Students, faculty, alumni, and citizens of the state came together during the 1996-97 academic year to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the February 25, 1847, founding of The University of Iowa. This brief history of the University was compiled at that time by the University News Service.
February 25, 1847, 59 days after Iowa became a state.
OPENING OF CLASSES
The first faculty offered instruction at the University in March 1855 to students in the Old Mechanics Building, situated where Seashore Hall is now. In September 1855, the student body numbered 124, of which 41 were women. The 1856-57 catalogue listed nine departments offering Ancient Language, Modern Language, Intellectual Philosophy, Moral Philosophy, History, Natural History, Mathematics, Natural Philosophy, and Chemistry.
The original campus was composed of Old Capitol and the 10 acres of land on which it stood. Following the placing of the cornerstone July 4, 1840, the building housed the Fifth Legislative Assembly of the Territory of Iowa (December 5, 1842) and then became the first capitol of the State of Iowa (December 28, 1846). Until that date it had been the third capitol of the Territory of Iowa. When the capitol of Iowa was moved to Des Moines in 1857, Old Capitol became the first permanent “home” of the University.
1855-The University receives 50 books, the basis for its library that will open in 1857. University Libraries eventually will become one of the nation’s largest research libraries, with world-renowned collections of rare medical books, materials about Abraham Lincoln, and works by Leigh Hunt and Edgar Allan Poe.
1858 The University awarded its first degree to Mr. Dexter Smith, who received the Bachelor of Science degree. By the mid-1990s, Iowa will have awarded nearly 200,000 degrees.
1858-The Cabinet (later Museum) of Natural History is established – the first university museum west of the Mississippi. By the 1990s its collection will have grown to more than one million indexed specimens.
1860-The University becomes the first state institution of higher learning to admit women and men on an equal basis.
1868-The first law school west of the Mississippi moves to the Iowa campus after being established three years earlier in Des Moines.
1870-The University’s Medical Department, which will become one of the nation’s premier public medical colleges, holds its first sessions. With eight women in its original class, it is America’s first co-educational medical school.
1872-The University creates the nation’s first permanent college-level department of education.
1873-The first woman to graduate from the University’s Law Department, Mary B. Wilkinson, receives her Bachelor of Laws diploma. She is possibly the first woman to earn a law degree in America.
1879-The son of the first black American ambassador, Alexander Clark, Jr., becomes the first African American in the Iowa Law Department – and possibly the nation – to earn a law degree.
1882-Iowa becomes home for another west-of-the-Mississippi first: the Dental Department, which is also the nation’s sixth oldest dental school.
1890-The father of modern dentistry, G. V. Black, teaches in the Dental Department.
1896- The first five-player basketball game west of the Mississippi River was held at the UI against the University of Chicago in Close Hall on January 18. The Maroons won, 15-12.
1897-Carl E. Seashore, a professor of psychology who will become the Graduate College dean, arrives at Iowa. Seashore will do pioneering work in speech pathology on the Iowa campus.
1898-Iowa begins accepting candidates for the Ph.D. degree.
1898-University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics opens – the first university-based teaching hospital west of the Mississippi. Eventually it will be the largest such university-owned institution in America.
1901-University students begin publishing The Daily Iowan, the first daily campus newspaper west of the Mississippi.
1905- Jacob Van der Zee becomes the first UI student to receive a Rhodes Scholarship, three years after the first awards were presented. By the mid 1990s, 17 other Iowa undergraduates will have been named Rhodes Scholars, including three recent Iowa-raised scholars: 1985 recipient Jeff McKinney of Chariton, 1993 recipient Andy Wildenberg of West Branch, and 1994 recipient Ali Husain of Knoxville.
1907-The School of Education establishes the first chair of pedagogy at a U.S. university.
1909-The American Association of Universities, a select group of research institutions that today numbers 54, elects The University of Iowa to membership.
1909-The University appoints to the faculty its first professional artist, Charles A. Cumming, who will become head of the Department of Fine Arts.
1913-Based on its academic quality, the Graduate College is ranked second among all state universities.
1914-Following a 1911 expedition to Laysan Island, the Zoological Museum (today known as the Museum of Natural History) designs one of the world’s first habitat group exhibits – a detailed cyclorama that depicts hundreds of the island’s birds and includes reproductions of 50,000 leaves.
1919-Iowa establishes a separate Department of Neurology, the oldest continuing program west of the Mississippi.
1919-Station 9YA, which will be named WSUI in 1925, begins regular broadcasts of news and recorded music – the first educational radio station west of the Mississippi.
1920s-The Department of Graphic and Plastic Arts becomes the first in the country to base appointments on a prospective professor’s artistic abilities and portfolio quality.
