Open January 18 – July 1, 2022

This exhibit celebrates students at the University of Iowa, recognizing student life as the very core of the university. It offers a sampling of historical documents and objects found in the University Archives and the Iowa Women’s Archives at the University of Iowa Libraries.

Popular aspects of the student experience are depicted:

Academics, athletics, activism. Protest, public service, parties.

On display are snippets of student life from throughout the university’s history: the Iowa Memorial Union as a center of activity, the performing arts as a source of vibrancy, and military service and Greek life as time-honored traditions. Decades of student publications and glimpses of social and political activism are seen throughout, demonstrating the diversity of student voices on campus.

While not every student’s experience is recounted in this exhibit, we hope visitors to the Main Library Gallery will find something that speaks to their own time on campus – whether during this past year, or generations ago.

Find historic videos and other exhibit-related resources in our LibGuide.

Curator Highlights


Exhibition Curation
Denise Anderson, Archives Assistant
Aiden Bettine, Community and Student Life Archivist
David McCartney, University Archivist

Preparation & Conservation
Bill Voss, Conservator Technician & Exhibit Preparator 
Giselle Simón, University Conservator 

Kalmia Strong, Creative Coordinator

Exhibition Coordination 
Sara J. Pinkham, Exhibition and Engagement Coordinator

Bill Voss, Kalmia Strong, Sara J. Pinkham

Exhibition Technology
Will Brown, IT Consultant (LIB IT) 
Chris ClarkSenior IT Support Consultant (LIB IT) 

Publicity & Website
Sara J. Pinkham 
Ken Clinkenbeard, Web Services Specialist

Virtual Exhibit Assembly & Photography
Sara J. Pinkham

Financial Support
Friends of the University of Iowa Libraries

Special Thanks

  • Tricia Bender, Collections Manager, National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library
  • Katie Buehner, Director of the Rita Benton Music Library
  • Deborah A. Calkins, Office of the Registrar  
  • Bethany Davis, Digital Processing Coordinator
  • Ethan DeGross, Researcher/Developer, Digital Scholarship & Publishing Studio
  • Rob Durham, Scene Shop Supervisor, UI Theatre Arts
  • Brian Fotsch, Assistant Director of Facilities, University of Iowa Libraries
  • Sarah Harris, Office of the Registrar
  • Anna Holland, Processing Librarian, Iowa Women’s Archives
  • Daniel Johnson, Digital Preservation Librarian
  • Mark Mueller, Communications Infrastructure Engineer, Learning Spaces Technology (ITS)
  • Earl M. Rogers (1938-2017), University Archivist, 1970-1998
  • Noelle Sinclair, Head of Special Collections, University of Iowa Law Library
  • Alyssa Varner, Creative Coordinator, Digital Scholarship & Publishing Studio
  • Janet Weaver, Assistant Curator, Iowa Women’s Archives
  • University of Iowa Pentacrest Museums