Iowa Edge

2015 Iowa Edge Peer Leaders

Sunday, August 14 - Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The University of Iowa is an exciting place—full of academic, cultural, and social opportunities. Yet, attending a large university can be overwhelming and a little intimidating.

Many students have found that programs like The Iowa Edge eased their concerns and ensured a successful academic and social transition to the University of Iowa. The Iowa Edge is an exciting program for selected African American, Alaskan Native, American Indian, Asian American, Pacific Islander, Latino/a, and first-generation college students.

Participate in The Iowa Edge and:

  • Meet faculty and campus leaders who will support you during your college experience
  • Build community with a group of peers before the semester begins
  • Develop leadership skills for success in class, on campus, and in life

On the first day of class, you'll feel like a seasoned pro—your first step to becoming a University of Iowa graduate! Move in early at no charge; lodging, meals, and program expenses for all participants are paid by a grant from the Kevin and Donna Gruneich Charitable Foundation.


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New students gain an edge at Iowa

The Iowa Edge Videos

Advisory Board Members

Kyra Seay
Educational Services Support Assistant
Chief Diversity Office

Gabriela Rivera
Assistant Director, Diversity, Inclusion and Student Success
Henry B. Tippie College of Business Undergraduate Program Office

Richard Barajas
Director of Admissions
College of Pharmacy

Valerie Garr
Diversity Coordinator
College of Nursing

Sauvik Goswami
Senior Admission Counselor
Office of Admissions

Stacy Narcotta-Welp
Director, Career Leadership Academy
Career Center

Planning Committee Members

Alejandra (Alex) Almazan
Office of Student Financial Aid

Carly Armour
Student Disability Services

Dominique Brooks
Center for Diversity and Enrichment 

Berrett Chestleigh
Graduate Research Assistant

Elia Farias
Center for Diversity and Enrichment

Dan Gall
Library Administration

Monica Marcelo
University Housing and Dining

Katie Miller
Center for Diversity and Enrichment

Jeremy Mims
College of Education

Tyra Nelson
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Tracy Peterson
College of Engineering

Beth Ripperger
Student Health and Wellness

Meagan Schorr
​Womens Resource and Actions Center (WRAC)

Audrey Scranton
Graduate Teaching Assistant

Kristin Wurster
PhD student

Campus Partners

Lori Adams
Iowa Bioscience Advantage Program

Aubree Compton
Office of Study Abroad

Jane Dorman
College of Engineering

Mario Duarte
Academic Advising Center

Denise Martinez
College of Medicine

Kathy Mossman
College of Education

Roy Salcedo
Center for Student Involvement and Leadership

Kelly Thornburg
Honors Program

Peer Leaders

Peer Leaders are trained to provide a person-centered, community-centered orientation to university life the week before classes begin for students who face challenging issues of transition. Iowa Edge peer leaders directly address and positively impact these students’ rates of persistence, retention, and graduation.

If you have questions, please contact Kyra Seay at

Associate Peer Leaders

Victor Diaz
Linguistics and Spanish (Teaching English as a Second Language)
Sioux City, Iowa

Daneissa Folker
Communication Studies (Spanish Minor)
Burlington, IA 

Peer Leaders

Art, Journalism and Mass Communication
West Liberty, Iowa

Chemical Engineering
Des Moines, Iowa

Finance (International Business Certificate)
Wood Dale, Illinois

Human Physiology (Pre-Medicine)
Olmito, Texas

Ethics and Public Policy
Des Moines, Iowa

Malik Salsberry
Business (Entrepreneurial Management Track)
Davenport, IA

Austin Hughes
English & Theater
San Antonio, TX

Samuel Pang
Psychology/ Public Health
Mount Pleasant, IA

Cristina Perez
Nursing Interest (Latina/o Studies Minor)
Sioux City, IA 

Ariana Smith
Management and Marketing
Lake View, IA 

Alantra Wright
Milwaukee, WI 

The Iowa Edge (TIE) Student Organization

The purpose of The Iowa Edge Student Organization is to provide year-round academic, social, and volunteer programming for all students; with a focus on student of color, first-generation students, and Iowa Edge alumni. It is a student organization created by Iowa Edge alumni with the ultimate aim of increasing both student retention, student diversity, and the quality of student life at the University of Iowa.