1921-School of Music director Philip Greeley Clapp forms the University Symphony Orchestra, which will win acclaim as one of the finest groups of its kind.
1924-After the University’s pioneering decision to accept creative work in lieu of academic theses from graduate students in the arts, Eve Drewelowe earns Iowa’s first master of arts degree in painting.
1925- E.F. Lindquist joins the College of Education as a research assistant. The future director of the Iowa Testing Programs, Lindquist will develop the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills and the American College Testing (ACT) Program Tests, used by elementary and high school students in every state in the country.
1927-Iowa becomes the first state university to establish a school of religion.
1927-Psychology, previously part of the philosophy department curriculum, becomes a separate department. Dean Carl E. Seashore helps this field earn recognition as a serious science.
1931-One of the world’s leading organizations in basic and applied fluids research, the Iowa Institute of Hydraulic Research, is established.
1932-Ul Hospitals organizes the nation’s first and only statewide hospital ambulance service for patients unable to pay for their own transportation
1932-W9XK, the world’s first educational television station, airs its premiere telecasts. Sound is transmitted over campus radio station WSUI.
1934-Artist Grant Wood joins the faculty of the Department of Graphic and Plastic Arts, just four years after paintjng American Gothic.
1935-A University of Iowa medical laboratory is one of the first in the nation to record human electroencephalography (EEG) activity, led by pioneering investigator Professor Lee E. Travis.
1935-David A. Armbruster, the first Hawkeye swimming coach, originates the butterfly stroke and the flip turn. Eight years earlier, he developed under-water observation windows.
1936-America’s first University-sponsored program in creative writing, the Writers’ Workshop, is established. It will become preeminent in the United States, with Flannery O’Connor, Gail Godwin and John Irving among its graduates.
1938-Partly through the efforts of Louis C. Zopf, now known as “the father of hospital pharmacy,” the College of Pharmacy establishes the nation’s first hospital pharmacy graduate program.
1939-Nile C. Kinnick, star member of the legendary Ironmen football squad, receives the Heisman Trophy.
1939-Iowa establishes the first blood bank in the nation to use preservative agents for long-term storage.
1939- Frank Luther Mott received a Pulitzer Prize in history for his book History of American Magazines. He attended Iowa in 1921 and 1922.
1947-University Hospital School, the first program on a college campus devoted to rehabilitating disabled children and young adults, opens its doors to its first 20 patients.
1948-The School of Journalism awards the first doctoral degrees in the nation in mass communication.
1948-Tennessee Williams wins a Pulitzer Prize, for his play A Streetcar Named Desire.
1952-Work is completed on a television teaching and training laboratory, the largest instructional studio in the country and more extensive than many commercial stations.
1955-Ophthalmology Department doctors are the first in the nation to enlist state highway patrol officers to rush donor eyes to them for corneal transplantation. The department later becomes the first to train morticians to remove corneas for transplantation.
1955-The University establishes the western hemisphere’s first institute of agricultural medicine and environmental health.
1955-The UI Cleft Palate Research Program, the first multi-specialty rehabilitative program for cleft palate patients, is established.
1956-Nursing Dean Myrtle E. Kitchell (later Aydelotte) initiates one of the first major studies funded by the U.S. Public Health Service. The 1960 report that results from her three-year study of nursing activity and patient welfare will become a classic in nursing literature.
1958-Using data from America’s first earth satellite, Explorer 1, UI physics Professor James A. Van Allen discovers belts of radiation surrounding the earth, a phenomenon that eventually will be called the Van Allen belts. The cosmic ray instruments aboard Explorer I are the first of many that the University will provide for U.S. satellites, rockets, and space probes.
1961-With Injun 1, Iowa becomes the first university to completely design, assemble, and operate an entire spacecraft. It will repeat this feat at least seven more times and distinguish itself as one of only two universities in the world to do this.
1964-Paul Conrad received the first of three Pulitzer Prizes he would receive during his distinguished career as a political cartoonist. His others were awarded in 1971 and 1984. He received a B.A. degree from Iowa in 1950.
1965-Pharmacy faculty member William W. Tester establishes the Iowa Drug Information Service, now consulted by nearly 700 health centers and colleges of pharmacy and medicine around the world.
1965-Pharmacology faculty, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows begin studying the effects of chemical substances on living organisms in the Pharmacology-Toxicology Center, the first of its kind in the western hemisphere.
1966-The Rockefeller Foundation chooses the UI School of Music as home for a Center for New Music, to encourage new works by emerging composers.
1967-Paul Engle and Hualing Nieh bring 27 writers from 18 countries to Iowa City as they found the International Writing Program, the first and only program of its kind in the world.
1969-The University’s Museum of Art opens, established completely with private funds raised in the University of Iowa Foundation’s first capital campaign.
