Inside Iowa State for faculty and staff
Oct. 14, 2021
Inside news
For several years, the Professional and Scientific Council has advocated for greater flexibility in when and where staff can do their jobs. With the new WorkFlex program announced last week, the council's longstanding aim will become reality beginning in January.

Registration opens Oct. 20 for a four-week winter session that will run Dec. 20-Jan. 14. Continuing undergraduates will choose this year from approximately 55 courses, more than half in upper levels. 

Senior associate athletics director for student services Charles Small will serve as interim vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion, effective Oct. 15. Small also serves as deputy Title IX coordinator for athletics and sports administrator for wrestling and men's basketball.

In May, the Faculty Senate voted on four new learning outcomes for the U.S. diversity course requirement and their intent to have students achieve all four. An amendment in July supported by the executive board would require only three of the four outcomes, prompting a motion at this week's meeting to rescind that change.

As the end of 2021 approaches and before open enrollment for 2022 begins, here are a few reminders and updates on employee flexible spending accounts.

Members of the P&S classification/compensation project team provide an update on adjustments made, insights gained, in the 12 months since implementation.

October is cybersecurity awareness month and the Center for Cybersecurity Innovation and Outreach is working to better educate people on campus about how they can protect themselves from scammers looking to steal sensitive information.
The following announcements were added this week:
  • COVID-19: By the numbers
  • Half-day symposium focuses on moving forward, post-pandemic
  • 'Allies for gender equity' workshop has room for male faculty
  • Country singer Cody Jinks plans Nov. 12 concert at Stephens
  • Reminder: Employee flu shot clinic wraps up Friday
  • 'Tracing race' initiative seeks project proposals
  • Lecture looks at origins of curriculum violence
Around campus
A survey of 73 Iowa communities showed the pandemic affected communities of different sizes differently. Rural communities were more likely to have worsening mental health and relationships, while larger communities encountered more physical and financial problems. 

Following a U.S. Supreme Court decision and approval from the Big 12 Conference, the athletics department will roll out a student-athlete achievement program for the 2022-23 academic year. Details still are being finalized, but Cyclone scholarship student-athletes potentially could receive up to $23,920 at graduation, provided they maintain good standing on campus and within the community. 

Innovative ISU students are collaborating across disciplines to find harmony within materials science, music and reducing waste by transforming recycled plastic material into durable musical instruments.

Chemical and biological engineering professor Laura Jarboe leads a research team working to improve fuel and chemical bioproduction by finding tougher enzymes that can withstand the heat and acidity used to lower industrial fermentation costs. The project is supported by a three-year grant from the U.S. Department of Energy.
Seminars and conferences
Arts and events
"Corners Grove" follows a group of young people dealing with growing-up challenges that come with hometowns and friendships. The performances (7:30 p.m. Oct. 14-16 and 2 p.m. Oct. 17) are ISU Theatre's first with a live audience in Fisher Theater since the pandemic began.

You don't have to be an alumnus to enjoy events tied to ISU Homecoming, including a parade in downtown Ames Sunday, Oct. 17 (2 p.m.), and lunch on central campus next week. "CY of the Storm" festivities continue through Oct. 23.

Roy Kroezen, carillonneur for the Centralia (Illinois) Carillon, will perform on Iowa State's carillon Sunday Oct. 17 (4 p.m., central campus). The program includes an arrangement of George Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue."

The 2021 World Food Prize laureate, Shakuntala Haraksingh Thilsted, has been transformative in improving fish and aquatic food systems -- and therefore nutrition -- for vulnerable people worldwide. She will deliver this year’s Norman Borlaug lecture Oct. 18 (8 p.m., MU Great Hall and via livestream).
Learning opportunities
Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT) programming

Center for Communication Excellence programming
Seminar series on grant writing, register online
  • Introduction to grant writing, Oct. 18 (3-4:30 p.m.)
  • Preparing grant proposals for USDA/NIFA, Oct. 20 (1-2:30 p.m.)
  • Preparing grant proposals for NSF, Oct. 25 (3-4:30 p.m.)
  • Preparing grant proposals for NIH, Oct. 26 (2-3:30 p.m.)
  • Finding funding, Oct. 28, (2-3:30 p.m.)

Student Innovation Center programming
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Inside Update is published Thursday mornings by Strategic Relations and Communications. Questions may be directed to 515-294-7065.