The goal of The Iowa Edge Student Organization will be to provide leadership opportunities and year-round programming for all Iowa Edge alumni and the multicultural community. The Iowa Edge Student Organization will aim to help foster community and student success among the overall community of color. Building from The Iowa Edge program, the organization will pursue continued growth at both the community and individual level through community building, diversity education, and student support.

The organization will provide enriching academic, social, and volunteer programming opportunities throughout the year that all students may take part or become active leaders in organizing; with the purpose of increasing both student retention, student diversity, and the quality of student life at the University of Iowa. This will be done for all students, with a particular focus on students of color, first-generation students, and specifically Iowa Edge alumni.

IESO Board 2016-17

President: Tristan Schmidt
Vice President: Samuel Pang
Treasurer: T'Shailyn Harrington
Secretary: Sandra Amouzou
VP of Programming: Cristina Perez
VP of Public Relations: Mikhayla Hughes-Shaw

Advisor: Kyra Seay

facebook button If you are interested in joining The Iowa Edge Student Organization, please join our group on Facebook.


The Iowa Edge is funded by the Kevin and Donna Gruneich Charitable Foundation.

The Iowa Edge is coordinated by a coalition of UI students, faculty, and staff. Individuals from the following academic programs and campus offices plan and implement The Iowa Edge.

Kevin Gruenich
Kevin Gruneich BBA 1980 Park City, Utah

“I am just beginning to return the investment others have made in me.”


Where is the link to apply for The Iowa Edge Program?

On this Iowa Edge program page there are 3 blue buttons on the right side of the screen. Please click on the 3rd button that reads, "How to Apply/Enroll.” There should be a hyperlink to the application that says “2016 Iowa Edge Application.” The application should display after clicking that link.

I’m not sure if my application went through.

If you believe that your application did not submit successfully, please send an email with your name and the date that you suspect that you submitted your application to Kyra Seay at

I might miss a day of the Iowa Edge Program date, can I still apply for the program?

Since the Iowa Edge program is limited in the number of students who can actually participate (the program only selects 100 students) we can only accept students who can commit to completing the program in its entirety. 

I will be living off campus, can I still participate in the Iowa Edge Program?

While the Iowa Edge program is designed for students who live on-campus, we will accept students into the program who live off-campus. It will be your responsibility to arrive on- campus each day at the assigned time and stay for the duration of the program each day, or a cancellation fee will be assessed. For planning purposes we would like to know where you will be living during the week of Iowa Edge, so that we may provide you with appropriate logistical communication regarding your participation in the program. Please note that the application will request that your address of residence be submitted before submitting the application.

What are the benefits of participating in The Iowa Edge Program?

There are several benefits to participating in the Iowa Edge program, for example student in this program will be able to:

  • Meet faculty and campus leaders who will support you during your college experience
  • Build community with a group of peers before the semester begins
  • Develop leadership skills for success in class, on campus, and in life

On the first day of class, participants will feel like a seasoned pro—their first step to becoming a University of Iowa graduate! 

I am participating in the Honors Primetime program, Hawkeye Marching Band, or another program that has conflicting times with the Iowa Edge Program. Can I still participate in Iowa Edge and my other program simultaneously?

Unfortunately, due to significant time overlaps, it is not possible for students to participate in the Iowa Edge program if they are also participating in Honors Primetime, the Hawkeye Marching Band, or any other conflicting program. 

What date/time should I arrive on campus if I am selected for the Iowa Edge Program?

Students should expect to move into their resident hall (dorm) sometime during the designated move-in time from 10:00am to 2:00pm on Sunday August 14th.

Will I be charged to move into my dorm room early?

No, the Iowa Edge Program will cover the cost of early move-in.

Will I be able to move directly into my actual dorm room or is there special housing for the Iowa Edge Program?

The room that you move in to will be your actual residence hall room for the entire school year. The University of Iowa’s resident halls determine room assignments for all incoming students in advance, and we request their assignment information prior to the program beginning just so that we can have Iowa Edge Leaders welcome you to the residence halls and answer any questions. Since you move in early, chances are you will not meet many individuals in your residence hall until they move in four days later on the actual housing move-in date.

Will our meal plan be active during the program, or do we have to pay for our meals?

