News Release Archive

March 21, 2018 - 1:37pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Campus Compact, a Boston-based nonprofit organization working to advance the public purposes of higher education, has announced that Ashley Sánchez from the University of Northern Iowa is among the 268 students chosen to receive the 2018 Newman Civic Fellows Award.

Ashley Sanchez

Sánchez is a senior majoring in psychology and Spanish at UNI. She is a first-generation college student from a mixed-status family, a McNair Scholar and a double major. After graduating from UNI, Sánchez will be pursuing a master's degree in sociology from Northern Illinois University. She hopes that her graduate degree will help her advance her dream of advocating for and empowering undocumented citizens.

"Ashley is articulate, full of energy, knowledgeable and an effective communicator," said UNI President Mark Nook. "She reflects the spirit of the Newman Civic Fellowship in a variety of ways evidenced through her investment of time and talent to advocate for immigrant rights and her desire to continuously improve and make UNI and the Cedar Valley a better community."

The Newman Civic Fellowship, named for Campus Compact co-founder Frank Newman, is a one-year experience emphasizing personal, professional and civic growth. Through the fellowship, Campus Compact provides a variety of learning and networking opportunities, including a national conference of Newman Civic Fellows in partnership with the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United State Senate. The fellowship also provides fellows with access to apply for exclusive scholarship and post-graduate opportunities.

The Newman Civic Fellowship is supported by the KPMG Foundation and Newman's Own Foundation. For more information about Campus Compact and the full list of 2018 Newman Civic Fellows, visit

March 20, 2018 - 2:30pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Graduate College will hold its 11th Annual Graduate Student Symposium on Tuesday, April 3. The symposium provides graduate students the opportunity to showcase innovative and diverse research and creative performances. Sixty graduate students and 29 graduate faculty judges are participating in this year’s event.

2018 Symposium Schedule:

 - 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Poster Presentation, 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, Maucker Union Ballroom

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

Symposium Scholarship Awards 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 26, in the Rod Library ScholarSpace.

All events are free and open to the public. For more information, visit

March 19, 2018 - 9:47am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – University of Northern Iowa Science Education will host the UNI Science Education Update Conference from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Friday, April 6, at the

Commons Ballroom on UNI's campus. Secondary science teachers from all of over the state of Iowa, as well as UNI faculty and students, are expected to participate.  

The conference features presentations on the latest research in the sciences and science education; innovative science teaching strategies and curriculum aligned with national and state science education standards; and informal discussions on relevant issues in secondary science classrooms. 

Aileen Sullivan, 2018 Iowa Teacher of the Year, UNI alumnus and Ames High School chemistry teacher, will provide the keynote presentation.    

For more information about the conference, contact Larry Escalada, chair of Science Education, at 319-273-7357 or  

March 19, 2018 - 10:08am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The Center for Violence Prevention at the University of Northern Iowa and Western Iowa Tech Community College will host the 12th Annual MVP Student Leadership Summit from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Friday, March 23, in the Rocklin Conference Center at Western Iowa Tech Community College in Sioux City, Iowa.

Two hundred fifty student mentors from Sioux City, Council Bluffs and Treynor will be participating in this year’s summit. Vanessa McNeal, national speaker and film producer, will be the featured keynote presenter. McNeal speaks nationally on how to confront adversity with grace using her personal story as a vehicle to inspire and empower others. Additional topics and learning sessions offered to students will focus on leadership and facilitation skills, healthy relationships, team-building activities, preventing sexual harassment, social media literacy and active bystander strategies.

“Students play a key role in supporting and promoting healthy relationships among their peers. For over a decade, the MVP Student Leadership Summits have provided student leaders with the knowledge and skills to be proactive in reducing incidences of bullying and gender violence in their schools, homes and neighborhoods,” says center director, Alan Heisterkamp.

MVP Strategies was developed by Jackson Katz in 1993 and was the first prevention model to infuse the bystander approach within bullying and gender-based violence prevention programming.

“The Mentors in Violence Prevention program has truly changed our district for the better,” states Paul Gausman, superintendent of the Sioux City Community School District. “Our student mentors have become leaders of positive change through situational leadership examples and in making all feel welcome. We know, like all districts, we are not immune to the challenges of bullying and harassment, but we have become a stronger team by working together through MVP to make our school climate and culture better for all students.”

MVP Strategies is implemented worldwide in colleges, universities, professional and collegiate sports organizations, all branches of the U.S. military, secondary schools, as well as public and private corporations.

To learn more about MVP Strategies, contact Alan Heisterkamp, director of the UNI Center for Violence Prevention, at 319-273-3545 or

March 15, 2018 - 9:53am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Department of Physics will host the UNI/Central Rivers AEA Regional Physics Competition from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 27, at the McLeod Center on UNI's campus. 

High school students from more than 12 area schools are expected to participate, including: Cedar Falls, Clear Lake, Denver, Dike-New Hartford, East Buchanan, Grinnell, Jesup, Nashua-Plainfield, North Butler, St. Ansgar, Waterloo and Waverly. 

The competition stresses creativity and ingenuity as well as 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 existing physics laboratory equipment to determine the time and uncertainty for an event.  

The regional winners and runners-up will advance to the state competition hosted by UNI's Department of Physics on Tuesday, April 10, in the McLeod Center. 

For more information about the competition, contact Larry Escalada, physics professor, at 319-273-2431 or  

March 13, 2018 - 1:28pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – TheatreUNI will present "Doubt: A Parable" April 5 through 8 and 12 through 15 in the Bertha-Martin Theatre in the Strayer-Wood Theatre complex. "Doubt," by John Patrick Shanley, won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and Tony Award for Best Play.

"Doubt" continues to be a timely play as the question of trust continues to be asked throughout the world. When should we trust? Whom should we trust? Why must we trust? Must we live in a world of doubt, suspicion and fear? Set in a parochial school in 1964, "Doubt" focuses on the charismatic Father Flynn and his interest in a young student, a naïve young nun and the skeptical nature of the school’s principal, Sister Aloysius. "Doubt" is a tense, dramatic examination of the potential danger of blind trust and the roles of men vs. women, faith vs. doubt and tradition vs. change.

Directed by Steve Taft, the artistic staff of "Doubt" includes scenic design by Jordan Andrews, light design by Ron Koinzan, costume design by Emily Peck and sound design by Jacob Barnwell. The stage manager is Maddie Grissom.

Tickets are $20 for adults and free for UNI students with their UNI ID card. 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, call the Strayer-Wood Theatre box office at 319-273-6381 or visit

March 13, 2018 - 1:38pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa is now accepting applications for its Master of Arts in Education (MAE) or Advanced Studies Certificate (ASC) in Principalship. The programs are scheduled to begin in August 2018. This two-year program is designed for individuals seeking endorsement in the state of Iowa as pre-K through 12 principals or supervisors of special education.

“We are really proud of our school leadership preparation programs here at the University of Northern Iowa,” says Susan Alborn-Yilek, program coordinator. “Our faculty and staff members are committed to ensuring our graduate students have an exceptional experience and are prepared school leaders upon completion of the program.”

Courses in this program are offered one night per week during the fall and spring semesters via interactive video conferencing. Some courses are offered entirely online using eLearning, a Blackboard learning management system, and the first summer session includes a nine-day on-campus experience. This performance-based program is unique in that it minimizes student class time and maximizes on-site skill development while working with a mentor.

