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News Release Archive

March 23, 2017 - 9:08am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The UNI Presidential Scholars are hosting the Panthers for Pages book drive through Monday, April 3. The goal of the drive is to collect books and funds to purchase books for the Waterloo Community School District through a partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters in Waterloo.

Drop-off locations for the book drive include:

  • Nazareth Lutheran Church, Cedar Falls
  • Farmer’s State Bank, West 1st St. & Hudson Rd., Cedar Falls
  • Lincoln Savings Bank, Viking Rd., Cedar Falls
  • Lincoln Savings Bank, Washington St., Cedar Falls
  • Cedar Heights Presbyterian, Rainbow Dr., Cedar Falls
  • Westminster Presbyterian Church, Kimball Ave., Waterloo
  • Waterloo Public Library, Commercial St., Waterloo
  • Rotary Club of Waterloo, Commercial St., Waterloo
  • KPTY 107.3 The Party, Jefferson St., Waterloo
  • Waverly Public Library, West Bremer Ave., Waverly

Students in the district will be able to take donated books home and keep them in addition to reading the books at school. The group is also accepting monetary donations at drop-off sites as well as online at tinyurl.com/Panthersforpages. The group is specifically looking for books directed at the fourth grade reading level and up, but titles for children of all ages are accepted.

For more information, contact Madeline Sullivan at sullimag@uni.edu.

March 22, 2017 - 9:29am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – “The Voiceless,” a documentary that features the stories of five male survivors of sexual violence, will be screened at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, April 5, at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center on the University of Northern Iowa campus.

Vanessa McNeal, a graduate student in the UNI Department of Social Work, produced the film. The documentary explores taboos, stereotypes, intersectionality and the impact of sexual violence on male survivors. A panel discussion with McNeal and subjects from the film will follow the screening.

“The Voiceless” was co-produced by PLVTO Productions and was funded by the Iowa Board of Regents, Office of the Provost, Center for Violence Prevention, and Heart and Solutions, with support from UNI Student Wellness Services, Riverview Center and Sigma Phi Epsilon.

For more information, contact McNeal at mcnealv@uni.edu.

March 22, 2017 - 9:35am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Department of Technology will host Kia Spande as part of the Alumni In Residence program from 10 a.m. to noon, Friday, March 24, in Room 3 of the Innovative Teaching and Technology Center on the UNI campus.

Spande is a UNI manufacturing technology alumnus who has worked with General Motors for the past 25 years and currently serves as the plant manager for the Corvette facility. He will discuss his UNI experience, how it benefitted him throughout his career and the manufacturing processes used to produce the 2017 Z06 Corvette. Weather permitting, he may drive a 2017 Z06 Corvette to UNI and discuss its performance capabilities.

For more information, contact Sarah Pauls, marketing manager for the College of Humanities, Arts and Sciences, at 319-273-2817 or sarah.pauls@uni.edu.

March 21, 2017 - 9:53am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The Upsilon Nu Iota chapter of Chi Sigma Iowa (CSI) international counseling honor society will hold its third annual Out of the Darkness Suicide Prevention Walk from 1 to 4 p.m., Saturday, April 1. The event will start and finish at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center on the UNI campus.

The monetary donations collected for this event help the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention allocate money toward educational programs, advocacy for public policy, research and support, and provide resources for individuals affected by suicide.

Registration will begin at 1 p.m., speakers will begin at 2 p.m. and the 3-mile walk will begin at 3 p.m. You can register as an individual walker, virtual walker or as a team at tinyurl.com/uniwalk17.

For more information about the Out of the Darkness Suicide Prevention Walk, contact Aubrey Davis at 563-422-7437 or outofthedarknessUNI@gmail.com.

March 21, 2017 - 10:56am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Graduate College will host its 10th annual Graduate Student Symposium on Tuesday, April 4. The symposium provides graduate students the opportunity to showcase innovative and diverse research and creative performances. Eighty-one graduate students and 35 graduate faculty judges are participating in this year's event.

2017 Graduate Student Symposium schedule:

- 9 a.m., Welcome from President Mark Nook, Maucker Union Ballroom

- 9:15 a.m., Alumni Panel, Maucker Union Ballroom; the focus of the panel is "UNI Graduate Education for the Greater Public Good"

- 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Poster Presentations, Maucker Union Ballroom; open for public viewing from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.; judging is from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

- Noon to 2:30 p.m., Creative Performances, Great Reading Room, Seerley Hall

- 1 to 4:30 p.m., Oral Presentations, Maucker Union Meeting Rooms

First place awards of up to $300 will be presented to students in each category. The awards will be presented at the annual graduate faculty meeting at 3 p.m., Thursday, April 27, in the Great Reading Room, Seerley Hall.

All events are free and open to the public. For more information, visit grad.uni.edu/graduate-student-symposium.

March 21, 2017 - 12:21pm

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – TheatreUNI will present “Into the Woods” at 7 p.m., Friday, April 21, and 2 p.m., Saturday, April 22 and Sunday, April 23, at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center on the University of Northern Iowa campus.

“Into the Woods,” with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and book by James Lapine, is the fourth offering of TheatreUNI’s 2016-17 season. Jay Edelnant, professor of theatre, directed the production. Casting was completed in December 2016 and cast members are as follows:

  • Noah Hynick (Narrator)
  • Calli McCartan (Cinderella)
  • Patrick Hale (Jack)
  • Jessica Buchanan (Jack’s mother)
  • Mic Evans (The Baker)
  • Lauren VanSpeybroeck (The Baker’s Wife)
  • Erika Kuhn (Cinderella’s stepmother)
  • Taylor Raub (Florinda)
  • Hannah Miedema (Lucinda)
  • Erica Bailey (Little Red Riding Hood)
  • Leah Decker (Grandmother)
  • Marjorie Gast (The Witch)
  • Carlee Glenn (Cinderella’s Mother)
  • Jonathan Carpenter (Cinderella’s Father)
  • Dillon Bosler (Mysterious Man)
  • Carlos Cortes-Ortiz (The Steward)
  • Sam Wiegers (The Wolf)
  • Robin Kime (Rapunzel)
  • Michael Oasheim (Cinderella’s Prince)
  • Michael Alexander (Rapunzel’s Prince)
  • Rachel Winter (Snow White)
  • Lauren Leman (Sleeping Beauty)

Tickets range in price from $16-$46. Tickets can be purchased from the Gallagher Bluedorn box office between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturday. The box office also opens one hour before curtain time.

For more information, contact Eric Lange, artistic director at the Strayer-Wood Theatre, at 319-273-6833, eric.lange@uni.edu, or call the Strayer-Wood Theatre box office at 319-273-6381 or visit www.uni.edu/theatre/swt.

March 21, 2017 - 1:59pm

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Department of Communication Studies will host a launch party to commemorate the new digital media program from 3 to 5 p.m., Thursday, March 30, in Lang Hall Auditorium and the Digital Media facilities in Lang Hall on the UNI campus.

“The decision to launch this new program arose from recognizing the significant changes in the media industry, in the media production, journalism and media leadership professions,” said Paul Torre, assistant professor of communications studies. “The new digital media moniker reflects ongoing adjustments to our program and a commitment to be on the forefront of programs that prepare students for exciting careers in the media industry.”

The digital media program, formerly known as the electronic media program, will feature three majors: digital journalism, digital media leadership and digital media production. The digital media majors will combine creativity and innovation in digital media storytelling and leadership to prepare graduates for careers in the expanding digital media field.

