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News Release Archive

May 21, 2015 - 10:14am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – In April 2015, University of Northern Iowa alumna Sandy Stevens (B.A. '62, English teaching) created the Bear and Sandy Stevens Head Wrestling Coach Endowment. Funds from this endowment will be used to support the salary of the UNI wrestling coach position. Sandy Stevens, wrestling endowment donor

"I would not have done this had I not believed in Doug Schwab and the kind of coach he is and the kind of coaches UNI has had and will continue to have," said Stevens. "He has the same high expectations and standards for his wrestlers off the mat as he does on the mat. He is an outstanding example of teaching life lessons but also of caring about the individual, whether that individual is an All-American or someone in the wrestling room working his tail off."

"Sandy's gift is the ultimate legacy," said UNI Director of Athletics Troy Dannen. "Her passion for UNI wrestling is unmatched. There is no doubt that her personal investments in our program will enable UNI wrestling to achieve and sustain long-term success."

Stevens' late husband, Bear (Bob), a UNI alumnus (B.A. ’64, biology and physical education; M.A. ’65, science; Ed.D. '76, Indiana University) wrestled from 1959-63 under head coach Bill Koll. After graduation, Bear taught science and was an assistant wrestling coach. He later became a science teacher and was the first wrestling coach at the newly opened Kennedy High School in Cedar Rapids. During his career Bear also served as a junior high and high school administrator.

Stevens went on to lead a nearly 45-year career as a wrestling announcer at NCAA tournaments, the Olympics and other major tournaments. She has received numerous accolades during that time, including the Order of Merit from the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, the Meritorious Service Award from the National Wrestling Coaches Association and the International "Exceptionelle" ranking from United World Wrestling.

May 20, 2015 - 9:25am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – Lisa Birley Baronio has been named vice president for University Advancement and president of the UNI Foundation at the University of Northern Iowa. She will assume her new duties at UNI on July 15. VP for Advancement

"Lisa is an accomplished fundraiser with experience in executive leadership," said UNI President Bill Ruud. "She has a strong track record of strengthening fundraising programs, as well as comprehensive fundraising, volunteer management, campaign and major gift experience. I am excited that she will be bringing those skills and expertise to the University of Northern Iowa."

Baronio is a Waterloo native. She earned her bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Iowa in management science, a Bachelor of Arts degree in computer science from the University of Iowa and an executive MBA from the University of Nebraska at Omaha. Prior to coming to UNI, Baronio served as vice president for Alumni Relations and Development at Trinity University in San Antonio, vice president for development at the University of Connecticut Foundation, associate vice president for development at the Wichita State University Foundation and director of corporate relations at the University of Nebraska Foundation.

"I'm delighted to be coming home to the Cedar Valley community and to the premier university in the region," said Baronio. "I can't think of a better institution to work with to achieve university goals while fulfilling it's donors' passions."

Baronio replaces Bill Calhoun, who is retiring from the vice president for University Advancement and president of UNI foundation position on June 30 after 34 successful years at UNI.

May 20, 2015 - 11:09am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- University of Northern Iowa professor of art JoAnn Schnabel has been selected as a Fulbright recipient to teach abroad.Fulbright winner JoAnn Schnabel

The Fulbright Program, one of the most prestigious award programs in the world, is sponsored by the United States Department of State and Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, and provides merit-based grants for international educational exchange. The Fulbright Program awards approximately 8,000 grants annually to roughly 1,600 U.S. students, 4,000 foreign students, 1,200 U.S. scholars and 900 visiting scholars. Since its inception in 1946, approximately 310,000 "Fulbrighters" have participated in the program.

Schnabel will spend the spring 2016 semester at Anadolu University in Eskisehir, Turkey, where she will teach ceramics and also be a senior lecturer. "Schnabel's art work has been exhibited internationally and published in several works. Additionally, she serves on the Board of Trustees for the Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts in Newcastle, ME," said Jeffrey Byrd, Art Department Head and professor.

For more information, contact Philip Plourde, interim head, International Programs, at 319-273-6022 or visit 

May 20, 2015 - 3:32pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's Integrated Roadside Vegetation Management program (IRVM) reminds Iowans to protect roadside habitat for nesting game birds and song birds this spring and early summer.

According to Iowa Code 314.17, mowing roadside ditches is restricted until July 15, to protect young pheasants and other ground-nesting birds until they are ready to fledge. The law, which applies to county secondary roads as well as state primary and interstate highways, also protects habitat for pollinators and other beneficial insects, including crop-pest predators.

Exceptions for visibility and weed control are built into the law, but non-essential mowing – including cutting for hay – is prohibited.

Iowa Code 314.17 states: Mowing roadside vegetation on the rights-of-way or medians on any primary highway, interstate highway, or secondary road prior to July 15 is prohibited, except as follows:

-Within 200 yards of an inhabited dwelling

-On right-of-way within one mile of the corporate limits of a city

-To promote native species of vegetation or other long-lived and adaptable vegetation

-To establish control of damaging insect populations, noxious weeds and invasive plant species

-For visibility and safety reasons

-Within rest areas, weigh stations and wayside parks

-Within 50 feet of a drainage tile or tile intake

-For access to mailbox or for other accessibility purposes

-On right-of-way adjacent agricultural demonstration or research plots

Iowa's roadsides provide a valuable refuge for wildlife. The mowing law serves as a reminder to only mow shoulders during the critical nesting season and leave the rest of the roadside for the birds.

May 15, 2015 - 3:31pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The University of Northern Iowa Regional Business Center is now the Center for Business Growth and Innovation (CBGI). The CBGI is one of 15 programs represented by UNI Business and Community Services.

The CBGI assists Iowa entrepreneurs with economic growth and business advice. Their process includes a five-point approach of listening, imagining, creating, evaluating and sharing ideas with small businesses. This new name accommodates their expanding clients and opportunities.

The same services will be offered by CBGI, including Advance Iowa, Iowa Small Business Development centers, MyEntre.Net programs and the UNI incubation services. UNI Business and Community Services programs are designed to enhance and serve their growing community.

If you have any questions about the Center for Business Growth and Innovation, contact Sarah Bey at 319-273-4324 or, or visit

About the Center for Business Growth and Innovation

The Center for Business Growth and Innovation is a program of the Business and Community Services, a division of the College of Business Administration at the University of Northern Iowa. The CBGI serves entrepreneurs and small businesses throughout Iowa.

May 14, 2015 - 3:06pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- RAGBRAI® is coming to Cedar Falls and the University of Northern Iowa on Wednesday, July 22. As an overnight stop, UNI and the community will host thousands of participants, a perfect opportunity to share civic pride and invite visitors to come again. All Cedar Falls RAGBRAI details and updates will be located at as they become available.


It will take nearly 1,000 volunteers to provide an excellent experience for riders and their support teams. Areas of need include hospitality, vending, beverage garden (must be 21), campground hosts, entertainment, etc. Volunteers can choose times and roles by registering on the volunteer form at

Housing hosts

In 2007, the most recent RAGBRAI stop in Cedar Falls, nearly 2,100 requests for lawn space or residential accommodations were met. Those interested in hosting riders at your home should register on the housing form at

Food vendors

Commercial and nonprofit organizations are invited to apply to serve as food vendors during the overnight stop. Approximately 18,000 riders and support team members are expected. Apply at

May 14, 2015 - 4:18pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Purple and Old Gold awards, recognizing meritorious scholarship or conspicuous achievement, were presented to 56 seniors during the University of Northern Iowa's Commencement ceremonies Saturday, May 9, in the UNI-Dome.

Named after the university colors, the traditional awards were first presented at Commencement ceremonies on May 29, 1939. The awards for meritorious scholarship are the highest university honor awarded by academic departments to undergraduate students. Those for conspicuous achievement are granted to students with outstanding accomplishments. Each student receives a certificate and a bronze medallion.

Since 1939, more than 2,050 students have been Purple and Old Gold recipients. Currently, awards may be in 54 academic areas, as well as for achievement in particular areas. 

