Grinnell College

Grinnell, Iowa

#50 National Colleges

23.08% Admission Rate
Moderately Selective

1,697 Undergraduates Enrolled

  • Private nonprofit
  • Baccalaureate Colleges: Arts & Sciences Focus
  • Four-year, full-time, more selective, lower transfer-in
  • Four-year, small, highly residential

By Aureliusxv - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Grinnell College is a private liberal arts college in Grinnell, Iowa. It was founded in 1846 when a group of New England Congregationalists established the Trustees of Iowa College. Grinnell is known for its rigorous academics, innovative pedagogy, and commitment to social justice.

Grinnell has the fifth highest endowment-to-student ratio of liberal arts colleges, enabling need-blind admissions and substantial academic merit scholarships to boost socioeconomic diversity. Students receive funding for unpaid or underpaid summer internships and professional development (including international conferences and professional attire). Grinnell participates in a 3–2 engineering dual degree program with Columbia University, Washington University in St. Louis, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and California Institute of Technology, a 2–1–1–1 engineering program with Dartmouth College and a Master of Public Health cooperative degree program with University of Iowa.

Among Grinnell alumni are 15 Rhodes Scholars, 5 Marshall Scholars, 15 Truman Scholars, 122 Fulbright grantees, 79 Watson Fellows, 19 Goldwater Scholars (since 2000), and one Nobel laureate. It is one of the top producers of Fulbright grantees. Its alumni include actor Gary Cooper, Nobel chemist Thomas Cech, Intel co-founder Robert Noyce, jazz musician Herbie Hancock, government administrator Harry Hopkins, and comedian Kumail Nanjiani.

The 120-acre campus includes several listings on the National Register of Historic Places as well as a César Pelli designed ultra-modern student center, integrated academic complexes, and state-of-the-art athletics facilities. Grinnell College also manages significant real estate adjacent to the campus and in the historic downtown, a free-access golf course, and the 365-acre Conard Environmental Research Area.

"Grinnell College." Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 15 February 2022,

Grinnell, Iowa

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Town: Remote (in urban cluster more than 35 miles from an urbanized area)

Plains (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD)


Predominant Degree Awarded
Predominantly bachelor's-degree granting

Highest Degree Awarded
Bachelor's degree

Most Popular Fields

Field % Students
Social Sciences 20.8%
Biological And Biomedical Sciences 17.4%
Computer And Information Sciences And Support Services 11.4%
Physical Sciences 9.4%
Mathematics And Statistics 6.2%
English Language And Literature/Letters 5.7%
Foreign Languages, Literatures, And Linguistics 5.7%
History 5.5%
Psychology 5.2%
Visual And Performing Arts 5.0%
Philosophy And Religious Studies 4.5%
Area, Ethnic, Cultural, Gender, And Group Studies 1.7%
Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies 1.5%



Percentage Students Receiving Aid

Average Net Cost After Aid


SAT Scores

1457 Composite Average
Percentile 75% 50% 25%
Math 790 745 700
Verbal 740 705 670

ACT Scores

33 Cumulative Average
Percentile 75% 50% 25%
Math 33 30 27
English 35 34 32