As part of its historic commitment to social justice and responsibility, and in an attempt to match the talents and idealism of our students with the needs of our local and global communities, Grinnell College has created the Grinnell Corps: an opportunity for new graduates to join one of six one-year, post-graduation service programs.
All six programs provide students with the opportunity to undertake a one-year service fellowship supported by the College in the year immediately following their graduation. The programs are open for applications from as many students as possible, with no prerequisites or requirements except participation the year immediately following graduation. All of the Grinnell Corps fellows' reasonable expenses during their year of service, including transportation, stipend, housing, and insurance, are covered under these programs. All fellows submit monthly reports to the Office of Social Commitment and post quarterly reports on the Grinnell Corps website. As feasible, fellows are also brought back to campus in the semester after their return to the US to give a presentation on their year of service.
The Grinnell Corps programs are carried out in conjunction with partner institutions. Grinnell provides the funding for the programs; the fellows provide the labor; and the partner institution provides the service opportunity. Currently, the six programs include:
- education-related service in China, Lesotho, and Thailand;
- conservation-related service in Namibia;
- local anti-poverty service in Grinnell; and
- housing reconstruction service in New Orleans.
There are currently 10 fellowships awarded each year; two in each of our four international programs, and one in each of our two domestic programs.
Applying to Grinnell Corps
The Grinnell Corps welcomes applicants with disabilities. Each Grinnell Corps location and position has unique features and qualities, so applicants with disabilities who want to discuss, in advance of applying, what accommodations may be needed to successfully complete a Grinnell Corps fellowship are encouraged to contact Doug Cutchins. Once accepted, a Grinnell Corps fellow needing an accommodation for a disability should talk with Doug Cutchins regarding necessary documentation and the accommodation process. Doug will then work with the applicant and the site to arrange for reasonable accommodation.
International students are also welcome to apply for Grinnell Corps fellowships when it is possible to obtain the necessary one-year visa for participation in the program. International students are strongly encouraged to contact Doug Cutchins before submitting an application to discuss possibilities.
Stafford and Perkins loans are generally deferrable for Grinnell Corps service, but it is up to the individual fellow to obtain this deferment. Fellows who have loans made directly by Grinnell College will not be able to defer these loans during their period of service. However, fellows can take advantage of forbearance for a period of time after graduation, after which the college will reduce payments to interest plus a few dollars in principal. Prospective applicants are strongly encouraged to talk with Financial Aid, the Cashier's Office, or their lending agency for additional details based on their individual circumstances.
Orientation and Training
All Grinnell Corps fellows will be required to take part in a mandatory orientation and training program which will either take place between spring break and commencement, or in the days following commencement.