Hometown                                                 Name, College

Alta                                                      Katie Jo Garrison, COE

Ankeny                                                Jonathan Dean Bethards, CHAS (fall 2014 graduate)

                                                            Suzanne Cronbaugh Sontag, CSBS 

Bristow                                                Julia Jeanne Lewis, Continuing Education and Special Programs

Burlington                                                Conner James Brakeville, CSBS

Cascade                                                Amy Michelle Peiffer, CBA

Cedar Falls                                            Anne Bridget Bryson, COE

                                                            Hannah Elizabeth Eilderts, CHAS

                                                            Victoria Marie Hurst, CSBS

                                                            Joseph A. Schumacher, CHAS

                                                            Emilie Shelby Wunder, CSBS (fall 2014 graduate) 

Cedar Rapids                                       Benjamin Tod Castle, CHAS

                                                            Karinne Nicole Graves, CHAS

                                                            Zachary Croix Kelchen, CHAS

Clinton                                                Ariana Marie Aquilani, CBA

Columbus Junction                                    Vanessa Espinoza, CHAS

Coralville                                                Ryan Francis Courtney, CHAS

Davenport                                                Kara Christine Poppe, CSBS

Denver                                                            Martha Clare Thurman, CHAS

Fairfield                                                Allissa Shance Buelow, CHAS

Fostoria                                                Morgan Scott Kramer, CHAS

Garner                                                            Blake Kyoo Risius, COE

Gilbertville                                                Joshua Eugene Frost, CHAS

                                                                Nicole Elizabeth Stone, COE (fall 2014 graduate)

Gladbrook                                                Angela M. Wrage, CHAS

Guttenberg                                                Abby Kathryn Kilstofte, CSBS

Grand Junction                                    Nathaniel John Beyerink, CHAS

Harlan                                                            Jordan Lindsay Brelje, CBA

Hawkeye                                                Randi Sue Bumgardner, CSBS (fall 2014 graduate)

Hiawatha                                                Jenna Victoria Lyons, CHAS

Iowa City                                                Aaron James Ottmar, CHAS (summer 2015 degree candidate)

Jefferson                                                Heather Elizabeth Vander Wilt, CHAS (fall 2014 graduate)

Lawler                                                            Madeline Grace Achen, CHAS

Le Grand                                                Trevor Michael Parrish, COE

Lisbon                                                            Alexina Ellen Wilson, COE

Mason City                                                Matthew Alan Patchen, CBA

Mount Vernon                                                Holly Maria Salz, CHAS

Muscatine                                                Shannon Irene Carlson, CHAS (fall 204 graduate)

Onslow                                                Bethany Carin Chatterton, CHAS

Pella                                                            Christopher James Madigan, CSBS (fall 2014 graduate)

                                                            Grace Elizabeth Vande Haar, CBA

                                                            Tricia Marie Wisniewski, CHAS

Polk City                                                Stephanie Lynn Kibby, CSBS

Reinbeck                                                Hayley Marie Downey, CSBS

Sheffield                                                Seth James Tuttle, COE

Stacyville                                                Abby Esther Goodale, CBA

Van Meter                                                Audrey Rose Grove, CBA

Vinton                                                            Corey C. Cooling, CHAS

Waterloo                                                Jonathan Thomas Heinzman, CBA

                                                            Olivia Grace Mossman, CHAS
Waverly                                                 Emily Ann Bruns, CSBS

West Des Moines                                     Linh Mai Ta, CHAS


Out-of-State Graduates

Denver, Colorado                                    Laysa Marie Shreves, COE (fall 2014 graduate)

Winnebago, Illinois                                     Larissa Ann Morrissey, COE

Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam                        Huy Ngoc Nguyen, CHAS



May 11, 2015 - 9:58am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The Academic Learning Center (ALC) at the University of Northern Iowa will offer Graduate Record Examination (GRE) revised general test preparation courses through Continuing Education and Special Programs. The GRE is the most widely accepted graduate admissions test in the United States as well as internationally for prospective graduate and business school applicants who want to pursue a master's degree, MBA or doctoral degree.

Three different courses will be offered during the summer and fall semesters of each academic year. Students can register for all three classes together or separately. The classes offered are GRE analytical writing, GRE quantitative reasoning and GRE verbal reasoning.

To register for any of the classes, visit For additional information, contact Carolina Wilson, secretary for continuing education and special programs, at 319-273-2121 or

May 6, 2015 - 2:47pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's American Advertising Federation (AAF) student chapter won first place at the AFF District 9 National Student Advertising Competition (NSAC) on April 17, in Kansas City.

NASC is an annual AAF event in which they partner with a major corporate client to create an integrated marketing campaign. This year's corporate client was Pizza Hut.

The UNI students worked on the campaign through two marketing elective classes: Experimental Marketing in the fall and Advertising Campaign Development in the spring. Marketing instructor and adviser of AFF-UNI Matthew Wilson teaches both classes.

"Our team this year was unflappable," said Wilson. "They diligently worked toward overcoming the challenges, unfazed by obstacles."

For more information on AAF-UNI, contact Wilson at 319-273-6046 or, or visit 

May 6, 2015 - 2:51pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will be keeping students active this summer by offering numerous athletic camps. Camps are available for elementary through high school students in the following sports: basketball, football, soccer, softball, swimming and volleyball.

These camps provide individuals with a positive, fun-filled learning experience while receiving individual attention and coaching to improve their skills.  

UNI coaches, past and present players and top-notch high school coaches will lead the camps. For additional information and to register, visit and click on the Camps tab.

May 6, 2015 - 3:06pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa recently recognized graduating seniors at the Student Leadership Awards Ceremony on April 21, where students are awarded for their outstanding leadership in organizations across campus. The awards given are the Outstanding Student Award and the Servant Leadership Award.

The Outstanding Student Leader Award recognizes students who have demonstrated dedication and leadership through their involvement in one or more campus activities. This year's recipients of the Outstanding Student Leadership Award are Joslyn Aldape (Huntley, Ill.); Kevin Gartman (Waukee); Carl Reitz (Denison); Brooke Brown (Chanhassen, Minn.); Corey Cooling (Vinton); and Vanessa Espinoza (Conesville).

The Servant Leadership Award recognizes those who have worked for the common good while putting the needs of others first. This year's recipients of the Servant Leadership Award are Fariha Afzal (Cedar Falls); Haley Hasenstein (Bartlett, Ill.); Madison Gavin (Adel); Austin Hansen (Cedar Falls); Paul Andersen (Ankeny); Walter Abrego (Denison); Brianna Fisher (Davenport); and Alyssa Turcsak (Davenport).

For more information on Student Leadership Awards, visit or contact Lisa Kratz, director of Maucker Union, at 319-273-2554 or

May 5, 2015 - 2:14pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa presented three graduating students with the Lux Service Award for their exemplary service to the university:

Blake Findley is a psychology and Spanish major from New Virginia. He has served as vice president of the Northern Iowa Student Government (NISG) and was a writer for the Northern Iowan. Findley was an advocate for students on a number of university committees and served as chair of the First Generation and/or Low Income Student Task Force, commissioner of the Iowa Commission on Volunteer Service and chairman of the NISG Campus Relations Committee, among many others. He was also a peer mentor for the First Year Cornerstone Program and a Classic Upward Bound tutor and mentor for UNI's Center for Urban Education. Findley created the Above and Beyond Awards, which recognize faculty and staff for their contributions to teaching and advising students. He has also been actively involved in suicide prevention efforts on campus. Findley will be attending graduate school this fall.

Kara Poppe is a geography and environmental systems major from Davenport. She made study abroad a large part of her UNI experience, going abroad four times with UNI and two times on her own. Poppe served as president of Green Project UNI and director of environmental affairs for NISG. She was also a peer mentor, STEM ambassador, and a member of the Honors Program, Circle K and the Student Nature Society. Poppe is one of the founders of the UNI Panther Plot, a campus-wide vegetable garden that produces food for UNI Dining and the surrounding community. In two summers, the garden has engaged more than 100 volunteers and produced 4,000 pounds of produce. After graduation, Poppe has plans to take a position that incorporates program management, experiential education and diverse populations.

