Grinnell College Celebrates the Class of 2024

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Recognizing Contributions and Celebrating Achievements

Published:

May 20, 2024

Student walking across the stage at 2024 graduation
Photo by Justin Hayworth, Grinnell College.

The Commencement Ceremony for the class of 2024 took place at 10:30 a.m. on May 20, 2024, on the College’s central campus. The ceremony marked the culmination of hard work, dedication, and academic achievement by the graduates. 332 accomplished graduates marked the class of 2024’s milestone.

The cohort boasted a global perspective, with international students from China, India, Japan, Vietnam, Brazil, Greece, and more, while domestic students brought representation from 49 states, with Illinois, Iowa, California, Minnesota, and New York being the top states students hailed from. Prominent majors within the class included computer science, economics, biology, psychology, and political science. An impressive 35% of graduates had pursued double majors. Among their varied academic pursuits, common concentrations included statistics, neuroscience, and environmental studies.

President’s Medal Award

Feven Adane Getachew ’24 hugging President Anne F. Harris after being awarded the 2024 Grinnell College President's Medal.
Feven Adane Getachew ’24 hugging President Anne F. Harris after receiving the 2024 President’s Medal. Photo by Justin Hayworth, Grinnell College.

Feven Adane Getachew ’24 has been awarded the 2024 Grinnell College President’s Medal. This award is presented each year during the commencement ceremony to an individual who best embodies the mission and values of a Grinnell education. Getachew has consistently demonstrated distinguished and engaged learning throughout their time as a Grinnell student, making significant contributions to the academic community.

The selection of Getachew as the 2024 President’s Medalist was made by the College President Anne F. Harris, based on the recommendation of a committee composed of esteemed faculty and staff members. This recognition is a testament to his outstanding contributions and their embodiment of the values and principles cherished by Grinnell.

The Archibald Prize for Highest Scholarship

Parris King-Levine ’24
Parris King-Levine ’24 with President Anne F. Harris. Photo by Justin Hayworth, Grinnell College.

The Archibald Prize is given annually to the senior who has achieved the highest grade-point average during four years of study. It is accompanied by a cash prize. The award was made possible in 1928 from a $1,000 bequest from the Rev. Andrew Archibald, who died in 1926.

The award commemorates 15 years of work by the Rev. and Mrs. Archibald for the Congregational Church in Iowa. Archibald was a Grinnell College trustee from 1890 through 1899. The 2024 recipients are:

  • Isidora Bailly-Hall ’24
  • Parris King-Levine ’24
  • Meredith Neid ’24

Speaker Peter Sagal

NPR Host Peter Sagal delivered the 2024 Commencement Address. With a career spanning over two decades in radio, television, and writing, Sagal was renowned for his witty commentary on current events, politics, and the American experience. His ability to seamlessly blend humor with insightful analysis had captivated audiences nationwide. Read more about this year’s speaker.

2024 Commencement Speaker Peter Sagal.
2024 Commencement Speaker Peter Sagal address the crowd. Photo by Justin Hayworth, Grinnell College.

Honorary Degree Recipients

Grinnell College recognized four exceptional individuals who have made significant contributions to their fields of expertise. During the ceremony, the College bestowed honorary degrees upon distinguished scholars in law, science, and humanities. These celebrated recipients are Stuart Allan Yeager ’82, Alvin Irby ’07, Shane Rasmussen, and Peter Sagal. Their remarkable achievements and profound impact serve as inspirations to us all. Read more about the honorary degree recipients.

2024 recipients Honorary Degree recipients Alvin Irby ’07, Stuart Allan Yeager ’82, Shane Rasmussen, and Peter Sagal. Photo by Justin Hayworth, Grinnell College.
2024 recipients Honorary Degree recipients Alvin Irby ’07, Stuart Allan Yeager ’82, Shane Rasmussen, and Peter Sagal. Photo by Justin Hayworth, Grinnell College.

2024 Emeriti Faculty

  • Eugene Gaub, Professor of Music
  • Susan Ireland, Professor of French
  • Ellen Mease, Associate Professor of Theatre
  • Katya Gibel Mevorach, Professor of Anthropology
  • Mark Montgomery, Professor of Economics

2024 Senior Faculty Status

Ralph Savarese, Professor of English

Congratulations, class of 2024! Follow this link to the Livestream page to view a full recording of the 2024 Commencement ceremony.

Aerial view of green lawn and trees surrounding the commencement area. graduates process in with some already seated. Audience is arrayed to the sides and back of the area
Drone photo of 2024 Commencement Ceremony. Photo by Justin Hayworth, Grinnell College.