1971-Muscatine industrialist Roy J. Carver gives $3.5 million to the UI Foundation – the largest recorded gift American higher education for the year.
1972-Hancher Auditorium, a performing arts center that will gain national stature, opens to acclaim for its exceptional acoustics and for a computerized lighting system that at the time is found in only one other theater, the Royal Shakespeare in Stratford-on-Avon.
1974-The UI’s health colleges acquire consolidated, state-of-the-art library facilities with the opening of the $4.2 million Health Sciences Library, funded by federal grants and by $2 million in private gifts to the UI Foundation.
1975-Dentistry Professor George F. Andreasen first uses nitinol wire on orthodontic patients. Known as the “wire with a built-in memory,” it reduces the time required for braces.
1976-Old Capitol reopens for public tours following a six-year effort to restore the building to its original appearance as the first permanent seat of Iowa’s territorial and state governments.
1978-James A. McPherson received a Pulitzer Prize for fiction with his book, Elbow Room. He received an M.F.A. degree from Iowa in 1971.
1979-With instruments similar to those he used on Explorer 1 to discover the Van Allen radiation belts, James A. Van Allen discovers Saturn’s radiation belts during the Pioneer 11 mission.
1979-Using data gathered by UI plasma wave instruments aboard Voyager 1, physics Professor Donald A. Gurnett establishes the presence of lightning and other radio emissions from Jupiter.
1979-Using a special camera designed and built at the UI and carried aboard the Dynamics Explorer satellite, physics Professor Louis A. Frank and associates take the first global photographs of the earth’s northern lights.
1979, 1980, 1981-0riginal University Theatres plays by students in the Playwrights Workshop are selected three years in a row for performance at the American College Theatre Festival at Kennedy Center in Wash-ington, D.C. Iowa is the only university ever to be present at three consecutive national festivals.
1980-Author James A. Michener gives the Writers’ Workshop a half million dollars to create an endowment to help the program’s most promising recent graduates complete works for publication.
1981-William R. Panje in the Otolaryngology Department invents the neolarynx or “voice button,” enabling people to speak after removal of the larynx.
1981-84-The College of Medicine’s Physician Assistant Program ranks first in the nation for four consecutive years for its graduates’ performance on the National Certifying Examination.
1982 A package of UI instruments carried aboard the Space Shuttle Columbia becomes the first scientific payload to be picked up with the shuttle’s mechanical arm.
1983-The 15,450-seat Carver-Hawkeye Arena, one of the nation’s 10 largest university-owned sports arenas, opens after private contributors provide more than $10 million for the $17 million facility in less than 12 months. A year later the arena will receive an Honor Award from the American Institute of Architects for design excellence.
1984-A College of Medicine research team headed by Dr. Antonio Damasio determines the precise areas of brain damage responsible for the memory loss associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
1984-The Ul establishes the unique Undergraduate Scholar Assistantship Program, which permits top undergraduates to do research with senior faculty.
1985-The first heart transplant at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics is performed.
1985-The Museum of Art adds to its permanent holdings one of the world’s most important collections of African art: the Stanley Collection, a gift from Elizabeth and C. Maxwell Stanley of Muscatine, Iowa.
1985-Iowa Hall, a major gallery in the Ul Museum of Natural History that is devoted to the state’s geology, archaeology and ecology, is established through private gifts to the UI Foundation.
1985-An artificial blood substitute developed by professor of biochemistry Joseph Walder and associate research scientist Roxanne Walder undergoes U.S. Army-funded clinical trials at Baxter Healthcare Corporation. The blood substitute, extracted from donated human blood and chemically altered, will potentially stretch the blood supply and reduce the risk of contracting blood-borne infection.
1986-The UI is selected to become part of a 10-site, $60 million high-resolution radio telescope network that will enable research about galaxies billions of light-years away.
1986-UI-built instruments aboard Voyager 2 fly through the atmosphere of Uranus, giving science its first close encounter with the mysterious planet. Voyager 2 approached Neptune in 1989 and will continue sending information to earth until 2015.
1986-The UI reaches a new high in external funding: more than $1 billion obtained in gifts, grants and contracts between 1966 and 1986.
1986-Through a Ford Foundation grant, the UI initiates a model five-year program to prepare language students to teach Chinese, Japanese and Russian in Iowa secondary schools.
1986-The 50th anniversary of the Writers’ Workshop attracts nationwide media attention, including a New York Times story calling the program the best in the nation.
1986-The Iowa field hockey team’s NCAA championship marks the first national title in Iowa women’s athletics history.
1986-The new Law Building, a $25-million facility, is named for president emeritus Willard L. Boyd.