Monzurul Russel Karim is a computer science major from Laxmipur, Bangladesh, who will graduate in December. He served as the president and vice president of International Student Promoters, president of the Muslim Student Association and international director for NISG. He was also an orientation leader and worked with UNI Dining to offer meals for students who could not go home over major academic holidays. Karim has started two businesses in mobile applications, software and Web development, and created a mobile app for the UNI Traditions Challenge, which is a must-do list of things students should participate in before they graduate. The app allows students to track their Traditions Challenge memories on their phone.

A selection committee chose the Lux Service Award recipients based on nominations from UNI faculty, students and staff. Requirements include being scheduled to graduate in 2015, a minimum 2.5 GPA and demonstration of service to UNI during the recipient's academic career that will leave a lasting impact on the university community.

For more information about the Lux Service Award, visit


May 5, 2015 - 3:55pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The Iowa Waste Reduction Center (IWRC) will host a first-of-its-kind event - Food Waste Compost Training: On the Farm and in Your Community. The one-day workshop, hosted by the IWRC and presented by the Office of the President at the University of Northern Iowa (UNI) will take place Thursday, Aug. 20, at the Center for Energy and Environmental Education on the UNI campus.

"We are excited to be working with the United States Composting Council as well to provide this as an official USCC Composter Training Program event," says Dan Nickey, associate director at the IWRC. Utilizing the knowledge and capabilities of the USCC, the event will focus on the fundamentals and key variables of the composting process, as well as how to incorporate utilizing food waste.

The training will be led by Robert Rynk, an expert in compost research with the United States Composting Council. Sessions will include preventing odors, managing stormwater, using food waste as feedstock and more. "The training will be very beneficial for farmers, landfill operators and even those interested in composting at home," explains Nickey.

Early bird registration is $20 through June 30. Registration continues into early August but fees will increase and seats are limited. More information and registration is available at

About Iowa Waste Reduction Center. The IWRC has been providing environmental services, including technical assistance and industry training, as well as research and development, for more than 25 years. The IWRC is a part of the University of Northern Iowa's Business and Community Services which builds a better Iowa through hands‐on technical assistance for economic and business development, entrepreneurship, environmental improvement and enhanced sustainability. For more information, visit


April 30, 2015 - 9:16am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- RAGBRAIÒis coming to Cedar Falls and the University of Northern Iowa on Wednesday, July 22. The Des Moines Register's 43rd annual ride is making its fourth stop in Cedar Falls. As an overnight town, UNI and the community will host thousands of participants, which is a perfect opportunity to share civic pride and invite visitors to come again. The stop is expected to provide an economic boost of approximately $3 million. Plans to date were shared at a news conference today. All Cedar Falls RAGBRAI details and updates will be located at as they become available.


The main campground, entertainment and food vending will take place at the parking lots and fields west of the UNI-Dome on the UNI campus. Some charter group camping will also take place south of University Avenue, also on the UNI campus. A shuttle route will provide access to The Hill, downtown Main Street, the College Square area and other parts of town for volunteers, riders and support teams.

Route in and out of town

The riders will enter Black Hawk County from New Hartford using T-55, then travel east on Beaver Valley Road or C-67, then travel south on Union Road or T-75. The riders will continue south on Union Road, crossing Highway 57 (West 1st Street) to West 27th Street. The riders will then turn east onto West 27th Street arriving at UNI. A request will be made to the City of Cedar Falls that West 27th Street be closed to vehicle traffic during the arrival of the bicyclists. Vehicle traffic should expect delays on the bike route and should find alternate routes to avoid these delays. Police officials expect bike riders will begin arriving in Cedar Falls before 10 a.m. until around 6 p.m. 

Riders will be leaving Cedar Falls on July 23 using West 27th Street to Hudson Road, heading south on Hudson Road until they reach the city limits. At that time, responsibility will be turned over to the Iowa State Patrol, Black Hawk County Sheriff officials and the Hudson Police Department. A request will be made to the City of Cedar Falls that one southbound lane of Hudson Road from West 27th Street to the southern city limits be coned off and designated for bicyclists only. Again, vehicle traffic that usually travels Hudson Road should find an alternate route. RAGBRAI officials will be sending letters to industrial park businesses requesting that employees who work west of Hudson Road use Union Road to get to work. Employees of businesses east of Hudson Road are going to be asked to use Highway 58 to get to work. Police officials expect the bike traffic to begin around 3 a.m. and last until around 10 a.m.   


It will require nearly 1,000 volunteers to provide an excellent experience for riders and their support teams. Areas of need include hospitality, vending, beverage garden (must be 21), campgrounds hosts, entertainment, etc. Volunteers can choose times and roles by registering on the volunteer form at

Housing hosts

In 2007, the most recent RAGBRAI stop in Cedar Falls, nearly 2,100 requests for lawn space or residential accommodations were met. The UNI Department of Residence is also providing housing in residence halls. Those interested in hosting riders at their home should register on the housing form at 


Two stages will provide a variety of music styles throughout the day. The afternoon venue will be in the natural amphitheater space on the south lawn of the McLeod Center. The schedule is:

            12:30 – 1:15 p.m.             Karla Ruth

            1:30 – 2:30 p.m.            Joe Price

2:45 – 4 p.m.                        Dylan Sires and Neighbors

4:15 – 5:30 p.m.            Bob Dorr and the Blue Band


Beginning at 5:30 p.m., entertainment will move to the beverage garden in the parking lot west of the UNI-Dome, and that schedule is:

5:30 – 7 p.m.               The Devon Worley Band

7:30 – 9 p.m.                        The New Black Seven

9:30 – 11:30 p.m.              Hairball


The need to provide food and beverages to 18,000 visitors creates an opportunity for businesses and nonprofits alike; in 2007, 35 vendors met this demand. Potential vendors are invited to complete the application form at 

Steering committee

Cedar Falls RAGBRAI provides a unique opportunity for a collaborative approach between university and community members. Expertise is being provided by 33 volunteer chairs.

April 29, 2015 - 2:53pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will hold its seventh annual Panther Pick Up, a project to help the environment while benefiting the community, on Thursday, May 7, and Friday, May 8.

At a time when many UNI students are moving out of residence halls and apartments, Panther Pick Up gives old stuff new life. Instead of throwing unwanted household items in the dumpster to end up in the landfill, usable items can be donated to charitable organizations, which will have pick-up sites at convenient locations on campus. Donated materials will go directly back to the local community.

During Panther Pick Up, St. Vincent de Paul and The Salvation Army trucks will accept clothing, dishes, furniture, carpet and other usable household items. Agency staff determines whether or not they can accept certain items. Metal items not accepted can be recycled on UNI's campus on the north side of the UNI Physical Plant in the red metal recycling container.

Panther Pick Up locations and times are listed below and on the UNI Office of Sustainability website at, along with additional details about the event.

The times for donation are noon to 4 p.m., May 7, and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., May 8. Locations include:

-East side of Redeker Center

-23rd Street near Commons Circle

-East Towers

-Northwest corner of Campbell Hall

Students living off campus may donate items by calling St. Vincent de Paul at 319-232-3366 to schedule pick up of usable furniture, computers, keyboards, printers, computer accessories and other large items.

Last year's Panther Pick Up collected 10 full truckloads of furniture, clothing and household necessities. The program also received 13 full bed sets, which were all delivered to families in need. For more information on UNI's Panther Pick Up, contact Eric O'Brien, university sustainability coordinator, at 319-273-7207 or

April 28, 2015 - 3:25pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will host four Commencement ceremonies this year. Two ceremonies will take place for students receiving graduate degrees. The first will be at 7:30 p.m., Friday, May 8, in the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center (GBPAC). The second ceremony will be at 6 p.m., Saturday, May 9, in GBPAC.

The ceremony for undergraduate students receiving degrees from the Colleges of Education and Business Administration, and the Division of Continuing Education and Special Programs will be at 10 a.m., Saturday, May 9, in the McLeod Center. The ceremony for undergraduates receiving degrees from the College of Humanities, Arts and Sciences, and the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 9, in the McLeod Center.

The speaker for the graduate student ceremony on Friday, May 8, is Heather Place, a post-secondary education in student affairs graduate student. Gretta Berghammer, professor of theatre, will read the names of the graduates. The speaker for the second graduate student ceremony is Michael Western, a master's in business administration graduate student. Elaine Eshbaugh, professor of applied human sciences, will read the names of the graduates.