The program begins in August using a cohort model in which a group of students moves together through the course sequence with the degree or certificate to be awarded in the summer of 2020. To learn more about the program and how to apply, visit or contact program coordinator, Sue Alborn-Yilek, at 515-689-5455 or through Voxer at yalbor999.

For information about additional offerings available through UNI Continuing and Distance Education, visit or call 319-273-7740 or 800-648-3864.

March 9, 2018 - 10:17am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa's Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Student Organization will be honoring local nonprofits at the 14th Annual Cedar Valley Nonprofit Awards Luncheon from noon to 1:30 p.m., Thursday, April 5, in the Commons Ballroom on the UNI campus. The luncheon will recognize the outstanding contributions of local nonprofits, nonprofit leaders, and UNI faculty and staff. Abby Turpin from KWWL TV will be the master of ceremonies.

Awards available are Nonprofit Business Partner of the Year; Koob Award for Collaboration; Nonprofit Board Member of the Year; Gordon Mack Legacy Award; Nonprofit Staff Leader of the Year; New Nonprofit Employee of the Year, who will receive a one-year Cedar Valley Nonprofit Association membership; Keri Kulish Award for Student Leadership, who will receive a cash prize of $1,000 sponsored by the Dean Fund for Excellence, College of Education; and Exceptional Nonprofit of the Year, who will receive a $1,000 grant from the Community Foundation of Northeast Iowa.

The Nonprofit Leadership Alliance is a program of UNI's division of Leisure, Youth and Human Services. It is a national certification and credentialing program that works to strengthen the nonprofit sector with a talented and prepared workforce.

Ticket prices are $35 for an individual ticket, $120 for a half table of four people and $240 for a full table of eight people.

For more information and to RSVP, contact Kristina Kofoot at 319-273-4507 or Please include the name/s of attendee/s, organization of attendee/s (if applicable) and any dietary restrictions. 

March 7, 2018 - 3:00pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Fraser Seitel, public relations practitioner, analyst, professor and author, will give a presentation titled "Public Relations in the Age of Nationalism" at the University of Northern Iowa at 7 p.m., Tuesday, March 27, in the Rod Library's Scholar Lounge.

Seitel is the founder and president of Emerald Partners, a public relations firm located in Newark, New Jersey. He has authored three books in his career: "The Practice of Public Relations," "Ideawise: How to Transform Your Ideas" (co-authored with Steve Rivkin) and "Rethinking Reputation" (co-authored with John Doorley).

He is a public relations analyst for Larry King Live, MSNBC, Glenn Beck, Fox Business Network, The Fox Radio Network, National Public Radio, and has written opinion pieces for Fortune Magazine and O’Dwyers PR News. He also teaches as an adjunct professor at the New York University School of Continuing and Professional Studies' graduate program in Public Relations and Corporate Communication.

Seitel has quite the successful career, being named one of the "100 Most Distinguished Public Relations Professionals of the 20th Century." He has also been a senior counselor for Burson-Masteller, senior vice president and director of public affairs at Chase Manhattan Bank and spokesperson for the Rockefeller family.

This event is part of the Hearst Lecture Series and sponsored by the Department of Communication Studies. It is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Gayle Pohl, associate professor of communication studies, at 319-273-6308 or, or Melissa Beall, professor of communication studies, at 319-273-2992 or

March 7, 2018 - 3:06pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa- Over 60 high school teams from around the world will showcase an original robot they designed and built over the course of six weeks in the FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Competition Iowa Regional. The competition will start on Thursday, March 22 and conclude on Saturday, March 24, in the UNI-Dome and McLeod Center on the University of Northern Iowa campus.

In those short six weeks, teams from across the Midwest, Turkey, Brazil and Italy must learn the game rules and then design, build and program a robot. This year’s game is “Power Up” based on classic video arcade games.

A team of around 27 judges will be giving out awards at the end of the day on Saturday. Awards range from robot creativity to outstanding professionalism. At least six teams from the FRC Iowa Regional will progress to the FIRST® Worlds Competition.

Qualifying matches will be held from 9 a.m. to 12:15 p.m., Saturday, March 24, in the McLeod Center. Final matches will be held from 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, followed by the awards ceremony at 6 p.m. The public is welcome to attend the event all day Saturday.

The event will also be open to the public from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Thursday, March 22and from 8 a.m. to 5:45 p.m., Friday, March 23.

For more information, visit or contact Marcy Seavey, UNI STEM coordinator, at 319-273-6253 or

March 2, 2018 - 2:35pm


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 19, through Saturday, April 14. An awards ceremony and opening reception will be held at 7 p.m., Monday, March19, 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 Jamál Currie, associate professor of fine arts at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD) in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Currie will make a selection from approximately 350 student entries and choose a number of merit awards and honorable mentions. He will also give a lecture about his work and his perspective on jurying at 6 p.m., Wednesday, March 7, in KAB 111.

Currie received his M.F.A. from the University of South Florida-Tampa in 1998 and currently leads the Time-Based Media program at MIAD. He is a video, sound and installation artist who has been teaching film and video courses to students of all ages for over a decade. In addition, Currie is the recipient of several awards and fellowships in Wisconsin, including a Black Excellence Award in Education from the Milwaukee Times, an Art Futures Individual Artist Grant and a Wisconsin Arts Board Individual Artist Fellowship.

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 or contact Darrell Taylor, director of the UNI Gallery of Art, at 319-273-6134 or

March 1, 2018 - 11:01am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center will host a one-day summit to provide community conversations between medical professionals, social workers and the general public as they explore and share experiences with end-of-life care. This summit will be held Saturday, March 24, in conjunction with the one-man play, "Mercy Killers," written and performed by Michael Milligan. The free workshop will offer continuing education credit.

"Mercy Killers" looks at the behemoth of the American healthcare system from the vantage point of an average working "Joe." "Mercy Killers" is an unflinching look at the recent past and possible near future of healthcare in America.

Written in the tradition of American playwrights, from Arthur Miller and Clifford Odets to Tony Kutchner and Anna Deavere Smith, in capturing political and social reality in powerful story and unforgettable character.

"Over 60% of all bankruptcies in the U.S. are the result of medical debt," says Milligan. "What most people don’t realize is that the majority of those bankruptcies, the person involved actually had insurance at the onset of their health crises." This discovery led him to collect stories from people suffering financial disaster on top of chronic illnesses. After hearing many horror stories of victims of the growing dysfunction of the American healthcare system, Milligan worked to put a human face on what he believed was a national tragedy. Joe is a blue-collar mechanic with a red state perspective. A staunch believer in the American way of life, he prizes hard work, self-reliance and personal liberty.

"Mercy Killers" is an emotional journey of a man who fights for his wife’s life using every resource, personal and otherwise, he can muster. Caught in a life and death struggle with the healthcare system, Joe finds the bedrock of his life, marriage and self-identity shifting under him.

"In our polarized culture,” Milligan says, “we tend to vilify one another or, rather, we accept too easily the vilification served by the beneficiaries of a divided populous. My experience acting and interacting with audiences around the country has taught me that we as a people are much more than the two dimensional caricatures our political masters would like us to be."

The deadline to register for the summit is Thursday, March 15.  Find more information on the summit and how to register at Tickets can be purchased for "Mercy Killers" online at, by phone at 1-877-549-7469 and at all UNItix box locations.

