Lauren Mills

Recent Stories

Children’s Parade of 1934

A poster for a doll and buggy parade from the Works Progress Administration's Federal Art Project in 1939.

Summertime in Iowa means countless community celebrations and parades throughout the state. Many of today’s Brat Days, Corn Days, and 4th of July festivities had their roots in 19th and 20th century events and continue in the 21st century. That’s a long tradition of summer fun across the Hawkeye state! Continue Reading →

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Developing Connections Could Keep Young Talent In Iowa


Brain drain is not a new problem, but Iowa employers must adopt new ways to attract talent by developing personal connections by focusing on career opportunities, fostering connections between employees and the community and providing mentorships to nurture young talent, panelists at a July 22 Brain Drain forum said.

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IowaWatch Connection: Filling Gaps in Iowa’s Workforce


There's a gap between the jobs that are available in Iowa and the skill set of workers to fill those jobs. We'll talk about preparing workers for the jobs that are actually available, creating a better workplace, and rethinking the entire concept of work. "You can't have a successful economy without having a relatively diversely skilled and motivated young workforce. We've got good people like that, that's just Iowa, whether it's city or county, people in Iowa are workers," said Iowa State University Department of Economics associate scientist David Swenson. However, Swenson noted that many young workers are migrating out of rural areas for better opportunities for themselves and their families in larger communities — places with higher pay, better amenities and better jobs available for spouses. Continue Reading →

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News Quiz: Iowa Flooding


According to a 2014 White House National Climate Assessment report, an analysis of rainfall patterns in Iowa shows a significant increase in the number of days with heavy rainfall, despite no increase in total annual precipitation. Major cities across Iowa have suffered multi-million dollar losses from floods over the past two decades. Do you know some of the history and facts behind flooding in Iowa? Continue Reading →

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Mischievous ISU Student Becomes Celebrity

Cheryl Mullenbach, "Iowa Stories" author

William Howard Taft's inaugural parade in March 1909 was canceled because of a snow storm, but the inaugural ball was held and a young Iowa woman was among the attendees. The young woman had just returned from touring Europe and performing on stages in London, Lucerne and Paris. But she also had a history of performances on Iowa stages that earned her a reputation for mischief. Continue Reading →

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