BAS Summer Seminar 2023 at St. Olaf FAQ

Q: How can I participate in the Summer Seminar at St. Olaf College?

A: You may register and attend in-person at the college in Northfield, Minnesota, or you can register for the on-line virtual seminar. Whichever way that you register, in addition to the live lectures, you will be sent a link via email to view the recordings of all 20 lectures given at the seminar, after the recordings have been edited.

Q: How much does it cost to attend in-person?

A: If you attend our Summer Seminar in-person (at St. Olaf College) when you register from May 12 until June 12, the regular in-person fees are $1,865.00. If you register for the in-person event, you will also need to deposit $200.00 to hold your reservation. If you cancel for any reason, your $200.00 deposit will convert into an on-line virtual ticket.

Q: How much does it cost to attend virtually?

A: If you attend the event virtually, it will cost $199.00. That includes a “live” Zoom link, and a later link to all the recordings of the 20 lectures (after the seminar is completed). You will be able to view ALL 20 lectures whenever you like from your own computer. NOTE: BAS can’t guarantee access to any of the live online lectures or recordings of lectures, if we have any unexpected technical issues.

Q: If I go in-person, where will I stay?

A: If you register for the in-person event, you will stay in the brand-new dorms on St. Olaf’s gorgeous campus. Our rooms have air-conditioning, 2 beds, a table, a chair, a dresser and bathroom shared in a “Jack and Jill” style with the next room. The college will also supply clean bed sheets, pillows and towels. If traveling alone, your suite mate (on the other side of the bathroom) will be the same gender as you.

Q: Where is St. Olaf’s College?

A: St. Olaf’s College is located about 40 miles south of the Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport, in Northfield, Minnesota. Northfield is a lovely, quiet small college town on the Cannon River.

Q: How do I get there?

A: If you live in the Upper Midwest, you could drive there. If you live elsewhere, you will fly into the Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport on Sunday, July 16 and fly out of the airport on Saturday, July 22.

Q: Will BAS purchase my flight for me to the Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport?

A: No, as we are not working with a travel agency. Please purchase your own flight through your own travel agent, through Orbitz, Expedia or any other reputable online travel company.

Q: How do I get from the airport to the St. Olaf College campus?

A: You will have the option to take a St. Olaf minivan back to the campus from the airport on Sunday, July 16 at 11 am or 2 pm. Or, if your flight arrives very early in the morning, or if your flight arrives after the final 2 pm minivan leaves for Northfield, you will need to take a taxi, Lyft or Uber to the new dormitories at St. Olaf College.

Q: When is the Summer Seminar?

A: If you are coming in-person, you will arrive at the college on Sunday, July 16, in time for the 3 pm reception in the New Dorm. We will leave the college on Saturday, July 22. We will have three minivans to take attendees back to the airport on Saturday. Whether you are attending virtually or in-person, the 20 lectures will start on Monday, July 17 and will continue until Friday, July 21. There are no lectures scheduled on Sunday, July 16 (arrival day) or Saturday, July 22 (departure day).

Q: Where will we eat?

A: If you come to St. Olaf, we all be served three delicious meals per day (Monday through Friday) at the St. Olaf College’s dining hall. On Sunday evening, after we arrive, we will have dinner in the dining hall. On Saturday morning (departure day), we will have only breakfast available in the dining hall.

In addition, the Summer Seminar attendees will attend a banquet in a private room in the college library on Friday evening to celebrate the end of the seminar. All the food will be prepared by Bon Appetit Catering (St.Olaf’s catering service). They will prepare a wide variety of tasty food (including vegetarian options). We will also be served a snack with our coffee break daily (outside our lecture hall).

Q: How will we get around campus?

A: We will walk to the dining and lecture halls, so please wear comfortable walking shoes or sandals. NOTE: there is a hill in the center of campus we will daily have to walk up and down. If you have a wheelchair or walk with a cane, please bring a spouse or friend who will safely accompany you.

Q: Do we need to have our fully updated Covid vaccine cards to register for the in-person event?

A: Yes, St. Olaf College requires everyone to be fully vaccinated against Covid to protect all the attendees, the students, and the staff. In addition, you need to test yourself for the Covid virus 24-72 hours before you leave for the event, and you must test negative for Covid to attend in-person.

Q: Who is presenting the 20 lectures?

A: We are very lucky to have Dr. Jillian Ross and Dr. Ralph Hawkins, who will present 10 lectures each on the books of Judges and Joshua from the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament and who will talk on the formation of the early Israelite people.

