Grinnell College, located in Grinnell, Iowa, is a private, coeducational, residential liberal arts and science college. Established in 1846 by a group of New England Congregationalists, the college is currently unaffiliated though it was historically related to the United Church of Christ. Grinnell’s campus is located in a rural area, and sits on 120-acres. Grinnell was recently ranked among America’s Best Colleges by U.S. News & World Report, and tied for 19th place among all liberal arts colleges in the United States. Grinnell is the alma mater to several notable graduates who have gone into politics, made important scientific contributions, and become prominent entertainers, including actor Gary Cooper; Harry Hopkins, senior advisor to Franklin Roosevelt; and Thomas Cech, co-winner of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
Academic ProgramsGrinnell is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools to award Bachelor of Arts degrees in more than 25 major fields with a dozen concentrations. Grinnell’s programs are offered through its divisions of Humanities; Division of Science; Division of Social Studies; and Interdisciplinary Majors. Students may also create an individualized curriculum, choosing their own unique set of courses with help from an advisor who serves as a valuable aid to the student throughout their time at Grinnell. Grinnell is about opportunity and choice, freedom and responsibility, and to this end, allows students to create an independent major.
Multiple off-campus study programs provide students with opportunities for internships or volunteer activities, ranging from teaching children English in Ecuador, to assisting the elderly in a French nursing home, for example. The Rosenfield Program and the Global Development Studies Concentration, among others, fund summer internships abroad while the Grinnell’s Center for International studies brings global leaders to the Grinnell campus to teach and meet with students.
Student LifeNearly 2,000 students are enrolled at Grinnell College, approximately 85% of which live in one of the college’s residence halls, language or project houses, or a college-owned house. Grinnell’s residence halls are kept small, accommodating between fifty and sixty students at the most, making the halls feel like a large, diverse family. At the campus’ center, Grinnell’s Marketplace Dining serves freshly prepared meals, ranging from stir-fry to pizza to vegan and vegetarian.
Grinnell hosts more than 500 free events on campus annually (more than most larger universities) and students are able to connect with one other through more than 100 student-led organizations, groups and clubs which are based on interests, passions, culture, and more. Student groups include every type of organizations such as sports, arts, outdoor recreation, volunteer, and spiritual activities. Grinnell’s varsity athletic teams, named the Pioneers, compete at the NCAA Division III level. Grinnell also offers a number of different club sports teams, including volleyball, sailing, water polo, ultimate Frisbee, and rugby.