Campus News

Samuel Huntington Public Service

Angela Frimpong ’20 received this year’s Samuel Huntington Public Service Award. The award provides a $15,000 stipend to graduating college seniors to pursue a meaningful public service activity. Frimpong will develop a youth entrepreneurship program in Gbulahagu, Ghana, that she named EntrepreYearn.

Donna Vinter retires after 40 years

Donna Vinter began teaching in the Grinnell-in-London program in 1980 and was crucial to helping shape the program since 1982, when she became the director. She made it a Grinnell away from Grinnell by fostering a richness of experiences and memories for the many students who attended during her 40 years of service.

Summer school offered to students

The spirit of community and desire to care for students prompted the quick development of summer classes during the COVID-19 pandemic. As travel restrictions went into effect in February 2020, Grinnell leaders recognized that more students than usual would need to remain on campus during the summer. It was the first time since 1947 that Grinnell offered summer courses. 

Stone Buddha sculpture gifted to College

Harold Kasimow, professor emeritus of religious studies, and his wife Lolya Lipchitz donated a 5-foot-6-inch tall Buddha sculpture to Grinnell. The unique stone Buddha was installed in the newly renovated Alumni Recitation Hall.

Stone Buddha sculpture

Fulbright U.S. Student Grants

Four Grinnell seniors — Valencia Alvarez ’20, Madeline Nelson ’20, Allie Pearce ’20, Kate Perry ’20 — and two alumni — Ben Binversie ’17 and Sophie Neems ’16 — received Fulbright U.S. Student Grants for research/study and teaching English in 2020–21. For more than 70 years, Fulbright grants have provided future American leaders with opportunities to study, conduct research, and teach abroad.

New chief diversity officer named

Schvalla Rivera was named Grinnell’s chief diversity officer and associate vice president of diversity and inclusion in July. As a member of Grinnell’s senior leadership team, Rivera will work closely with the president on institutional planning, developing short- and long-range strategies, policy development, and problem-solving.

Gateway public art project

A new “Grinnell Crossroads” art project welcomes people to the community by commemorating Grinnell’s history and celebrating its intersecting lives and histories. The piece, designed by artist Walter Hood, features ornate wooden structures that echo the walls of homes and a carriage house that originally stood on the site. The paths in the small park are reminiscent of the walkways on the College campus, where students have crossed paths for generations.

‘We hope that we can bring a little Grinnell to you.’

A student wearing her mortar board cap watched her virtual Commencement on campus at the empty stage.Grinnell’s class of 2020 was scattered around the globe for Commencement ceremonies, but faculty and staff stood on the familiar ground of Central Campus to address new graduates. “We hope that we can bring a little Grinnell to you,” College Chaplain Deanna Shorb said from Grinnell’s Commencement stage. The prerecorded remarks from speakers were delivered in an online event on May 18.

Against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, associate professor of sociology Sharon Quinsaat urged students to become “active agents of transformation,” using the crisis as a way to imagine and create a better world. And Anshul Tambay ’20 reminded his fellow graduates that “this big world needs our small-school love.”

To see the full remarks, including personal messages from graduates, visit Virtual Commencement 2020.

Care Package Project Connects Campus and Alumni Communities

Box with hand printed note that says So much goodness in this little box... just for you!Students flocked to the Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center in February to receive alumni care packages. The three-day event was part of a collaboration between the Everyday Class Notes (ECN) alumni Facebook group and the Student Alumni Council (SAC). The annual tradition began in 2014.

Under the guidance of the members of ECN, alumni from all over the world participated, sending goodies and special letters. On the distribution days, alumni joined SAC members at the distribution tables. In total, 1,304 packages were distributed.

To participate in the 2021 project, visit the ECN Care Package Project page on Facebook.

Editor's Note Summer 2020

As this issue’s content was being finalized, George Floyd was killed by a police officer, sparking protests across the country and around the world about racial injustice. To read about Grinnell’s response and plan of action, visit our Racial Justice Response.