All posts by Ashton Hockman

University Communications endows scholarship

The Office of University Communications has endowed a scholarship after reaching its $25,000 threshold in Fiscal Year 17. Funded mostly by personal donations, the Marketing and Communications Endowed Scholarship (which was named before the office changed names to University Communications) will benefit undergraduate students who demonstrate financial need and are studying graphic design, marketing, or communications. Students interested in the scholarship will apply through financial aid directly.

The idea to create the scholarship came from staff member Tim Schmitt, GR ‘08,’10, who has worked in the communications office for 12 years. He got the idea for the scholarship while working on an article about the difficulty some students have affording a college education.

“I decided that rather than just discussing the problem, I should take real action,” Schmitt said. “I realized that the people I work with shared my concerns and I also realized that, collectively, we could do more than just wring our hands over the problem and do something to make a difference.”

Once the idea for a scholarship was brought forward the entire staff responded enthusiastically and committed to making it happen.

The scholarship was funded almost entirely by personal donations from the employees in the office. The office initiated various fundraisers throughout the endowment process, which took approximately five years. They ran some silent auction fundraisers through a Facebook page, organized benefit concerts from bands that consisted of Drake faculty and staff, held food challenges, and ran office garage sales.

— Niki Smith, University Communications

Complete your wellness screening now for a chance to win a prize

If you are on Drake’s health plan, you can save approximately $300 in 2018 by simply completing a biometrics screening and an online wellness assessment this year. Think what you could do with an extra $300. In addition, if you complete your screening and the online assessment at by Sep. 30, your name will be placed in a drawing for a chance to win your choice of a prize from an online wellness catalog.

There are three screening options:

  1. Complete a screening with your physician and have your doctor fill out a Physician Wellness Screening Results Form. This option is available through Aug. 31.
  2. Complete your screening at a participating Hy-Vee. This option is available through Sep. 15.
  3. Complete your screening on campus through UnityPoint Health. The on campus dates are Oct. 4–6, 9, 11, 13, 17, and 19. Online registration opens Sep. 1.

Faculty and staff can select the option that works best for them. However, it’s important to note that there are a limited number of spaces available for the on campus screenings, so employees are encouraged to complete their screening with their physician or at a participating Hy-Vee.

Additional information about this year’s biometric screenings and wellness assessments (including copies of the Physician Wellness Screening Results Form and participating Hy-Vee locations) can be found under the employee tab of blueView. The Wellness Portal is on the right-hand side of the employee page.

Please note that you must complete a biometric screening and wellness assessment annually to retain your wellness premium discount. Questions may be directed to Linda Feiden at or 271-1880.

—Linda Feiden, Human Resources

Studio Arts parking lot closures

The Studio Arts parking lot (18 South) will close at 2 p.m. for a Welcome Weekend event and on several football game days. The lot will reopen approximately two hours after the end of the football games. See the dates below.

Thursday, Aug. 24—Welcome Weekend

Saturday, Sept. 2—football game

Saturday, Sept. 9—football game

Saturday, Sept. 23—football game

Saturday, Oct. 7—football game

Saturday, Oct. 28—football game

Saturday, Nov. 18—football game

— Scott Law, Public Safety

New cardboard compactor improves recycling on campus

Facilities Planning and Management (FPM) installed a cardboard-only compactor near the loading dock behind Hubbell Dining Hall over the summer. Hubbell and the Olmsted Center use the most cardboard packaging on campus. By strategically locating the cardboard compactor near these buildings, other dumpsters can be concealed and placed out of public view, labor and equipment hours can be minimized, and recycle disposal fees can be reduced. The recycling plant actually pays the University for providing pure cardboard.

For small, sporadic cardboard recycling needs, the single-stream recycling dumpsters should still be used. However, if you have a large amount of cardboard to dispose of, due to a large shipment of equipment or supplies, please contact FPM for assistance in moving it to the compactor.

Last year, Drake recycled more than 163 tons of recyclables, including cardboard, and so far this year, Drake has recycled 75 tons of materials. Click here to review Drake’s recycling guidelines to ensure materials are being recycled correctly and responsibly. Just because an item has a recycle symbol and number, does not mean it is recyclable through the Central Iowa Plant.

It’s important to note that the plant cannot recycle hard cover books. In order for these to be recycled, the cover needs to be removed and placed in the trash, and then the remainder can be recycled.

