Why the Liberal Arts?

With Grinnell’s individually advised curriculum, we don’t expect students to stick with one specialty for four years. Instead, they develop the flexibility and adaptability that enable and inspire the big thinkers and global leaders of tomorrow. Grinnellians take responsibility for their education; they take responsibility for their work.

Grinnellians make original connections and develop fresh ideas. They solve problems. They thrive in teams yet excel at independent, self-driven projects.

Grinnellians learn how to learn. Within their major, students develop depth, and from their other course choices they develop breadth. No matter what students study, they develop the hallmark skills of a liberal arts education — critical thinking and well-reasoned writing and speaking — that help them succeed in any field they care to pursue and enjoy productive, meaningful lives.

After spending four years at one of the most international and multicultural liberal arts schools in the nation, Grinnellians understand and contribute to diversity. They graduate equipped to adapt quickly to new organizations and new environments.

Nearly a quarter of our students elect two majors; and a foreign language — Spanish, Chinese, French, German, or Russian — is one of the two majors for nearly half of these graduates. At Grinnell, students also study such languages as Arabic, Czech, Hindi, Hungarian, Italian, Korean, Portuguese, and Swahili, poising them to provide their future employers with a wide variety of linguistic talents.

Every day, Grinnellians make waves in business, science, medicine, law, education, public service, the arts, and more.