1987-The University kicks off the public phase of Iowa Endowment 2000, a $100-million capital campaign providing more than 150 major endow-ments for faculty chairs, graduate fellowships, and a center for advanced study by the year 2000.
1987-President James O. Freedman announces he is leaving the University to become president of Dartmouth College. Richard D. Remington, vice president for academic affairs and distinguished professor of preventive medicine and environmental health, is appointed interim president.
1987-The Iowa legislature authorizes the Board of Regents to issue $25.1 million for the construction of the Laser Science and Engineering Laboratory building.
1987-The Association for Theatre in Higher Education recognizes the Department of Theatre Arts with a new award for “outstanding support of student playwrights.” The award is made following the department’s fourth invitation in nine years to the annual American College Theatre Festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.
1987-Nancy Andreasen, professor of psychiatry, wins the Foundation’s Fund Prize for Research in Psychiatry, the highest award for research given by the American Psychiatric Association. Andreasen is the first woman to receive the award.
1987-Interim President Richard D. Remington introduces “Opportunity at Iowa,” a comprehensive effort to attract greater numbers of minority students and outstanding minority professors to the University.
1987-The International Writing Program celebrates its 20th year, attracting $30,000 from the Rockefeller Foundation and earning praise from The New York Times. Paul Engle and Hualing Nieh step down as directors of the program.
1987-The Board of Regents approves the first nursing doctoral program in Iowa to be offered at The University of Iowa, a major step in improving health care in the state and one of only 50 such programs in the country.
1987-Assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering Konstantine P. Georgakakos receives a five-year, $100,000-per-year National Science Founda-tion Presidential Young Investigator Award for re-search in predicting rainfall. Georgakakos created the system for flash flood prediction used by the National Weather Service.
1988-The University of Iowa Foundation receives more than $4 million from the estate of distinguished alumnus Edwin B. Green, former editor of The Iowa City Press-Citizen.
1988-Coach C. Vivian Stringer leads the women’s basketball team through its fourth consecutive 20-victory season to a Big Ten championship. Stringer is voted Converse coach of the year by her peers and is featured in Sports Illustrated, The Chicago Tribune, The Los Angeles Tribune, and The New York Times.
1988-Playwright in Residence Shelley Berc is awarded one of six $10,000 McKnight Fellowships from Minneapolis’ prestigious Playwrights’ Center and is invited for a residency at the Rockefeller Foundation’s Study and Conference Center in Bellagio, Italy.
1988-Hunter R. Rawlings III is named 17th presi-dent of The University of Iowa.
1988-Physics and astronomy professors James Van Allen, Louis A. Frank, Donald A. Gurnett, and Dwight R. Nicholson present expert testimony to the House Subcommittee on Space Science and Applications in a hearing on the long-range goals of the U.S. space program held on the Iowa campus.
1988-The University’s Arts Outreach Program, founded in 1979 and recognized as a model program in its field, receives a $10,000 grant from Target Stores. Target will renew its support for the next seven years, until the University ends the program in June 1995. The program sponsored more than 1,000 events and served 75,000 to 100,000 Iowans annually.
1989-The University of Iowa Mental Health Clinical Research Center, dedicated to the study of schizophrenia, receives a grant of $3.6 million from the National Institute of Mental Health. The multidisciplinary center, the largest of its type in the United States, is directed by Nancy Andreasen, professor of psychiatry.
1989-NASA grants $10.5 million to Louis A. Frank, professor of physics and astronomy, to build and operate a state-of-the-art camera to study the earth’s aurora borealis, or northern lights. NASA also grants $7.1 million to Donald A. Gurnett to design, build, and operate a plasma wave instrument to study the northern lights. Both instruments are scheduled for launch aboard NASA’s 1993 Polar spacecraft.
1989-The College of Engineering establishes the Iowa Institute of Biomedical Engineering with a $650,000 grant from the Iowa Department of Eco-nomic Development (DED) and matching non-state funds. Drawing on the expertise of faculty in the Colleges of Business Administration, Dentistry, Engineering, and Medicine, the institute is expected to accelerate the transfer of accumulated research findings in biomedical science and engineering to the Iowa economy.
1989-The State Board of Regents approves a plan to research the creation of a University-affiliated research park on the Oakdale campus.
1989- James A. Van Allen, Carver professor of physics emeritus, is awarded the Crafoord Prize by the Royal Swedish Academy of Science for his pioneering exploration of space and his 1958 discovery of the Earth’s radiation belts, named the Van Allen belts. The Crafoord Prize is widely regarded as the equivalent of the Nobel Prize.
1989-Alumnus John Pappajohn and his wife, Mary, donate $3 million to help complete the final phase of the 20-year capital replacement program at The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. The Pappajohns also create endowment funds for the operation of a comprehensive Clinical Cancer Center and for other programs at the University.