The launch party will include displays and demonstrations from journalism, leadership and production, digital media studio tours, door prizes, music from KULT College Radio and refreshments. For more information, contact Torre at 319-273-6445 or paul.torre@uni.edu.

March 15, 2017 - 4:00pm

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – University of Northern Iowa students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends are joining forces to impact current and future UNI students by participating in the #LivePurpleGiveGold Day of Giving on Wednesday, April 5.

This is the third year UNI has hosted a day of giving. This year's initiative will last 24 hours, beginning at midnight on Wednesday, April 5. Participation-based challenges will be announced throughout the day on April 5 and will be used to match gifts. A goal of 500 donors has also been issued for the day.

For more information, visit dayofgiving.uni.edu, and follow the #LivePurpleGiveGold hashtag.

March 10, 2017 - 9:07am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Center for Multicultural Education (CME) will host an open house to reveal the renovated building and welcome the new director of the CME, Jamie Butler Chidozie, from 3 to 5 p.m., Thursday, March 23, at the CME on the UNI campus.

Chidozie received her bachelor’s degree in elementary education and teaching and master’s degree in higher education student affairs from Indiana University Bloomington. She served as the assistant director of the Center for Race, Ethnicity and Diversity Education at Elon University before coming to UNI in February.

The event is free and open to the public; no RSVP is required. Snacks and refreshments will be provided. For more information, contact Jenny Murphy, secretary for the CME, at 319-273-2250 or jenny.murphy@uni.edu or visit www.uni.edu/cme.

March 10, 2017 - 9:23am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The Department of Mathematics at the University of Northern Iowa will present the 2017 Hari Shankar Memorial Lecture at 7:30 p.m., Friday, March 31, in the Lantz Auditorium of McCollum Science Hall on the UNI campus.

This year’s lecture is titled “Fluid Adventures: Where Mathematics Meets Art” and will be presented by Rachel Levy, associate dean for faculty development and professor of math at Harvey Mudd College in California. Levy is also the vice president for education for the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics, founder of the Business, Industry and Government Math Network and the blog, “Grandma got STEM.” She was a recipient of the Mathematical Association of America’s Henry L. Alder Award for Distinguished Teaching.

The lecture will explore Levy’s work in fluidity for art and math through photographs and videos created by students in her fluidity course that explored the quantitative and aesthetic information about fluids.

For more information, contact the Department of Mathematics at 319-273-2631 or mathematics@uni.edu.  

March 7, 2017 - 9:17am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The Center for Violence Prevention at the University of Northern Iowa is proud to announce this spring semester’s recipients of the O. Jay and Pat Tomson Student Internship and Verizon HopeLine™ “Making Iowa Safe” Scholarships.

The O. Jay and Pat Tomson scholarship is made available through a generous donation from the Tomson family to acknowledge student engagement with community agencies and partners providing prevention and victim services for individuals impacted by sexual, domestic or family violence. The Verizon HopeLine™ “Making Iowa Safe” Scholarship is made available to support the Center for Violence Prevention’s community engagement efforts by supporting student internships that address bullying and gender-based violence prevention.

Requirements and eligibility for the scholarships were judged on academic merit, verified enrollment as a full time UNI undergraduate or graduate student in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences and engagement in an internship at an agency, non-profit organization, association or government agency with a focus on interpersonal violence prevention or victim services.

This year’s recipients are Morgan Holzer, Charles City, Iowa; Hannah Sedlacek, Spirit Lake, Iowa; MacKenzie Whelan, Waterloo, Iowa; Lindsey Suits, Waverly, Iowa; and Shelby Schreck, Hazleton, Iowa.

Student award winners will participate in a scholarship recipient reception and present on internship experiences and learner outcomes at the end of April. For more information, contact Alan Heisterkamp, director of the Center for Violence Prevention, at 319-273-3545 or alan.heisterkamp@uni.edu.

March 7, 2017 - 2:38pm

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Dance Marathon raised $453,278 during their 6th Annual Big Event on Saturday, March 4, exceeding their goal of $400,000. This year’s fundraising total makes UNI Dance Marathon the top Dance Marathon fundraising program in the country for schools with less than 12,000 undergraduate students.

Dance Marathon

UNI Dance Marathon is the largest student-run philanthropy program at UNI. The organization strives to provide hope and comfort for families with children facing life-threatening illnesses by raising money for the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and hosting events that engage students and the community. Since 2012, UNI Dance Marathon has raised over $1,436,000 for the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital.

To learn more about UNI Dance Marathon, visit www.unidancemarathon.com or contact Abigail Cornett, director of public relations for UNI Dance Marathon, at 563-349-4279 or publicrelations@unidancemarathon.com.

March 6, 2017 - 10:13am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa College of Education will host its bi-annual Teacher Education Induction Convocation at 4 p.m., Wednesday, March 22, in the Great Hall of the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center on the UNI campus.

Two hundred and fifty students have satisfied requirements for admission into the UNI Teacher Education Program and are invited to participate in the formal ceremony as an official induction into the field of study. Gaetane Jean-Marie, dean of the College of Education and professor, will deliver the convocation address. Jim Wohlpart, provost and executive vice president of Academic Affairs and professor of English, will perform the official duties. 

This ceremony marks the 53rd group of candidates inducted into the Teacher Education Program since the formal ceremonies began in 1991. Parents and friends of the candidates and UNI faculty and administrators are invited to attend. A reception will follow the ceremony in the lobby of the Gallagher Bluedorn.

For more information, contact J.D. Cryer, chair of the convocation committee and coordinator of elementary teacher education, at 319-273-2294 or jd.cryer@uni.edu.

March 6, 2017 - 10:14am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Department of Physics will host the UNI/Area Education 267 Regional Physics Competition from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 28, at the McLeod Center on the UNI campus.

High school students from more than 12 area schools are expected to participate, including Cedar Falls, Denver, Dike-New Hartford, East Buchanan, Grinnell, Jesup, La Porte City, Nashua-Plainfield, St. Ansgar, Tripoli, Waterloo and Waverly.

The competition encourages creativity, ingenuity and an understanding of physics-related principles, and is intended to stimulate interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Students will use a variety of everyday, inexpensive materials to build devices. The devices will perform specific physical tasks while using physics laboratory equipment to determine the time and uncertainty for an event. 

The regional winners and runner-ups will advance to the state competition hosted by the UNI Department of Physics on Tuesday, April 11, in the McLeod Center.

For more information about the competition, contact Larry Escalada, professor in the Department of Physics, at 319-273-2431 or lawrence.escalada@uni.edu.

March 6, 2017 - 10:15am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Gallery of Art and the UNI Department of Art will present the "Annual Juried Student Art Exhibition" in Kamerick Art Building (KAB) South from Monday, March 20, through Saturday, April 15. An awards ceremony and opening reception will be held at 7 p.m., Monday, March 20, in the KAB Auditorium, Room 111. 

This competitive exhibition showcases outstanding artworks by students enrolled in classes in the UNI Department of Art. The juror for this year's competition is Susan Chrysler White, professor of art from the University of Iowa School of Art and Art History. White will make a selection from approximately 350 student entries and choose a number of merit awards and honorable mentions. She will also give a lecture about her work and her perspective on jurying at 6 p.m., Wednesday, March 8, in KAB 111.

White is a painter and public art sculptor who has exhibited her work in over 40 solo and 100 group exhibitions nationally and internationally. She received an M.F.A. from the University of California-Davis and a B.A. from the University of California-Berkley. Recently, she completed a large-scale public art installation for the new UnityPoint Health Prairie Parkway pediatric care facility in Cedar Falls.

