Whether you’re entering the workforce right away, taking time to serve others in a volunteer position, or starting graduate school, you’ll be ready for it. Grinnell's Center for Careers, Life, and Service can help you prepare. You'll get help with identifying your strengths, exploring career options, finding internships and service opportunities, honing your applications and resumes, and more.

First jobs

Our recent graduates have found that a Grinnell education provides them with the necessary skills and abilities to land jobs directly related to their career goals.

These grads work for Fortune 500 companies, consulting agencies, investment banking firms, government organizations, technology industries, health care facilities, educational and other social service organizations, and museums.

  • Amazon.com (Seattle, WA)
  • Brigham and Women’s Hospital (Boston, MA)
  • British Embassy (Washington, DC)
  • Cerner Corporation (Kansas City, MO)
  • Chungdahm Learning (Seoul, South Korea)
  • Duke University (Durham, NC)
  • Epic Systems (Verona, WI)
  • Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center (Waterford, CT)
  • Facebook (Austin, TX)
  • Food Research and Action Center (Washington, DC)
  • Goldman Sachs (Salt Lake City, UT)
  • Graves Communications (Minneapolis, MN)
  • Hall Capital Partners (San Francisco, CA)
  • International Monetary Fund (Washington, DC)
  • Iowa Reading Corps (Oskaloosa, IA)
  • KMPG Management Consulting (Tokyo, Japan)
  • MasterCard (White Plains, NY)
  • Morningstar, Inc. (Chicago, IL)
  • National Institutes of Health (Bethesda, MD)
  • Northern Cascades Institute (Diablo, WA)
  • Ogilvy & Mather (New York, NY)
  • Peabody Museum (Cambridge, MA)
  • Royal Bank of Scotland (Stamford, CT)
  • Teach for America (various locations)
  • TIAA-CREF (Charlotte, NC)
  • Zynga (San Francisco, CA)

Graduate school

Many Grinnellians pursue graduate or professional school at some point. In fact, thanks to Grinnell’s inquiry-based learning, individualized advising, and rigorous curricula, Grinnell students are often mistaken for graduate students while still undergrads.

In the fall of 2013, nearly a quarter of the class of 2013 enrolled as full-time, degree-seeking students, and 84 percent of them were accepted to either their first- or second-choice institution and program. Here are a few of the schools and programs they chose:

  • Columbia University (MFA, Creative Writing)
  • University of California–Los Angeles (JD, Law)
  • Cornell University (MEng, Engineering)
  • University of Geneva (MA, International Affairs)
  • Emory University (MPH, Public Health)
  • University of Illinois (PhD, Chemistry)
  • Georgetown University (MS, Health Systems Admin.)
  • University of North Carolina (PhD, Sociology)
  • Harvard University (PhD, History)
  • University of Michigan (MS, Biostatistics)
  • Johns Hopkins University (MS, Microbiology)
  • University of Minnesota (MS, Operations Research)
  • Miami University (MA, Philosophy)
  • University of Texas (PhD, Spanish & Portuguese)
  • New York University (MS, Data Sciences)
  • University of Wisconsin (PhD, Cellular/Molecular Pathology)
  • University of California–Davis (DVM, Veterinary Medicine)
  • Washington University (MArch, Architecture)

Internships and Externships

More than half of all Grinnellians complete at least one full-time, eight- to 10-week domestic or international internship before graduating. These students hone top-notch professional skills, gain hands-on experience, and prepare for a successful transition from undergraduate to professional life.

Grinnell also operates a thriving job-shadow program. By shadowing Grinnell alumni at their workplaces, students build connections, explore their interests, and develop confidence in themselves and their future careers.

Recent Student Internships

Intern Host Professional Field Location
Amazon.com Computing/Information Systems Seattle, WA
American Civil Liberties Union Law New York, NY
Arden Theatre Company Arts–Performing/Creative Philadelphia, PA
Carter Center Social Services Atlanta, GA
Center for Constitutional Rights Law New York, NY
Chicago Public Schools Education/Teaching K–12 Chicago, IL
Chimp Haven Medicine/Health Keithville, LA
Denver Museum of Nature and Science Library/Museum Denver, CO
Educational Testing Service Research/Development Princeton, NJ
Encounter Foreign Services New York, NY
Environmental Law Institute Law Washington, DC
Eugene O’Neill Theater Center Arts–Performing/Creative Waterford, CT
Foreign Policy Magazine Publishing/Journalism Washington, DC
Goldman Sachs Brokerage/Securities/Investment New York, NY
Grinnell Regional Medical Center Medicine/Health Grinnell, IA
Indianapolis Zoo Medicine/Health Indianapolis, IN
Iowa Health System Computing/Information Systems Cedar Rapids, IA
Kaibab National Forest Life Sciences Williams, AZ
Koch Industries Finance Wichita, KS
Merrill Lynch Brokerage/Securities/Investment Chicago, IL
Microsoft Computing/Information Systems Redmond, WA

Student Quotes

Rob Storrick ’15
Internship: Indiana University Health (marketing department), Indianapolis

“I’ve been learning some very important lessons in brand management. Especially within the health care industry, how you present your ‘product’ (i.e., the care you deliver) is so important in running the business. Communicating our company’s comparative strengths within the industry has allowed me to see what it really takes to be a successful health care provider.”

Lea Greenberg ‘14
Internship: International Fellowship of Reconciliation (Austrian branch)

“Living and working in Vienna both with and without the safety net of my study-abroad program has allowed me to leave my comfort zone, improve my German-speaking abilities, learn to adapt more easily, and deal with ambiguity and uncertainty. I now approach day-to-day interactions with greater attention to language, behavior, and culturally specific practices; this observance and analytical approach will give me the intellectual flexibility to pursue a career in an ever-changing employment landscape.”

Experiential Learning

Grinnellians deepen their understanding their classroom learning while making a difference in their communities — 60% of students participate in service projects and events where they learn transferable professional skills.

Grinnell’s Service Learning and Civic Engagement Program collaborates with more than 80 different nonprofit, direct service community partners. Students come to appreciate the interdisciplinary nature of real-world problem solving.