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Alumni Oral Histories

The Alumni Oral History Project aims to better understand and share the history of Grinnell College by recording and preserving oral histories with members of the Grinnell College alumni community. This collection of oral histories was recorded between 2009 and the present as part of the annual alumni Reunion weekend event.

Alumni oral history interview with Kalilah Moxley '02. Recorded June 2, 2012.
I wanted to go to a small town to a small school where you can get individualized attention. And I came here and it was middle of nowhere, so it was complete opposite of what I was used to and I wanted to get far away from home to experience something different. I figured, “Oh, 1,000 miles, that’ll work.”

Alumni oral history interview with Margo Gray '05, Jenny Noyce '05, and Maggie Montanaro '05. Recorded 3-June-2011.
So many people- I live in Chicago right now which is a huge concentration of Grinnellians, and other people who I know, they’re all like, “Oh are you guys talking about plans again?” Or, they’ll say things like, “Ugh, another Grinnellian who's helping you with something? Ah! Why are there so many of you?” It's like, there aren’t so many of us. We just find each other and are willing to help each other. Like, if you call up a Grinnellian you’re like, “Oh by the way, do you know anything about this?” and they’re always willing...

Alumni oral history interview with Rebecca Mauldin '05. Recorded June 5, 2011.
The sense of community in Grinnell College is really amazing. Being back here is just, it floods you with memories, like wonderful memories. I think that’s so essential to a college experience, that you come back and you are overwhelmed by this sort of sense of love. That’s cool, but that’s hard to write down, y’know? That’s not- that’s a feeling.

Alumni oral history interview with John Bowers '06 and Leighton Bowers '04. Recorded June 4, 2011.
It’s the way that the community is structured and the smallness of it, which is something I keep coming back to as part of.. is one of Grinnell’s great virtues. It enables these kind of events to just pervade every aspect and you have that ability to kind of have something that impacts everybody even though it’s all very local.

Alumni oral history interview with Carly Schuna ‘06. Recorded June 3, 2011.
I decided that I wanted to come here because it just- I loved the way that the school felt. I loved the vibe. I felt really comfortable here. I've always been sort of a weird person and I felt like there were a lot of weird people here, and that was a very good thing for me, personally.

Alumni oral history interview with Benjamin Cantor-Stone '07. Recorded June 3, 2011.
If you want to really get to know your professor, do field research with them for six weeks. Share a bathroom with them, and twelve, thirteen other people. That’s how you get to know your professors.


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