White is a recipient of the prestigious Joan Mitchell Foundation Award in Painting and Sculpture as well as two international awards, a Mexican Association for Arts and Popular Culture Award in 1998 and a Greenwich World Hunger Association Grant for the Milagro del Día Project in 1999. This was a two-year long endeavor helping Chichimeca Indian women in rural central Mexico build artistic cooperatives for sustaining communities. 

All events are free and open to the public. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Thursday; noon to 5 p.m., Friday and Saturday; and by appointment. The gallery is located on the main floor of KAB South. 

For additional information, visit www.uni.edu/art/gallery.html or contact Darrell Taylor, director of the UNI Gallery of Art, at 319-273-6134 or darrell.taylor@uni.edu.

March 6, 2017 - 12:46pm

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will host the 49th annual Elementary Literacy Conference Friday, April 7, in the Schindler Education Center. This year's theme is “Open Arms, Open Hearts, Open Minds: Inclusive Teaching and Classrooms That Welcome ALL!"

The conference will feature best-selling author and illustrator Anne Sibley O’Brien, who has created 36 multicultural children’s books. Her most recent title,  “I’m New Here,” is a picture book she wrote and illustrated about three immigrant children. Sibley’s keynote address will focus on what schools can do to help children and families of diverse backgrounds as they acclimate and adjust to a new country.

A preconference event will take place at the Waterloo Center for the Arts from 5 to 7:30 p.m., Thursday, April 6. The evening will be a celebration of different cultures and will include activities for families. Sibley will give a short presentation about her books and be available for autographing books. The ELC preconference event will be held in partnership with Waterloo Community Schools and the Waterloo Center for the Arts.

“Our children - native and immigrant in schools - come from different walks of life," said Gaëtane Jean-Marie, dean of the College of Education. "They possess different abilities, speak different languages, and have different values and dreams. At a deeper level, the need to teach all students successfully ‘is connected to our ability to give each student, regardless of differentiated circumstances, permanent value and unconditional care.’  The work of Anne Sibley O’Brien illuminates how teachers can uphold their commitment to educate all learners. With a focus on immigrant children, she draws attention to how teachers can enhance their cultural knowledge, awareness and sensitivity to improve the educational experience of learners."

Sarah Vander Zanden, director of the UNI Literacy Clinic and program coordinator of the Literacy Education division remarked, “Practicing teachers have contributed as presenters to the ELC since its inception, and this valuable professional outlet is a great source of positive energy. At the ELC, participants will discuss problems of practice, share successful learning contexts and learn about multicultural literature - all of which support academic success for our diverse student populations."

Since the Beginning Reading Conference began in 1969, it has hosted more than 52 authors in 49 years. The conference was conceived and organized by Joan Duea and Delsie Charais Foreman, former elementary school faculty at Malcolm Price Laboratory School.  Although the conference was originally intended for lower elementary teachers and their principals, attendance has grown to include all elementary grade level teachers. The conference has become increasingly popular over the years and currently is one of the largest conferences hosted on UNI’s campus.

General sessions will include literacy and inclusion strategies. Parking will be available in the West Dome parking lot. Shuttle buses will transport guests from the lot to the Schindler Education Center every 15 minutes between 7 and 8 a.m. The preconference and conference events are sponsored by the UNI College of Education. The conference is free to UNI students and faculty; continuing education credits are available. To register for the conference or for more information, visit www.uni.edu/elc. 

March 3, 2017 - 9:14am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The Rod Library at the University of Northern Iowa will host the fourth annual RodCon from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, April 1.

RodCon is a mini comic book convention where people with common interests can come together to share their love of all things pop culture. Activities will include a costume contest, kids zone, escape room, panels, demonstrations, trivia, and art and merchandise exhibitions.

"This year is very exciting for us because of all of the community support we've seen for RodCon. The Mix 93.5, Gameliner, Escape Cedar Valley, CopyWorks and Video Games Etc. have all rallied behind us as major donors for the event, we've been awarded a Cedar Falls Tourism grant and we're proud to be bringing even more to this annual family-friendly, fun and engaging event,” said RodCon planning committee member Caroline Francis. 

Larry Nemecek and Adam Van Wyck will serve as RodCon’s keynote panelists. Nemecek, also known as “Dr. Trek,” will discuss his work on Trekland and other Star Trek projects. Nemecek is the author of the Star Trek: Next Generation Companion and Stellar Cartography maps and books set, founder of the PORTAL 47 fan experience and producer of “The Con of Wrath” documentary. Van Wyck, a storyboard artist, will present on his work with several DC and Marvel comic productions. Additional panels include “So You Want to be a Stormtrooper” and “Dr. Nathan Bird and The Evolution and Superpowers: Where are all the X-Men?”

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Melinda Beland, library assistant, at 319-273-2802 or melinda.beland@uni.edu or visit www.library.uni.edu/rod-con/.

March 3, 2017 - 10:46am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – A $1 million gift from HNI Corporation to the University of Northern Iowa is providing the finishing touches on the renovation of Schindler Education Center, home to the university’s College of Education. The gift established the HNI Corporation Instructional Resources and Technology Services (IRTS) Lab and helped furnish the facility.

IRTS Lab

HNI Corporation Instructional Resources and Technology Services Lab

“The UNI College of Education and HNI Corporation are both Iowa-based leaders in their respective fields,” said Gaëtane Jean-Marie, dean of the College of Education and Richard O. Jacobson Endowed Chair of Leadership in Education. “The HNI Corporation IRTS Lab will serve as an education resource facility for students, faculty, and in-service teachers and school administrators.”

Headquartered in Muscatine, Iowa, HNI Corporation is the second largest furniture company in the world. Its brands include HON, Allsteel and Gunlocke.

“HNI Corporation truly values our partnership with UNI,” said Gary Carlson, HNI Corporation’s vice president of Community Relations. “UNI does an excellent job of preparing students for outstanding careers offered by HNI Corporation and other excellent Iowa employers.”

According to Jean-Marie, the redesign of Schindler Education Center enabled the university to create a showplace for a teaching lab and best practices in classroom design. “We are thrilled to see traditional classrooms transformed, fully integrating technology and creating flexible spaces to better prepare students for their future careers.”

The gift from HNI Corporation caps off more than $7 million in private fundraising for the newly renovated facility. Renovations feature spaces and furnishings that are flexible, such as the central learning commons area where students can engage in diverse learning activities like group presentations. Lecture halls transitioned into collaborative, interactive learning spaces. Obsolete computer labs were replaced by classrooms that use integrated technology. The new design also created classroom simulation spaces in which teacher candidates can model instructional methods in learning environments similar to those that are currently used in kindergarten through high school settings. 

The HNI Corporation gift was made to the University of Northern Iowa through the UNI Foundation.

March 2, 2017 - 9:16am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will host the Student Leadership Awards at 7 p.m., Tuesday, April 11, in the Old Central Ballroom of the Maucker Union on the UNI campus. The ceremony recognizes outstanding student leadership through a series of awards presented to students and student organizations.

Several awards are presented in various categories, including three awards from the Office of the Dean of Students: the Lux Service Award, Outstanding Student Leader Award and Servant Leadership Award. The Lux Service Award is the most prestigious award given to graduating senior students to acknowledge their outstanding involvement and lasting legacy. The Outstanding Student Leader Award recognizes students that have demonstrated dedication and leadership in one or more campus activities. The Servant Leadership Award is presented to students who strive to serve others before themselves and promote the common good.

