Benefits of Iowa’s Universities to be the topic of an event in Atlantic, Thursday

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April 11th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Here’s a reminder from “The Station Where Your Friends Are”: A student-led movement to create awareness of the value Iowa’s public universities deliver throughout the state, is coming to Atlantic, Thursday evening. “Universities for a Better Iowa” will hold a program at the Cass County Community Center from 5- until 6:30-p.m.

During the event, alumni and friends of the University of Iowa, Iowa State University and University of Northern Iowa, along with student leaders at those institutions, will be in attendance. One of those planning to make the trip is Greta Johnson, a native of Le Mars, in northwest Iowa. Johnson grew up on a farm, attended the Le Mars Community High School, and received an undergraduate degree from Iowa State University in Political Science. She’ll be graduating soon from the University of Northern Iowa, with a Master’s Degree in Youth and Human Service Administration. Johnson says the Universities for a Better Iowa is designed to showcase all the great things a public education at Iowa’s Colleges and University’s have to offer. She says the impact all of the State’s Universities have can be felt all across the State.

Budget cutbacks and rising tuition costs are things all public colleges and universities have to deal with, but Johnson says these “challenging times” will make the institutions better in the end, by making them stronger. That, along with the value of a college education, will be demonstrated to those in attendance, by student leaders from the three big universities in Iowa, during Thursday evening’s event. She says 50% of all doctors in Iowa were trained at Iowa public universities. That includes six doctors in Cass County. There are also seven Cass County Veterinarians who earned their degrees at one of Iowa’s institutions of higher learning. That, according to Johnson, shows people who graduate from the State’s universities return to their hometowns and contribute to the economy, therefore it is a true investment from the State.

She says college grads in Iowa become their community’s business leaders, doctors, pharmacists and more. The presentations Thursday, are put on by students from the University of Iowa, ISU and UNI. Light snacks and refreshments will also be served. The event is free, and open to the public.