Why Grinnell

Where the curious go forth.


We’re not usually one for the “us vs. them” approach (we’re more into uniting than dividing). But there are some very clear things that separate us from other institutions.

With your vision, drive, and academic interests, we know you could go anywhere. By choosing Grinnell, you’re accepting a wonderful challenge. You're stepping into a community of change-makers and solution-seekers that will prepare you for an ever-changing world and whatever it sends your way. 

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As Grinnellians, we believe in free inquiry and the open exchange of ideas. So here, you’ll think creatively and critically about the world around you. You’ll dive deep into theoretical and scientific research. You’ll work alongside world-class experts, advisers, and mentors who are dedicated to your success.

Define Your Direction

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Individually Advised Curriculum

This is your education. Our individually advised curriculum is built on opportunity, choice, freedom, and responsibility. Working with your faculty adviser, you’ll have a significant role in designing a course of study that’s specific to your academic and career interests. 

Create Your Curriculum

Mentored Research

Paired with accomplished faculty who serve as experts, advisers, and mentors, you’ll choose from a wide range of research opportunities, here and beyond, and all for the greater good.

Explore Research

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First-Year Tutorial

Here, this is the only required course beyond your major. Choosing from one of 35 different topics, you'll emerge with razor-sharp writing, critical-thinking, and presentation skills, speaking your own voice, clear and true.

Find a Topic


Grinnellians turn outward, and let the world in. In fact, we approach every question or situation with a global lens. Because in this increasingly connected world, every difference strengthens how we understand what’s before us, or something far out of our view.

Make Your Mark

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Career Forward

From day one at Grinnell, you’re building a career. Every class. Every conversation. Every easy answer challenged. And you have a careers, life, and service adviser ready to help.

Get Started

Social Responsibility and Service

You care about being part of the solution. You’re not afraid to step forward and speak up for others. Here at Grinnell, you’ll join a legacy of activism and sharpen your voice as a thoughtful, engaged citizen.

Dive In

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We bring together diverse perspectives and global understanding in an open and safe community. By fostering growth, we focus our collective energy to advocate for fairness and the common good.

Find Your Direction

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Advisers at Grinnell

With three advisers to cover every aspect of your experience, all driven to help you contribute and belong to our community, the moments for mentorship and support are limitless.

Meet Your Advisers

Campus Culture

Every Grinnellian brings a unique presence to our campus. The friendships you build. The clubs you join. The way you lead others. We want all of our students to take part in creating Grinnell's community and continually evolve it.

Get Involved

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Global Understanding and Diversity

Grinnellians examine every question and situation through a global lens. Because every difference can strengthen how we understand what’s before us, or introduce us to something far out of our view.

Explore Further

Student Quote

Grinnell has been a welcome change from my hometown which was very competitive, very focused on prestige and, I've come to realize, unhealthy. I am confident that I made the right decision in coming here.

Julie Sloniewsky '21