Other awards include the UNI CARE (Creating a Responsible Environment) Award, Northern Iowa Student Government Above and Beyond Awards, Student Organization Awards, Drake Martin Gold Star Awards, Student Employee of the Year, Dr. Sue Follon Scholarship for Women in Leadership and Dr. Charlotte West Scholar-Athlete Award.

Recipients of Student Leadership Awards were chosen from nominated students or student organizations throughout January and February. For more information, contact Steffoni Schmidt, associate director of Student Life and Event Services, at 319-273-7422 or steffoni.schmidt@uni.edu.

March 1, 2017 - 9:43am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) will host a mental health awareness discussion panel from 4 to 5 p.m., Tuesday, March 7, in the University Room of the Maucker Union located on the UNI campus.

UNI PRSSA has partnered with the Campaign to Change Direction in an effort to change the culture of mental health at UNI. The Campaign to Change Direction is a coalition of concerned citizens, nonprofit leaders and leaders from the private sector who have come together to change the culture in America about mental health, mental illness and wellness.

The “UNI Know the Signs” panel discussion will showcase the five signs of mental suffering that include personality change, agitation, withdrawal, poor self-care and hopelessness. Featured panelists will include student members from organizations UNI Proud and To Write Love On Her Arms as well as two mental health professionals from the UNI Counseling Center. Additionally, one representative member from the UNI Department of Residence and one mental health professional from UnityPoint Health Allen Hospital in Waterloo will be participating in the panel.

“We’re hoping this panel brings to light the five signs of mental suffering and provides participants with a way to help,” said Mikayla Lien, case director and UNI PRSSA vice president of communications. “We know it isn’t easy for someone suffering to seek help, but if we’re all able to learn the signs it will make it easier to ensure individuals at UNI get the support that they need.”

Students, faculty, staff and community members are encouraged to attend and participate in this free panel discussion. Light refreshments will be provided. Additional information can be found at www.facebook.com/events/390788921294157/.

The University of Northern Iowa Public Relations Student Society of America is a nationally affiliated student organization for students interested in public relations and communications. For more than 30 years, UNI PRSSA has provided students with professional opportunities, access to industry leaders
and leadership experiences. For more information about this event or UNI PRSSA, contact Mallory Feeney, president of UNI PRSSA, at feenema@uni.edu or visit www.uni-prssa.org.

March 1, 2017 - 9:45am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa’s Continuing and Distance Education is accepting applications now through March 13 for a Master of Arts in Education degree program in elementary education, scheduled to begin fall 2017. This program is designed for K through six elementary classroom teachers with licensure in the field of elementary education. 

"Unlike many other online programs, all of our courses are taught by full-time faculty, not by adjuncts or teaching assistants,” said program coordinator Dana Atwood-Blaine. “In addition, at the UNI College of Education, we believe that building meaningful and supportive relationships with our students is the foundation of providing the highest quality educational experience. We welcome the opportunity and challenge to apply this commitment to our online programs."

The courses are designed using the Quality Matters set of professional standards based upon research, best practices and national standards for course design. They also address curriculum issues, technology, literacy, mathematics, science, social studies and action research. The program supports faculty-guided teacher research on relevant issues within a classroom context throughout the course sequence.

The degree consists of 30 units of credit, which can be earned in five consecutive semesters. Courses are taken using a cohort model in which a group of students moves together through the course sequence, with the degree to be awarded in the spring of 2019. All courses included in this program are offered entirely online through eLearning, a Blackboard learning management system requiring Internet access and a web browser. To learn more about the program and how to apply, visit distance.uni.edu/elementary.

For more information about the Master of Arts in Education: Elementary Education degree program and additional offerings available through UNI Continuing and Distance Education, visit distance.uni.edu or call 319-273-2504 or 800-772-1746.

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa is accepting applications for its master’s degree program in social science scheduled to begin summer 2017. This two-year program is designed for secondary (six through 12) social studies classroom teachers who wish to broaden their knowledge and understanding of the social sciences as well as improve secondary student learning of social studies in the classroom. 

“The program is designed to help practicing teachers develop a deep knowledge in social sciences that they can take back to their classrooms,” said program coordinator Chad Christopher. “Our students really like the cohort delivery model as they get to share teaching resources and develop a great professional network from across the state.”

Courses in this program are offered via interactive video conferencing methods scheduled one night per week during the fall and spring semesters, while summers may include additional conferencing sessions. Some courses and coursework are offered entirely online using eLearning, a Blackboard learning management system.

The program begins this summer using a cohort model in which a group of students moves together through the course sequence, with the degree to be awarded in the summer of 2019. To learn more about the program and how to apply, visit distance.uni.edu/social-science.

For additional information about the master’s degree program in social science and additional offerings available through UNI Continuing and Distance Education, visit distance.uni.edu or call 319-273-5970 or 800-648-3864.

March 1, 2017 - 9:55am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – University of Northern Iowa student Rachael Johnson has been named as a finalist for the Harry S. Truman Scholarship for her outstanding work in public service leadership.

Johnson is a double elementary education and middle level education major from Sioux City, Iowa. She was selected as the institutional nominee for the nationally competitive Truman Scholarship for UNI. Johnson was notified of her selection as a finalist for the scholarship and will have an interview in Kansas City on March 13. Scholarship winners will be announced on April 12. 

The Truman Scholarship is awarded through the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation. Created in 1975, the foundation has supported nearly 3,000 Truman Scholars making a difference through public service around the nation and the world. Truman Scholars are chosen based on their commitment to public service, academic achievement and being a "change agent." As part of the extensive scholarship application process, Johnson had to write a policy memo and chose to write on GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs), a program that targets cohorts of secondary education students in low-income schools and encourages their enrollment in post-secondary institutions. 

Approximately 600 college juniors apply for the Truman Scholarship every year and approximately 60 are chosen as winners. The scholarship provides recipients with $30,000 toward graduate education geared toward public service.

For more information about the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation, visit www.truman.gov.

March 1, 2017 - 12:31pm

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The 2017 Cedar Valley Local Food and Film Festival will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, March 4, at the Waterloo Center for the Arts located at 225 Commercial St. in Waterloo.

The festival will have information about community-supported agriculture subscriptions, and the 2017 Buy Fresh Buy Local Directory will be available for pick up. Local food producers and vendors will be at the event with local food available for purchase. The festival will also feature a screening of the film “Vanishing of the Bees” at 11 a.m. Local bee keeper Tim Laughlin will lead a discussion following the film. 

The festival is free and open to the public. Reserved parking is available. For more information, contact Jodie Huegerich, local food program manager for the University of Northern Iowa Center for Energy and Environmental Education, at 319-273-7883 or jodie.huegerich@uni.edu.

March 1, 2017 - 12:33pm

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Paula Knudson has been named vice president for Student Affairs at the University of Northern Iowa. Knudson's first day at UNI will be June 19.

Paula Knudson

"Paula is an accomplished student affairs professional with many years of leadership experience," said UNI President Mark A. Nook. "She has a strong emphasis on both the theoretical and practical elements of student development and really understands the needs of a campus community. I'm very excited that Paula will be a part of the Panther family and will be bringing her skills and expertise to the University of Northern Iowa."

Knudson is an Iowa native. She earned her bachelor's degree in mathematics education from the University of Iowa, a Master of Public Administration from the University of Hartford and a Ph.D. in higher education administration from the University of Minnesota. Prior to coming to UNI, Knudson served as vice chancellor and dean of students at the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse. She held other leadership positions at UW – La Crosse before becoming vice chancellor and dean of students. Knudson also worked with student affairs at the University of Minnesota Duluth and the University of Hartford.

