Business and education leaders and the public — including Saint Mary’s students, administrators, and Brother William — had the opportunity to interact with Neel Kashkari, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, during a “listening visit” to Winona. Kashkari is familiarizing himself with the areas under his jurisdiction including Minnesota, the Dakotas, Montana, 26 counties in Wisconsin, and the Upper Peninsula in Michigan.

Kashkari met with a small group of students and career services staff from Winona’s three institutions of higher education to hear students’ concerns about entering the workforce, student loans and tuition, and other financial issues. He also held a private session with Brother William, Winona State President Scott Olson, and Devinder Malhotra, chancellor of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, before hosting a town hall meeting with the public.

On these visits, Kashkari gets a sense of how local economies are faring. He asks students about job searches and business leaders about local struggles with a dwindling workforce. He also fields questions from citizens about monetary policy and the inner workings of the Federal Reserve.