Recent Stories

Governor On Board With University Funding Plan


A controversial new funding distribution plan for Iowa’s three state universities, proposed by the Board of Regents, appears to have strong support from Gov. Terry Branstad. “It makes sense to me that the focus should be on giving higher educational opportunities for Iowa in-state students,” Branstad said in an IowaWatch interview. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , ,

Iowa Chinese Students Struggle To Adjust, Feel Lack Of Support

Old Capitol photo

The University of Iowa has intensely recruited Chinese students since 2007, but has made little progress fostering their assimilation to campus life. In some respects, an IowaWatch investigation has found, the university’s practices make interactions with domestic students more difficult and increase isolation. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , ,

Many Iowa Employers Look For Study Abroad Experience


GOING GLOBAL special report: studying abroad experience can give graduates valuable skills in areas such as communication and collaboration, in addition to cultural awareness, an increasingly sought-after trait in a global economy. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Huge Debts Temper Job Searches For 2014 College Graduates In Iowa

Sara Harrington (right), assistant director of academic progress and loans at the University of Iowa’s Office of Student Financial Aid, meets with UI junior Alyssa Lattner on May 1, 2014, to discuss Lattner’s financial aid situation.

Plenty of seniors on Iowa college campuses interviewed this spring for an IowaWatch report on college debt and attitudes about finding a job have been in an 'in-the-now moment'. They will graduate soon and many of them don't have solid plans for paying the bills. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Graduating Debt-Free Gave Students A Jump In Job Market


DES MOINES, Iowa -- Some hard work and a little luck has left a handful of graduating seniors at Drake University free of any student-loan debt, and anxiety about wading into the workforce. Erin Hassanzadeh, 21, a graduating broadcast major from Bloomington, Minnesota, who has accepted a Fulbright scholarship to teach English in Korea, said she has saved wages from work she has done since she was 13. Her first job was helping out at her parents’ restaurant back home. She also got help from her parents and a generous scholarship from Drake, she said. “I’m very thankful for that,” she said. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , ,

Graduating Early Does Not Loosen The Job Market


OSKALOOSA, Iowa -- Jessica Magill received her associates of arts degree from Indian Hills Community College in Ottumwa right before graduating from high school in 2012 in Sigourney. On Saturday, May 10, she graduated from William Penn University with a degree in business management at the age of 20. Although she got ahead in her college education she wasn’t sure about her job prospects yet. Perhaps her interviews at Walt Disney World and Universal Studios in the Orlando, Fla., around the start of June after she graduates will land her a job in hospitality. “I’ve done a lot of research between the two companies and several similar companies,” she said. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Iowa State Student Taking Advantage Of Having No Debt

Emily Funk as a child with her father, Ruben Funk, of Davenport. Ruben Funk died in Emily's senior year of high school but left money for her to attend Iowa State University debt free.

AMES, Iowa -- Emily Funk is the only person in the circle of people she knows at Iowa State University who will graduate this month without debt. “My dad died when I was a senior in high school, and he left a bunch of money for me and my brothers to go to college,” Funk, 24, of Davenport, said. “It’s only for school. That’s the only way we can use the money.”

She will have some money left to attend graduate school but will have to borrow some, and also work for a year. Funk said she’s taking a year off of regular schooling to improve her research and language skills, and to read books for fun. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , ,