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University of Iowa News Release


April 26, 2010

At A Glance

Education research article named 'Oracle Research Article of the Year'

A research article titled “The Effects of Fraternity/Sorority Membership on College Experiences and Outcomes: A Portrait of Complexity," was named Oracle Research Article of the Year by the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors. The article was co-written by two individuals from the University of Iowa College of Education --- graduate student Ashley Asel and professor Ernest “Ernie” T. Pascarella -- and Tricia Seifert, an assistant professor at the University of Toronto.

The Oracle Award was established in 2006 to recognize the outstanding written contributions to Oracle: The Research Journal of the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors.

The article, which appeared in the September 2009 issue, shared the results of a study that estimated the effects of fraternity/sorority membership on a wide range of college experiences and outcomes for first-year and senior college students at a large, public Midwestern university.

The findings suggest a complex portrait of the relationship between affiliation, engagement and learning outcomes. While membership appeared to facilitate social involvement during college, it may also limit the diversity of relationships. It was also associated with higher levels of community service but also increased the odds of excessive alcohol use. The study concludes that Greek life cuts both ways – warranting neither unreserved praise nor blanket condemnation.


UI forum to examine Bolivian constitutional reform process

The University of Iowa will host an international symposium on Bolivia’s historic Constituent Assembly of 2006-07. The event, which is free and open to the public, will be held in Room 2520D, University Capitol Centre from 3 to 6:30 p.m. Saturday, May 1, and from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday, May 2.  

Bolivia’s indigenous and social movements have captured worldwide attention. A constituent assembly to re-write the constitution and “refound” the nation was a key demand of those movements. The symposium will explore the relationship between the assembly and wider efforts to overcome legacies of political exclusion.

“Perspectives on the Constituent Assembly and the Refoundation of Bolivia” is co-organized by Laura Gotkowitz (history, UI), and Rossana Barragán (history, Universidad Mayor de San Andrés). Participants include Bolivia’s Minister of Autonomies Carlos Romero; Congressional Deputy Marcela Revollo; human rights activist Loyola Guzmán; Director of Fundación Tierra Gonzalo Colque; anthropologists Salvador Schavelzon and Pamela Calla; and historian James Dunkerley.

A Major Projects Grant from UI International Programs, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Perry A. and Helen Judy Bond Fund for Interdisciplinary Interaction, the Department of History and the Latin American Studies Program sponsor the symposium.

Visit or contact Heidi Vekemans, or 319-335-3862.


UI International Programs' 'WorldCanvass' features the Middle East May 7

Joan Kjaer will host a “WorldCanvass” program featuring the Middle East before a live audience from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, May 7, in the Senate Chamber of the Old Capitol Museum on the University of Iowa campus.

Experts from many disciplines and backgrounds will discuss the history, cultures and religions of the region, and there will be live musical performances by artists from Iraq and Armenia. The event is free and open to the public.

Faculty members from the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Denise Filios of Spanish and Portuguese and Vicki Hesli of political science, will join International Writing Program Director Christopher Merrill in offering an overview of the region.  UI and community participants will discuss local interfaith dialogue efforts, the long history of Muslims in Iowa, UI recruitment in the Middle East and the arts.

"WorldCanvass" is recorded for later broadcast by UITV and KRUI-FM. Live streaming will be available on the University of Iowa International Programs website at

“WorldCanvass” is a production of International Programs at the UI in partnership with the UI Pentacrest Museums, UITV and KRUI.

For more information, visit or contact Joan Kjaer at 319-335-2026 or


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Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all UI-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation to participate in a program, please contact the sponsoring department in advance.