Tuesday, December 6, 2016


Dean Keller

This fall the University of Iowa campus celebrated a Week of Inspiration, marking recovery from the historic flood, completion of the stunning new arts buildings, and the installation of the 21st president of the University of Iowa, J. Bruce Harreld. President Harreld has challenged our campus to build on its rich heritage of strengths – especially our missions of teaching and research – in providing the highest quality educational experience to our students while training tomorrow’s educators, innovators, and leaders.

The UI Graduate College has already undergone a shift toward increased emphasis on holistic training of graduate students.  We support students’ individual success and provide a foundation for successful graduate programs, which ultimately enhances the national reputations of our individual programs and the institution as a whole.

We are further investing in interdisciplinary scholarship, financial support of our students, and expanded career exploration and training. However, now is a time of unprecedented and rapid change in graduate education, making these investments both exciting and complex. We explore the new landscape of graduate education knowing that the investments we are making in our exceptional graduate students today will pay off with dividends in the future.

In the following pages, you will read about exciting work taking place on our campus. You will hear about efforts to increase diversity among leaders in academia, Iowa M.F.A. dancers who have performed with national dance companies, insights into developing speech perception, tools to prevent spread of infection in healthcare facilities, discoveries that may inform future treatments for HIV, and efforts to reimagine the next generation of the Ph.D.

These remarkable projects are just a sampling of the innovative work taking place on our campus. By fostering a diverse intellectual environment conducive to exemplary research, scholarship, and creativity, the Graduate College is poised to further strengthen the University of Iowa’s reputation as a leading institution of American higher education and prepare the next generation of scholars.

This success is a team effort involving the community, our talented students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends. Your support redefines graduate education at Iowa, enabling us to continue to explore, take risks, and push boundaries. Your support provides students with a holistic, student-focused experience that is uniquely Iowa and sets us apart from our peers. Your support provides opportunities for graduate students to excel and develop into scholars.

I invite you to stay connected as we chart our new course. We will be hosting a number of events on campus this spring, including a free lecture by former UI President and current Secretary of the Smithsonian, David Skorton. Dr. Skorton will share his thoughts on the future of graduate education from his perspective as Smithsonian secretary, former university president, musician, physician, researcher, academician, and reformer. I hope you will join us.

Thank you for your commitment to graduate education. I look forward to our continued partnership.