University of Iowa

2016-17 Annual Report

The Office of Outreach & Engagement reflects the university's emphasis on creating a "better future for Iowans," one of four strategic priority areas outlined in the 2010-16 UI strategic plan. This plan was the basis for the creation of our office. During the first few years, we learned how we could serve the university faculty, staff, and students, as well as the people of Iowa. Now, our office focuses on the current strategic plan, A Bright Future. In this plan, the Office of Outreach & Engagement plays an integral role in the university’s goal to “engage with Iowa and the world to broaden education, improve health, and enhance economic development.” We do this work through our seven featured programs, our grant program, and continual support of community engagement across campus.

Arts Share is the University of Iowa’s arts outreach program, sharing the talents of students and faculty from the Division of Performing Arts (music, dance, and theatre), the School of Art & Art History, and the Writers’ Workshop with the rest of the state.  Arts Share programs can tie into classroom curricula, enhance offerings in community venues, and fill in gaps in arts programming.  In addition to developing new curricula each year, we also have established programs that we continue to expand.

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The Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities (IISC) partners faculty, staff, and students across the University of Iowa campus with urban and rural communities to complete projects that enhance the sustainability of Iowa's communities.

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The University of Iowa's Theme Semester is a collaboration that brings diverse perspectives to bear on a topic of importance to Iowa and the world every spring semester. Grounded in the education mission of the university, the Theme Semester provides opportunities for teaching, engagement, and learning both on campus and throughout the state of Iowa.

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The Grant Wood Art Colony celebrates the life and legacy of Iowa’s most famous artist, Grant Wood. After painting one of the most recognizable images in the world, American Gothic, Wood joined the University of Iowa faculty. Each year, the Colony provides three Fellowships in Painting, Printmaking, and Interdisciplinary Performance.

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The University of Iowa’s Resource Conservation & Development (RC&D) Partnership is a community engagement initiative that partners the University of Iowa with Iowa’s Resource Conservation & Development non-profit organizations to help build strong, sustainable communities and improve the quality of life in Iowa.

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The Hawkeye Lunch & Learn lecture series and Hawkeye Speakers Bureau sent University of Iowa talent and imagination throughout the state to meet and engage with Iowans, who in turn reported an increased awareness of the value that the University of Iowa provides to the state.

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The Office of Outreach & Engagement also integrated the Hawkeye Speakers Bureau into program offerings this year. The Hawkeye Speakers Bureau supplemented the Hawkeye Lunch & Learn lecture series in growing community partnerships by making University of Iowa experts available to meet the educational needs of Iowans throughout the state by request.

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2016-17 Annual Report