Parent Newsletter December 2007

UNI I am a Panther Parent

Panther Parent is UNI's e-newsletter for parents and guardians. Panther Parent is sent three times per semester and features university events, deadlines and tips from the UNI Parents Association. 

Student Data Needed for UNI Alert System
UNI's new emergency notification system, UNI Alert, is on track for testing early next semester. Please remind your student to update their emergency contact information before Dec. 15. Instructions: go to MyUNIverse and click on "Update My Personal Information" in the "My Personal Records" section. Once there, click on the UNI Alert tab.

For more information about UNI Alert, see The first UNI Alert test is scheduled for early February.

Campus Security Update -- Arming UNI Police
The Board of Regents, State of Iowa, recently approved the request for campus police at the three state universities to be armed while on duty. Arming campus police officers is one part of a larger plan developed by the institutions to ensure safer campus environments. At UNI, these measures include the installation of an electronic rapid-notification system, an outdoor loudspeaker notification system, additional counselors, additional police officers, campus-wide education sessions about critical incidents, and a transparent review of Department of Public Safety use-of-force policies and procedures.

See full text at

UNI e-mail Outage Scheduled for Dec. 30
UNI e-mail and UNI mailing lists will be unavailable from 7 a.m., Sunday, Dec. 30, until no later than 3 p.m. for an upgrade. This upgrade will improve system reliability and address a number of issues. No e-mail will be lost. E-mail sent to UNI students, faculty and staff during the upgrade will be delivered after the work is complete.

Show Me the Money
The Iowa minimum wage increases to $7.25 on Jan. 1. UNI will automatically increase all student-wage rates currently below that level.

Key Dates:
Finals week -- Dec. 10-14
Fall Commencement -- Dec. 15
Holiday break -- Dec. 16-Jan. 13
Spring semester begins -- Jan. 14
Martin Luther King, Jr., holiday -- Jan. 21
Spring break -- March 14-23
Spring Commencement -- May 10

De-Stress Days Set for Students
UNI's annual De-Stress Days will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday, Dec. 10, through Wednesday, Dec. 12. Wellness and Recreation Services staff will be in the Maucker Union Old Central Ballroom offering free mini massages. Also available will be Cedar Bend Humane Society animals to pet (located near Chats), a labyrinth walk and more.

Stress Can Follow Students Home
With the holiday season often comes shopping, baking, entertaining, travel, seldom-seen friends and relatives and, for many, increased stress. The UNI Counseling Center offers some tips to reduce that stress and enjoy the month ahead. A good place to start is to remember the concept that "less is more." Help your student avoid the proverbial pressure to be all things and do all things possible. Examine the have-to's and must-do's that can make the holidays stressful and see where you might make changes. It's also important for students, and parents, to have some down time. The holiday break should be just that, a break -- a time to rest and rejuvenate.

Financial Aid Workshops Set for January
The UNI Graduate College and Financial Aid Office are co-sponsoring two workshops for students who plan to enroll in graduate or professional school for the 2008-2009 academic year. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) workshops are scheduled for 3 p.m., Jan. 28 and at noon, Jan. 30 in the Innovative Teaching and Technology Center, Studio IT.
Did You Know?

  • Tuition covers less than 50 percent of the cost of a UNI student's education. The State of Iowa covers less than 50 percent as well, leaving a gap alumni, friends and parents generously help fill each year.
  • Last year, more than $19 million in private donations helped provide UNI students extraordinary opportunities, including private scholarships, program support, and classroom experiences.
  • UNI's Students Today Alumni Tomorrow program is one of the nation's largest in terms of sheer numbers and by percentage of participation (20 percent). The program has grown from 600 members three years ago to today's total of 2,500. Learn more at

You're Always Welcome!
The UNI Alumni Association hosts socials and events throughout Iowa and the United States. As a part of the UNI family, you're always welcome to join us. You can find the alumni calendar of events at  For more information, e-mail Mark at
Celebrate Your Student!
UNI offers an exclusive UNI ring that's available only to those who have earned at least 60 credit hours. Learn more about this very special opportunity at
Calling all Parents…
That's what some UNI students will be doing during the spring semester -- checking in with you to see how your student is enjoying UNI -- as well as talking with you about a long-standing UNI-parent tradition.
Each year, UNI parents carry on the tradition of giving to the UNI Annual Fund. The fund provides an extra measure of support for your student and all UNI students.
You are part of the UNI family. Your support helps UNI offer a high-quality university education, with personalized experiences and a lifetime of opportunities. When a Panther calls, we hope you'll take part in the tradition of giving!
For more information, contact the UNI Foundation at 800-782-9522 or visit

All parents/guardians of UNI students are automatically members of the parents association, which works as an advocacy group. Benefits include e-newsletters each semester and a parents' booth at orientation. Contact James O'Connor, UNIPA liaison at (319) 273-6728, or with questions. The parents association also supports the Parents Fund, which supports student scholarships and activities on campus.

UNI Parents Association Advisory Board -- We Need You!
The UNIPA Advisory Board is a group of parents who meet twice annually to hear updates from the university leadership and to give input to the university. We need you! Please consider serving on the UNIPA advisory board. Contact James O'Connor, UNIPA liaison at (319) 273-6728, or with questions.