. Change starts with an idea, and I hope the STOTalks conference can be a meaningful platform to set it into motion.

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