1989-One hundred years of football is celebrated at the University. Iowa’s first game was a 24-0 loss to Grinnell.
1989-Three University of Iowa scientists are named Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) investiga-tors: John E. Donelson, professor of biochemistry, for research on the tropical parasite that causes sleeping sickness; Michael J. Welsh, professor of internal medicine and physiology, for research on the lining in the airways of the lung that may shed light on the cellular defect in people with cystic fibrosis; and Kevin P. Campbell, professor of physiology, for isolating the protein dystrophin, whose absense has been shown to cause Duchenne muscular dystrophy. HHMI will provide a minimum of seven years’ support for salaries, laboratory space, and equipment for each investigator and research team.
1990-The Legal Clinic in the College of Law receives a $63,000 U.S. Department of Education grant to provide assistance to eastern Iowa AIDS patients.
1990-Poet Jorie Graham receives one of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation’s “genius” grants.
1990-Clark Blaise, 1962 graduate of the Writers’ Workshop, is named director of the International Writing Program.
1990-Assistant professor of biochemistry Madeline Shea is named a Presidential Young Investigator by the National Science Foundation, receiving $100,000 in research support annually for five years.
1990-The University of Iowa Cancer Center establishes the Cancer Information Service, available toll-free and nationwide.
1990-The Iowa Political Stock Market (IPSM), which made its debut during the 1988 presidential elections, gains international notoriety when it pre-dicts the outcome of the first all-national elections in Germany. Devised by political science professor John Wright and economics professors Robert Forsythe, Forrest Nelson, and George Neumann, the IPSM in the next year will be used in the Netherlands, Den-mark, and Turkey, and will consistently fare better than most major professional polls.
1990-University of Iowa Press director Paul Zimmer is awarded an Open Book Award by the American Society of Journalists and Authors, for his stand in rejecting a $12,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts rather than agreeing to a controversial new restriction.
1991-Howard Hughes Medical Investigator Michael Welsh uses gene insertion techniques to successfully correct the defect in human cystic fibrosis cells in a laboratory culture, prompting widespread response from the medical community and the public.
1991-The Center for Biocatalysis and Bioprocessing is created with a $300,000 appropriation from the state legislature. The center is an outgrowth of the Biocatalysis Research Group, a diverse team of 35 faculty representing more titian $5.3 million annually in funded research.
1991-John W. Colloton, director of the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, receives the American Hospital Association’s Distinguished Service Award, its highest award.
1991-Ground is broken for the new College of Business Administration building, slated for comple-tion in mid-1993.
1991-Women’s athletics director Christine H.B. Grant is named by the Institute for International Sport as one of 17 Ethics Fellows to study the state of ethics and sportsmanship in society and develop codes of ethics for athletics organizations.
1991-The Center for New Music celebrates its 25th year with premiers of new works by Michael Eckert, associate professor of music composition and theory, Eric Ziolek, acting director of the center, and founding member Richard Hervig, now on the faculty at Juilliard. The center was awarded a 1990 American Composers Alliance Laurel Leaf Award for “distinguished achievement in fostering and encouraging American music” and in 1986 became one of only two performance ensembles ever to receive a Broadcast Music Incorporated “commendation of excellence.”
1991-Professor of anthropology Russel Ciochon’s search for the remains of Gigantopithecus in the jungles of northern Vietnam earns worldwide attention and is the subject of a National Geographic special. The dig is the first joint scientific project between the U.S. and Vietnam since the end of the war.
1991-Writers’ Workshop alumna Mona Van Duyn wins the Pulitzer Prize in poetry.
1991–On Friday, Nov. 1, physics and astronomy doctoral student Gang Lu shoots and kills fellow graduate student Linhua Shan, Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy Robert Alan Smith, Professor of Physics and Astronomy Christoph K. Goertz, Professor and Chair of Physics and Astronomy Dwight R. Nicholson, and Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs T. Anne Cleary. Critically wounded is Miya Sioson, an honors student in Spanish and Portuguese working in the Office of Academic Affairs.
1992-The Guided Correspondence Study program celebrates its 75th year. This year approximately 5,500 students participated in 160 courses.
1992-Iowa is chosen by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as the site of the $32-million National Advanced Driving Simulator, then scheduled for completion at Oakdale Research Park in 1996.
1992-Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator Kevin Campbell uncovers the strongest evidence to date that the loss of the protein dystrophin renders muscle more susceptible to deterioration, a significant clue to the disease process of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
1992-The U.S. Department of Agriculture awards $1.85 million to the Biotechnology Byproducts Consortium (BBC) for continued research into the conversion of agribusiness and biotechnology byproducts into valuable materials. This is the fourth year the USDA has awarded a grant to the BBC, which includes The University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and the City of Cedar Rapids.