"I'm excited that my professional journey has brought me back to Iowa," said Knudson. "The University of Northern Iowa is a special place. I'm ready to explore and engage with the students, faculty and staff and really learn more about UNI's student involvement."

Knudson replaces Terry Hogan, who retired from the vice president for Student Affairs position on June 30, 2016, after more than eight successful years at UNI. Jan Hanish has been serving as the interim vice president for Student Affairs since Hogan's retirement.

February 24, 2017 - 10:18am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will host the sixth annual UNI Dance Marathon from noon to midnight, Saturday, March 4, in the Maucker Union on the UNI campus.

Dance Marathon is a nationwide movement involving college and high school students in more than 300 programs. Money raised by the schools during the events goes toward their local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital. UNI Dance Marathon is the top fundraising program for colleges with under 12,000 undergraduate students and raised over $370,000 last year.

Participants will stay on their feet for 12 hours to “stand for those who can’t.” Along with dancing, there will be breakout rooms throughout Maucker Union where various activities will take place. Dancers will also have the chance to meet the Dance Marathon kids who have been treated at the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital and their families.

This year, UNI Dance Marathon hopes to raise $400,000. UNI has exceeded their fundraising goal for the past five years. Money raised at the UNI Dance Marathon goes to the Children’s Miracle Network and the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital.

To register for UNI Dance Marathon, visit www.unidancemarathon.com/. For more information, contact Abbey Cornett, director of public relations for Dance Marathon, at publicrelations@unidancemarathon.com.

February 21, 2017 - 9:20am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Local artist Chaveevah Banks Ferguson will lead a discussion of her work and life at 4 p.m., Wednesday, March 1, on the main floor of Rod Library on the UNI campus.

Ferguson earned her bachelor’s in public relations and master’s in communication education at UNI and is the owner and founder of BaHar Publishing in Waterloo. The company has published numerous books, including works of fiction, non-fiction, children’s literature and poetry.

Her paintings are on display in the library until March 5. The whimsical and colorful artwork conveys the feeling of motion, and much of her art is influenced by her love for dance and music. The images pay homage to the years she danced with the Mantu Dance Theatre of Chicago and to Chicago’s vibrant music scene, where jazz, blues and reggae ruled.

An artistic door prize will be awarded to one attendee. For more information, contact Julie Ann Beddow, library assistant, at 319-273-6256 or julieann.beddow@uni.edu.

February 20, 2017 - 12:37pm

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Interpreters Theatre will present “Boys Will be Boys” at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, March 2; Friday, March 3; and Saturday, March 4, in the Interpreters Theatre in 040 Lang Hall on the UNI campus.

“Boys Will be Boys” takes a closer look into current issues surrounding the relationship between masculinity and violence. Using a collaboration of dramatic and satirical scenes, “Boys Will Be Boys,” directed by graduate student Ryan Courtney, examines subjects associated with masculinity to question how U.S. culture teaches boys to be men. Performances will be followed by an audience discussion of the themes and issues that emerge from the show.

The event is free and open to the public; seating is limited. This production contains mature language and situations. Tickets will be passed out on a first come, first serve basis beginning at 6:30 p.m. The doors open at 7 p.m. For more information, contact Amandajean Freking Nolte at 319-273-3793 or amandajean.nolte@uni.edu.

February 20, 2017 - 12:39pm

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The annual Leland Wilson Lectureship event at the University of Northern Iowa will be presented by Annette Richards, executive director of the Westfield Center for Historical Keyboard Studies and professor of music and university organist at Cornell University, and Catherine Oertel, associate professor of chemistry at Oberlin College, at 6 p.m., Thursday, March 2, in Lantz Auditorium in McCollum Science Hall on the UNI campus. The lecture is titled “Music and Materials: Art and Science of Organ Pipe Metal.” Richards will also perform a guest recital at 6 p.m., Friday, March 3, in Jebe Hall in the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center. 

Richards is a performer and scholar with a specialty in 18th century music and aesthetics, and interdisciplinary research in music, literature and visual culture. She is the author of “The Free Fantasia and the Musical Picturesque,” editor of “C.P.E. Bach Studies” and “Keyboard Perspectives,” and is currently writing a book titled “Music on the Dark Side of 1800.” She has been a Mellon New Directions Fellow, Alexander von Humboldt Fellow and has won prizes at the Dublin and Bruges international organ competitions.

Oertel joined the faculty of Oberlin College in 2006, where she teaches introductory and inorganic chemistry as well as an interdisciplinary course on the chemistry of materials used in artwork. Her research examines synthesis and structural characterization of oxide-based materials and is supported by the National Science Foundation and Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation. Oertel and Richards first worked together at Cornell University while Oertel was a chemistry graduate student taking organ lessons. 

The Leland Wilson Endowed Chemistry Lectureship was established in 2007 by a gift from Wilson’s daughter, Mary Sue Coleman, who served as president at the University of Michigan and University of Iowa, and her husband Kenneth Coleman. Leland Wilson was the first department head of the chemistry department at UNI in 1968. He retired in 1979 and passed away in 1993 at the age of 79, leaving behind a legacy of professionalism and integrity in faculty and staff.

The lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Laura Strauss, department head and professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, at 319-273-2052 or laura.strauss@uni.edu.

February 17, 2017 - 9:43am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Women’s and Gender Studies (WGS) program will commemorate its 40th anniversary with a celebration event from 5 to 8 p.m., March 3, in the Center for Multicultural Education (CME) on the UNI campus.

The event will feature emerita faculty member and former director Phyllis Baker as a speaker and a performance by alum Terry Stevens in addition to food, music and photo opportunities. The celebration is also an opportunity for networking with alumni and current students, recognizing the program’s history and raising awareness of the program on campus. 

This event is cosponsored by the CME as part of their First Friday series. For more information, call the women’s and gender studies department at 319-273-7102 or email wgs@uni.edu.

February 17, 2017 - 9:44am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Culture and Intensive English Program (CIEP) will present the Cedar Valley Immigrants Culture Talk from 4 to 5 p.m., Monday, Feb. 20, in the Scholar Space of the Rod Library on the UNI campus.

This session will provide an opportunity to learn more about refugees and immigrants in our community. Speakers will include immigration attorney Gunda Brost and RefugeeRISE AmeriCorps Community Education Development coordinator Breanna Johnson.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Sally Roos, student services coordinator for the UNI CIEP, at 319-273-3410 or sally.roos@uni.edu.

February 16, 2017 - 8:22am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – RSM US LLP (“RSM”), the leading provider of audit, tax and consulting services focused on the middle market, raised $1 million to create the first RSM Chaired Professorship at the University of Northern Iowa's College of Business Administration.

The professorship will be within UNIBusiness' Department of Accounting and will enable the university to continue to attract and recruit high-quality educators.

RSM Chaired Professorship

"For years, RSM US has positively impacted the lives of UNIBusiness students with financial support and a desire to build better business leaders," said Leslie K. Wilson, dean of the College of Business Administration. "This [professorship] has enabled us to grow our legacy as the go-to business college for future accounting professionals. The additional resources and expertise made available to us through this endowed chair will allow us to expand our reach, enhance our program and let us compete on a national level. We are grateful to RSM employees, the RSM Foundation and their partners for their dedication to our program."

"Stewardship is one of RSM's core values," said Doug Opheim, chief financial officer with RSM and chairman of the board for the RSM US Foundation. "We are so pleased to support UNI, the accounting profession and the Cedar Falls community with this $1 million chaired professorship, made possible by contributions from partners, principals and employees who are UNI alumni along with a match from the RSM US Foundation."

