Grinnell is a residential liberal arts college, which means that your learning doesn’t stop when you step out of the classroom. At Grinnell, learning and living are integrated and inseparable.

Grinnell’s campus is active. Students, as well as some staff and faculty, live, eat, study, and play within our campus and nearby community. Because we are not located in a metropolitan area, we bring the world to Grinnell. Each day brings nationally or globally renowned scholars, artists, and musicians to our community of life-long learners.

Independence, with Support

The vast majority of Grinnell students live in our residence halls. Living with people your own age, and negotiating all the positives and negatives of that, is a big part of the college experience. Where you live should be a healthy, relaxing place. A place where you can study, rest, and socialize. And a place where you can explore adulthood with the help of some mentors.

Your residential experience at Grinnell is much like the academic individually-advised curriculum. You have the freedom to explore your world, learn independence, think critically, and live and work collaboratively — with the support and guidance of mentors and advisers.

Self-gov is Love

One thing that makes the Grinnell residential life experience a bit different is something we call self-governance — self-gov for short.

Self-gov is the way students help each other manage the responsibilities of living together in a community. Everyone is accountable and responsible for each other, not just themselves. (See Self-Gov 101 for more info.)

Self-gov affects life at Grinnell in ways both big and small. From deciding which bands to bring to campus to having student representation on campus committees, students have a strong voice at Grinnell.

Student Well-Being

Going to college is exciting and sometimes stressful. Helping students address difficult issues such as substance use and abuse, Grinnell’s academic rigor, and mental health requires a complex web of services.

Grinnell’s  public health approach works at multiple levels at once — from individual to institutional. From the professional health and wellness services at the Student Health and Counseling Services (SHACS) and the Student Affairs Office to the student-driven organizations such as the Sexual Health Information Center and the Stonewall Resource Center and committees like the Harm Reduction Committee, our campus community works together to keep you at your best.

Unlimited Opportunities for Leadership Development

Students at Grinnell have a huge range of options when it comes to student organizations. And if they don’t see what they want, they can start one with the support of funding from the Student Government Association, which manages the student activity fees (that’s part of self-gov, too).

As a result, students have many opportunities to become leaders. Grinnell is working to increase mentoring of student leaders and helping them develop their leadership skills.