Campus News

Grinnell Celebrates 2021 Graduates

Kesho Scott, associate professor of American studies and sociology, drew upon the symbolism in Frank Baum's classic "The Wizard of Oz," during her inspiring Commencement address on May 28. Scott told graduates, “I think all of you need a pair of these slippers,” to help them remember to own their education, and discover what they can do in this life. Watch the ceremony online.

2021 Tenured and Emeriti Faculty

Promoted with Tenure

Promoted to Associate Professor, with Tenure

  • Barry Driscoll, political science
  • Logan M. Lee, economics
  • Nick D. Phillips, Spanish

Promoted from Associate Professor to Associate Professor with Tenure

Hâle Utar, Sidney Meyer Chair in International Economics

2021 Emeriti Faculty

Grinnell honored seven faculty members retiring in 2021 for their years of service and bestowed on them the title of emeritus or emerita faculty:

David ArseneaultDavid M. Arseneault, associate professor of physical education, for bringing an innovative and successful approach to both men’s and women’s sports at Grinnell.

George BarlowGeorge Barlow, associate professor of English, for highlighting the very best of the arts and humanities in Iowa and giving students the tools and confidence to create their very best work. Jean Ketter, professor of education, for her work to develop smart, engaged teachers who were energized and equipped to make a meaningful difference in the education system from within it.

Janet GibsonJanet Gibson, professor of psychology, for finding creative and ambitious ways to pursue her research and for embodying the best of what it means to be a professor at Grinnell.

John StoneJohn Stone, senior lecturer in computer science, for his commitment to teaching and for modeling the strengths of a liberal education.

Henry WalkerHenry Walker, Samuel R. and Marie-Louise Rosenthal professor of natural science and mathematics and professor of computer science, for being a fierce champion for his students and for his extensive contributions to the fields of mathematics and computer science education nationally and internationally.

Greg WallaceGreg Wallace, associate professor of physical education, for his decades of dedicated coaching and for his efforts to make athletics and recreation an open and welcoming activity for students and community members alike.

Brock Weirather ’21 Pitches a Perfect Game

On Sunday, April 25, in the opening game against Knox College, Brock Weirather ’21 pitched a perfect game. The senior fired just the second perfect game in Grinnell baseball history while guiding the Pioneers to a 13-0, seven-inning victory. Grinnell’s only other perfect game was by Jake Chavez ’01 in 1999; Sam Tinkham ’16 tossed a no-hitter in 2016.

2020 Grinnell Prize Winner

Alexander McLean, founder and director general of Justice Defenders, was selected to receive the 2020 Grinnell College Innovator for Social Justice Prize. McLean and Justice Defenders provide legal assistance, training, and education to incarcerated people and select prison staff in four African countries. Justice Defenders has reached 50,000 prisoners through legal awareness sessions in the past 11 years and opened Uganda’s first prison-based legal aid clinic to provide free legal advice and assistance.

Loans Eliminated from Need-based Financial Aid Packages

In response to the financial hardship that many families are experiencing because of the pandemic, Grinnell will eliminate student loans in financial aid packages and replace them with scholarships. This no-loan initiative endorsed by the Board of Trustees will be effective in fall 2021 for all new and continuing students eligible for need-based financial aid and is intended to lower the debt burden on students. This initiative builds on Grinnell’s commitment to preserving academic continuity and equal access to education during this time. For more information, see “Less Debt, More Opportunity.”

2020 Community Enhancement through Architecture and Design Award

 Grinnell College received a 2020 Community Enhancement through Architecture and Design Award from the Iowa Architectural Foundation (IAF). IAF noted that Grinnell was selected for the honor in recognition of more than 50 years of outstanding and sustained institutional contributions, vision, and leadership in architecture and planning.

Chemistry Major Wins Competitive Fellowship

Madison Wardlaw ’20 won a highly competitive Woodrow Wilson Pennsylvania Teaching Fellowship for 2020–21. Each fellow receives a $32,000 stipend for the year while enrolling in a master’s degree program. Wardlaw is working in a Philadelphia school district teaching a chemistry class for English language learners.

2020 SPARK Social Innovation Challenge

Sharene Gould Dulabaum ’22 is the winner of the College’s 2020 SPARK Challenge. Gould Dulabaum proposed a new system of centralized waste bins that would standardize and streamline the process of sorting waste, potentially saving the College thousands of dollars. The Wilson Center’s SPARK Social Innovation Challenge encourages students to closely examine the issues affecting their own communities and enables them to make tangible change by working with community partners.

2020 Wall Service Award Recipients

Kaitlin Alsofrom ’10 (left) and Mariam Asaad ’14 (right) received Grinnell’s 2020 Joseph F. Wall ’41 Alumni Service Awards. Each will use the $35,000 award to further projects that improve the effectiveness of teaching and learning in South African and Pakistani schools, respectively. Since 1996 the Wall Service Award has been presented to 56 individuals who have contributed their time and talents to 50 diverse projects throughout the United States and in eight other countries.

Students on Campus

Class of 2024 students were given the opportunity to live on campus during the first spring term that began Feb. 1. Instruction continued to be delivered primarily online with limited in-person learning experiences. Online events and programming helped maintain physical distancing for everyone and provided a common experience for students unable to return to campus. Conor Martin ’24 (with suitcase), from Berkeley, Calif., got a wintry introduction to Iowa on move-in day