Honors Siblings: Graceanne and Joyana Tarsa

April 15, 2019

Meet the Tarsas! Graceanne and Joyana are sisters who both found their place at St. Norbert College. As to why they wanted to be a part of the Honors Program, they both joined because they wanted to surround themselves with academically driven people who love to learn as much as they do.


The younger of the two, Joyana is a first-year at SNC who is not quite sure what she wants to study yet. Interestingly, Joyana did not originally consider St. Norbert because of the fact that her sister goes here. I think we can all relate to that feeling of wanting to branch out on our own after high school! But she loved the size of St. Norbert and was interested in the science program, so she decided to come here nonetheless. Once she chose SNC to continue her education, Joyana explains that it calmed her nerves to know her sister would be there as well: “This school is about 7 hours from our hometown, so having Graceanne with me helped ease me into living so far away from home. Because I have her here, I always feel like I have someone to turn to when needed.” This just goes to show that having a family member on campus does have its perks, even if it’s something a student is initially hesitant about.


As for Graceanne, she is a senior, and will be graduating from SNC in May. With a Mathematics and Organismal Biology double major and a minor in Chemistry, her academics keep her pretty busy. Not to mention all of the other things that not only Graceanne, but both sisters are involved in. Graceanne was overjoyed when her sister chose St. Norbert! She was especially excited to be an RA this year for the first year dorm where her sister lives, Bergstrom Hall, and to return to the residence hall she called home a few years ago. So far she has been loving her time as an RA and the sisters like living close enough where they can come to each other for motivation or words of encouragement.


On campus, both Tarsas are also involved in cross country and track & field together, where they can push each other to be better athletes and teammates. Reflecting on being teammates, Graceanne says “Joyana is an amazing competitor. I am often inspired by my teammates, but nothing has inspired me more than watching Joyana kick butt!”


Whether it’s in athletics or not, Joyana and Graceanne love cheering each other on and sharing there experiences at SNC together. We certainly enjoy having these two sisters as part of our Honors Program!


Fun Facts:

  • Joyana and Graceanne have another sister and all three of them were on the same cross country team for one year in high school before Graceanne graduated

  • The Tarsas have raised llamas, cows, goats, sheep, rabbits, and turkeys

  • The only sport at their middle school was cross country, which is how they got into running in the first place


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