Dr. Jillian Ross is an Associate Professor at Liberty University. She is also the author of many articles about the book of Judges. In addition, she has published a book, “A People Heeds Not Scripture: Allusion in Judges.”

Dr. Hawkins is Chair of the Religion Department at Averett University. He has been on the staff at excavations at Tall Jalul and Khirbet Ataruz, both in Jordan. He is also currently the co-director of the Jordan Valley Excavation Project. In addition to his numerous articles and reviews, he has written “How Israel Became a People.”

Q: If we are at St. Olaf College, what can we do when we are not busy listening to lectures, dining, and sleeping?

A: You can walk around the gorgeous 350-acre campus, and hike on the many trails that the college has built on the campus. In addition, if you wish, you could go into the town of charming Northfield and explore the shops and restaurants located downtown.

Q: What if I need medical attention while I am at the Summer Seminar at St. Olaf College?

A: If you need serious medical attention, one of the BAS staff will drive you to a local emergency room for you to be treated. However, you will need your medical insurance card. Neither BAS nor St. Olaf College will cover any of your medical expenses.

Q: Should I get travel insurance?

A: BAS strongly advises all in-person attendees to get travel insurance. In case your flight is cancelled, or you need to change flights, if you need to cancel your attendance for any reason, if you lose your luggage, a good travel insurance plan will cover all those costs. You can get travel insurance through many of your regular insurance companies (car, house, etc.). In addition, some credit card companies do offer travel insurance to their members. Our customers have also used: Select Travel Insurance.

Q: What is the weather like in Northfield, Minnesota in the middle of July?

A: It averages 82 degrees Fahrenheit in the day, and 64 degrees Fahrenheit at night. In the month of July, that area averages about seven rainy days for July. We suggest summer clothes for the day, and long sleeves and long pants for the evening (for the chilly nights, and for the mosquitoes). In addition, it will be helpful to pack a sweatshirt or fleece, as well as a rain jacket. Remember, those temperatures are average. We could easily have much hotter, much cooler, or much rainier weather when we are there.

Q: What should I bring?

A: If you are attending in-person, please bring: your summer clothes, comfortable walking shoes, your toiletries, your medications, a light jacket or sweater, your rain jacket, and your cell phone. You will not need sheets, towels or pillows, as St. Olaf College provides them.

Q: When and how are the Zoom links sent to us (if we are attending virtually)?

A: We will send out the Zoom link to attend the 20 lectures in the week before the seminar starts. Please look in your email for a link from Zoom. If you don’t find the link, please look in your email promotions folder or your email spam folder for the email from Zoom with the link to join.

Q: What if I can’t attend some (or all) of the lectures during their scheduled times between July 17-21?

A: No problem. You may view the recordings of the lectures. We will edit all the lectures, and about a week or more after the event ends, we will send out another link and password to view all the recorded lectures. If you don’t receive the link by July 31, please look in your spam folder or promotions folder in your email for the link from BAS. If you still can’t find it, please contact me, and I will send you another email with the link.

Q: What is the schedule of the lectures during the Summer Seminar?

A: July 17-21 (U.S. Central Time)

Note: All lectures subject to change (if needed). The titles of the lectures will be added later.

Sunday, July 16
Arrival day- no lectures

Monday, July 17
9-10 am –lecture 1;10:30-11:30 am- lecture 2; 1:30-2:30 pm – lecture 3; 3-4 pm – lecture 4; 7-8 pm – lecture 5

Tuesday, July 18
9-10 am –lecture 6; 10:30-11:30 am- lecture 7; 1:30-2:30 pm – lecture 8; 3-4 pm – lecture 9

Wednesday, July 19
9-10 am –lecture 10; 10:30-11:30 am- lecture 11

Thursday, July 20
9-10 am –lecture 12; 10:30-11:30 am- lecture 13; 1:30-2:30 pm – lecture 14; 3-4 pm – lecture 15; 7-8 pm – lecture 16

Friday, July 21
9-10 am –lecture 17; 10:30-11:30 am- lecture 18; 1:30-2:30 pm – lecture 19; 3-4 pm – lecture 20

Saturday, July 22
Departure Day: no lectures

Q: If I have more questions, whom should I contact?

A: Peter Megginson, BAS Travel/Study Director. Email him at [email protected]
or call 202-364-3300 ex. 424.