It can be hard to keep up with everything happening on such a large and bustling campus. Even if you spent the summer in Iowa City, chances are you missed some important news.
So as you begin another academic year—whether you’re rolling out syllabi, filling petri dishes, or processing student registrations—here are 10 things you might not know about, but should.
- Strategic plan draft published for Fall Forums
- New lecturer faculty policy
- Working at Iowa Engagement Survey
- Gender-inclusive restrooms
- Pronouns of reference in the new Inclusive Student Record
- Ending Violence at Iowa resource
- New buildings
- Major road construction and CAMBUS changes
- New undergraduate and graduate degrees
- New online drop-authorization process
1. Strategic plan draft published for fall forums
The Strategic Plan Development Group (SPDG) published a draft of the University of Iowa Strategic Plan 2016–21 this summer and will be seeking campus feedback before it submits a final draft to administrative leadership on Oct. 1. Open forums to gather your thoughts on the draft will take place Aug. 31 through Sept. 8.
2. New lecturer faculty policy
A new UI Instructional Faculty Policy grants the UI’s 280 lecturers and other instructional faculty grievance rights, representation in the Faculty Senate, a pathway to promotion, and more transparent expectations for workload. Colleges will begin adapting and implementing the policy this academic year.
3. Working at Iowa Engagement Survey
In October, University Human Resources will conduct the biennial Working at Iowa Engagement Survey. The anonymous survey will ask 20 questions of UI employees about their work environment and is an important opportunity for staff and faculty to provide feedback. University HR will use survey responses to help campus units improve work experiences.
4. Gender-inclusive restrooms
This summer, 147 campus restrooms were re-labeled as gender inclusive. As part of the student-led initiative, more than 40 volunteers last spring reviewed more than 1,000 campus restrooms. The locations of gender-inclusive restrooms are now available on campus maps. The group also worked with the Student Life Marketing + Design Office to create a printable map of both single-user gender-inclusive restrooms and single-user gender-specific restrooms on campus.
5. Pronouns of reference in the new Inclusive Student Record
UI students can now specify a preferred first name and pronouns of reference as part of the Inclusive Student Records Initiative. A student's preferred name and pronoun will appear on instructor class lists in MAUI and ICON. To learn more about these updates and the importance of using correct pronouns, view the video "Using preferred names and gender pronouns at the University of Iowa." For more information about Inclusive Student terminology, see the new Resources for Trans Communities and their Allies page. The Inclusive Student Records Initiative is a joint project of the UI Chief Diversity Office, Information Technology Services, the Office of Admissions, and the Office of the Registrar.
6. Ending Violence at Iowa resource
Ending Violence at Iowa is a new resource that provides information about workshops and trainings, ways to get involved, and initiatives on campus to help end gender-based violence and discrimination. The website was created by the UI Anti-Violence Coalition’s Campus Education Subcommittee.
7. New buildings
Dedications and open houses are scheduled for new additions to the UI campus: Hancher Auditorium on Sept. 9; the Visual Arts Building on Oct. 7; and the Voxman Music Building on Oct. 21. The new UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital will celebrate its dedication on Nov. 11. In addition, the new College of Engineering annex and College of Pharmacy building will break ground this fall, on Aug. 26 and Sept. 29, respectively.
8. Major road construction and CAMBUS changes
Iowa City’s Gateway Project construction has narrowed and will periodically close North Dubuque Street and sections of West Park Road. Drivers are advised to expect 15- to 30-minute delays during peak driving hours until the project’s 2018 scheduled completion. In response to road construction and changing campus needs, several CAMBUS routes serving west campus and UI residence halls will be altered. See details of the CAMBUS changes here.
9. New undergraduate and graduate degrees
The English department now offers a Bachelor of Arts in English and Creative Writing. The College of Engineering and College of Liberal Arts and Sciences have collaborated to offer a Bachelor of Science in Engineering and Computer Science. A BA or BS in public health is now available at the College of Public Health, and the College of Education now offers a master's degree in STEM education.
10. New online drop-authorization process
With authorization through MAUI from appropriate administrative offices, students are now able to drop courses through MyUI throughout the semester. Adds, section changes, and hours changes can only be done through MyUI during the first five business days each semester, after which students will continue to be required to submit the paper Change of Registration form. Read more here.