Remy Ferber’s love affair with Grinnell College began at night.
The beautiful, modern buildings mixed with distinguished, historic ones impressed her as she toured the campus with her father.
“I kind of fell in love with the school then and there,” says Ferber ‘14, a fourth-year art history and political science major. “It was a small school that would challenge me, and it was an opportunity to explore a new part of the country with a diverse group of people.”
That moment put Ferber on the path to join an esteemed group known as Grinnellians.
Excellence, service, leadership
The 21-year-old from Concord, Mass., says her four years here have taught her that Grinnellians are committed to excellence, service, and leadership.
“What I love about Grinnellians — students, faculty and staff — is we’re constantly setting the bar higher,” she says. “Not to make a statement about what we can achieve, but in legitimately trying to make a difference.”
Challenging and transformative opportunities abound at Grinnell — inside and outside of the classroom.
Like so many other Grinnell students, Ferber devised her own research plans to guide major projects.
Jenny Anger, associate professor of art and art history, described Ferber’s research at Grinnell and abroad as “meticulously detailed and thoughtful.”
“Remy’s consummate professionalism surpasses that of many who have already collected many more credentials than she,” says Anger.
As graduation approaches, Ferber is excited about a project that will culminate four years of interdisciplinary research, Art as an Agent of Diplomacy: The Anglo-American Example, her Mentored Advanced Project (MAP). The paper explores the use of the visual arts as propaganda in American cultural diplomacy since the Cold War, and mentions potential reforms based on the success of the British Council.
“This is what a Grinnell education is all about — providing the means for you to jump in and be able to manage independent research,” she says.
Recently, Ferber and Jennelle Nystrom ’14, a fourth-year computer science and art history major, co-founded the Grinnell+ Leadership Program. The organization brings together student leaders, online and on-campus to discuss leadership issues. Alums can join the online forum.
Ferber, who laughingly refers to German Expressionist painters as “friends” of hers, has leveraged her art knowledge and leadership skills on a variety of high-profile summer internships at the Museum of Modern Art, Harvard Art Museums, and Christie’s. Internships, externships, off-campus study and course-embedded travel very much make the world Grinnell’s “campus.”
Intense New Englander
With a self-described “New England intensity,” Ferber has relished serving on a staggering number of groups and committees, including her role as the Student Government Association’s vice president of academic affairs.
The position enables her to work with College leaders to consider Grinnell’s future in ways she otherwise might not have.
Even with graduation looming, Ferber is certain her attachment to Grinnell won’t end.
“I love Grinnell, and I’m dedicated to this school,” she says. “Students have access to a customized education here in a way that is very unique to this particular institution.”
Remy Ferber ’14 is an art history and political science major from Concord, Mass.