Community engagement is a strategic priority of the University of Northern Iowa. Good Neighbor Iowa is a statewide initiative of the UNI Conservation Corps and members of the University of Northern Iowa’s Spring 2017 Interactive Digital Studies Practicum.

UNI Conservation Corps

Center for Energy & Environmental Education at
University of Northern Iowa

UNI Conservation Corps consists of teams of students and faculty working with community leaders to research, analyze, plan, design and implement science-driven knowledge in the context of community environmental conservation in Iowa.

UNI Conservation Corps has two broad goals:

  • Elevate the role of science and its public value in the educational experience of UNI students.
  • Cultivate and support a culture of acting on what we already know through science.

The Center for Energy & Environmental Education at UNI strives to empower Iowans with the knowledge, experiences, tools, and inspiration to create a sustainable, desirable future.  The CEEE works with community leaders across Iowa on energy conservation & renewable energy education, strengthening the local food economy, and involving UNI students in community environmental conservation.

Interactive Digital Studies 2017 Practicum Class

In Spring 2017, eighteen students in UNI’s Interactive Digital Studies Practicum class worked with Kamyar Enshayan, the Director of the CEEE, and members of the Conservation Corps, to build the Good Neighbor Iowa campaign.

The Interactive Digital Studies (IDS) at UNI is an innovative program capitalizing on the growing trend in digital research and theory. IDS makes central the critical inquiry of the liberal arts in understanding technology’s contemporary existence and impact. In the culminating “practicum” course,” students effectively simulate the environment of a tech startup. For the Good Neighbor project, they divided into teams according to their interdisciplinary talents– digital design, computation, social media, photography/video, and writing. They conceived a new logo, the campaign name, website, and orchestrated a campaign kickoff event. 

At the beginning of the semester, only one of eighteen students had thought to question the use of lawn pesticides.

Major funding provided by:

Ceres Trust and Roy J Carver Charitable Trust

Progress Photos