For more information, contact Amy Hunzelman at or by calling 319-273-3660. 

March 1, 2018 - 11:11am


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 21, in the Great Hall of the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center. 

Two hundred and seventy-nine students have satisfied requirements for admission into the UNI Teacher Education Program and are invited to participate in the formal ceremony, the official induction of students into that field of study. Andy Pattee, superintendent of Cedar Falls Schools, will deliver the Convocation address.   

This will be the 55th group of candidates inducted into the Teacher Education Program since formal ceremonies began in 1991. Parents and friends of the candidates are invited, along with UNI faculty and administrators. A reception will follow in the Gallagher Bluedorn lobby. 

For more information, contact J.D. Cryer, Convocation committee chair, at 319-273-2294 or

February 27, 2018 - 8:47am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – For the past 80 years, University Book & Supply (UBS) has served and supported the University of Northern Iowa and the surrounding community from its convenient location on West 23rd Street. The store has long fulfilled the unofficial role of a one-stop shop for students, alumni and friends, with an inventory ranging from textbooks and course materials to licensed university apparel.

On Tuesday, Feb. 27, a new chapter begins for both UNI and UBS. The address won’t change and that same level of service and support will continue, but the university will officially acquire ownership of the store and reopen it as the UNI Bookstore.

The store’s private shareholders first approached the university in spring of last year about the prospect of UNI purchasing the store. While due diligence was required on both sides, the decision for the university ultimately came down to the impact on students.

“In this case, we saw that we could add value for students,” said Michael Hager, senior vice president of finance operations at UNI.

Hager explained that the UNI Bookstore will operate as a not-for-profit entity of the university, allowing them to maintain reasonable educational costs for students. The change of ownership will also allow the bookstore to be more tightly integrated with the university, enabling store employees to work closely with faculty members and coordinate with the orientation staff to better serve new students.

In terms of convenience, students will now be able to charge the cost of their textbooks and other materials to their U-bill and use their financial aid to cover it. Hager also said that there are plans to bolster the store’s selection of licensed logo wear, with an emphasis on providing quality merchandise at a variety of different price points.

“If you want a lower cost t-shirt, you can find it at the bookstore. If you want a higher quality Nike item, you can find it at the bookstore,” said Hager, describing his hopes for the bookstore. “We’ll have a broader range of materials that people can look at and purchase.

For more information about the UNI Bookstore, visit

February 27, 2018 - 3:02pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa is now accepting applications for its Master of Arts (MA) in School Library Studies. The program is scheduled to begin in August 2018. This two-year program prepares students to become teacher librarians who manage the school library program, serve as leaders in technology and literacy, teachers of digital citizenship and advocates for lifelong readers.

All courses in this program integrate technology skills, preparing graduate students to teach technology and literacy and lead schoolwide learning through co-planning, co-teaching, and providing print and digital resources to students and teachers. The curriculum is aligned with the ALA/AASL Standards for Initial Preparation of School Librarians, and graduates of the program are prepared to enact the Iowa Department of Education vision for school libraries.

“The online School Library Studies program stands out in the preparation of K through 12 teacher librarians throughout Iowa because faculty have K through 12 teaching and library experience and infuse a K through 12 connection and technology integration throughout all courses in the program,” said program coordinator Karla Krueger.

Courses in this program are offered online using eLearning, a Blackboard learning management system. Many courses in this program meet one night per week via interactive video conferencing. One in-person, Saturday class session will be held on UNI’s campus during the first semester.

The program begins in August using a cohort model in which a group of students moves together through the course sequence. To learn more about the program and how to apply, visit

For information about additional offerings available through UNI Continuing and Distance Education, visit or call 319-273-2504 or 800-648-3864.

February 27, 2018 - 3:34pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – This spring break, a group of exceptionally talented University of Northern Iowa School of Music students will travel to southern Brazil March 8 through 19. The group will perform throughout the region in two full concerts and several chamber concerts, collaborating with the Orquestra Sinfônica da Universidade de Caxias do Sul and presenting works by American film composers (Bernstein, Corigliano and Williams).  

Forty-six student musicians will travel with UNI School of Music faculty artist Ross Monroe Winter, violin, and orchestra conductor Rebecca Burkhardt. In addition to performances, the 12-day trip will include extensive rehearsals, sightseeing opportunities and cultural exchange with the students at the host university in Brazil.

Burkhardt noted, “The opportunity for interaction between our students and the students of Universidade de Caxias do Sul and the opportunity to perform side-by-side on great musical works is invaluable, especially in a world that is becoming smaller and smaller.”

Jeffrey Funderburk, director of the UNI School of Music, stated “We are extremely pleased that the UNI School of Music is able to send the Northern Iowa Symphony Orchestra to Brazil for the second time. The experience that our students will gain as they collaborate with the Orchestra of the University of Caxias do Sul in performances of music by American composers will be a major developmental experience that will change perspectives for a lifetime. Experiences such as this are incredibly important for enriched cultural insights as well as broader musical understandings.”

For more information on the tour to Brazil or the UNI School of Music, contact Caroline Francis, UNI School of Music communications and operations coordinator, at 319-273-2028 or

February 26, 2018 - 11:36am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will host the 50th annual Elementary Literacy Conference Friday, April 13, in the Schindler Education Center. This year's theme is “Literature, Laughter and Learning: A Lifelong Love of Literacy!"

The conference will feature Eric Litwin, New York Times best-selling author of the original "Pete the Cat" series and "The Nuts" and "Groovy Joe." Litwin’s books have sold more than 8.5 million copies, been translated into 14 languages and have won 18 literacy awards, including a Theodor Geisel Seuss Honor Award.

Another featured speaker will be John Schumacher (aka Mr. Schu), who is a blogger, part-time lecturer at Rutgers University and Ambassador of School Libraries for Scholastic Book Fairs. Library Journal named him “The Xtreme Librarian” for the high level of exertion—along with some gears and stunts—he uses to get kids reading, and Instructor Magazine named him a "Cool Teacher" for redefining what it means to be a teacher-librarian.

There will be a preconference event from 6 to 7 p.m., Thursday, April 12, in the lobby of the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center, where Eric Litwin will perform a concert for families and do a book signing. The event is free and open to the community.

Since the Beginning Reading Conference began in 1969, it has hosted more than 53 authors in 50 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 is one of the largest conferences hosted on UNI’s campus.

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

February 26, 2018 - 11:51am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa has been named to the Phi Theta Kappa 2018 Transfer Honor Roll, which identifies the top four-year colleges and universities creating dynamic pathways to support transfer students.

Open to all regionally accredited baccalaureate degree-granting institutions, Phi Theta Kappa’s Transfer Honor Roll recognized only 112 colleges and universities for excellence and success in community college transfer pathway development. To be considered, participating institutions complete an application detailing their community college transfer programs. Applications are evaluated in the areas of scholarship and financial aid, admissions outreach, student support services and student engagement opportunities. Transfer Honor Roll colleges will be recognized at PTK Catalyst 2018, Phi Theta Kappa’s annual convention, in Kansas City, Missouri, April 19-21, 2018.

"In order to ensure their continued success, the Transfer Honor Roll Program identifies colleges and universities that understand the unique needs of transfer students and applauds the dynamic pathways these colleges have created to continue fostering student success among transfer students at the four-year college," said Lynn Tincher-Ladner, president and CEO of Phi Theta Kappa.