— Mitch Wieczorek, Facilities Planning and Management

Athletics: Discounted season tickets, Bulldog Club Corn Feed

Fall sports season tickets on sale now

Cheer your Bulldogs on to victory this fall. Take advantage of affordable season ticket pricing for football, volleyball, and soccer.

Season Ticket Pricing:

Football: $40 per person with faculty/staff discount (Regular $60)

Volleyball: $15 per person with faculty/staff discount (Regular $30)

Men’s Soccer: $20 per person

Women’s Soccer: $20 per person

For more information or to purchase your tickets today, contact the Drake Athletics Ticket Office at 271-3647 or

53rd annual Bulldog Club Corn Feed

Come meet Drake coaches, recognize outstanding student-athletes, and celebrate the start of a new year for Bulldog athletics on Drake’s first day of classes.

Date: Monday, Aug. 28

Location: Shivers Practice Facility—Courtside Club

Social: 5:30 p.m.

Dinner: 6:15 p.m.

Program: 6:45 p.m.

Cost: $30 per person

Register by Thursday, Aug. 24 at

For more information, please contact Austin Strawhacker, director of Bulldog Club, at 271-2228.

— Tom Florian, Ticket Sales and Donor Management

Drake to partner with Joppa to build tiny homes as part of DU Good Day

The Drake community is teaming up with Joppa Outreach in a weeklong event to help build tiny homes for their tiny home community, which is designed to provide safe, transitional housing for the homeless. The build will take place in the parking lot across from the alumni house Sept. 11–16, and faculty, staff, students, alumni, and the Drake neighborhood are encouraged to participate.

The event coincides with DU Good Day on Sept. 16, in which alumni across the country participate in a day of service. Click here to sign up to volunteer for the build. This is a great opportunity for faculty and staff to use their community service leave hours. For questions or more information, contact Amelia Klatt, assistant director of alumni relations, at 271-3378 or

— Amelia Klatt, Alumni Relations

ITS self-service laptop kiosk

There’s a new addition to the lobby of Meredith Hall: Drake ITS is piloting a self-service laptop kiosk. If you are a student, faculty, or staff member, you can borrow one of 14 Macbook Pro laptops for up to four hours for free. Laptops are available to check out during building hours, Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., Saturdays from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Sundays from 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Please stop by and take advantage of this new service.

— Carla Herling, ITS

STEM@DRAKE: An example of inclusivity and financial stewardship

As thousands of Bulldogs return to campus or join the Drake community for the first time, they will have two new buildings to become acquainted with––the Science Connector Building and Collier-Scripps Hall.

The two buildings are part of the STEM@DRAKE project, which began in 2016 with the renovation of several labs and classrooms in Harvey Ingham Hall and will conclude with the construction of the Ray Promenade, scheduled to be complete later this year.

Not only will these buildings enhance collaboration and meet high environmental standards, the Science Connector Building and Collier-Scripps Hall will  further Drake’s goal of creating and sustaining an inclusive campus community. Here’s how:

  • Both the Science Connector Building and Collier-Scripps Hall have gender inclusive restrooms and dedicated space for nursing mothers.
  • The new buildings connect students and faculty of multiple disciplines, creating a welcoming environment for all––not just those of one particular discipline.

The new STEM@DRAKE buildings are also an example of Drake’s financial stewardship. Construction of the buildings began in early 2016 and were completed this month, on time and on budget, which not only helps the University’s financial performance, but demonstrates responsibility and commitment to the donors who generously gave to the project.

The entire STEM@DRAKE project, a $52 million investment, involved students, faculty, and staff working together in both the design and management of the project. Through input from many different parties, the new space is designed to remain current and in touch with the needs and wants of students and faculty today and in the future.

Strive to Be event this Thursday

This year Welcome Weekend will feature a new event, Strive to Be, that is open to the entire University community. Strive to Be will be held Thursday from 10–11 a.m. in the Knapp Center. The event will take the place of University Convocation, traditionally held on the Friday afternoon of Welcome Weekend. It will feature student speakers Ashley Blaze and Jose Garcia-Fuerte, who will share their Drake stories, and it will showcase the talents of Fermata the Blue, the Brocal Chords, and D+ Comedy Improv. Please join in welcoming the 2017–2018 student body by attending this special event.

— Melissa Sturm-Smith, Academic Excellence and Student Success