A GRINNELL EDUCATION
At the center of a Grinnell education is intensive mentoring of students by the faculty. This mentoring begins in the First-Year Tutorial, the only required course at Grinnell College. While faculty members from all academic departments teach the tutorial and their topics vary widely, every tutorial emphasizes writing, critical thinking and analysis, oral discussion skills, and information literacy. Each tutor also serves as adviser to this group of students until they declare a major field of study. Thus, students receive guidance from an instructor with personal knowledge of their academic interests, aptitudes, and needs. The tutorial is usually limited to 12 students, making it somewhat smaller than the average class, though similar in intensity to the rest of the curriculum. Grinnell classes generally are small, with an average enrollment of 17 and fewer than 6 percent of classes above 30 students. Many academic programs offer a Mentored Advanced Project (MAP), either as independent study or in the context of a seminar. The MAP, closely guided by a faculty director, gives upper-level students the opportunity to culminate a sequence of academic work by completing a highly advanced project in research or creative arts.
At all levels of the curriculum, Grinnell College students receive an education rooted in active experience. For example, students in science classes engage in discovery-based learning, even at the introductory level. Each area of the fine arts offers opportunities for creative practice alongside the study of history, theory, and formal analysis. Outside the classroom, the Career Development Office has coordinated more than 400 College-funded summer internships forstudents over the past five years. About one- third of students participate in intercollegiate athletics through membership on varsity teams. Residence life, another important feature of a Grinnell education, teaches students the pragmatic social skills of self-governance as they live together in community. The College offers a calendar packed with cultural events and activities, including concerts, lectures, theatre, films, and opportunities for volunteer and civic involvement. Grinnell has never had fraternities or sororities; social events are open to all members of the College.
Grinnell’s emphasis on active learning extends to participation in the global community. With international students making up about 10 percent of our student body and domestic students representing every state, Grinnell offers a geographically and culturally diverse environment for living and learning. A flourishing Center for International Studies coordinates and highlights the many courses and programs at Grinnell College with a global perspective. Even without a language requirement, nearly all students elect to study a foreign language. Roughly half of Grinnell students (a number matched by very few other colleges) spend a semester in Off-Campus Study. Nearly all of these students decide to live and study in an academic program outside of the United States.
Above all, Grinnell College entrusts students with an uncommon level of responsibility for their own college experience. Just as self-governance is central to residential life at the College, the freedom of each student to choose a unique set of courses is central to the way Grinnell organizes its curriculum. Students exercise this responsibility not in isolation, but with the active guidance of their faculty advisers and other faculty mentors. Intensive teaching, active learning, residence in a community of cultural and global diversity, and self-governance in both social and academic life–these elements come together at Grinnell College to form a distinctive experience of liberal education.
EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION FOR STUDENTS IN THE LIBERAL ARTS
- varied forms of learning, in and out of the classroom and beyond the campus
- creative and critical thinking stimulated by the free, open exchange of ideas
- education that reflects on its own process
- excellent teaching as the highest priority of the faculty
- active scholarship in traditional and interdisciplinary fields
- need-blind admission of students with strong academic potential
A DIVERSE COMMUNITY
- a wide diversity of people and perspectives
- a residential campus in a setting that promotes close interactions
- personal, egalitarian, and respectful interactions among all members of the college community
- meeting full demonstrated financial-aid need of admitted and continuing students
- support for professional well-being of all whose work contributes to the college
- our strong tradition of social responsibility and action
- our strong tradition of self-governance and personal responsibility
- learning from and communicating with the world beyond the campus
- life-long connections that support friendship, work, and learning
- continuing to build institutional strength for educating tomorrow’s students
When Grinnell College framed its charter in the Iowa Territory of the United States in 1846, it set forth a mission to educate its students “for the different professions and for the honorable discharge of the duties of life.” The College pursues that mission by educating young men and women in the liberal arts through free inquiry and the open exchange of ideas. As a teaching and learning community, the College holds that knowledge is a good to be pursued both for its own sake and for the intellectual, moral, and physical well-being of individuals and of society at large. The College exists to provide a lively academic community of students and teachers of high scholarly qualifications from diverse social and cultural circumstances. The College aims to graduate women and men who can think clearly, who can speak and write persuasively and even eloquently, who can evaluate critically both their own and others’ ideas, who can acquire new knowledge, and who are prepared in life and work to use their knowledge and their abilities to serve the common good.
