Campus Housing

Location
Grinnell, IA
Undergrads
1,615
Tuition
$41,004
Admission Difficulty
Hard
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Reviews

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4 College Freshman

Campus Housing: The housing is very nice on campus. There are many choices for where you would want to live (i.e. substance free dorms or non-substance free). There are some dorms that have computer labs, printers, laundry rooms, and air conditioning. Overall the dorms are very nice to live in.

3 College Freshman

Campus Housing: It's college housing it's not meant to be the Ritz.

3 College Freshman

Campus Housing: Most of the dorms are pretty old with lots of stairs, but they have nice, bigs rooms. The campus is really small, so nothing is really too far away. However, the East campus dorms can be a pretty long walk to the library and academic buildings.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: Most dorms are co-ed. You can request single-sex floors or sub-free dorms.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: Not as Bad as You'd Think! East Campus, comprised of the four newest dorms on campus, has air conditioning, elevators, big bathrooms, basically great amenities. Get in if you can! There is somewhat less close-knit community on East, but it's not as bad as the widely-perpetuated stigma suggests. Some floors are really close, some aren't. C'est la vie. South Campus is known as the hippie, druggie dorms. Needless to say, it frequently smells like week and is very loud on weekends. But, it's also super close to all academic buildings and the library, and there's a student-run coffee shop in the basement of Main Hall. North Campus is pretty isolated; north people tend to interact mainly with other north people, from what I see. There are a lot of athletes in North and it's where most of the alcohol-centric parties take place on the weekends. It's close to the Bear gym and Harris center, it has a huge field right in front of it where a lot of early fall and late spring events happen, and some dorms like Younker and Smith are very close to the academic buildings and JRC. There is also college-owned housing in houses surrounding the campus, based on themes that rotate each year as well as languages. Freshmen can't live in them however.

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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 72nd
    Shortest Walk to Class
  • 81st
    Best Dorm Atmosphere
  • 269th
    Cleanest Dorms
  • 534th
    Most Spacious Dorms

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Akshay Bajaj
Hometown
Mumbai, India
Major
Economics
View all previous student authors

Grinnell uses a room draw system in which your chances of getting the room you want are based on an ingenious mix of seniority and luck. Every spring, each student is assigned a number. Each class lines up outside of the concert hall in Harris to pick rooms. The juniors with the lowest numbers pick first, then the highest juniors, then the lowest sophomores, all the way down to the highest numbers of the freshman class. If you selected a roommate, the lowest number is used. Lately, given the huge intake of freshmen, campus housing has been under the highest demand. 

Since incoming freshmen are not around to pick a room or dorm, the College selects their rooms for them. While some first-years end up randomly scattered across campus, a good majority ends up in Norris or Cleveland—the far north or south. To be frank, Norris closely resembles a prison camp and is at the very northern tip of campus where students have to take a commercial jet in order to get anywhere on campus. However, Norris is a great place for first-years to end up since there is nothing that can cement friendships faster than shoving 60 nervous and bewildered 18-year-olds into the same building. Overall, the housing facilities are not great. South Campus used to be the women's quarters back in the '50s, while North Campus was the men's. East Campus has fabulous facilities, though. Each dorm on East Campus has its own computer lab, laundry room, air conditioning, and an elevator. In comparison to the high-quality East housing, South Campus and North Campus are fairly unimpressive. However, North Campus and South Campus both offer students an array of rooms.