The speaker for the ceremony for undergraduate students in the Colleges of Education and Business Administration, and the Division of Continuing Education and Special Programs is Ariana Aquilani, a senior arts in accounting major. The names will be read by Deirdre Heistad, associate professor of languages and director of the Liberal Arts Core, and Nichole Zumbach Harken, instructor in communication studies.

The speaker for the ceremony for undergraduate students in the Colleges of Humanities, Arts and Sciences and Social and Behavioral Sciences is Daniel Yehieli, a senior majoring in criminology and global studies. Names of graduates will be read by Gretta Berghammer, professor of theatre, and Penelope O'Connor, instructor in communication studies.

There will be a reception immediately following each ceremony with light snacks and beverages provided. Receptions for the graduate ceremonies will take place in the GBPAC lobby. Receptions for the undergraduate ceremonies will take place at the Eldon Miller Plaza. There will also be areas set up for families and graduates to take pictures.

The individuals receiving honorary degrees are Gayle Rose, Tom Harkin and Nancy Powell. Rose is a UNI School of Music alumna and the founder, principal owner and current CEO of Electronic Vaulting Services Corporation. Harkin served for 40 years in Congress and played a vital role in expanding access to education as a co-sponsor of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Powell graduated from UNI as a history and teaching education major. She is now a foreign service officer and holds the rank of career ambassador, the highest in the United States Foreign Service.

The UNI Department of Military Science will host its annual spring Commissioning Ceremony at 8 a.m., Saturday, May 9, in Lang Hall Auditorium. Seven students will receive their commissions as second lieutenants in the U.S. Army. The speaker at the ceremony will be UNI President Bill Ruud.

For additional information, visit or contact Philip Patton, university registrar, at 319-273-2244 or


April 28, 2015 - 8:39am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Department of Physics hosted the State of Iowa Physics Competition Thursday, April 16, in the McLeod Center on the UNI campus.

Approximately 120 students from 19 different schools participated. Grinnell-Newburg High School placed first, led by instructor Chris Molitor; Washington High School in Washington placed second, led by instructor Jeff Richard; and Wahlert Catholic High School in Dubuque placed third, led by Tom Stierman.

Individual event winners were Grinnell-Newburg High School in the self-propelled catapult event, led by Molitor; Washington High School in the mousetrap car event, led by Richard; Manson Northwest Webster High School in the bridge-building event, led by instructor Mark Lynch; Perry High School in the soda straw arm event, led by instructor Trevor Kittleson; and Wahlert Catholic High School in the challenge problem event, led by Stierman.

For additional information, contact Larry Escalada, UNI professor of physics and science education, at 319-273-2431 or

April 28, 2015 - 4:17pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Acclaimed actor Rob Lowe will speak at the University of Northern Iowa's Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center (GBPAC) at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 8, as part of the Joy Cole Corning Distinguished Leadership Lecture Series.

In a presentation based on his latest memoir "Love Life," Lowe shares unforgettable stories and observations during his process of becoming a man, husband, friend and father. Lowe will share some of these insights during his presentation "Living a Life of Leadership." Throughout his presentation, this multi-talented actor, philanthropist and champion in the fight against cancer will also discuss the importance of giving back to one's community and what it takes to be an exceptional leader, no matter what your field.

Lowe, who has been acting since the age of 8, is well known for his prolific career in film and television. His credits include hits such as "The West Wing," "Brothers & Sisters," "Parks and Recreation," "The Outsiders" and "St. Elmo's Fire." Lowe has also served as a producer, writer and director. Off screen, he is a dedicated activist in the fight against cancer, working with organizations such as the Cancer Hope Network.

The Joy Cole Corning Distinguished Leadership Lecture Series was established in 2001 by UNI alumna and former Iowa Lt. Gov. Joy Cole Corning. The series' purpose is to bring to campus nationally and internationally renowned leaders in such areas as the arts, business, education, government and the judiciary. It provides students with an understanding of what constitutes leadership across disciplines and helps them discover how people become leaders in their fields.

Joy Corning graduated from UNI with a bachelor of arts degree in elementary education in 1954. She taught school in Greenfield and Waterloo before leaving the profession to raise her family in Cedar Falls. She now lives in Des Moines.

Corning was elected to the Cedar Falls school board in 1973, serving 11 years, nine of them as president. After six years in the Iowa Senate, she was elected lieutenant governor, serving for eight years. 

Admission to the formal lecture is free; tickets are required. Tickets will be available: Monday, Aug. 31, and Tuesday, Sept. 1 for UNI students only; Wednesday, Sept. 2 through Friday, Sept. 4 for students, faculty and staff; and Tuesday, Sept. 8 for the general public. Tickets will be available at all UNItix locations or call 319-273-7469.


April 27, 2015 - 10:01am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- UNI offers a variety of elementary, middle school and high school camps throughout the summer to keep kids active. Numerous camps are offered, ranging from drones and robotics to interior design and digital storytelling.  

Each camp features a unique interactive learning environment through which students can gain hands-on experience while working among students with similar interests. From exploring outdoor activities at the Exploring the Tallgrass Prairie Camp for elementary students to the Ultimate Sumo Robots Camp for high school students, UNI summer camps offer something for everyone. 

UNI faculty, staff and current students lead the camps. For additional information and to register, visit 

April 27, 2015 - 1:24pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's New Horizons Band will perform a spring concert at 7:30 p.m., Monday, May 4, in the Great Hall of the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center on the UNI campus.

The band will perform a variety of traditional concert band repertoire that will include "The Messenger March" by C.L.Barnhouse and "High School Cadets" by John Philip Sousa. "Five Mello Winds" by David Schanke will feature New Horizon Band members Carol Gordon, clarinet; Bob Shafer and Tom Burchers, alto saxophone; Betty Winther  and Les Aldrich, tenor saxophone. "Amazing Grace," arranged by Luther Henderson and Paul Murtha, will feature Jo Van De Berg, clarinet; Steve Reints, trumpet; and David Glen-Burns, trombone. Featured xylophone soloist for the concert will be Matt Andreini, UNI percussion instructor.

A reception will be held in the Lobby of the Performing Arts Center immediately following the concert. Admission is free.

The New Horizons Band (NHB) is sponsored by the UNI School of Music and the UNI Community Music School. The group includes 90 musicians who range in age from 50 to 100 years old, with various musical backgrounds who travel from all over Iowa to rehearse and perform. Diana Blake, retired music educator and director of the New Horizons Band, said new members are welcome to join the group. 

For more information, contact Blake at 319-352-3007 or Cindi Mason, NHB administrative assistant, at 319-273-2142.

April 27, 2015 - 4:44pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Department of Languages and Literatures presented 19 students with awards and scholarships at a recent recognition ceremony.

For more information, contact Brooke Wonders, associate professor in UNI's Department of Languages and Literatures, at 319-273-2821 or


Department of Languages and Literatures award and scholarship recipients are listed below in alphabetical order by hometown. Please check the list for all communities in your coverage area.