Grinnell College Profile
Type: Private, coed, residential, liberal arts
Location: Grinnell, Iowa (population 9,100); on or near Interstate 80, U.S. Highways 6 and 63, State Highway 146; one hour from airports at Des Moines and Cedar Rapids.
Contact: 1121 Park St., Grinnell, Iowa 50112-1690; phone 641-269-4000; www.grinnell.edu
Degree Conferred: Bachelor of Arts
Enrollment: Approximately 1,500 students, generally from all states and about 50 countries
Six-Year Graduation Rate: 90 percent
Student: Faculty Ratio: 8: 1
Academic Year: Late August through mid-May (two semesters)
Accreditation and Affiliations: Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, 30 North LaSalle Street, Suite 2400, Chicago, IL 60602-2504, telephone 312-263-0456; on the approved list of the American Chemical Society; Phi Beta Kappa chapter chartered in 1907; member of the Midwest Conference, National Collegiate Athletic Association (Division III); member of the Associated Colleges of the Midwest, Great Lakes Colleges Association, American Council on Education, Association of American Colleges and Universities, Council for Higher Education of the United Church of Christ, College Board, and other national and regional associations.
Libraries: The Grinnell College libraries- consisting of Burling Library, Windsor Science Library, and the Music Library- hold more than a million books and government documents, more than 20,000 serials, roughly 30,000 audiovisual units, and nearly 8,000 e-books; select depository for federal documents
Academic Support Laboratories: Library Lab, Math Lab, Reading Lab, Science Learning Center, Writing Lab
Distinguished Programs: Center for Prairie Studies, Center for the Humanities, Center for International Studies, Noun Program in Women’s Studies, Peace Studies Program, Rosenfield Public Affairs Program, Donald L. Wilson Program in Enterprise and Leadership
Campus: 120 acres, 64 buildings (including 19 residence halls), 365-acre environmental research area
Colors: Scarlet and Black
Grinnell College has an attractive 120-acre campus of spectacular academic facilities that include the Noyce Science Center, featured in architectural journals; and the Bucksbaum Center for the Arts, designed by Cesar Pelli. The College also owns the 365-acre Conard Environmental Research Area (CERA), located about 14 miles from the campus and used on a regular basis for research and teaching.
The city of Grinnell is a community rooted in agriculture, but also benefits from a long history of international commercial connections and civic pride, leadership, and accomplishment. Grinnell’s buildings are rich in architectural interest. Thirteen sites in town are listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including the Louis Sullivan “Jewel Box” bank building and the Walter Burley Griffin “Ricker” house. The city of Grinnell offers members of the campus community a chance to enjoy the quality of life that has earned it a place among the 25 “Best Small Towns in America” in the book of that title.
Outdoor recreational activities include lakes, prairie preserves, cross country ski trails, and a paved bicycle path connecting Grinnell and Rock Creek State Park. In town, attractions include a downtown triplex cinema, eclectic downtown shopping, coffee shops, bed-and-breakfast inns, weekend antique auctions, restaurants, and diverse city parks.
From Grinnell, it is less than an hour’s drive to Des Moines and about an hour to Iowa City, a university community with vibrant cultural attractions and a renowned teaching hospital. The urban amenities of Minneapolis-St. Paul, St. Louis, Kansas City, and Chicago are all accessible within a four- to five-hour drive.
The new Fitness Center is a multi-floored 8,000 square foot facility that includes brand new cardiovascular and strength equipment.
The upper floor of the Fitness Center, approximately 2,500 square feet, holds 26 pieces of cardio equipment, a stretching mat, dumbbells, medicine balls, and exercise balls.