“The University of Northern Iowa is very honored and pleased to be recognized by Phi Theta Kappa," said Matt Kroeger, associate vice president for enrollment management at UNI. "Approximately one-third of our undergraduates come to UNI as transfer students. This recognition highlights the support that we provide to transfer students when they discover UNI and aligns with our goal of being the top choice destination for transfer students in Iowa."

Phi Theta Kappa is the premier honor society recognizing the academic achievement of students at associate degree-granting colleges and helping them to grow as scholars and leaders. The Society is made up of more than 3.5 million members and nearly 1,300 chapters in nine nations.

For more information about Phi Theta Kappa, visit For more information about transferring to UNI, visit

February 23, 2018 - 10:55am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa has been named one of the safest college campuses in the nation, according to a new ranking by the National Council for Home Safety and Security.

Safest Campus Badge

The 2018 "Safest College Campuses in America" list ranked UNI at No. 30 out of 243 universities and colleges. The list is compiled using the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting and the Campus Security Survey created by the U.S. Department of Education. The highest ranked university campuses boast low total campus and local area crime, according to the council.

"In today's context, families are naturally worried about safety in schools and on campuses," said Paula Knudson, UNI vice president for Student Affairs. "We have many safety measures in place at UNI and are vigilant about providing bystander training and interventions in a timely fashion. UNI prioritizes all aspects of student well-being and success. You can't be your best if you are worried or fearful, and we want our students to be able to be their best."

A number of safety resources are available to UNI students, faculty and staff, such as safety escorts, training, counseling, an on-campus police force and multiple alert systems. To further enhance campus safety, pathways and sidewalks are well lit. Residence halls can only be entered by using a security card or key, and a full-time professional staff person lives in and supervises each residence hall.

The National Council for Home Safety and Security is a trade association comprised of home security professionals across the United States. The council advocates for safe communities and home safety with a strong focus on community involvement.

The full 2018 "Safest College Campuses in America" list can be found at

February 23, 2018 - 2:30pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will host Robyn Ochs, educator, speaker, grassroots activist, and editor of the Bi Women Quarterly and two anthologies, at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, March 1, in the Commons Ballroom. She will present "Beyond Binaries: Identities and Sexuality."

Ochs' writings have been published in numerous bi, women's studies, multicultural and LGBTQ+ anthologies, and she has taught university courses in gender and sexuality studies.

An advocate for the rights of people of all orientations and genders to live safely, openly, and with full access and opportunity, Ochs' work focuses on increasing awareness and understanding of complex identities and mobilizing people to be powerful allies to one another within and across identities and social movements.

This event is presented by the Women's and Gender Studies Program, Center for Excellence in Teaching & Learning, College of Humanities, Arts and Sciences, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, and UNI Proud. For more information, contact the Women's and Gender Studies Program at

February 22, 2018 - 10:14am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Veteran Association (UNIVA), partnering with University of Northern Iowa Military and Veteran Student Services (MVSS), will host its second annual statewide PTSD Awareness Conference from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Wednesday, March 28, in the Maucker Union on the UNI campus.

The conference will cover issues and concerns related to PTSD that not only originate from military experiences but also will include topics regarding sexual assault, addictions and other traumas. Speakers will present on subjects such as mental, emotional and academic support for those suffering from PTSD; the conference will focus on therapy such as art, music, service dogs and forgiveness; and will be a therapeutic intervention to the specific as well as broad challenges of changing generations of practitioners providing services to the evolving cultures of present day.

The conference will include an open panel discussion on how PTSD affects people during their day-to-day life, college and professional careers. This event will raise awareness to an unseen disorder by many. It will provide an opportunity to support continuing education to professionals and the general community alike.

The PTSD Awareness Conference was made possible through a partnership between the UNI Counseling Center, UNI Student Disability Services, UNI Student Wellness Services, UNI Veteran Association and UNI MVSS. The general registration fee is $10; free for UNI students. To register, visit For more information, contact Chiquita Loveless, coordinator for UNI MVSS, at 319-273-3040 or

February 21, 2018 - 3:25pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – University of Northern Iowa Recreation Services will host Rock Revolution—Pirates of the Carabiner Rock Climbing Competition from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 24, at the Wellness and Recreation Center.

This 19th annual climbing competition is a friendly and fun-spirited competition open to climbers of all skill levels. Interested participants can stop by the Wellness and Recreation Center, Room 174, for more information. Registration until Friday, Feb. 23 is $30; day-of registration is $40.

February 21, 2018 - 3:28pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa—Every year, nationally renowned Nonprofit Leadership Alliance (NLA) students seek proposals for consulting projects. Five projects were accepted last year and were presented at the Alliance Management Institute (AMI) conference in Kansas City, Missouri, last month. The projects received two first-place awards and one second-place award, including the “What’s the Big Idea” award. Cedar Valley nonprofit agencies are encouraged to submit proposals that will benefit students in acquiring research skills as well as informing best practices to the partnering agencies through potential findings.

Proposals are currently being accepted for one-year consulting projects that will be undertaken from spring 2018 to spring of 2019. The consulting committee will evaluate the proposals and select up to five proposals, and accepted proposals will be announced promptly. Selected projects could potentially result in publication and/or presentation at the AMI conference that will be held in January 2019 in Orlando, Florida.

For a Request for Proposal (RFP) application, please visit Proposals are due by 5 p.m., Friday, March 16.

For more information, email Morgan Rahe at or Stanley Ebede at

February 21, 2018 - 3:52pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will host Jessica Setnick, an internationally known dietitian and eating disorder expert, at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 27, in the Maucker Union Ballroom. Setnick will present "Stop Bullying Your Body: Learn How Body Image Gets its Start and How to Quiet the Bully Inside Your Head."

Having recovered from her own eating disorder, Setnick's passion is promoting a positive relationship with food and eating as key components of a healthy and happy life.

This event is sponsored by BIEDA (Body Image and Eating Disorder Awareness—Student Organization), Alpha Sigma Tau and Student Wellness Services.

February 20, 2018 - 3:01pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Marshall Center School will present a talk at 2 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 24, about the "abc Project" creation of clothing from the 1920s in the historic one-room school at the University of Northern Iowa.

The Friends of the UNI Museum invite participants to the historic schoolhouse to see and touch reproduction clothing from the era worn by Iowa citizens in the learning centers all around the state. Research from historical societies and museums from seven counties helped show a slice of life in Iowa.

This is the sixth offering in the Friends of UNI Museum Rural Schoolhouse Speaker Series. All Speaker Series presentations are open to the public, and there is no admission fee. Free parking on campus is also available for this event.

For more information, contact Amy RohrBerg, Friend of the UNI Museum board member and associate professor in the Department of Theatre, at 319-273-6459 or

February 16, 2018 - 1:44pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa's Center for Violence Prevention (CVP) and the Governor’s Office on Bullying Prevention Task Force released its "Primary Prevention Action Report for Iowa Schools and Communities."

Members of the task force were representative of pre-K through 12 education, public health professionals, youth athletics, victim services and legal aid, colleges and universities, and LGBTQ advocates. Monthly meetings were held throughout 2017 to evaluate and assess current school and community programming and practices in preventing gender violence and all forms of bullying.

Recommendations for continued education and training opportunities to enhance and improve the implementation of multi-level, multi-systemic gender violence and bullying prevention practices are provided in the report.

The report examines the overarching cause and scope of violence and abuse and provides concrete and realistic strategies for school and community stakeholders to consider and implement.

"As parents, educators and community stakeholders, we all play an important role in fostering healthy relationships, nurturing homes, safe schools and thriving neighborhoods," states Alan Heisterkamp, CVP director. "This report provides school and community leaders with a framework for prioritizing and institutionalizing sound gender violence and bullying prevention practices."

Professional development and training opportunities focused on the multi-level, multi-systemic approach to preventing violence and abuse will be offered to school and community leaders later this summer or early fall and will support and complement the Iowa Department of Education’s new online Bullying Investigating Training for school leaders. 

"We have a good foundation in place for protecting Iowa students from bullying, harassment and discrimination," said Ryan Wise, Iowa Department of Education Director. "This new training builds on that foundation by helping educators better understand bullying so that they can provide the support that their students need."

"Every student deserves to feel safe and respected, so I appreciate the task force’s work on developing realistic strategies for schools and communities," said Gov. Kim Reynolds. "We must continue our focus on bullying prevention, and the report delivers the important message that everyone has a role to play.

To review the task force’s "Primary Prevention Action Report for Iowa Schools and Communities" in its entirety, go to, or contact Heisterkamp at 319-273-3545 or

February 14, 2018 - 9:11am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will host UNI Day at the Statehouse from noon to 2 p.m., Monday, Feb. 19, at the Iowa Capitol in Des Moines. The event is an educational opportunity to highlight UNI's impact across the state of Iowa by showcasing programs, services, students and alumni.

UNI is known for Educating Iowans for Iowa™:

- 90% of UNI's students are from Iowa.

- The vast majority of UNI students from Iowa remain in the state to work or continue their education after graduating.

- Half of UNI's non-resident students stay in Iowa after graduation, making the university a talent pipeline.

- 99% of the state's school districts, in all 99 counties, employ UNI educators.

An affordable education is critical to the vitality of Iowa's economy and workforce. The trend of UNI students taking less time to graduate and earn their degree continues for a fourth year. And, breaking away from national trends, UNI has seen its average student loan indebtedness decrease by 13% over the past seven years. UNI provides students with real-world, hands-on experience enabling students to not only find a job after graduation, but to be able to start making an impact from day one.

At UNI Day at the Statehouse, 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 13, 2018 - 3:43pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will host a diversity colloquium titled “The Relevance of Disability Studies in Education: A Framework for Change.” This event will be held from 7 to 8:30 p.m., Monday, Feb. 19, in the Scholar Space in Rod Library.

Disability Studies in Education (DSE) promotes the understanding of disability from a social model perspective, drawing on the social, cultural, historical, philosophical and literary to challenge medical, scientific and psychological models of disability as they relate to education.

With an interest in promoting social justice and equitable and inclusive opportunities for all, a DSE framework rejects traditional interpretations of disability and acknowledges disability as socially constructed, complex and intersectional.

This panel presentation will share how a DSE framework within K through 12 and higher education settings creates spaces for change and transformation.

For more information about this panel, contact Marybeth Stalp, department head and professor in the Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminology, at 319-273-2786 or

February 12, 2018 - 9:52am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's Interpreters Theatre will present "Live Thy Neighbor" at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, March 1 to Saturday, March 3, in the Interpreters Theatre in 040 Lang Hall.

The people you call the cops on because they are still too loud? A young couple whose intimacy you hear through the walls? That lady who walks in uninvited at all times? The immigrants who curse in a strange language? The people who are hiding in the basement together during the war? The guy who does bad things when you are not looking? Written by graduate student, Milica Njezic, "Live Thy Neighbor" is a series of poetic performances that explores what it means to be a neighbor in times of crisis.

This event is free and open to the public, but seating is limited. This production contains mature language and situations. Tickets can be reserved through Eventbrite, but will expire at 7:15 p.m. each night. Any non-reserved tickets are first come, first serve basis beginning at 6:30 p.m. The doors will open at 7 p.m.

For more information, contact Amandajean Freking Nolte at 319-273-3793 or

February 12, 2018 - 9:58am


Cedar Falls, Iowa—The 12th annual African-American Read-In will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 22, in Maucker Union and Rod Library on the University of Northern Iowa campus. The two featured guests at the event this year are Don Tate and Tiffany Flowers.

Don Tate has received multiple awards for his children’s books including “The Cart That Carried Martin” and “Hope’s Gift”. He is also the first author to be a two-time winner of the Ezra Jack Keats Book Award for writing. Tate is a founding host of the blog The Brown Bookshelf and a member of the #WeNeedDiverseBooksCampaign.

Tiffany Flowers is currently an assistant professor of education at Georgia State University Perimeter College. Throughout her career, she has published various academic articles and reviews and over 16 children books for grades 1-8. Flowers has also supported funding for multiple research-based literacy projects in schools and community centers.

Hundreds of first graders from around the area will be participating in this event.

For more information, visit or contact Gloria Holmes, associate professor of curriculum and instruction, at 319-273-2007 or

February 6, 2018 - 2:34pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Alex Oberle, University of Northern Iowa associate professor of geography and coordinator for the Geographic Alliance of Iowa (GAI), was recently named a National Geographic Education Fellow by the National Geographic Society for the 2017-2018 academic year. Oberle received this fellowship along with four other educators because of their accomplishments and contributions in education. He is the only representative out of the group from higher education.

Alex Oberle

Oberle's geography education research centers on geospatial technologies for teaching and learning as well as internationalizing teacher education. Geospatial technology is a term used to describe the range of modern tools used to map and analyze the Earth’s environmental and human aspects. At UNI, he particularly strives to create opportunities to engage pre-service teachers in funded undergraduate research that advances geography education and greatly strengthens their career preparation. His research has been published in the Journal of Geography in Higher Education, Journal of Geography and Latin American geography journals.

This fellowship will allow him to extend his research and outreach to a national level.  He will be supporting National Geographic with the implementation and training of the Geo-Inquiry Process. This will reach an estimated 50,000 middle school students in all 50 states, as well as Washington, D.C. and Canada. This bold educational effort is designed to help students understand the world by examining the patterns, processes and interactions between human and natural systems. The Geo-Inquiry Process also allows students and educators to solve community issues with geographic skills. Through the impact of this fellowship, Oberle anticipates bringing the Geo-Inquiry Process back to Iowa and UNI to provide opportunities for Iowa educators, UNI pre-service teachers and UNI geography majors.

“The spirit of the National Geographic Education fellowship opportunities reflect the mission of National Geographic Education, something that resonates so well with teachers, pre-service teachers, geographers and the vision/mission of UNI: ‘We teach kids about the world and how it works, empowering them to succeed and to make it a better place,’" said Oberle.

For more information about National Geographic's commitment to education and other opportunities to get involved, visit

February 5, 2018 - 2:53pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa—The University of Northern Iowa's Office of Undergraduate Studies and First-Year Cornerstone Program will host writer, performer and video maker Dylan Marron at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 15, in the Great Hall of the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center. He will present "Beta Snowflake Cuck: Being a Digital Creator in 2018." The talk is free and open to the public.

Dylan Marron

Marron is an IFP Gotham Award and Drama Desk-nominated writer, performer and video maker. He is the voice of Carlos on the hit podcast "Welcome to Night Vale," an alum of the New York Neo Futurists and the creator of "Every Single Word" (Tumblr's "Most Viral Blog" of 2015 and Shorty Award Nominee), a video series that edits down popular films to only feature the words spoken by people of color.

