Parent Times
Students sledding on the west side of Old Capitol.

Greetings, Hawkeye parents!

Your students are in their last week of fall classes, and probably studying hard for finals, which are scheduled for the week of Dec. 12–16. Whether your student will be coming home for the winter interim, traveling, or staying in Iowa City, the semester break is a good time to chat about academic progress and career goals. Read on to see what's new on campus, how to support your student through times of high stress, and some gift suggestions for the holiday season.


A message from the vice president for student life
Tom Rocklin, vice president for student life, talks about how to encourage your students to seek help when they need it. Link to message.

How to help your student handle stress
Your undergrad is in the home stretch of the fall semester—a stressful time of the year, especially for first-year students preparing for their first round of final exams. The Office of Admissions has posted online some tips on how to support your student through academic challenges, and Student Health Service also offers information about stress management at

Find Commencement information online
Is your student graduating this month? Visit the Office of the Registrar to find a schedule of this semester's commencement ceremonies along with driving directions, links to local hotels, information about accommodations for guests with physical disabilities, and more.

University Housing accepting RA applications through Dec. 19
University Housing and Dining is accepting applications for Resident Assistants (RAs) for the 2012–13 academic year. RAs receive a stipend as well as full room and board during their appointment. Applicants must meet academic requirements and have at least one year of on-campus living experience. Find more information.

Career workshops help students prepare for job search
With graduation for some undergraduates just around the corner, the Pomerantz Career Center is offering workshops on Dec. 9 geared toward seniors. In Suit Camp: A Boot Camp for Your Job Search, students will hear from career advisors on topics from job search strategies to acing an interview. For more details, see

Peace Corps appealing to more UI post-grads
Peace Corps officials say the group is seeing a record number of volunteers this year, which may coincide with the organization's growing popularity as an alternative to graduate school or jobs following graduation. Currently, the organization has 9,095 U.S. volunteers stationed around the globe, said Meredith Mahy Gall, the University of Iowa Peace Corps representative. Included in that number are 41 UI alumni. Read the story in the Daily Iowan.

Get to know the 2011 Homecoming king and queen
Each year, two students who show exemplary Hawkeye spirit are selected to represent the University of Iowa's student body as its Homecoming king and queen. Those two students are chosen not by election, but through a process that includes a written application, reference letters, and an interview. Get to know this year's royalty, Wei Du, a senior finance and accounting major from Jinan, China, and Kevin Velovitch, a senior finance and management major from Noblesville, Ind. online.

Gift idea: Tickets to campus arts, sport events
Not sure what to get your student for the holidays? Consider treating them to a University performance. Hancher presents performances on and near campus while the Division of Performing Arts presents dance, music, and theatre arts events throughout the year. Also, student athletes participating in winter sports have kicked off their seasons and always appreciate crowd support; for schedule and ticket information, visit

Regents approve construction of Learning Commons in the UI Main Library
The University of Iowa is moving forward on a $14.5 million project to create a new academic center inside the Main Library. The 40,000-square-foot Learning Commons is expected to open in 2013 and would include 20 group study rooms, academic support services, flexible study space and an entrance on the eastside on Madison Avenue. Watch Parent Times for updates about this project as construction progresses.

International student population and study abroad participation continue to grow
International student enrollment at the University of Iowa, as well as study abroad participation by UI students, have continued to grow faster than national trends according to the Institute of International Education. The number of international students at colleges and universities in the United States increased by 5 percent from academic year 2009–10 to 2010–11. The UI saw a 15-percent growth in international student enrollment in fall 2010. Study abroad statistics show a 4 percent increase in study abroad during 2009–10 at the national level. Study abroad at the UI increased 6.4 percent in the same time frame.

Latino enrollment growing at UI, across the country
This fall, 1,334 Latino students are enrolled at the UI—an increase of 21.4 percent over last fall's 1,099. "It's certainly not a surprise to anyone who's been paying attention to national demographics that the Latino population is increasing," said UI Chief Diversity Officer Georgina Dodge. "We're seeing that corresponding tick in college-degree attainment and completion [here], as well." Read the story in the Daily Iowan.

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This Parent Times e-mail update is produced for family members of University of Iowa students by University Communication and Marketing in collaboration with the Division of Student Life and the Office of the Provost. A print publication is mailed four times a year. Visit Parent Times online at which includes archives of print and e-mail content.

The University of Iowa Parent Times