The Office of Graduate Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (Grad-DEI) at Iowa is committed to fostering a welcoming environment for graduate student populations that are historically underserved and underrepresented in higher education.

Grad-DEI is dedicated to supporting the outreach, recruitment, retention and success of underrepresented graduate students by:

  • Sponsoring events and programming through our Connecting Communities: Creating Space for Underrepresented Students.
  • Providing training, networking, community building, and celebrating achievements to establish a foundation of support on campus.
  • Holding space for students who experience isolation, micro-aggressions, and any other factors that may deter a student’s academic mission.
  • Offering the Summer Research Opportunities Program (SROP)—a Big Ten Academic Alliance—which provides underrepresented undergraduate students with research experience to create a gateway to graduate education.

In addition, the Graduate College is committed to funding students though fellowships, scholarships, and travel support in order to ease economic burden and protect time for scholarly pursuits. We also work closely with university partners including the Division of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Student Life, and International Student and Scholar Services.

The Graduate College Fellowships Incentive Award offers financial support for students who wish to apply for national competitions. We also work with the Big 10 Academic Alliance on recruitment efforts—one of which is the FreeApp program.

For more information, please contact Grad-DEI Director Liz Lara, MS, at