As a writer and correspondent at, Marron created, hosted and produced "Sitting in Bathrooms with Trans People," "Shutting Down Bullsh*t" and the "Unboxing" series. 

He is currently working on "Conversations with People Who Hate Me," a podcast where he has extended conversations with some of the folks who have said the most negative or hateful things about him on the internet. It was selected as a "podcast pick" by USA Today and The Guardian.

For more information about Marron's visit to UNI, contact Rachel Morgan, instructor in the Department of Languages & Literatures, at 319-273-2016 or


January 29, 2018 - 3:00pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – University of Northern Iowa alumni are invited to apply for a 2018 Merchant Scholarship. Merchant Scholarship recipients must be attending or planning to attend an accredited graduate or professional school at an educational institution as a full-time student.

The scholarships are awarded from a trust established in 1951 to honor Frank Ivan Merchant and his sister, Kate Matilda Merchant. Frank was a professor of Latin and Greek and served as head of the Department of Foreign Languages at UNI, then Iowa State Teachers College. He lived with his sister, who taught piano lessons until her death in 1942.

Scholarships are awarded on the basis of ability, achievement, character, potential and service to society.

Applications and instructions for applying are available online through the Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President at

Deadline for completed applications is March 1, 2018. Contact Merchant Scholarship administrator Krista Herrera with any questions at 319-273-2519 or

January 29, 2018 - 3:16pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa - Student success and engaged learning are at the heart of the University of Northern Iowa mission. In every classroom, students encounter everything from service work to new research to creative endeavors. No other project at UNI offers these experiences better than the Tiny House Project, developed in the Department of Technology.

This course teaches students to solve unique problems in innovative ways. These tiny houses always go toward a cause or nonprofit that can truly put the houses to use for people and organizations in need. We need your help to continue this meaningful and impactful program.

Visit to learn how you can help UNI students build the next tiny house.

January 29, 2018 - 3:59pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – TheatreUNI will present "Hair," the iconic American musical by James Rado, Gerome Ragni and Galt McDermot, at 7:30 p.m., Feb. 22, 23, 24, March 1, 2 and 3, and at 2 p.m., Feb. 25 and March 4, in the Strayer-Wood Theatre on the University of Northern Iowa campus.

TheatreUNI’s 2018 production celebrates of the 50th anniversary of "Hair: The American Tribal Love Rock Musical," which debuted on Broadway in 1968. The show centers on a group of hippies in the late 1960s who explore peace, love, sex and discrimination in the shadow of the Vietnam War. The show includes the iconic musical numbers: “Aquarius,” “Let the Sun Shine In” and “Good Morning Starshine,” among others, transporting audiences into a psychedelic fantasy of 1960s New York. Though set in 1968, the cast’s cries of “Peace now, freedom now!” and its message of tolerance and love ring true in 2018.

"Hair" is the third offering of TheatreUNI’s 2017-18 season. The production is directed by Amy S. Osatinski, assistant professor of directing, and music is directed by Rebecca Burkhart, professor in the UNI School of Music, and Seth Butler. Scenic design is by Mark S. Parrott, associate professor of design, and costume design is by Amy S. RohrBerg, associate professor of costume design. Lighting design is by guest artist Jess Fialko and sound design is by Shawn Poellet. The production stage manager is Madison Knaack.

Tickets are $16 for adults and free for UNI students with their UNI ID card. 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, call the Strayer-Wood Theatre box office at 319-273-6381 or visit

January 26, 2018 - 2:05pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa - The University of Northern Iowa construction management program recently received recognition in three different rankings.

The program was ranked third in College Factual’s 10 Best Colleges and Universities for Highly Paid Construction Management Graduates, 16th in College Factual’s Top Construction Management Colleges in the U.S: Nationwide and 22nd in Best Value Schools’ 50 Best Value Schools for Construction Management. Construction management has been recognized by these rankings since the late 2000s.

UNI’s construction management program is designed to prepare management-oriented professionals for careers in the construction industry: residential, commercial, heavy and highway construction, and marketing. UNI’s program is also well known for having a nearly 100 percent placement rate after graduation. Most students will have at least one job offer up to a year before graduation.

For more information about UNI’s construction management program, visit or contact Shahram VarzaVand, professor of construction management, at 319-273-6428 or

January 24, 2018 - 3:10pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Susan Faludi, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, will give a lecture titled "In the Darkroom of Identity" at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 6, in the Kamerick Art Center auditorium at the University of Northern Iowa.

According to her biography on the Henry Holt and Company website, Faludi is the author of the bestselling book, "Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women," which won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction. Her most recent book, titled "In the Darkroom," is a memoir of her transgender father and a meditation on identity in its many forms. This book won the Kirkus Prize for Nonfiction. Her work has been featured in The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times and The Nation.

Faludi will be the fifth speaker in the Meryl Norton Hearst Lecture Series, which is sponsored by the College of Humanities, Arts and Sciences and the Department of Communication Studies. This event is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Gayle Pohl, associated professor of communications studies, at 319-273-6308 or, or Melissa Beall, professor of communication studies, at 319-273-2992 or

January 23, 2018 - 1:54pm


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. 5 through April 11 (excluding March 12 and 14 of spring break week). Returns for foreign students and scholars will be prepared beginning Monday, March 5.

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 2017 tax return. 

New requirement: 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 22, 2018 - 11:34am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa- The University of Northern Iowa College of Education will host the seventh annual African-American Children and Families Conference from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, Feb. 23,in Maucker Union. A pre-conference will be held from 5 to 9 p.m., Thursday, Feb 22. The theme for this year’s conference is “Pass it On: Lessons Learned From Our Ancestors.”

This conference is designed for educators, administrators, childcare providers, law enforcers, policy makers, health care professionals, social workers, business leaders and students of all ages. The goal of the conference is to promote a better understanding of culture, ethnicity, race, socioeconomic status and the needs of African-American families. Participants will engage in networking, sharing ideas and meeting new colleagues to improve the quality of life for African-American children and families.

The keynote speaker this year is Gail L. Thompson, the Wells Fargo Endowed Professor of Education at Fayetteville State University. Thompson has written multiple books, co-hosted radio programs and appeared on PBS television networks. In 2009, she was selected as a new member of the African-American Advisory Committee by the California Department of Education.

Both conferences are open to the public; registration is free for UNI students and faculty as well as middle and high school students. For more information or to register, visit or contact Gloria Kirkland-Holmes, associate professor of curriculum and instruction, at 319-273-2007 or

January 22, 2018 - 2:58pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Michele Norris, famed journalist and former host of National Public Radio’s "All Things Considered," will present "The Race Card Project" at the University of Northern Iowa’s Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center (GBPAC) at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 30. The event is free but will be ticketed. Tickets must be picked up in person at the GBPAC.

Michele Norris
Michele Norris, famed journalist and former host of National Public Radio’s "All Things Considered."

Norris is, according to her web page, one of the most trusted voices in American journalism. Her voice informs, engages and enlightens listeners with thoughtful interviews and in-depth reporting as one of the hosts of NPR’s flagship afternoon broadcast, "All Things Considered." Norris uses an approachable interviewing style that is at once relaxed and rigorous. She’s interviewed world leaders, Nobel laureates, Oscar winners, American presidents, military leaders, influential newsmakers and astronauts traveling in outer space.

Norris’ "The Race Card Project" has been presented across the United States to rave reviews. Through it, participants are asked to think about their experiences, questions, dreams and observations about race and identity. Then the participants must distill those thoughts to just one six-word sentence. The project actually began as a conversation exercise during her book tour, but the response was so overwhelming that Norris decided to keep it going. 

“I've listened to Michele Norris speak before and was fascinated with how she describes grace and the role it plays in our lives,” said Michael Hager, senior vice president for finance and operations at UNI. Hager heard Norris speak in 2017 during a conference. “I remember thinking she would be a great person to invite to the UNI campus as her approach is similar to how our campus discusses differences and similarities, including hope for the future. The candor with which she shares about her own family is amazing. I'm excited she will be on campus.”

For more information about the presentation, contact Gwenne Berry, assistant to the president and chief diversity officer, at 319-273-2820 or For ticketing information, visit the GBPAC on UNI’s campus.

January 19, 2018 - 9:32am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa's Nonprofit Leadership Alliance (NLA) received the "What's the Big Idea?" Award at the annual Alliance Management Institute, an educational conference geared toward students planning a career in the nonprofit sector, in early January.

Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Award
Susan Tomlinson Schmidt, CNP and President of the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance; Madelyn Christensen, CNP; Trevor Schmitt; Morgan Rahe; JD Waybill; Emily Dvorak; and Lee Sherman, President & CEO, National Human Services Assembly

UNI's Nonprofit Leadership Alliance is a student-run organization dedicated to educating, preparing and certifying professionals to strengthen and lead nonprofit organizations. The group sent 41 students to the conference in Kansas City, Missouri, to attend educational workshops, network and experience career development activities, including research and awards presentations.

The "What's the Big Idea?" Award recognizes a group of NLA students who have created an innovative solution to address a major challenge facing the nonprofit sector. The 2018 groups focused on diversity, equity and inclusion in the nonprofit sector. UNI's "Big Idea" was presented in front of a panel of judges and 500 conference attendees. As the winning team, UNI received the "What's the Big Idea? Award and $1,000 for the organization.

In addition to receiving the "What's the Big Idea?" Award, students also participated in poster presentation sessions that allowed them to showcase best practices from their campus Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Student Association or for the nonprofit sector and research conducted in one or more of the Alliance competency areas. UNI students received first and second place in Undergraduate Research and first place in Best Practices of the Nonprofit Sector.

For more information about UNI's Nonprofit Leadership Alliance, visit or contact Julianne Gassman, campus executive director of NLA, at 319-273-2204 or, or Kristina Kofoot, community engagement program coordinator for Undergraduate Studies, at 319-273-4507 or

January 19, 2018 - 9:39am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Bob Ryan, retired sports writer for the Boston Globe and regular contributor for ESPN's "Around the Horn" sports roundtable discussion show, will give a presentation titled "Bob Ryan: You Know Me From Television, But When I Look in the Mirror, I See a Writer" at the University of Northern Iowa at 7 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 25, in the McLeod Center's Alumni Suite.

Ryan has been referred to as "the quintessential American sportswriter" and a guru of basketball. He retired from the Globe in 2012, but continues to report and appear on ESPN and other programs. He also has his own podcast, "Bob Ryan's Boston Podcast."

His presentation is part of the Hearst Lecture Series presented by the College of Humanities, Arts and Sciences and the Department of Communication Studies. This event is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Gayle Pohl, associated professor of communications studies, at 319-273-6308 or

January 11, 2018 - 11:51am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The UNI School of Music will present a winter opera performance of Engelbert Humperdinck’s "Hansel & Gretel." The performances will be held at 7:30 p.m., Friday, Jan. 26 and 2 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 28, in the Great Hall in the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center.

These performances will feature the UNI Opera Ensemble under the direction of Mitra Sadeghpour, director, and Korey Barrett, vocal coach, and will feature the Northern Iowa Symphony Orchestra led by Rebecca Burkhardt, conductor.

In Humperdinck’s operatic version of the Grimm brothers' fairy tale, the mischievous Hansel and adorable Gretel make their way through the forest searching for strawberries and meet a magical cast of characters along the way. These performances will feature the full production and is a collaboration of theatre, dance and music students.

Admission to the opera performances will be ticketed. To purchase tickets, call 319-273-4TIX or visit For more information on this or other School of Music events, call 319-273-2028 or visit

January 4, 2018 - 10:19am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will end Martin Luther King Jr. Week activities on Jan. 20 with a presentation by Carol Anderson, author of "White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide." Anderson’s lecture will begin at 7 p.m. in Lang Hall and is free and open to the public.

Anderson’s book, "White Rage," was chosen as the campus’ inaugural President’s Diversity Common Read. Through the common read process, the book is made available to all members of the campus community interested in participating. Then individuals sign up to discuss the book in groups led by 17 groups and pairs of facilitators over the fall 2017 semester. Approximately 200 people participated, according to Gwenne Berry, assistant to the president and chief diversity officer at UNI.

Carol Anderson

Carol Anderson, author of "White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide."

In "White Rage," according to its description on, "Anderson pulls back the veil that has long covered actions made in the name of protecting democracy, fiscal responsibility or protection against fraud, rendering visible the long lineage of white rage. Compelling and dramatic in the unimpeachable history it relates, "White Rage" will add an important new dimension to the national conversation about race in America." The book has a long list of positive reviews and, in the midst of those accolades, was named a National Book Critics Circle Award Winner, a New York Times Bestseller, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, a Washington Post Notable Nonfiction Book of the Year, a Boston Globe Best Book of 2016 and a Chicago Review of Books Best Nonfiction Book of 2016.

"There was exceptionally high interest in the book," said Berry, who noted that many of the 17 groups filled up in less than a day. "I think people are hungry not just for the kind of information presented in the book, but also to talk about the difficult subject of race and their own experience with race relations."

Berry, who co-facilitated a common read group with Paula Knudson, vice president for student affairs, said her group initially struggled to get comfortable enough with one another to "make mistakes." "When you start to talk about race, about the incredibly violent and shameful history associated with it in this country, people get very uncomfortable. But out of that discomfort comes growth and understanding, so I think it’s important to engage it."

Susan Hill, director of UNI’s Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, also co-facilitated a group. "White Rage is a difficult, painful and necessary book for white people to read. The book made many of us who were unaware of how deeply racism is embedded in very creation of the U.S. sad, angry and committed to doing our part to undo and undermine the effects of white rage."

"Once we announced that Anderson would be on campus to talk about the book, I suddenly had more requests for the book. I also had some people ask if they could put together an ad hoc common read group in advance of Anderson’s appearance here. It’s been very exciting to see that," said Berry. 

Both the Cedar Falls and Waterloo public libraries have extra copies of the book for loan. Anderson will set aside time to sign copies following her presentation. A reception will precede the lecture in the Center for Multicultural Education at 3 p.m. on Jan. 20.

For more information, contact Berry at 319-273-2820 or




January 3, 2018 - 3:47pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The UNI Tallgrass Prairie Center will host a series of restoration and natural management seminars in 2018.

The first seminar will feature Kristine Nemec, who will present “Creating the Case for Habitat in Rights-of-Way” at 4 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 11. In her talk, Nemec will discuss the use of a decision support tool that addresses the benefits and barriers of pollinator habitat in utility and transportation rights-of-way.

