SHINE: Joy Dunna ’20

The 2017 St. Lucia, Joy Dunna ’20, on what the honor has meant to her.
Posted on December 5th, 2018 by

The 2018 St. Lucia Festival will be celebrated Thursday, Dec. 6. All are invited
 to Christ Chapel for a service that features the St. Lucia Court and the St. Lucia Singers. As she is the previous year’s St. Lucia, Dunna will provide the homily, including the telling of the legend of St. Lucia. The event is free and open to the public. The event will also be livestreamed.


“I hadn’t heard of St. Lucia before Gustavus,” Dunna says. “I vaguely remember voting as a first-year.” But fellow Gustie women were eager to fill her in. “They talked about the service and leadership aspects. And when I looked at the amazing women on the court, I wasn’t surprised.”

But she never imagined she would be up there. Instead, Dunna, who is from St. 
Paul, simply went about the business of being a great first-year Gustie. She worked with the Women’s Action Coalition, and at the end of the year she was nominated for every position. (She prefers the background, she says, so she became the secretary, a job she loves.) She was on the events committee for Building Bridges. She had originally planned for a nursing major, but her work with justice issues, “made me realize I had a burning passion for it,” she says. Now she’s a history and gender, women, and sexuality 
studies double major. “I want to go into women’s counseling,” she says. “So I 
decided to make the change.”

A year later—surprise!—she was on that St. Lucia court. Then, she was wearing the crown. “That was humbling,” she says. “I have no words for 
that feeling.” Her words now are all about how St. Lucia has changed her. “Avery Bather (St. Lucia 2016) told me, ‘You will always think about your actions, and become a better person,’” Dunna says. Her roommate gave her
 a St. Lucia pin last Christmas as a reminder “that I can continue to be the person that I am, but also make a conscious effort to stop and say hello, to ask someone how they are doing. Being St. Lucia solidifies in you. It pushes you to care about people and care about the community.”

She didn’t need a whole lot of pushing—she was crowned St. Lucia for
 a reason. Dunna’s other activities include Feminist Bible Study, Intergreek Senate (she is an Alpha Sigma Tau), Senior Week co-chair, Gustie Greeters, and Cribbage Club. In her upcoming St. Lucia homily, “I plan on recognizing and appreciating the invisible labor that women do in society and highlighting how women in all of our lives complete necessary tasks daily, but at times go unnoticed,” she says. “Can you tell I’m working on a GWSS major?”

 

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Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication JJ Akin
jakin@gustavus.edu
507-933-7510

 

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