1992-The Iowa Women’s Archives opens at University Libraries, through a proposal by Louise Rosenfield Noun and Mary Louise Smith. The $1.5 million endowment for the archives was raised through Noun’s donation of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo’s painting “Self Portrait with Loose Hair.”
1992-The University dedicates the T. Anne Cleary Walkway, linking the eastside residence halls to the Pentacrest and named for the former associate vice president for academic affairs who was killed in the 1991 shootings that claimed six lives.
1993-Hancher Auditorium premieres Billboards, a collaborative effort with the Joffrey Balley and rock star Prince. For the production, Hancher received a $25,000 grant from The Arts Midwest Dance on Tour program, an agency that combines funds from the National Endowment for the Arts and a number of state arts councils, regional corporations, and founda-tions.
1993-Associate professor of pediatrics Jeffrey C. Murray participates in a four-year, $15-million Human Genome Project grant funded by the National Center for Human Genome Research. The project’s goals include addressing ethical, legal, and social issues raised by genetic research as well as establishing a new genetic research center at the University.
1993-University faculty receive three National Science Foundation grants supporting curriculum research at Iowa, including $6 million for the five-year Core Plus Mathematics project; $716,191 for professor of science education Robert E. Yager’s “Iowa Chautauqua” project; and $300,000 for professor of science education James A. Shymansky’s project challenging traditional teaching and testing of science and math.
1993-The University celebrates the 100-year anniversary of Czech composer Antonin Dvorak’s stay in Spillville, Iowa, with School of Music concerts, a Museum of Art exhibition, an Opera Theatre production, and a University-wide symposium.
1993-Nora England, professor and chair of anthropology, is named recipient of a five-year, $285,000 “genius” grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation for her work studying Mayan linguistics and preserving Mayan culture.
1993-Playwrights Workshop alumnus Robert Olen Butler wins the Pulitzer Prize for fiction.
1993-University facilities sustain more than $4 million in damage when record rainfall raises the Iowa River more than two feet above flood stage. Among buildings hardest hit were Hancher Auditorium, where water reached the orchestra pit, and Mayflower Hall, where water displaced the building’s 1,000 residents. Among the closest calls was the campus water treatment plant, where crews worked round the clock to ensure a safe water supply.
1993-The University of Iowa hospitals and Clinics establishes an outreach agreement with the Keokuk County Medical Clinic in Sigourney. The program is the first in what is hoped to be a network of clinics designed to make health care more accessible to rural Iowans.
1993-Health sciences at the University are reorganized under a new vice president responsible for overseeing the Colleges of Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing, and Pharmacy, as well as the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and statewide health service units. Henri Manasse, former interim vice chancellor for health services at the University of Illinois at Chicago, is named to the post.
1993-The University Honors Program receives a $1.7 million bequest from Rbodes Dunlap. Dunlap, who died in 1992, was a professor of English, a Rhodes scholar, and founding director of the Honors Progam from 1958 until 1981. The bequest is ex-pected to generate an annual income of $90,000, enhancing the University’s ability to recruit and retain exceptional students.
1994-The College of Business Administration opens its new John Pappajohn Business Administration Building, the largest classroom building on campus. More than $13 million has been pledged through the Foundation to endow professorships, underwrite scholarships, and fund educational programs.
1994-University Hospitals and Clinics begins construction of the Pomerantz Family Pavilion, a $113-million addition to be completed in 1995. It is projected that by the year 2000, some 319,000 ambulatory patients (56 percent of those served at University Hospitals) will be served annually within the new pavilion.
1994-The Opportunity at Iowa program receives a second $330,000 General Electric Fund grant to continue participating in the Faculty for the Future program; established nationwide by GE to respond to two crises in American higher education: the increasing shortage of faculty in the sciences and engineering and the under-representation in those areas of women and minorities.
1994-Women’s basketball coach Vivian Stringer’s 500th career victory occasions the endowment of a scholarship to be awarded annually to a women’s basketball player.
1994-Funds from a $7.3 million contract with the National Library of Medicine establish the National Library for the Study of Rural Telemedicine at the University. One of the laboratory’s goals is to use the state’s fiber-optic network to link state health care providers with resources at UIHC and the College of Medicine.
1994-The Truman Capote Literary Trust and the Writers’ Workshop announce the Truman Capote Award for Literary Criticism and the Truman Capote Fellowships in Creative Writing, which will provide more than $100,000 a year to the University of Iowa Foundation.
1994-Writers’ Workshop faculty continue to receive national recognition: poet Marvin Bell receives a 1994 Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and poet Gerald Stern is selected for an Academy of American Poets fellowship for distinguished poetic achievement.