Nemec manages the Integrated Roadside Vegetation Management program, which is in its 30th year at UNI. Nemec is also an active participant of the Rights-of-Way as Habitat Working Group, which is facilitated by the Energy Resource Center at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Other topics of this four-part series, which is scheduled January-April, include wetland mitigation, habitat establishment and maintenance, and landscaping with native plants. All seminars will be held at the Tallgrass Prairie Center, located at 2412 W. 27th Street, Cedar Falls.

For more information, contact Staci Mueller, outreach coordinator at the Tallgrass Prairie Center, at, or find complete details at

December 22, 2017 - 2:58pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa conducted its annual emergency exercise on Dec. 19, 2017.

The exercise simulated a fire in an administration building. Participants included the UNI Department of Public Safety, the Cedar Falls Fire Department and the Cedar Falls Police Department.

The purpose of the exercise was to review, assess and evaluate the university's emergency plans and capabilities.

The exercise also assessed the university's internal notification process that is used to notify stakeholders when an on-campus incident occurs.

For more information about UNI's evacuation plans, visit

December 15, 2017 - 10:55am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Gallery of Art will present "Anastylosis Project" from Monday, Jan. 8, through Tuesday, Feb. 27. This exhibition represents nearly two decades of work by artist Mary Griep, professor emerita of art and art history at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota. At 6 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 17, Griep will present a lecture in Kamerick Art Building, Room 111. An opening reception will follow.

"Anastylosis Project" draws inspiration from 11th and 12th century sacred architecture from around the world, here depicted in numerous large-scale drawings. Among the buildings illustrated are the Notre Dame Cathedral of Chartres (France), the Hindu temple of Angkor Wat (Cambodia), the Buddhist temple of Thatbyinnyu (Myanmar), the Ulu Camii (Great Mosque) of Divrigi (Turkey), the Mayan Palace of the Governors (Mexico), the Stavkirke of Borgund (Norway), the Mayan temple El Castillo (Mexico), the Byzantine Orthodox Church Hagios Dimitrios (Greece), the Franziskanerkirche of Salzburg (Austria) and the Basilica of San Marco of Venice (Italy), as well as the artist’s newest work, the Baptistery of Saint John, in Florence (Italy).

"Anastylosis" refers to the practice of restoring a monument by dismantling and rebuilding the structure using the original methods and materials as closely as possible. The exhibition title is a nod to each building’s physical, cultural and historical layers, and a celebration of the palimpsest that results as monuments are reimagined at different moments in history. Griep’s drawings compress centuries of use, spiritual practice and restoration, offering a reflection on the long and numinous lives of these sacred spaces.

Support for this project has been generously provided by the Institute for the Study of Religion and Culture, Payap University, Chiang Mai, Thailand; the Associated Colleges of the Midwest; the Anderson Center, Red Wing, Minnesota; the City of Salzburg, Austria; the Minnesota State Arts Board; the Ella and Kaare Nygaard Foundation; and St. Olaf College.

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. Please note: the gallery will be closed on Monday, Jan. 15 for the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday. For additional information, visit or contact Darrell Taylor, director of the UNI Gallery of Art, at 319-273-6134 or

December 15, 2017 - 12:01pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Gallery of Art will present an exhibition titled "Women as Makers," which will be open to the public on the following dates: Jan. 8 – Feb. 27; March 19 – April 14; and April 23 – May 5. Please note: the gallery will be closed Monday, Jan. 15, for the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday.

This UNI Permanent Art Collection exhibition was co-curated by Elizabeth Sutton and gallery director Darrell Taylor. Some of the artworks featured are by artists Elisabeth Frink, Akane Kirimura, Käthe Kollwitz, Berenice Abbott, Liisa Hallamaa and Marjorie Nuhn. Also presented are historical objects borrowed from the UNI Museum.

Sutton states, "Women’s contributions to society are often undervalued. Women represented more than 60 percent of students in art programs in 2006 and 51 percent of professional visual artists. However, galleries, museums, universities, canonical art history texts and other institutions continue to under-represent and under-compensate women. Drawing from UNI’s Permanent Art Collection and the UNI Museum collection, this show makes visible the many ways in which women shape and benefit society through their art and labor."

Sutton has also collaborated with Rod Library’s Fine and Performing Arts librarian Angela Pratesi to host a collaborative writing and editing initiative, which endeavors to include more women artists on Wikipedia, the online free encyclopedia. This edit-a-thon will take place March 24, 2018. Visit the exhibition website for digital images of the works on display and Wikipedia entries:

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. For additional information, visit, or contact Darrell Taylor, director of the UNI Gallery of Art, at 319-273-6134 or

December 12, 2017 - 9:33am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa will host its annual fall Commencement ceremony at 11 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 16, in the McLeod Center. This year’s Commencement speaker delivering the student address is Megan Kennedy, a senior psychology and family services major.

Approximately 560 graduates will participate in Commencement. The names of candidates will be read by Gretta Berghammer, professor of theatre.

Following the ceremony, there will be a reception on the concourse level inside the McLeod Center with light refreshments provided. Graduates and guests are encouraged to attend. There will also be areas set up for families and graduates to take pictures. For family and friends who are unable to attend, the ceremony will be streamed live starting at 11 a.m. at

For additional information, visit or contact Joyce Morrow, university registrar, at 319-273-2244 or

December 12, 2017 - 2:11pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – University of Northern Iowa industrial technology students, in collaboration with the Regents' Center for Early Developmental Education, are helping children across the state "scale up" their skills as part of Ramps & Pathways by creating the materials needed for more than 250 pre-made kits.

Ramps & Pathways is an integrative STEM activity that fosters children's understanding of force and motion and challenges spatial thinking as they design and engineer ramps and pathway systems to move objects from one point to another. Teachers apply for a grant, and when chosen by the STEM Advisory Committee in each STEM Hub, they receive a classroom set of unit blocks, a 30-piece set of track for constructing ramp systems, objects to roll on the track, and a teacher guide and STEM resource book.

Ramps and Pathways

Through their own research, the Regents' Center has developed materials that support young children in doing STEM investigations, posing their own and eventually creating outside engineering and design challenges. These materials are not readily available to teachers. For this project, the Regents' Center formed a partnership with UNI’s Department of Industrial Technology (DIT). They were able to bring prototypes of educational materials to the DIT and have them use these prototypes to create high-quality materials that will serve young STEM investigators and their teachers well. The benefit to the DIT was an authentic experience for their undergraduate and graduate students to research sources for raw materials, methods of production and design, and carry out production.

The center has been successful on a small scale and was excited for this opportunity to bring this partnership to a large scale with an added challenge of following public university guidelines and procedures. To date, DIT has produced 7,500 pieces of track (ramps) and 62,0000 blocks. Each kit requires approximately 35-40 hours to complete. When complete, the DIT students and staff deliver the kits to locations across Iowa, including urban and rural classrooms.

"I think by partnering with industrial tech students, we bridged an understanding of what we do at the Regents' Center and also opened doors for other community collaboration," said Allison Barness, instructor of teaching at UNI. "We are making something with a purpose."

For more information about Ramps & Pathways, contact Barness at 319-273-2381 or, or visit For more information about the Regents' Center for Early Developmental Education, visit