Scholars' Convocation

For nearly four decades, the Scholars’ Convocation series has created a common educational experience shared by the entire Grinnell College community. Established in the late 1970s in response to the College’s move to an open curriculum, the accessible interdisciplinary nature of convocation offers an intellectual encounter that transcends disciplinary boundaries.

Scholars’ Convocations are arranged by a faculty committee. If you are planning or are interested in planning a Scholars’ Convocation, please see Scholars’ Convocation Proposals.

All Scholars’ Convocations are held at 11 a.m. on Thursdays throughout the academic year in the Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center, Room 101, unless otherwise noted.

Scholars’ Convocation 2018–19


Sept. 27: Kathryn Lofton
Gates Lecturer

Title of Talk: “The Present Life of Blasphemy: Kanye West in American Popular Culture”

Credentials: Professor of Religious Studies, History, and Divinity at Yale University


Oct. 11: Kathy Cramer

 Title of Talk: To be determined

Credentials: Director of the Morgridge Center for Public Service and a Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison


Nov. 8: LaDonna Redmond

 Title of Talk: To be determined

Credentials: Founder and Executive Director of the Campaign for Food Justice Now

Nov. 15: Alexander Payne

 Title of Talk: To be determined

Credentials: Film Director, Screenwriter, and Producer known for the films Nebraska, About Schmidt, Sideways, The Descendants, as well as Downsizing


Feb. 14: John Hassard

 Title of Talk: “Envisioning the Post-Hydrocarbon World”

Credentials: Founding associate director of the Institute for Security, Science and Technology at Imperial College London

Feb. 21: Kristina Koch ’92
Rosenfield Program – Spring 2019 Symposium “Coming to the Rescue: Humanitarian Aid in Time of Crisis”

Title of Talk: To be determined

Credentials: Grinnell Alumna, Chief of Recruitment Section in the UN Department of Field Support    


March 14: Ken Alder

 Title of Talk: To be determined

Credentials: Milton H. Wilson Professor in the Humanities at Northwestern University


April 4: Dr. Emeran Mayer

Title of Talk: To be determined

Credentials: Professor in the Departments of Medicine, Physiology and Psychiatry at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. Executive Director of the G. Oppenheimer Center for Neurobiology of Stress and Resilience and Co-director of the CURE: Diseases Research Center at UCLA.

April 25: Speaker To be determined

PBK Lecture

 Title of Talk: To be determined

Credentials: To be determined