When first-year students come to The University of Iowa this month, they will face new student pressures: getting around campus, living with a roommate, attending new classes, learning how to talk with professors. But 86 students will have help, because they share a common bond: they are considering health science careers, and theyre members of a new learning community at Iowa.
As members of the Health Science Learning Community, on the 11th and 12th floors of Rienow Residence Hall, theyll be invited to regular seminars on themes such as bioethics, womens health, geriatrics, and genetics. Informal workshops with other Iowa students, faculty members, and leading researchers from other top institutions will give them a basis to make a decision about possible health science careers. And experienced preprofessional students will be on hand to help them navigate the University.
We have one of the strongest health science programs in the nation and the only one in Iowa, says Christopher Squier, associate provost for health sciences. We try to present this strength to incoming students and guide them as they explore career choices in several ways: by mentoring, activities, and introducing them to faculty members from all of our health science collegesDentistry, Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, and Public Health.
Students will have chances to join organizations for preprofessional students in each of the health science colleges. An advisory committee of collegiate representatives of these colleges, preprofessional students, and current health science students, led by Karin Brunk, program assistant in the Office of the Provost, will help them develop programs they want.
This falls class will be the first to live in a health sciences community. However, other learning communities have flourished for many years, such as the International Crossroads Community and Women in Science and Engineering. The following communities exist in the residence halls:
International Crossroads Community
Located in Hillcrest Residence Hall, International Crossroads Community is a unique living/learning community for
students interested in foreign cultures, languages, and international issues. The community is diverse; it is coed; and it accommodates students of different language abilities, international interests, ages, and experiences. Residents have the opportunity to participate in cultural festivals, language dinners, and programs where they learn about the intricacies of living in a diverse world. It is not necessary to be fluent in a foreign language, nor is a major in a foreign language required to live in the community.
First-year students invited to join the Honors Program are eligible to live on the honors floors located on quiet floors in Daum Residence Hall. One of the many benefits of living on an honors floor is the special programming by the honors staff to involve students with the University and the Honors Program. Students find a welcoming, productive environment in which to pursue academic goals and make friends with similarly motivated students.
Men in Engineering
First-year male engineering students may choose to live on a quiet floor in Daum Residence Hall. Students on this floor will register in the Courses in Common program for courses taken by first-year engineering students. In this way, engineering students interested in this learning community option will live with other first-year engineering students who will be their classmates and study partners. First-year men admitted into the College of Engineering may apply.
Women in Science and Engineering
The Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) floor is open to first-year women interested in pursuing degrees in science, engineering, or mathematics. As a WISE floor resident, students have the opportunity to apply for the Student to Student Support in Science program (SSSS), which matches students with a peer mentor in their field and provides programming on a variety of topics, including academic survival skills and career planning.
Leadership Community in Business and Entrepreneurship
This learning community is open to first-year students with a prebusiness or economics major. It offers opportunities to participate in activities and programs geared particularly to students interested in a business career. Benefits include specialized career advising, an introduction to technology applications, interaction with faculty, and social and cultural activities.