UNI accounting graduates are in high demand due to the rigorous and relevant education, professional development opportunities outside the classroom and the CPA preparation they receive on campus. UNI has been in the top two schools in terms of the number of graduates RSM hires in its Central Region for the last five years.

The RSM Chaired Professorship is the third Chaired Professorship within UNI's College of Business Administration, but it is the first for the accounting department. Other professorships include the David W. Wilson Chair in Business Ethics and the Bradford Chair in International Business.

February 16, 2017 - 9:34am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa College of Education will host the sixth annual African-American Children and Families Conference from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, Feb. 24, in Maucker Union. A pre-conference will also take place in Maucker Union from 5 to 9 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 23. The theme of this year's conference is "Imagine the Impact: Creating a Caring Community Through Vision, Voice and Victory!"

This event is designed for educators, administrators, childcare providers, law enforcement, policy makers, social workers, health professionals, business leaders and anyone committed to improving the lives of children. The conference promotes a better understanding of culture, ethnicity, race, socioeconomic status and the needs of African-American children and families. Participants will spend the day networking, sharing and meeting new colleagues to help improve the quality of lives of children and families.

The events are open to the public; registration is free for UNI students and faculty and middle and high school students. For more information or to register, visit www.vpaf.uni.edu/aac or contact Gloria Kirkland-Holmes, associate professor of curriculum and instruction, at 319-273-2007 or gloria.holmes@uni.edu.

February 13, 2017 - 9:45am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – University of Northern Iowa faculty member Deirdre Heistad, associate professor and director of undergraduate studies, has been selected as a recipient of the Outstanding First-Year Student Advocates award.

Deedee Heistad

The Outstanding First-Year Student Advocate awards are presented by the National Resource Center for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition at the University of South Carolina. Each year, presidents of American higher education institutions are invited to nominate an educator on their campus for exceptional work in the areas of students learning, development and success. The nominations are reviewed by a national panel of distinguished educators and select 10 individuals for the award. 

“UNI students benefit from the strong foundation our first-year programs provide, but it takes so much more than one person to create and sustain this work. While my name may be on this award, I am only one of many ‘Outstanding First-Year Student Advocates’ at UNI,” said Heistad. “To have our work recognized by the National Resource Center for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition is indeed an important national honor for UNI. Personally, I am most proud to have been nominated by my UNI colleagues whose commitment to and compassion for student learning inspires me on a daily basis.”

Heistad and the other recipients will be honored at the 36th Annual Conference on the First-Year Experience, Feb. 11-14, in Atlanta, Georgia. Heistad will also participate in an advocate’s session on Monday, Feb. 13, to discuss best practices, instructional methodologies, stories of student success and the challenges of teaching college success. 

February 10, 2017 - 9:20am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa's Nonprofit Leadership Alliance (NLA) Student Association is now accepting nominations for their annual Cedar Valley Nonprofit Awards Luncheon. The UNI NLA organization takes the time to recognize the outstanding contributions of local nonprofits and their staff. Anyone may submit any number of nominations by Wednesday, March 1. Nomination information and forms can be found at https://uni-nonprofit.org/community/luncheon/.

There are eight Nonprofit Award Categories, which include:

  • Business Partner of the Year: A business that has made a significant contribution to a nonprofit.
  • Nonprofit Staff Leader of the Year: A person that stands out in the nonprofit sector and exemplifies strong leadership qualities.
  • Nonprofit Board Member of the Year: A board member in a nonprofit that has positively contributed or influenced the organization.
  • Koob Award for Collaboration: An organization that has collaborated with at least one other nonprofit organization and has shown successful and unique teamwork.
  • Gordon Mack Award for Student Leadership: This honors a college/university student who has made a significant contribution to a local nonprofit.
  • Legacy Award: This honors a nonprofit employee or volunteer who has contributed at least 10 hours of service to the same organization.
  • New Nonprofit Employee of the Year: This honors an individual in their first professional nonprofit position, having worked at the organization for two years or less. This can also include interns. The winner of this award will receive a one-year membership to the Cedar Valley Nonprofit Association.
  • Exceptional Nonprofit of the Year: A nonprofit organization that has demonstrated the best practices of nonprofit excellence in the 2016 year. The winner of this award will receive a $1,000 cash prize sponsored by the Community Foundation of Northeast Iowa.

The UNI NLA's luncheon planning committee will be selecting the winners of the 2017 awards, along with the guidance of UNI's NLA campus director, Julianne Gassman, and Community Foundation of Northeast Iowa's program director, Tom Wickersham. The winners will receive one complimentary ticket to the event, which will be held from noon to 1:30 p.m., Thursday, April 6, at the UNI Commons Ballroom. 

The luncheon is planned and implemented by student members of the UNI Nonprofit Leadership Alliance, which is part of a national network that transforms today's students into tomorrow's nonprofit leaders by helping them gain experience, skills, professionalism and certification within the nonprofit sector.

For more information, please contact Julianne Gassman, Nonprofit Leadership Alliance campus director, at 319-273-2204 or julianne.gassman@uni.edu.

February 8, 2017 - 9:24am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Center for Energy and Environmental Education (CEEE), UNI Department of Languages and Literatures, UNI Ethnic Minorities of Burma Advocacy and Resource Center (EMBARC), Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture and Waterloo Center for the Arts will present “VANG,” a two-person documentary play, at 2:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 11, in the Law Court Theatre at the Waterloo Center for the Arts.

“VANG,” written by Mary Swander, tells the story of four immigrant family farmers by weaving together photographs and transcript interviews of families who are actively making farming and agriculture a part of their new lives in the U.S. Swander is a fourth-generation Iowan, Poet Laureate of Iowa and a professor of English at Iowa State University. She worked with Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer Dennis Chamberlin and Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival award-winner Matt Foss to create “VANG.”

The program is free and open to the public. A suggested donation of $5 or new/gently used garden tools are appreciated and will go to the Community Producers program to raise start-up funds for the local community garden and farmers market stand this summer.

The doors will open at 1 p.m., and a plated Burmese meal will be available for purchase at Laughing Tree Café before and after the play. Chef Ah Lei, aspiring restaurant owner and refugee from Burma, will create the meal that includes a samosa, sesame ball, noodles and vegetable salad. There will also be a backstrap weaving demonstration by Karenni Kayaw mother/daughter duo Kyawt Mu and Day Leh. Woven goods will also be available for purchase including scarves and traditional school bags that mothers would weave for their children in Burma, Malaysia and Thailand.

For more information, contact Jodie Huegerich, local food program manager at UNI CEEE, at 319-273-7883 or jodie.huegerich@uni.edu.

February 8, 2017 - 9:43am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will host UNI Day at the Statehouse from noon to 2 p.m., Monday, Feb. 13, at the Iowa Capitol in Des Moines. The event will highlight UNI programs and inform legislators about the impact UNI has on the state.

“UNI Day at the Capitol is an amazing opportunity to illustrate how the incredible work of our students, faculty and staff benefits the state of Iowa,” said UNI President Mark A. Nook. “We are fortunate to have so many members of the UNI community engage with our legislators and advocate for our university, and I’m thrilled to be sharing my first UNI Day with such passionate individuals.”

 At UNI Day at the Capitol, students, faculty and staff will showcase interactive displays highlighting various UNI programs, departments and organizations. Alumni are encouraged to attend to reconnect with their university and speak with their elected officials about the value of UNI.

For more information, contact the UNI Office of Governmental Relations at 319-273-6144.

