Magazine Homepage Slideshow

In this issue: Spring 2018

Gina Clayton founded Essie Justice Group
Campus News

“Baby, She Had Sisters”

In 2014 Gina Clayton founded Essie Justice Group, and in 2017 she was awarded the $100,000 Grinnell College Innovator for Social Justice Prize. The Essie Justice Group creates “communities of belonging” through a nine-week “Healing to Advocacy” model to fight for an end to mass incarceration.

Jack Taylor profile

From Hoops to God

As leader and two-time captain of the Grinnell men’s basketball team, Jack Taylor Jr. ’15 focused on winning games. These days, he’s focused on building his own church in order to win souls.

Student Athletes Leading Social Change (SALSC)

Reaching Out

Daria Guzzo ’19 plays center for the Grinnell women’s basketball team. She is among the one-third of Grinnell’s student body that participates in varsity athletics. For service-oriented students like her, it can be a challenge to fit volunteerism into a jam-packed schedule that includes intercollegiate competition and weekend travel. 

Jo Schaalman ’99 headshot

Food as Medicine

Persistence has always defined Jo Schaalman’s character, but never more so than after an accident left her with chronic pain that doctors said she’d suffer the rest of her life.

At Grinnell, Schaalman ’99 majored in biology, with a career as a doctor before her on a tidy path. Or so she thought. While leading a bike trip in 2004, Schaalman was hit by a truck going 70 miles per hour, breaking her back in seven different places.

Gray Cat in a suit

Trial by Fire

I slid into a booth in a swanky joint I frequented little, if ever, in a part of town I saw only at night, if then. It was high noon. I was meeting up with an alum we’ll call “Joe.” He had a story to tell. I’d been there half a second when a pair of sharp eyes appeared opposite me. 

I looked him over. Well-groomed. Not too young, not too old. I’m paid to notice details. 

“Just the facts,” I said. “How’d it happen?” 

Data Science

Developing Expertise in Data Science

Imagine the vast quantity of data an online retailer such as Amazon collects from shoppers in a day. Or the amount of data the New York City Police Department collects on “stop and frisks” in a year.

Analyzing and interpreting such huge, quickly changing data sets is the province of the interdisciplinary field of data science.

Amanda Hodo ’14 with an aquarium of sea horses

Matchmaker for Seahorses

Experiences at Grinnell helped Amanda Hodo ’14 fulfill her dream of being a marine biologist at an aquarium.

Richard Tillotson ’66 headshot
Back Talk

On the Citrus

Richard Tillotson ’66 lives in Honolulu, where he worked for many years in advertising and now focuses on his own creative writing; his most recent novel is What You Will On Capitol Hill.

The summer of 1965 was one of those times when the powers that be decided too many immigrants were coming across the border and taking American jobs, so they closed it. They didn’t consider who was going to pick the fruit ripening in California’s citrus groves.

Lizeth Gutierrez ’12 Mellon Mays winner
Campus News

Lizeth Gutierrez ’12: First Mellon Mays Fellow to Earn Ph.D.

Lizeth Gutierrez ’12 is the first Grinnell College Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship (MMUF) fellow to complete her Ph.D., graduating with a doctorate in American Studies from Washington State University in 2017. Grinnell developed its MMUF program in 2009, and Gutierrez was accepted into its second cohort in 2010.

Robert Barron
Campus News

Empowering Latinos to Serve in Elected Office in Iowa

Robert X. Barron ’02, who co-founded the Latino Political Network (LPN), recently received the College’s Joseph F. Wall ’41 Alumni Service Award. Barron plans to use the $30,000 award to hire a full-time staff member for LPN. 

La Traversee
Campus News

Global Cosmologies of Vodou

Jan. 26–March 18, 2018

Tara Shukla, Skull, 2016, charcoal on paper, 30 x 22 inches. Courtesy of the artist.
Campus News

Making Life Visible: Art, Biology, and Visualization

Feb. 2–June 10, 2018


Fall Alumni Council group photo
Alumni Council News

Maximizing Connections

As an Iowan who left the state forever after graduating from Grinnell, I’m delighted that my membership on the Alumni Council brings me back more frequently. The most indelible impression that I carried home to Vermont this time is of the vital role played by the Alumni Council in building relationships among all facets of the alumni community.

Strategy Session

Q&A with the Fossil Fuels and Climate Impact Task Force

In the spring of 2017, Patricia Jipp Finkelman ’80, chair of the Grinnell College Board of Trustees, appointed a Fossil Fuels and Climate Impact Task Force to explore related issues including possible fossil fuel divestment in an unbiased, intellectually rigorous, transparent, and inclusive manner.

Michael ’74 and Virginia Munger Kahn ’76
Campus News

Alumni Couple Gives $1.158 Million to Grinnell College

Alumni Michael ’74 and Virginia Munger Kahn ’76 have established an endowed fund for career advancement with gifts totaling $1.158 million.