Hometown                                    Name: Award or Scholarship

AMES                                     Katie Upah: Award of Excellence for critical essay writing


                                                Jessica Walker: G. Erlene Hubley Memorial Writing Award; Scholarship in English


BETTENDORF                        Paige Berg: G. Erlene Hubley Memorial Writing Award


BURLINGTON                        Christine Fahlgren: Award of Excellence for short fiction


CEDAR FALLS             Rebecca Rewoldt: Wendell Phillips Memorial Scholarship for Creative Writing


CENTRAL CITY             Katelyn Roberson: G. Erlene Hubley Memorial Writing Award for creative nonfiction


DAVENPORT             Brooke Wiese: Award of Excellence for poetry


DUBUQUE                                    Christine Efferding: Award of Excellence for short fiction


FORT DODGE            Rose Peterson: James HiDuke Writing Award; Mary Wheat Graves Scholarship/ Scholarship in English-Teaching


Tara Jackson: G. Erlene Hubley Memorial Writing Award for creative nonfiction; Scholarship in English-Teaching; Award of Excellence for professional or pedagogical writing


JOHNSTON            Austin Kinsey: Award of Excellence for poetry; Scholarship in English-Teaching


LE MARS             Rachelle Lipp: Award of Excellence for poetry; Scholarship in English- Teaching


MASON CITY                        James Graham: Award of Excellence for short fiction


NEW HAMPTON                         James Keane: Award of Excellence for critical essay writing


PEOSTA                                     Andrew Richman: Award of Excellence for poetry


WATERLOO            Lexi Byrnes: Award of Excellence for poetry; Award of Excellence for short fiction


                                                Hannah Carr-Murphy: Myrtle Telleen Collins "Spirit of Life" Creative Writing Scholarship


WAVERLY            Ven Batista-Pedro: Myrtle Telleen Collins "Spirit of Life" Creative Writing Scholarship


WEST DES MOINES             Zachary Wiemers: Award of Excellence for short fiction



April 21, 2015 - 3:02pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- University of Northern Iowa School of Music students Kate Meyer and Melody Kosobucki, graduate students in piano performance and pedagogy, have been awarded the 2014 Yamaha In Residence Fellowship from the College of Music Society (CMS) Fund. They are supervised by Theresa Chardos Camilli, assistant professor of music, who integrates service-learning as part of the piano performance and pedagogy master's degree.

Their project, "Discovering the Ivories: 2014," involves implementation of a piano curriculum to teach six students during one lesson meeting. Meyer and Kosobucki provide weekly hour lessons to Irving Elementary students who may not otherwise have access to traditional piano lessons. These weekly sessions emphasize group dynamics, instead of the one-on-one applied lessons often encountered in piano, and they are provided outside of the university or traditional piano studio location. Students share time at two keyboards; if not playing, they observe those at the keyboard, providing support or feedback on what they hear and see. This approach allows students to embody many different roles, including listener, teacher, observer, performer and student. The Irving students will end their semester of group lessons by sharing a recital, and a final report of the project will be forthcoming this fall.

A consortium of college, conservatory, university, and independent musicians and scholars interested in all disciplines of music, the CMS provides leadership and serves as an agent of change by addressing concerns facing music in higher education. It promotes music teaching and learning, musical creativity and expression, research and dialogue, and diversity and interdisciplinary interaction.

For more information, contact Camilli at 319-273-7156 or


April 20, 2015 - 11:24am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will be hosting the Autism and Arts Education Symposium from 4 to 8 p.m., Friday, April 24, and 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Saturday, April 25, in Russell Hall on UNI's campus. The purpose of the symposium is to share ideas and learn more about the benefits of the arts for children with autism.

Three keynote speakers will be present, including Ryan Hourigan, director of the Ball State Prism Project; Beverly Gerber, co-editor of "Understanding Students with Autism through Art" and "Reaching and Teaching Students with Special Needs through Art"; and Jacqueline Russell, founder and artistic director of Chicago Children's Theatre and the Red Kite Project.

Attendees can choose between sessions about music, art or drama and move from different exhibits and speakers throughout the day in Russell Hall, Kamerick Art Building and Schindler Education Center.

For more information or to register, visit or contact Caroline Boehmer, music communication and operations coordinator, at 319-273-2028 or

April 20, 2015 - 11:29am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa College of Education (COE) will host an Education Summit presenting ideas on exploring education reform. The summit will take place Thursday, April 30, through Friday, May 1, in the Schindler Education Center on the UNI campus.

Recent research suggests that American schoolchildren are falling behind their international cohorts in academic skills at all education levels. Speakers and participants at the UNI Education Summit will discuss topics related to education reform, with particular emphasis on literacy, reading, rural education and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) instruction.

Author Jonathan Kozol will open the conference at 7 p.m. Thursday, speaking on "The Plight of Children of Poverty in American Public Schools." Dyslexia scholar and instruction expert, Louise Spear-Swerling will speak at 10:45 a.m. Friday on how to help students with dyslexia and other reading problems. Beginning at 11:45 a.m., there will be a panel presentation by the Iowa Academy of Education. From 1 to 2 p.m., David Drew, professor of education at Claremont Graduate University (Calif.), will discuss what we have learned from reforming STEM education in America. A variety of breakout sessions will take place throughout the day. The summit will wrap up at 5 p.m. with comments from COE Dean Dwight Watson.

For additional information about sessions and speakers and to register for the summit, visit For more information, contact Amelia Holden-McMurray at 319-273-3214 or

April 20, 2015 - 11:36am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The UNI Gallery of Art and Department of Art will present Congressman Rod Blum's "2015 Congressional Art Competition" of Iowa's 1st Congressional District, which will take place in the Kamerick Art Building (KAB) from Tuesday, May 5, through Tuesday, May 12.sponsor logo

An award ceremony and opening reception for the exhibition will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on May 5. Congressman Blum will address attendees at 7 p.m., where the grand prizewinner and several honorable mentions will be announced.

Each spring, the U.S. House of Representatives sponsors a nationwide high school visual art competition to recognize and encourage artistic talent in the nation and in each congressional district. The Artistic Discovery competition began in 1982, and since then more than 650,000 high school students have participated. This year's theme is "Discover Iowa."

Students submit entries to their representative's office, and panels of district artists select the winning entries. Winners are recognized both in their district and at an annual award ceremony in Washington, D.C. Last year four Iowa high school students were honored. The grand prize-winning artwork will be displayed for one year at the U.S. Capitol.

The University of Northern Iowa, Southwest Airlines and Kyle's Framing and Gallery in Marion sponsor this program.

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.

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

April 16, 2015 - 9:20am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Department of Biology recently purchased four synthetic cadavers, known as SynDavers. UNI is the first university in Iowa to have this technology in the classroom and plans to use the SynDavers in the teaching of anatomy and physiology courses.

The university received a $150,000 grant from the Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust to purchase the Syndavers. Former biology students who are now enrolled in professional programs, such as medical or dental colleges, physical therapy or physician assistant programs, have indicated that hands-on dissection experience, preferably with humans, is essential to successfully prepare them for their professional programs.

The SynDavers closely resemble real human structures in size, feel and complexity. They can be used semester after semester, and it's possible to replace any individual organ, vessel or muscle as needed.

"The SynDaver company has indicated that they are capable of 'creating' just about any pathological specimen we would like to include in our Syndavers, and various Syndavers can then have different pathologies for students to 'discover' in their dissection experience. Students could see the 'normal' anatomy in one, and the 'abnormality' in another," said Mary McDade, instructor of biology.

The SynDavers are state-of-the-art equipment, and having them may recruit students to UNI. For more information, contact McDade at 319-273-6994 or

April 16, 2015 - 1:39pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa is one of the 353 most environmentally responsible colleges, according to The Princeton Review.

Developed by The Princeton Review in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), the "Guide to 353 Green Colleges" recognizes colleges and universities that demonstrate an above-average commitment to sustainability. UNI ranked No. 41 among the 353 schools included, receiving a "green" rating of 98 out of 99.

Ratings are based on a combination of school-reported data and student opinion, with a focus on whether students have a quality of life on campus that is both healthy and sustainable, how well a school is preparing students for employment in an increasingly green economy and how environmentally responsible a school's policies are.

"Much of UNI's excellent rating in the Princeton Review can be attributed to the numerous student driven initiatives that have resulted in institutional changes," said Eric O'Brien, UNI's sustainability coordinator. "From their excitement to improve campus to their genuine interest in getting involved, students are powerful forces in UNI's sustainability efforts."

The free guide can be downloaded at or

For more information about UNI's sustainability efforts, visit or contact O'Brien at 319-273-7207 or

April 16, 2015 - 3:40pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will hold a U.S. Citizenship Ceremony at 1:30 p.m., Tuesday, April 21, in the Maucker Union Ballroom. At the event, 151 individuals from 53 countries will become American citizens. This is the largest group to ever participate in this event.

Chief Magistrate Judge Jon Scoles will preside over the ceremony. A prepared video message from President Barack Obama will welcome the new citizens. 

"It is an honor for UNI to be chosen to host this unique ceremony," said Mark Grey, professor of anthropology and director of the UNI New Iowans Center.