February 8, 2017 - 11:22am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa is offering admitted students and their guests a sneak peek at campus during “UNI Up Close” one-day visits on Friday, Feb. 10 and 17. “UNI Up Close” serves as an open house that provides prospective students with the opportunity to speak with faculty and staff, visit residence halls, learn more about financial aid and get an in-depth look at UNI.

Students and guests will attend academic workshops, departmental and campus tours, a UNI Majors and Student Activities Fair and various open houses, including the residence halls and Rod Library.

For more information, visit UNI Admissions at uni.edu/admissions/event/upclose or contact Jenny Connolly, assistant director of admissions, at 319-273-2281 or jenny.connolly@uni.edu.

February 3, 2017 - 11:10am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Critically acclaimed duo Dan + Shay will perform at 7 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 12, at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center on the University of Northern Iowa campus.

Dan + Shay’s recently released album "Obsessed," featuring their second consecutive Gold-certified chart-topping single “From the Ground Up,” and newest single “Nothin’ Like You,” follows their 2014 debut "Where It All Began," which made them the first new country duo in SoundScan recorded history to debut at No. 1 on Billboard’s Country Albums Chart.

Racking up more than 48 million YouTube views, the pair has sold more than two million digital tracks and more than 500,000 album equivalents to date, including 200 million streams.

Ticket prices begin at $25 and can be purchased during an online-only presale beginning 8:30 am on Saturday, Nov. 19, at gbpac.com/DanShay. Tickets will be available for purchase by phone and at all UNItix box locations beginning at 8:30 a.m., Monday, Nov.28.

For more information, visit gbpac.com or contact Blake Argotsinger, associate marketing manager at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center, at 319-273-4849 or blake.argotsinger@uni.edu.

February 3, 2017 - 11:29am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Military and Veteran Student Services (MVSS) will host the first annual statewide PTSD Awareness Conference on Wednesday, March 29, in the Maucker Union on the UNI campus.

The conference will cover issues and topics related to PTSD that not only originates from military experiences but also sexual assault and other traumas. Speakers will present on subjects such as mental, emotional and academic support for those suffering from PTSD in a college environment, different types of therapy such art and music and service dogs. The conference will conclude with a student panel discussion on how PTSD affects students’ day-to-day college career. This event will serve as a way for students to learn strategies for managing PTSD and as an opportunity for administration to learn how to serve students affected by PTSD.

This conference was made possible through a partnership between the UNI Counseling Center, UNI Student Disability Services, UNI Wellness and Recreation Center, Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services-UNI Service Unit, UNI Veteran Affairs and UNI MVSS. For more information, contact Chris Kennedy, president of the UNI Veterans Association, at kennecad@uni.edu, or Norman Ferguson, Jr., coordinator for UNI MVSS, at 319-273-3040 or norman.ferguson@uni.edu.

February 2, 2017 - 10:23am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa’s Black Student Union (BSU) will host a series of events on the UNI campus throughout February to celebrate Black History Month.

Some highlights include:

-The First Friday/Skate Party is a disco-themed skate party showcasing how music and the roller rink contributed to today’s culture. Skates will be provided. This event is from 5 to 11 p.m., Friday, Feb. 3, in the Wellness and Recreation Center. 

-The Tunnel of Oppression will feature reenactments of modern oppression of minorities, such as racial profiling and media portrayals, from 6 to 9 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 22, in Lang Hall Auditorium. 

-Seminar and workshop with Rasheed Cromwell: This nationally recognized workshop addresses the “diversity experience” on college campuses. BSU encourages all UNI students to attend this informative event. The event begins at 6:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 23, with the workshop in the Center for Multicultural Education followed by the lecture in Lang Hall Auditorium.

-The Fashion for Action event will include a runway show, hands-on workshops, informative seminars and music exhibits at 6:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 25, in the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center.

-The Toast for Chance/Ebony Ball is a campus celebration acknowledging positive changes in our culture and on the UNI campus at 7 p.m., Friday, March 3, in the Commons Ballroom.

All events are open to the public and free for UNI students, faculty and staff. For more information on these events and the Black Student Union, contact Brianne Baylor, president of UNI’s Black Student Union, at baylorb@uni.edu.

February 1, 2017 - 8:22am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – “Men of Color, Mental Health and the Correctional System” will be the first session of the spring Diversity Colloquium series at the University of Northern Iowa. This panel discussion will take place from 7 to 8:30 p.m., Monday, Feb. 20, in the ScholarSpace of the Rod Library on the UNI campus.

This session will focus on the mental health needs of men of color within the correctional system, both during and after leaving the system. Panelists will also discuss the disciplinary pipeline and how mental health counseling could serve as a reasonable and useful intervention tool. Panelists include: Tom Eachus, director of Black Hawk-Grundy Mental Health Center; David Goodson, civil rights activist; Bill Tate, Department of Correctional Services of Black Hawk County; and Cora Turner, associate superintendent of Waterloo Community School District. Kim Baker, associate professor of sociology, anthropology and criminology, will facilitate the panel.

The Diversity Colloquium is sponsored by the UNI department of sociology, anthropology and criminology, the College of Social and Behavioral Science, the Office of the President and the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning. For more information, contact Gwenne Berry, chief diversity officer, at 319-273-2820 or gwenne.berry@uni.edu.

January 31, 2017 - 9:06am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Cedar Valley artists and community members as well as UNI students, faculty and staff are invited to submit comic artwork during the month of February for the “Wall of Comic Art” exhibit in the Rod Library on the UNI campus.

Artwork submissions can be digital, paint, ink, pencil, charcoal, photography and collage. Artists are encouraged to title their artwork. The art exhibit will be installed on the main floor of Rod Library, and the artwork will be published on the library’s website, www.library.uni.edu.  

The “Wall of Comic Art” exhibit is a promotion for Rod Library’s annual RodCon. RodCon is a mini comic book convention where people from all areas of life can meet and celebrate their love of comics, graphic novels, pop culture and nerdom. RodCon will be held on April 1 at the Rod Library.

The deadline for submissions is March 1. For more information, contact Julie Ann Beddow, assistant at the Rod Library, at 319-273-6252 or julieann.beddow@uni.edu.

January 30, 2017 - 8:31am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Center for Violence Prevention received a donation from O. Jay and Patricia Tomson to provide financial support to students undertaking internships with agencies and community organizations that offer services for victims of sexual, domestic and family violence, prevention training and professional development, advocacy and policy development.

“This generous gift will enhance UNI students’ internship opportunities and have a positive impact on Iowa’s schools, neighborhoods and communities,” said Center director, Alan Heisterkamp.

Multiple members of O. Jay and Pat Tomson’s family are UNI alums. Pat Tomson received a master’s degree in counseling from UNI and worked as a therapist and advocate for families experiencing childhood sexual abuse.

For more information, contact Alan Heisterkamp, director of the UNI Center for Violence Prevention, at 319-273-3545 or alan.heisterkamp@uni.edu.

January 30, 2017 - 8:39am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The ninth annual Darwin Week will be held from Monday, Feb. 13 through Thursday, Feb. 16 on the University of Northern Iowa campus. The event is hosted by the University of Northern Iowa Freethinkers and Inquirers (UNIFI), a student organization for skeptics, atheists, agnostics and freethinkers. The event is free and open to the public and will feature various speakers throughout the week, centering on the theme of skepticism. In addition to daily lectures from UNI faculty members, featured keynote lectures will be held at 7 p.m. each night during Darwin Week in the University Room, Maucker Union.