All Iowa Edge participants will have meals provided for them starting with dinner on Sunday until the end of the day Wednesday August 17th at no extra cost.

Is there an itinerary of activities?

Families and students will be provided with itineraries for the program during check-in on Sunday. Until we release the official itineraries, you can expect there to be arrangements for participants to interact with faculty and professors, community building activities at the Challenge Course, tours of many important buildings and resource offices, leadership training, and classroom experiences, and sessions on financial literacy, study skills, and career paths.

How can I select more than one major option or pre-major option on the list?

To select more than one Area of Study please hold the CTRL button when selecting the options you want. It should allow you to highlight a couple of options.

I have already made arrangements for early move in on August 14th. Should I continue to register for this early move-in just in case I am not accepted into the program?

If you have already made arrangements for the 14th, feel free to keep that arrangement. If you are accepted into the Iowa Edge Program your early move in fee will be covered at no cost to you. However, if you not selected, you will still be charged the early arrival fee.

Does Iowa Edge pay for housing?

No, student living on and off-campus are responsible for their own housing costs. However, to participate in the Iowa Edge program the student will have to move into their University Residence Hall early. Moving into University Residence Halls early incurs a daily charge of $45 dollars. For the length of the Iowa Edge program, we will cover the early move-in costs only.

2016 Draft Schedule

Sunday, August 14

Participant Move-In
Welcome from Peer Leaders
Residence Halls

Check-in and Reception
Second Floor Ballroom, IMU
Children's Room: Room 245, IMU

Family Welcome**
Second Floor Ballroom, IMU

Family Goodbyes


Student Orientation Program and Dinner
Black Box, IMU

Daily Debrief & Nuts/Bolts
Black Box, IMU

Monday, August 15

Breakfast w/IE Planning Committee
Food Court, Old Capitol Mall

Travel to Old Capitol Museum

Group Photo
Old Capitol Museum

Travel Time


Campus Life & Student Panel
Jones Commons, N300 LC

Box Lunch
Jones Commons, N300 LC

Travel Time

Challenge Course Teambuilding
Ashton Cross Country Course


Challenge Course Teambuilding
Ashton Cross Country Course

Box Lunch

Travel to Campus Life & Student Panel

Campus Life & Student Panel
Jones Commons, N300 LC


Travel Back to Residence Halls


Student Connections Dinner
Hillcrest Marketplace

Daily Debrief & Nuts/Bolts
Hillcrest Marketplace

Tuesday, August 16

Burge Marketplace


Linking Our Experiences: Interactive Activity Exploring Identity & Intersectionality

Travel Time to Burge Marketplace

Burge Marketplace


Concurrent Sessions: Academic, Financial Literacy & Careers
Different Classroom Locations

Travel to Cultural and Resource Centers

Welcome to Your Home Away from Home
Afro-American Cultural Center
Asian Pacific American Cultural Center
Latino Native American Cultural Center
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Res. Ctr.

Hillcrest Marketplace

Community Tour
Downtown Iowa City

Wednesday, August 17

Burge Marketplace

Travel to Faculty Panel

Faculty Panel, UI Faculty Guests
101 Biology Building East

Classroom Experiences
Different Classroom Locations

Travel to Burge Marketplace

Lunch with Faculty
Burge Marketplace

Travel to Campus Resource Tour

Campus Resources Tour

Peer Leaders & Campus Partners
Various Locations

On Iowa! Registration
Second Floor Ballroom


Travel Time to Closing Banquet

Closing Banquet
UI Athletic Hall of Fame

Thursday, August 18

On Iowa!


Friday, June 17, 2016


Bridging Student

How to Apply/Enroll

To apply, submit a completed 2016 Iowa Edge Application. We will accept applications until June 17, 2016 with the goal of notifying applicants of their status with the program after July 7, 2016.

Questions about applications can be directed to Kyra Seay at Iowa Edge program questions can be directed to the Center for Diversity & Enrichment at 319-335-3555.

Please note: The Iowa Edge program occurs at the same time as Honors Primetime and as required practice time for the Hawkeye Marching Band. Due to significant time overlaps, it is not possible for students to participate in the Iowa Edge program if they are also participating in Honors Primetime or the Hawkeye Marching Band. If you decide to participate in either of those activities, please notify Kyra Seay ( as soon as possible so we can remove your application from the Iowa Edge program.