1994-The University of Iowa Museum of Art celebrates its 25th year. The museum is the only university museum in the country to be established entirely through donations.
1994-NASA honors Regent Distinguished Professor of Physics and Astronomy James A. Van Allen with a lifetime achievement award.
1994-University faculty win a record $167.5 million in grants, gifts, and contracts. The fiscal year ending June 30, 1994, marks the eighth consecutive year in which the University has won more than $100 million in external funding.
1994-The State Board of Regents approves the establishment of the Iowa Spine Research Center, a unique effort involving the Colleges of Engineering and Medicine. Funding and operation for at least three years is secured from external, non-federal support.
1994-Professor of biological sciences George Cain receives a four-year, $1 million Howard Hughes Medical Institute grant, to be combined with a previous $1.1 million Hughes grant, to give students and teachers greater access to tile biological sciences. The University is one of 62 universities to receive a portion of the $86 million awarded in 1994 HHMI grants.
1994-The University institutes UICare and UISelect, the two new comprehensive health care programs to be offered to University employees in January 1995.
1994-University President Hunter R. Rawlings III accepts a position as president of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.
1995-Provost Peter G. Nathan is named acting University president.
1995-Mary Sue Coleman, provost and vice president for academic affairs at the University of New Mexico, is named the 18th president and the first woman president of The University of Iowa.
1995-New freshmen entering the University in the fall of 1995 can take advantage of a new four-year graduation plan, which assures that they can earn a degree from Iowa in four years if they meet certain qualifications.
1995-University faculty, staff, and students won a record-high total of $189.3 million in grants, gifts, and contracts for University research, development, education, and service during fiscal 1995, the 12-month period ending June 30, 1995.
1995-Minority enrollment is up in all categories for the fall of 1995 and accounts for 9.2 percent of the total University enrollment.
1995-A study by the National Research Council ranks five of Iowa’s doctoral programs among the top 25 percent in the nation: physiology (top 10 percent), political science, psychology, pharmacology, and biochemistry and molecular biology.
1995-The University of Iowa and Iowa State University share the bulk of a $22 million estate left by F.W. Miller of Rockwell City.
1995-Music professor Daniel Shapiro performs all of Beethoven’s 32 piano sonatas – the first time they had been performed in a single recital series at the University, and as far as is known, the first time in Iowa.
1995-The Iowa State Board of Regents approves the renaming of the Music Building to the Voxman Music Building in honor of School of Music Emeritus Professor Himie Voxman.
1995-Ecolotree TM Inc., a research-based environmental engineering firm that uses poplar trees to help control water and air pollution, locates its corporate headquarters at the Technology Innovation Center on the Oakdale Research Campus.
1995-To make University of Iowa assistantships more competitive with those of its peer institutions, the Iowa State Board of Regents approves a policy allowing spouses of graduate teaching and research assistants to register for a full course load at resident rates.
1995-University Writers’ Workshop graduate Philip Levine receives the 1995 Pulitzer Prize for poetry.
1995-By attending a live, interactive teleconference orientation session, a group of Mason City area students are the first to use the state’s new fiber-optic network to learn about The University of Iowa.
1995-For the second year in a row, the American Academy of Family Physicians honors the College of Medicine for producing a high percentage of graduates (62 percent) who enter family practice careers.
1995-Former assistant University football coach Robert Elliott becomes the executive director of the 46,000-member Alumni Association.
1995-David C. Johnsen, a nationally recognized researcher and educator in pediatric dentistry, becomes the dean of the College of Dentistry.
1995-The University’s central mailing system receives the Industry Excellence Award by the National Postal Forum for its efforts to cut waste and save money.
1995-The College of Medicine held its first ever “White Coat Ceremony,” where students were ceremonially “cloaked” with their first white clinical coat, calling attention to the importance of the doctor-patient relationship.
1995-Iowa Gov. Terry E. Branstad honors the International Writing Program (IWP) with an Award for Distinguished Service to State Government.
1995-The Rhetoric Department, whose faculty have taught more than 100,000 students since the 1940s, celebrates its 50th anniversary.
1995-Human clinical trials have begun in Europe for a University-developed blood substitute that may offer a safe, infection-free alternative for patients who need transfusions due to trauma or surgery.
1996- The faculty of the College of Law is the fifth most productive among the nation’s public law schools. The rankings, provided by the Chicago-Kent College of Law Review Faculty Scholarship Survey, are based on the number of publications in the nation’s leading law reviews.
1996-The Ophthalmology Department moves into the Eye Institute in the new Pomerantz Family Pavilion at University Hospitals and Clinics. The new pavilion replaces the 1927-vintage facilities of the General Hospital. The facilities include 53 examination rooms, two state-of-the-art operating suites, a refractive laser surgery room, and faculty and support staff offices.