This year’s keynote speakers are as follows:

- Kavin Senapathy, writer at Forbes and Slate and science activist for health, medicine and agriculture, will discuss genetically modified foods and deciphering the fear tactics food marketers use on Monday, Feb. 13.

- Hiba Khrist. founder of the blog “Between A Veil and A Dark Place” and an ex-Muslim, will be talking about Islam, gender roles and other sociopolitical realities of Muslim women on Tuesday, Feb. 14.

- Hector Avalos, professor of religious studies at Iowa State University and author of ten books including his recent book “The Bad Jesus: The Ethics of New Testament Ethics,” will deliver a lecture about whether there is scientific evidence that prayer works on Wednesday, Feb. 15.

- Kathryn Crowe, an aerospace engineer for NASA, will give a talk about current NASA projects on Thursday, Feb. 16.

"Darwin Week is a wonderful opportunity to expand your horizons and learn about a variety of subjects," said Casey McGregor, director of public relations for UNIFI and co-organizer of Darwin Week. "The event is a great way to not only promote intellectual thought but also to give the public accessibility to this intellectually stimulating material. Darwin Week ultimately helps people to understand the world around us, something that our nation could really use right now."

Darwin Week was originally created to commemorate the work of Charles Darwin and his notable contributions to the field of science, and has since expanded to include additional topics such as diversity and sexuality. 

For more information, contact Casey McGregor, director of public relations for UNIFI, at 515-320-5578 or mcgregoc@uni.edu.

January 27, 2017 - 10:47am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – TheatreUNI will present “Palette of Possibility,” a unique touring theatre production created by UNI theatre professor Gretta Berghammer and designed specifically to meet the needs of youth on the autism spectrum and other developmental delays, their families and typical peers. Concepts such as pretend play, shadows, light, the rain cycle, water play, beneath the sea and wind are explored through a variety of actor-generated experiences for the audience that rely on playful, non-verbal and movement-based interactions between the audience and performers.

Performances are at 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 11, and 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 12 in the Bertha Martin Theatre. A tour will follow with planned performances in Hastings, Red Oak, Creston, Carroll and Fort Dodge. These communities identified as having a population of youth with autism and other developmental delays without easy access to programs and resources specific to the needs of that population and their typical peers and classmates. All tour performances will be free of charge and open to all youth and their families and will feature the hallmarks of best practices in production work designed to meet the needs of special learners including interaction, engagement, participation, non-restrictive seating, sensory friendly lighting and sound, multiple visual cues, low language and movement/gesture-based storytelling.

“Palette of Possibility” is the third offering of TheatreUNI’s 2016-2017 season.

Tickets are $5.50 for adults, $1 for youth 14 and under, and free for UNI students with their student ID. Tickets can be purchased from the Strayer-Wood Theatre lobby box office between noon and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. The box office opens one hour before curtain time.

For more information, contact Eric Lange, artistic director at the Strayer-Wood Theatre, at 319-273-6833 or eric.lange@uni.edu, call the Strayer-Wood Theatre box office at 319-273-6381 or visit www.uni.edu/theatre/swt.

January 26, 2017 - 1:00pm

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The Center for Violence Prevention and Governor’s Office on Bullying Prevention (CVP-GOBP) announced the development of a state-wide task force to examine current practices and gaps in prevention programming associated with bullying and other gender-based violence that children, youth and young adults experience from pre-kindergarten through the college years.

The task force will examine areas of strength and need regarding policy and institutional practice, community and familial partnerships, models for teaching and learning of critical life skills, knowledge to help prevent bullying and violence and how systems can be more responsive to victims of violence. Utilizing information obtained from this initiative, professional development opportunities and trainings for school, community stakeholders and leaders will be developed to offer a multi-systemic, multi-level approach to bullying and violence prevention.

Funding for this initiative was made available through a grant from the Kind World Foundation.  

For more information, contact Alan Heisterkamp, director of the UNI Center for Violence Prevention, at 319-273-3545 or alan.heisterkamp@uni.edu.

January 24, 2017 - 9:08am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) Panther Battalion achieved first place for Recruiting and Retention out of 42 Army ROTC programs throughout the Midwest. 

This is the third year in a row that the UNI ROTC achieved recognition for Recruiting and Retention. The program received second place in the previous two years. The program was also recognized as the third best overall program in 2013 and first place for administration in 2015 out of the ROTC programs in the Midwest. This award recognizes the health and culture of a successful ROTC program that brings in the best students to become cadets and retains them as cadets while ensuring their success as college students, college graduates and future Army officers. 

For more information, contact Lt. Col. Glen Keith, department head of military science, at 319-273-6220, glen.keith@uni.edu or the UNI ROTC office at 319-273-6178.

January 23, 2017 - 9:21am

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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Accounting students at the University of Northern Iowa are providing free income tax assistance again this year through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. Assistance in the preparation of tax returns will be available on Monday and Wednesday nights from Feb. 6 through April 12, excluding March 13 and 15 of Spring Break week. Returns for foreign students and scholars will be prepared beginning Monday, March 6.

Returns are being prepared from 7 to 9 p.m. with registration taking place in Room 223 of the Curris Business Building on the UNI campus. No appointment is necessary. Room 223 will open at 6:30 p.m. You are encouraged to arrive early to allow students sufficient time to complete your return. Only a limited number of returns will be completed each night.  

VITA was established by the Internal Revenue Service to help low income taxpayers who may find it difficult to pay for tax preparation services. The program also provides accounting students an experiential learning opportunity as they work with taxpayers.

Students will be available to electronically prepare and e-file federal and Iowa tax returns for eligible taxpayers. Accounting students have completed a one-semester comprehensive tax course, plus additional training for IRS certification, and have access to a variety of federal and state reference materials.

Taxpayers seeking assistance should bring: social security cards for the taxpayer, spouse, and dependents; valid photo identification; a copy of last year’s federal and Iowa tax returns; Form W-2, "Wage and Tax Statement," from each employer; Forms 1099, for such things as interest, dividends or retirement payments; a list of other income and expenses; Form 1098-E, student loan interest statement; Form 1098-T, tuition payment statement (also bring institution billing statement); banking information (account and routing numbers) for automatic deposit of refund; and all other information pertinent to your 2016 tax return. 

Clients will be asked about health insurance coverage for themselves and their dependents. Please bring a Form 1095-A (Health Insurance Marketplace), Form 1095-B or 1095-C statement to indicate your health insurance coverage.

For more information, call the UNI Department of Accounting at (319) 273-2394.

January 19, 2017 - 2:09pm

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CEDAR FALLS, IowaThe University of Northern Iowa School of Music will host a concert performance by guest ensemble Trombones de Costa Rica at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Feb. 3, in Bengtson Auditorium inside Russell Hall on the UNI campus.

 Winners of the Costa Rican National Award of Music in 1997 and the City of Passau’s Special Prize in Germany in 1999, Trombones de Costa Rica is an innovative and virtuosic brass ensemble featuring Martín Bonilla, Luis Fred, Leonel Rodríguez, Iván Chinchilla and Alejandro Gutiérrez. The ensemble has also commissioned works from composers around the world. During their visit to UNI, the group will perform standard classical and Costa Rican music.

 The Trombones de Costa Rica visit will also include a master class at 4 p.m. in Bengtson Auditorium on Feb. 3. The appearance of the group is sponsored in part by the UNI School of Music and the Northern Iowa Student Government. Both the master class and concert are free and open to the public.

 For more information on this performance or other School of Music events and activities, contact Caroline Francis at 319-273-2028 or caroline.francis@uni.edu

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