Refreshments will be served following the ceremony. "We hope many people from the Cedar Valley will join us for this moving ceremony," said Grey.

For more information, contact Grey at 319-273-6496 or

April 15, 2015 - 4:54pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – John J. Kamerick, the University of Northern Iowa's sixth president, died Monday, April 13, in Sarasota, Florida, at the age of 95.President Kamerick

President Kamerick served at UNI from 1970 through 1983. The Kamerick Art Building, built in 1985, was named in honor of him.

During his time as president, Kamerick worked very hard to define an appropriate role for UNI. He faced expanding interest and enrollment in business courses at UNI. In 1975, the Regents approved a Master in Business Administration degree, which only strengthened the business curriculum and increased enrollment. UNI's accounting program acquired a national reputation for excellence during Kamerick's time as president.

Support among the faculty for a doctoral program at UNI also grew under Kamerick's leadership. The Regents approved the Doctor of Industrial Technology degree in 1978 and the Doctor of Education degree in 1982.

The university also physically expanded while Kamerick was in office. The Communication Arts Center, Schindler Education Center, Industrial Technology Center, Physical Education Center and the UNI-Dome are some of the buildings that were constructed during his time as president.

Kamerick resigned from his position in 1983 to return to teaching. After taking a one-year sabbatical, he returned to UNI and was a professor of history until his retirement in 1987.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, April 18, in Sarasota. Memorial donations can be directed to: Incarnation School in Sarasota; Cardinal Mooney High School in Sarasota; St. Ambrose University in Davenport; and the John J. Kamerick Fellowship at the University of Northern Iowa.

April 14, 2015 - 1:15pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- John Pappajohn, Iowa's premier venture capitalist, has announced the launch of the 2015 Pappajohn Iowa Entrepreneurial Venture Competition. New and start-up businesses (in business for less than four years and located in Iowa) are eligible to enter the competition for the chance to win up to $25,000.

This is the 10th annual competition sponsored by Pappajohn. The competition is designed to stimulate business development and provide support for entrepreneurial ventures. Since 2006, more than $450,000 has been awarded to start-ups across the state. This year, a total of $50,000 will be awarded to the top three submitted business opportunities: $25,000 for first prize, $15,000 for second and $10,000 for third.

The first round of the business plan competition will take place between April 13 and June 8. During this time, businesses are invited to submit business information via a secure online program called Gust. A link to Gust is available at

In June, selected companies will be contacted and invited to submit full business proposals through Gust. The competition will then be narrowed to seven to 10 companies that will present to judges in September. The winners will be recognized at a special awards luncheon on Sept. 24 in Des Moines.

Assistance with the competition is available at the Iowa John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Centers located at Drake University, Iowa State University, North Iowa Area Community College, the University of Iowa and the University of Northern Iowa; the Small Business Development Centers throughout the state; and the business accelerators in Des Moines, Spencer, Cedar Rapids and Mason City.

The John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Centers provide entrepreneurial education and business support, partnering with agencies like the Small Business Development Center, the Iowa Economic Development Authority, Entrepreneurial Development Centers and local entrepreneurs to assist with funding and other business needs.

Rules, eligibility, timelines and assistance information are available at the competition website,  For additional information about the competition visit

April 14, 2015 - 1:32pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Student Association has announced the Cedar Valley Nonprofit Award winners. Recipients were honored at the 11th annual Cedar Valley Nonprofit Awards Luncheon from noon to 1:30 p.m., Tuesday, April 14, in the Commons Ballroom.

Award winners are as follows: Nonprofit Business Partner of the Year, ACES; Robert Koob Award for Collaboration, Church Row Historic Neighborhood Association; Nonprofit Board Member of the Year, J Ruth Capoccioni, Cedar Valley Chamber Music; Gordon Mack Award for Student Leadership, Sarah Nylin, Boys and Girls Club; New Nonprofit Employee of the Year, Nicole Lund, New Aldaya Lifescapes; Legacy Award, Howard Hughes, Northeast Iowa Food Bank; Nonprofit Staff Leader of the Year, Jessica Gulick, the Larrabee Center; Exceptional Nonprofit of the Year, Cedar Valley Friends of the Family. Cedar Valley Friends of the Family will receive a cash gift of $1,000, sponsored by the Community Foundation of Northeast Iowa, in recognition for its outstanding efforts.

The Nonprofit Leadership Alliance is a national certification program that prepares students to become the next generation of leaders in the nonprofit sector.

For more information, contact Julianne Gassman, director of the UNI Nonprofit Leadership Alliance, at or 319-273-2204.

April 14, 2015 - 2:41pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa’s Center for Violence Prevention (CVP) is hosting the 9th Annual MVP Student Leadership Summit from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Friday, April 17, at Western Iowa Tech Community College. Attending will be 250 high school students and faculty. Students and staff members participating in the summit include those from the Sioux City Community School District, Council Bluffs Community Schools, Fort Dodge Senior High, and the Davenport School District.

Leadership workshops and sessions will include topics such as cyber bullying, sexting and social media, healthy relationships, “Iowa Safe Schools” strategies, and facilitation skills. This year’s keynote is George Boykin, executive director of the Sanford Center.

The summit is funded and supported through a grant from the Iowa Department of Public Health. UNI has hosted the MVP Leadership Summit since 2011.

For more information on the CVP and MVP, contact Alan Heisterkamp at 319-273-3124 or

April 14, 2015 - 2:49pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The UNI College of Education will sponsor a lecture featuring Jonathan Kozol, a well-known author on the experiences of children living in impoverished communities. He will share strategies for what we can do in classrooms and beyond to support the nation's poorest children.

"Children of Poverty in our Public Schools" will be held at 7 p.m., Thursday, April 30, in Schindler Education Center Room 244. Kozol's books will be available for purchase following the lecture. The event is in conjunction with the Education Summit being held on Friday, May 1.

The lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Stephanie Logan, assistant professor of curriculum and instruction, at 319-273-5695 or

April 14, 2015 - 4:07pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will host a screening of the critically acclaimed film "The Hunting Ground" at 7 p.m., Wednesday, April 29, in Lang Hall Auditorium.

"The Hunting Ground" is a documentary that exposes the fight for justice against sexual assault on college campuses through the eyes of the victim. The film premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and since then has been screened on multiple college campuses across the United States. The film sparks discussion around issues of sexual assault and the role of the university in investigating and aiding the victims of rape. The film was subsequently picked up by CNN, who will feature the film in an upcoming special.

A panel discussion about response services available at UNI and in the Cedar Valley community will follow the film. Panelists will include representatives from university administration, victim advocates, fraternities and other areas on campus and in the community. The event is the film's Cedar Falls premiere.

The UNI Interfraternity Council, in collaboration with other on-campus departments and programs as well as community services, will sponsor this screening. UNI counseling center staff and community advocates will be on hand to provide resources and support during and after the film.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information about "The Hunting Ground" and to view the official trailer, visit


April 13, 2015 - 10:07am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will celebrate environmental efforts during Earth Week, Monday, April 20 through Friday, April 24. Earth Week is a campus-wide event that involves the campus community in environmental action through a number of interactive and education events.

There will be a campus cleanup at 4 p.m., Tuesday April 21. Volunteers will meet in the Center for Energy and Environmental Education (CEEE) atrium.

The UNI Earth Day celebration fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Wednesday, April 22. The fair will take place in the northwest courtyard outside Maucker Union and will include free bike tuneups, education and information booths, games and prizes, a plastic bag exchange, and a plant giveaway. Individuals can also make s'mores and try pedal-powered smoothies.

The film "Cleantech Future" will be shown at 7 p.m. Wednesday April 22, in the CEEE auditorium.

Cedar Valley Association for Soft Trails will host a 5k fun run on UNI's Prairie Preserve at 6 p.m., Thursday, April 23. Runners will meet at the Prairie Preserve, located at 29th and Walnut streets. All levels of runners are welcome.

A biannual event to pick up and bag trash on Highway 20 with UNI AmeriCorps will be held from 10 a.m. to noon, April 24. Transportation will be provided from the CEEE to the cleanup site. 