Facts & Statistics

On-Campus Housing Available?
Yes
Campus Housing Capacity
1,340
Average Housing Costs
$4,504
Types of Housing Offered
  • Coed dorms
  • Cooperative housing
  • Special housing for disabled students
  • Theme housing
  • Wellness housing
Freshmen Required to Live on Campus?
Yes
Undergrads Living On Campus
88%
Freshmen Living On Campus
100%
Number of Dormitories
19
Number of Campus-Owned Apartments
0
Best Freshman Dorms
Main Hall
Best Upperclassman Dorms
Loose Hall
Worst Freshman Dorms
Norris Hall
Worst Upperclassman Dorms
Norris Hall
What You Get
  • Bed
  • Bookshelf
  • Desk and chair
  • Dresser
  • Ethernet connection
  • Window coverings
Also Available
  • Chinese House (1227 Park St.)
  • French House (1019 Park St.)
  • German House (1221 Park St.)
  • Russian House (1217 Park St.)
  • Spanish House (1316 Park St.)
  • Special-interest housing
  • Two other houses rotate themes each year.
Available for Rent
Minifridges, lofts
Did You Know?
  • The campus dormitories are modeled after the residential colleges of Oxford and Cambridge.
  • In doubles, it's usually possible to bunk the beds.
  • The loggias connect all of South Campus. A loggia is a roofed outdoor walkway attached to the side of a building, also described as an "outdoor hallway."
  • North and South Campuses are connected by a series of underground maintenance tunnels that students aren't permitted to use.

DormitoriesWhat's This?

Clark Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles, triples
Special Features: Community kitchen, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in North Campus
Cleveland Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles
Special Features: Community kitchen, computer lab, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in South Campus
Cowles Hall
Floors: 2
Number of Occupants: 20-49
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles, quads
Special Features: Community kitchen, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located right above Cowles dining hall; located in North Campus
Dibble Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 20-49
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles, triples
Special Features: Community kitchen, laundry facilities, TV lounges, wireless Internet; active social dorm, located in North Campus
Gates Hall
Floors: 5
Number of Occupants: 20-49
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles, triples
Special Features: Community kitchen, TV lounges, wireless Internet; considered an icon of Grinnell, located in North Campus
Haines Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles, triples, quads
Special Features: Community kitchen, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in South Campus
James Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles
Special Features: Community kitchen, TV lounges, wireless Internet; substance-free, located in South Campus
Kershaw Hall
Floors: 3
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles
Special Features: Air conditioning, community kitchen, elevators, TV lounges, wireless Internet; substance-free, located in East Campus
Langan Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles, triples
Special Features: Community kitchen, piano, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in North Campus
Lazier Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles
Special Features: Air conditioning, community kitchen, elevator, laundry facilities, piano, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in East Campus
Loose Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles
Special Features: Community kitchen, computer lab, laundry facilities, piano, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in South Campus
Main Hall
Floors: 3
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles
Special Features: Bob's Underground, community kitchen, elevator, Gardner Lounge, laundry facilities, piano, TV lounges, wireless Internet; Quad Dining Hall, located in South Campus
Norris Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles
Special Features: Air conditioning, community kitchen, computer lab, piano, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in North Campus
Rathje Hall
Floors: 3
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles
Special Features: Community kitchen, computer lab, laundry facilities, recycling, storage, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in East Campus
Rawson Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 20-49
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles, triples
Special Features: Community kitchen, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in North Campus
Read Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles, triples, quads
Special Features: Community kitchen, computer lab, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in South Campus
Rose Hall
Floors: 3
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles
Special Features: Air conditioning, community kitchen, elevator, laundry facilities, TV lounges, wireless Internet; located in East Campus
Smith Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 50-99
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles, triples
Special Features: Community kitchen, TV lounges, wireless Internet; substance-free, located in North Campus
Younker Hall
Floors: 4
Number of Occupants: 100-249
Bathrooms: Communal
Coed: Yes
Residents: Freshmen and upperclassmen
Room Types: Singles, doubles
Special Features: Computer lab, kitchens, laundry, lounges, piano, wireless Internet; located in North Campus

Student Polls

Rate campus housing on the following subjects    Based on 19 responses

Very poor
Excellent
  • Age of buildings
  • Amenities/perks
  • Cleanliness
  • Ease of housing process/lottery system
  • Proximity to classes
  • Resident community
  • Social atmosphere
  • Spaciousness
  • Strictness
  • Value
4
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