People of St. Olaf: Matthew Dufresne '20

                                                                                                          Photo courtesy of Matthew Dufresne(pictured above)

Year: Sophomore

Major: Economics and Statistics

If you could travel anywhere where would you go?: Sydney, Australia

Describe your overall experience at St. Olaf: It has been academically challenging. I’m loving it!

iPhone or Android?

 IPhone all the way!!!

Would you rather chill and read a book or watch a movie?

Read a book. I’m kind’ve a bookworm

What is your favorite past time activity?

Hanging out with friends, reading, and writing my own short stories

Does traveling abroad for school interest you? If so, where and for what?

Traveling abroad is very interesting to me because I’ve always had an interest in other cultures. Preferably, I would go to England to study Economics.

What is some advice you have for college freshman or prospective students?

First-year is tough. I encourage you to keep going and be persistent in your work. Know that, in time, you will learn the effective balance between social life, extracurricular, and academics. Just keep working at it!

Also, be on the lookout for someone who will make you accountable for your self-development. They will be your mentor. This can be a professor, a friend, or anyone you have a close relationship with. Mine happened to be my piano instructor. I think that it is an overlooked aspect of the learning process for students because they see themselves as stupid if they ask for help. If you develop a genuine relationship with them, they will teach you things that you would’ve never had learned on your own. If the apprentice wants to become a master, the apprentice must first have a master.

Favorite class taken at St. Olaf so far

My favorite class would be Writing 111. I’ve had to write a cumulative 19 papers for that class, but, in retrospect, I’ve learned so much amidst the work. Eventually, I began to like the challenging amount of work, which pushed me to become a better writer.

What do you look forward to after attaining a college degree?

To learn more skills so as to help achieve my goal.

Favorite quote:

I’m cheating a little bit, but I love quoting the poem Invictus:

“Out of the night that covers me,

     Black as the pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be

     For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance

     I have not winced nor cried aloud.

Under the bludgeonings of chance

     My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears

     Looms but the Horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years

     Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,

     How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate,

     I am the captain of my soul.”- William Ernest Henley

Food that you absolutely can’t stand: Fried Fudge

Favorite season: Late Spring (early Spring is too muddy)

Favorite activity to do with friends: To go to the Twin cities and enjoy the nightlife

Favorite throwback memory to high school: Senior Prom and the Multi-Cultural Club Assembly

How has the Hill helped you further a passion in your life?

It helped foster good habits in myself. It was the perfect environment to learn time-management, discipline, and acquire new skills, whilst, simultaneously, providing the perfect lab environment to test my ideas with others in discussion as well as forge new ways of thinking.

Is there anything at St. Olaf that you look forward to pursuing more?

Economics as well as learning some new computer programs.

How has St. Olaf helped you develop your future plans?

It helped me to think, with greater specificity, about my future plans such as what I want to achieve, ideal career, etc.

Scenic photo of The Natural Lands at St. Olaf College courtesy of