Gemma Holt '17 on a Fulbright in Finland

March 1st, 2019

Last Log Lunch, Gemma Holt ’17 told a crowd munching on scallion pancakes and sesame noodles about the Fulbright she spent in Finland, right after graduating Williams. During her senior year, Gemma wrote a thesis about Arctic governance, which is a topic that doesn’t get a lot of attention.

(from left) Gemma Holt ’17, Prof. Sarah Gardner, Jane Tekin ’19

But the Arctic is extremely important, as we have seen with the acceleration of climate change. Gemma told us about the Arctic Council, which was formed by a coalition of Arctic countries (including France and Japan, surprisingly!) 25 years ago. She also stressed the importance of science diplomacy, the “biggest reality builder of the Arctic.”

Gemma also told us about the Finnish way of life, which includes two government-mandated coffee breaks and skiing to work. It also includes 2 hours of sunlight in the winter–in comparison, March in Williamstown doesn’t seem so bleak!



—Jane Tekin ’19