For a complete list of Earth Week events, go to For more information, contact Jenny Bruss, RRTTC program and community outreach coordinator, at 319-273-3689 or


April 13, 2015 - 2:29pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa has been recognized by two independent organizations, and, as offering online graduate programs in education that rank in the top 20 in the country for 2015. UNI placed 13th and 17th, respectively.

"It's well known that an abundance of online graduate programs exists for educators, so it's especially gratifying to be recognized for having some of the best online programs in the country," said Kent Johnson, dean of Continuing Education and Special Programs. "UNI's faculty and support staff do a fantastic job in making affordable, high-quality distance learning offerings available to educators who are seeking an engaging, meaningful degree. We hope that adult learners who are in search of flexible, high-quality online opportunities give us a look."

UNI offers more than 25 degree and certificate programs in education at a distance, using a variety of delivery methods, including videoconferencing and online instruction via eLearning. Some programs include in-person instruction on UNI's campus or at an off-campus location. Most programs also incorporate a cohort model in which students move as a group through a well-defined pathway to their degree. The approach fosters a genuine sense of community, even though students may be dispersed geographically around the country and world.

To view the rankings in full, visit and For more information, contact Johnson at 319-273-2122 or or visit

April 13, 2015 - 10:32am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Gallery of Art will present a Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.) group exhibition from Monday, April 27, through Saturday, May 9, on the main floor of Kamerick Art Building (KAB) South. An opening reception will be held at 7 p.m., April 27, in the KAB South lobby.

-Ashlie Coady of Urbandale will present an exhibition titled "To Hold Your Hand Again," which emphasizes the traditional processes of printmaking and sewing. Coady's most recent work immortalizes her late grandmother through memory and the ways that memories become fragmented over time. "By using the two creative processes, I can both evoke my past relationship with her as well as create new bonds directly through art-making," said Coady.

-Sarah Etringer of Reinbeck will present "Replanting the Past," an exhibition addressing the issue of prairie conservation through drawing, printmaking and sewing. "I am constantly noticing small things on the ground or big things in the sky," said Etringer. "If something grabs my attention I will detour from my original path to follow what intrigues me. Following my interests led to me becoming enamored of what remains of the prairies."

-Estephania González of Perry is pursuing a B.F.A. in performance art and a B.A. in art history. González's art exhibition is titled "EnZeitraum," an immersive video installation that surrounds the viewer, creating a dream world suggestive of multiverses, time travel and memories. The images to be projected in the gallery space were created in various locations using the artist's body and other symbolic objects, which she then used to visually alter the space through performative actions.

-Kelsey Sorensen of Manly will present an exhibition of ceramics titled "Equilibrium." Sorensen's earliest memories involve the garden and the continuous cycle of growth, death and rebirth. "I emphasize my passion for nature by altering wheel-thrown vessels and creating surface texture that mimics the effect of time on living and nonliving things," said Sorensen.

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

April 10, 2015 - 2:58pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Interpreters Theatre and Students Against a Violent Environment (SAVE) will present "Funny as a Crutch and Other _________ Things." The performance will take place at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, April 16 through Saturday, April 18, in Lang Hall, Room 040, on the UNI campus.

"Funny as a Crutch and Other _________ Things" skewers stereotypes, archetypes, prejudices and assumptions both toward and within the disabled community. Through the performance of poetry, personal narrative, drama and a little bit of humor, "Funny as a Crutch and Other __________ Things" challenges audiences to rethink the role humor plays in revealing our attitudes toward our own mental and physical disabilities.

"We hope to move audiences from a play of sympathy to one of empathy," said Karen Mitchell, professor of communication and performance studies and show co-director. "This show is an honest conversation around the issue of ableism."

Amandajean Freking Nolte, instructor of communication studies, director of SAVE and show co-director, added, "While this performance won't dismantle ableism and solve issues of disability on UNI's campus, we do hope it gives people incentive to enter the classroom."

For more information, contact Evan Schares, graduate assistant of communication studies, at 319-273-6144 or

April 9, 2015 - 11:20am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The National Program for Playground Safety (NPPS) at the University of Northern Iowa will celebrate National Playground Safety Week from Monday, April 20, to Friday, April 24.

In conjunction with National Playground Safety Week, the NPPS will start a project called Assessment of Iowa's Early Childhood Outdoor Play Environments. The purpose of the project is to evaluate the status of outdoor play spaces in public early childhood programs in the state of Iowa. These assessments help to ensure that playground areas are up to current safety standards.

Two awards are also given out annually to those who have made a significant difference in creating safe play areas for children. The Ahren's Playground Safety Advocate of the Year award is given to an individual who has displayed outstanding effort to provide playground safety for children. The John Preston Safe Playground Award is given to a group or organization that had displayed these same efforts toward playground safety. The winners of the awards will be announced during Playground Safety Week.

For more information on National Playground Safety Week, visit For more information on events happening during the week at UNI, contact Heather Olsen, associate professor of health, physical education & leisure services, at 319-273-6173 or

April 8, 2015 - 3:03pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa will host a screening of the short documentary "Of Many" at 7 p.m., Monday, April 13, in the Maucker Union Ballroom.

Set against the dramatic backdrop of violence in the Middle East and the tension between Jewish and Muslim students on college campuses, "Of Many" focuses on the surprising and transformative relationship between an orthodox rabbi and imam, who are both university chaplains in New York City. Through a series of voyages to communities struck by catastrophe, the film highlights young Jews and Muslims working together and overcoming long-standing divides.

Following the screening, there will be an interfaith discussion panel with Dave Glenn-Burns from the Wesley Foundation, Erin Maidan from the Sons of Jacob Synagogue in Waterloo and Imam Ahmed al Khaldy from the Muslim American Society of Iowa in Cedar Rapids. The screening and discussion panel are free and open to the public.

This event is sponsored by the Office of the President, the Diversity Council and the Explorers of Religion. For more information, contact Susan Hill, director of the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, at 319-273-2553 or

April 7, 2015 - 4:29pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The Army Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) will conduct Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP) training on Sunday, April 12, at Camp Dodge, in Des Moines in conjunction with their Combined Leadership Training Exercise (CLTX) April 10 through 12.

The MVP training for more than 300 cadets from Nebraska and Iowa will provide skills on how to be an active bystander to help prevent sexual violence on their campuses and in their communities. These skills will also help them in the Army once they are commissioned as second lieutenants. The overall CLTX will challenge cadets on their physical, mental and leadership skills.

Funding for the MVP training was made possible by a grant from the HopeLine® by Verizon program.

For more information on the training, contact Glen Keith, lieutenant colonel and department head of military science-ROTC, at 319-273-6178 or

April 6, 2015 - 9:53am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Holocaust survivor and artist Miriam Brysk will share her story in a presentation for the 7th annual Norman Cohn Family Holocaust Remembrance and Education lecture. Her presentation is titled "Survival in the Russian Partisans of the Lipiczany Forest" and will be presented at 7 p.m., Monday, April 20, in Sabin Hall Room 2.

Brysk was born in Warsaw, Poland, and came to America in 1947 at age 12 with no previous schooling and unable to speak English. Her two dreams in life were to become a scientist and an artist. She obtained her Ph.D. in biological sciences from Columbia University and went on to become a scientist and medical school professor at the University of Texas. Since her retirement, she has become a digital artist and writer depicting the plight of the Jews during the Holocaust. She has created three major art exhibits: "In a Confined Silence," "Children of the Holocaust" and her latest, "Scroll of Remembrance," which will be displayed along with some of her other works at the Grout Museum of History & Science in Waterloo.

The presentation is free and open to the public, and will be followed by a book signing and reception. For more information, contact Stephen Gaies, director of the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Education, at 319-273-3870 or

April 6, 2015 - 10:20am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Each spring, departments at the University of Northern Iowa select distinguished graduates to participate in the Alumni in Residence program. These accomplished alumni return to campus to speak with students about their professional experiences and help them understand the connection between the theory they learn in the classroom and the practice in the professional world. Alumni also meet with faculty groups to discuss current trends and issues in the workplace, tour campus and visit with student organizations about how extracurricular experiences may open doors during their job searches. In addition, alumni are invited to attend a joint luncheon hosted by the UNI Alumni Association and UNI Foundation.