1996-The College of Medicine is awarded a four-year, $2.4 million grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute to hire new faculty and to fund a series of initiatives in biomedical research. The new faculty will focus their research on molecular biology and gene identification and function in human disease.
1996-The World Council for Gifted and Talented Children chooses the College of Education as its new headquarters. The council will coordinate the activities of more than 40 member countries from its administrative space at the Belin-Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development.
1996-Des Moines venture capitalist John Pappajohn and his wife, Mary, contribute $1.5 million to expand Iowa’s Institute for Entrepreneurial Management, which is then renamed the John Pappajohn Entrepre-neurial Center. The center develops entrepreneurship education for students and for Iowa citizens. Daryl Erdman, director of the Center for Entrepreneurship at the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, is named director of the center.
1996-As part of an on-going effort to strengthen East Asian studies, the Office of the President announces plans to create an endowed chair jointly funded by the Korea Foundation of Seoul, the Stanley-UI Foundation Support Organization of Iowa City, and E & M Charities of Muscatine. The Stanley-Korea Chair will be created in one of the University’s social science departments.
1996-Students interested in the history of the book and the art of book design and production can now earn credit for their studies in a new graduate-level program offered by the Center for the Book. The nondegree certificate in Book Studies/Book Arts and Technologies is the only certificate program of its kind in the United States.
1996-Schaeffer Hall undergoes $8.9 million in renovations to upgrade the 94-year-old facility that houses the College of Liberal Arts.
1996-The University of Iowa is listed as one of the strongly recommended universities for Latinos, according to the Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education. The University was recommended based on its outstanding academic programs for Latinos.
1996-More than 3,000 miniature books dating from 1628 to 1989 are donated to the University Libraries by Charlotte Smith of Newton.
1996-William P. Albrecht, professor of economics, is named the first Global Scholar. The Global Scholars Program is a pilot faculty development program that grew out of the University’s strategic planning process.
1996-The Muscatine Coronary Risk Factor Project marks its 25th year. The project, which focuses on the Muscatine, Iowa community, is an on-going survey of factors associated with heart disease and stroke.
1996-The first floor of Stanley Residence Hall is designated a Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) floor, with the sole purpose of supporting women with an interest in science and engineering.
1996-College of Medicine researchers map the gene for a form of age-related macular degeneration, a finding that may provide scientists with valuable insight into the leading cause of blindness in older Americans.
1996-The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration awards a $34 million federal contract to TRW Inc. of San Diego to build the world’s most advanced driving simulator – the National Advanced Driving Simulator – at the University’s Oakdale Research Park.
1996-Construction is complete on the College of Business Administration’s Newton-Area Educational Classroom, one of three off-campus sites where Iowa’s M.B.A. program offers classes.
1996-Sixty-three percent of the College of Medicine’s class of 1996 chose to pursue careers in primary care specialties. This is the fourth consecutive year in which more than 30 percent of University medical graduates choose family practice.
1996-University students have the option of enrolling in three different summer sessions, including a new three-week session.
1996-Iowa workshop faculty member Jorie Graham receives the 1996 Pulitzer Prize for poetry. All three finalists -Donald Justice, Charles Wright, and Graham – are University graduates and all have been members of the Writers’ Workshop faculty.
1996-Students in the College of Law launch The Journal of Gender, Race and Justice, one of the few such journals in the country.
1996-The Olympic torch passes through Iowa City and the University campus. A brief ceremony is held at Hancher Auditorium.
1996- Jon Whitmore, dean of the College of Fine Arts at the University of Texas at Austin, is named University of Iowa provost.
1996-The University of Iowa Research Foundation receives a record number of disclosures of potential inventions by University employees during the fiscal year ending June 30. The 74 invention disclosures mark the third time in four years that a new record has been set.
1996-The Parents Association pledges $60,000 to create the first endowed Sesquicentennial Scholarships.
1996-University faculty, staff, and students attract an all-time high $197.7 million in grants, gifts, and contracts for University research, development, education and service during fiscal 1996.
1996-Plain Pictures: Images of the American Prairie opens at the Museum of Art. It is the first major exhibition to be devoted to artworks depicting the grasslands of the Midwest.
1996-The University of Iowa begins a yearlong sesquicentennial celebration of its founding on February 25, 1847.
1996-For the fall of 1996, minority students account for 9.5 percent of the total University enrollment, up for the third consecutive year and again exceeding the goal set by the State Board of Regents for a minority enrollment of at least 8.5 percent.
1996-President Mary Sue Coleman inaugurates a series of “fireside chats” to give students an opportunity to communicate their concerns and ideas to the president. The idea was suggested by Student Government president Marc Beltrame.