The cardio equipment includes the following:
- 6 Life Fitness Cross Trainers
- 6 Cybex Arc Trainers
- 6 Life Fitness Treadmills
- 3 Life Fitness Upright Bikes
- 3 Life Fitness Recumbent Bikes
- 2 Life Fitness Stair Steppers
- 2 Concept 2 Rowers
The lower floor, about 5,500 square feet, holds all of the strength equipment.
The strength equipment includes:
- 6 Power Lift Double-Sided Combo Racks
- 15 Life Fitness Selectorized Machines
- 20 Pieces of Assorted Strength Equipment – Made by Power Lift, Life Fitness, and Hammer Strength
The lower level also includes dedicated areas for stretching, abdominal work, and plyometric work. In addition to the exercise equipment, the Fitness Center also showcases a state of the art stereo system and seven flat screen televisions for the upper floor.
Grinnell plays baseball on a complex just north and east of the President’s residence. The field was renovated prior to the 2009 season. Highlights of the complex include a dirt warning track, black vinyl fencing, large dugouts, home and visitor bull pens, a double tunnel batting cage and bleacher seating for fans. Straightaway centerfield is 400 feet from home plate.
Darby Gymnasium is home for the Grinnell College men’s and women’s basketball teams, as well as the Pioneer volleyball squad. The state-of-the-art arena, which opened in 2005, seats 1,250 fans and is highlighted by a vibrant student section that is called the “Scarlet Sea.”
Les Duke Track
In the fall of 2002, the Les Duke Track and Field Complex underwent a major renovation. The facility now features a new 400m synthetic 8-lane surface with synthetic runways and high jump surfaces. The upgrades also include exact models of equipment used at the 2003 World Track and Field Championships: steeple barriers, pole vault and high jump pits with top-of-the line crank standards, Olympic level throwing cage for hammer and discus and top-of-the line hurdles. The final piece was the construction of a two-story finish line building equipped with a fully computerized Lynx timing system. The complex is named for the late, legendary track coach Les Duke.
The Obermiller Pool, named in honor of long-time, successful swimming and diving coach Ray Obermiller who retired in 1995, accommodates both NCAA and Olympic standards. The pool itself is a six-lane 25-yard by six-lane 25-meter pool with two 1-meter and one 3-meter maxi-flex diving boards. Colorado Timing System and Kiefer Advantage II Wave Eater Lane Lines are used for competitions. Grinnell has played host to more than two-dozen Midwest Conference Championships. Fans can enjoy the competition from both elevated, permanent seating and pool deck bleachers.
The football team competes on an established site that has undergone renovations in recent years. In the summer of 2002, the field was upgraded to include an underground irrigation system. Situated among mature trees with a sloped bowl built up around the field, spectators enjoy a great perspective of the game no matter where they sit. A large press box overlooks permanent bleacher seating on the west side. In the fall of 2002, the football team moved to a new practice facility, located just east of Rosenbloom. The practice facility features underground irrigation.
The Grinnell College softball team plays on one of the premier fields in the Midwest. Highlights of the complex, opened in the spring of 2002, include a subterranean drainage system in the infield and outfield, a dirt warning track, black vinyl fencing, heated dugouts, home and visitor bull pens, a double tunnel, artificial turf-surfaced batting cage, a heated media tower and permanent bleacher seating for two hundred fans. Although not part of the current construction, field lighting is also part of the long-term plan.
The Grinnell College soccer programs opened the 2002 season with new practice and game fields. The competition field is called Springer Field Already one of few Division III schools to have separate fields for the men’s and women’s programs, Grinnell went one step futher this past year by constructing two new practice fields (one for each program) and a performance game field (to be shared by the men and women). The new field meets maximum NCAA specifications, measuring 120×75, while terraced and berm seating is available for spectators.
n the mid-1990’s, the College demonstrated its commitment to the student-athletes by expanding the weight room into what was previously a basketball gym. Additional room allowed for the acquisition of more free weight equipment and cardio systems. The office of the Grinnell strength and conditioning coach is located in the weight room. The weight room is available for students, athletes, faculty and staff throughout the day and over the weekends.
Source: Grinnell College