Student at internship site

Career Forward

Preparation for careers that matter.

Where can you go from the middle of Iowa? Anywhere. And Grinnellians prove it, time and time again. We know you’re looking ahead: the next semester, the next year, the next chapter of your life. That’s why every course and experience at Grinnell is designed to inspire what’s next for you, as you move toward a life and a career full of purpose and growth.

  • Collin Davis-Johnson ’15 interning at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science

    Center for Careers, Life, and Service

    Turning your interests into action.

    In your first semester, you’ll be paired with one of the 22 staff members from the Center for Careers, Life, and Service (CLS), who will serve as your career adviser at Grinnell. They’ll help you with résumés, cover letters, head shots, etiquette dinners, mock interviews, grad school applications, alumni connections, and more.

    Through specialized advising and connections to peers, recruiters, and alumni, you’ll dive into a specific industry and find opportunities as an undergraduate. Through experiential learning and a range of accessible services, you’ll feel more prepared for post-college life in your particular field. It’s part of the reason more than 95 percent of our recent graduates say they feel satisfied about their career so far.

  • Luc Moisan at his Grinnellink internship at the Eldridge Street Museum in Brooklyn, N.Y.

    Internships and Externships

    Gain a greater understanding of what’s out there.

    Use your summers for internships. The CLS will help you locate one that’s a good fit and, if it’s unpaid or doesn’t pay quite enough, you can apply for funding. In 2017, the CLS provided over $450,000 to help cover students’ housing, food, and transportation expenses. We want to make sure you never have to say no to a great opportunity in New York or Beijing because of finances.

    During spring break in your first or second year, you can choose to obtain a fully funded job-shadowing opportunity with a Grinnell alum. These “externships” let you get a taste of a career to see if it’s something you want to explore further. And you don’t even have to have declared a major yet.

  • child points at painting in gallery

    Graduate School Opportunities

    Go forth from Grinnell. And take your education further.

    Grinnell College has a rich tradition of preparing its students for graduate study in a wide range of disciplines and degree programs. Inquiry-based learning, individualized advising, and the rigorous curriculum provide students with an exceptional academic foundation on which to build in graduate or professional school. Among Grinnell alumni, 51 percent hold an advanced degree within 10 years of graduation.

Graduate Outcomes - All Majors Career Outcomes

First Destinations

  • 58% Employment
  • 26% Graduate School
  • 3% Post-Graduate Service
  • 3% Fellowships
  • 2% Continuing Education
  • 7% Other


Positions related to Career Goals


  • California Department of Fish & Wildlife
  • Chipper Cash
  • CLIMB Theatre
  • Deloitte
  • Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
  • HarperCollins
  • IBM
  • League of Conservation Voters
  • Los Alamos National Laboratory
  • Mayo Clinic
  • McLean Hospital
  • Microsoft
  • Teach for America
  • U.S. Department of Justice
  • Wisconsin Farmers Union

Graduate Schools

83% Accepted to 1st- or 2nd- choice programs


  • Carnegie Mellon University
  • Columbia University
  • Cornell University
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Harvard University
  • Northwestern University
  • Princeton University
  • Stanford University
  • Tufts University
  • University of California
  • University of Chicago
  • University of Pennsylvania

Related Links

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