The selection of alumni participants and their Alumni in Residence experience is coordinated by each college. The 2015 class includes:

College of Business Administration
- Accounting: Doug Opheim '80, chief financial officer, McGladrey LLP (Minneapolis, Minn.)

- Economics: Amy Harris '95, chief economist and administrator of the research and analysis division, Iowa Department of Revenue (Urbandale)

- Finance: Jamie Freeman '93, senior vice president, Bank of America (Lake Worth, Fla.)

- Management: Matt Wiewel '90, voice over artist, VoiceGuyMatt LLC (Parkville, Mo.)

- Marketing: Bob O'Rourke '83, group senior vice president, Target Corp. (Eden Prairie, Minn.)

College of Education           
- Curriculum & Instruction: Stan Norenberg '57, retired high school principal (Adel)

- Educational Leadership & Postsecondary Education: Brenda Maro '97, assistant principal, Washington Middle School (Dubuque)

-Educational Psychology & Foundations: Brian Poncy '98, '02, associate professor, Oklahoma State University (Stillwater, Okla.)

- School of Health, Physical Education and Leisure Services: Cindra Kamphoff '98, associate professor, Minnesota State University (Mankato, Minn.)

College of Humanities, Arts and Sciences
- Biology: Suzanne Bartlett '92, physician and medical director, Mercy Integrative Medicine Center (Cedar Falls)

- Communication Studies: Michael Rueber '02, owner and creative director, Around the Corner Productions (Cedar Falls)

- Languages and Literatures: Susan Kerns '02, assistant professor, Columbia College Chicago (Milwaukee, Wis.)

- Mathematics: Mary Theilen '99, vice president, American Family Insurance (Columbus, Wis.)

- Music: Karen Fannin '96, director of bands, University of Nebraska Omaha (Omaha, Neb.); Aaron Hynds '11, contemporary music doctoral student, Bowling Green State University (Bowling Green, Ohio)

- Physics: Brad Neagle '86, founder and vice president, Essen Bioscience (Ann Arbor, Mich.)

- Theatre: Thomas White '11, production manager, Commonweal Theater Company (Lanesboro, Minn.); Bailey Otto '12, production stage manager, Commonweal Theater Company (Lanesboro, Minn.)

College of Social and Behavioral Sciences
- Criminology and Sociology: Carl B. Boyd '87, judge, Cook County District 6 (Chicago, Ill.)

- History: Jack Petersen '78, counsel, Principal Life Insurance Company (Clive)

- Interior Design: Serena Zwanziger '03, interior designer, Invision Architecture (Janesville)

For more information, contact Amy Mohr, associate director of Alumni Relations, at 319-273-3094 or


April 6, 2015 - 3:21pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Department of Physics will host the State of Iowa Physics Competition from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Thursday, April 16, in the McLeod Center.

Participating high school students qualified at regional competitions and represent the top teams from Area Education Agencies across the state. The competition is a series of five events that stress creativity, ingenuity and an understanding of physics-related ideas and is intended to stimulate interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Events include catapult, mouse trap car, bridge building, soda-straw arm and a challenge problem.

For more information, contact Larry Escalada, professor of physics, at 319-273-2431 or

April 2, 2015 - 1:24pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa-- The University of Northern Iowa IDT (International Dance Theatre) Dance Company will present its annual spring show at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, April 18, and 1 p.m., Sunday, April 19, in Davis Hall at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center (GBPAC). The show will demonstrate multiple dance styles such as folk, ballroom, jazz and tap, along with other multicultural and contemporary styles.

Admission for the event is $8 for the general public and $4 for students and senior citizens. Tickets can be purchased from IDT Dance Company members or IDT Dance Company director Mandy Masmar.

For more information or to pre-order tickets, contact Masmar, at 319-273-3560 or

April 2, 2015 - 1:12pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center (GBPAC) will host the Canadian folk trio the Good Lovelies at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, May 2.

Part folk roots, part Western swing, this Toronto-based trio relies on unerring three-part vocal harmonies, clever songs and funny repartee drawn from a seemingly endless succession of comedic adventures on the road. These Juno Award-winning best friends, Caroline Brooks, Kerri Ough and Sue Passmore, will charm you with an intimate and upbeat evening filled with music and laughter.

Ticket prices range from $29 to $35 and can be purchased at any UNItix location, at or by phone at 319-273-SHOW (7469).

This event is part of the GBPAC's 2014-15 Artist series "Spark, Ignite, Inspire." The Artist Series brings internationally acclaimed artists and programs to UNI for the benefit of students, faculty, staff and members of the surrounding community.

For more information, contact Blake Argotsinger, associate marketing manager for the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center, at 319-273-3660 or

April 2, 2015 - 1:48pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Join in the fight against cancer by participating in UNI's 13th annual Relay For Life, held from 6 p.m. Friday, April 10, to 6 a.m. Saturday, April 11. This fundraising event for the American Cancer Society will be held in the McLeod Center. Relay For Life teams set up campsites overnight and take turns walking around the concourse in the McLeod Center. Because cancer never sleeps, each team is asked to have at least one participant walking at all times.

The theme for this year's Relay For Life is "Wizard of Oz…There's no place like Hope!" The UNI Colleges Against Cancer chapter will host the event. Throughout the night there will be food and merchandise for sale, numerous activities and entertainment provided, along with time for participants to reflect on how their lives have been impacted by cancer. 

The opening ceremony of the event will showcase a celebration of the lives of those who have battled cancer, followed by the first lap of Relay For Life taken by cancer survivors. The 8:30 p.m. Luminaria Ceremony will be a time for reflection and to remember those who have lost their battle with this disease. 

The event is free and open to the public. To sign up or donate to the event, visit For additional information, contact Whitney Stoolman, president of the UNI Colleges Against Cancer chapter, at

April 1, 2015 - 9:57am


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa Textiles and Apparel program (TAPP) will present its 23rd annual design show on Saturday, April 11, in Lang Hall Auditorium on the UNI campus. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the show begins at 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

This year's show, "Ethereal Garden," will include two scenes: day and night. Day will feature ready-to-wear and night will showcase formalwear. There are 25 to 30 student designers who will be featured in this year's fashion show.

The Northern Iowa Student Government and College of Social and Behavioral Sciences provide funding for the fashion show. For more information, contact Sharon Mord, instructor, School of Applied Human Sciences at 319-273-2378 or

April 1, 2015 - 1:53pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's College of Social and Behavioral Sciences (CSBS) will present the 22nd annual CSBS Student Research Conference from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, April 25, in Sabin and Seerley halls.

The conference provides undergraduate and graduate students the opportunity to exchange ideas, present research and learn more about the developments in social sciences. Students can attend seminars, lectures and panel discussions. These often deal with future possibilities and job prospects after graduating in the social sciences, current research focuses in the fields and graduate education in the social sciences.

The event will feature keynote speaker Cameron Weaver, assistant professor of psychology at the University of Wisconsin-Stout. Weaver will present the talk "Optimizing College Drinking: Exploring Risk and Protective Strategies."

All undergraduate and graduate students in the social sciences are invited to participate in the conference. Attendees are encouraged to register before Friday, April 10. Registration is $15 and will include a boxed lunch if submitted by the deadline.

For more information, visit or contact Stephanie Strong, student coordinator, at

April 1, 2015 - 2:00pm


CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- The University of Northern Iowa's Student Disability Services (SDS) and the Office of Admissions will sponsor a workshop designed to help high school students begin to prepare for the next steps after high school graduation from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday, April 14.

The workshop will introduce students to the differences between high school and college, provide students an opportunity to see what life on a college campus may be like and encourage them to consider pursuing higher education after graduation.

"The transition from high school to college can be difficult for any student," said Ashley Brickley, student disability services coordinator. "Students with disabilities are no exception, but in addition to the change in academics, these students must also understand their new rights and responsibilities as adults with disabilities in order to receive the accommodations and educational support they may need to be successful."

The mission of SDS is to provide services and promote an accessible environment that allows students with disabilities an equal opportunity for participation in educational and other campus activities. For more information, contact Ashley Brickley, SDS coordinator, at 319-273-2677.