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Libraries preservation specialists reach out to area museums

Basket restoration
Caitlin Moore, a conservator in the UI Libraries preservation department, cleans a basket from the African American Historical Museum and Cultural Center of Iowa collection. Photo by Tom Jorgensen.

It takes a certain type of person to clean floodwater muck off of delicate baskets, historical books, and vinyl records.

“You have to be patient. You have to have steady hands. And you have to pay attention—you have to keep observing and testing,” says Nancy Kraft, head of the preservation department at University of Iowa Libraries. One wrong move, she explains, and you could destroy the item you’re trying to preserve.

When Kraft saw the devastation this summer’s floods wrought on two Cedar Rapids museums—the African American Historical Museum and Cultural Center of Iowa, and the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library—she wanted to provide that skill and attention to detail to help them recover as much of their collections as possible.



Photo feature: President's Residence turns 100

The University of Iowa President’s Residence, a neo-Georgian home perched on a bluff overlooking the Iowa River, is celebrating its 100th anniversary. The home was completed in 1909 for a total cost of $25,067. President MacLean was the first to move into the house in 1909, which at that time also housed the President’s Office. Today, the President’s Residence still serves as the private home of the UI president and hosts hundreds of University events throughout the year.

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News in brief


  • University purchases 22 mobile units to be used by School of Music, theatre arts
  • Combined undergraduate commencement to be held at Carver-Hawkeye Arena
  • Conversations from the Iowa Writers' Workshop to debut on Big Ten Network
  • University updates pandemic influenza response plan
  • UI tubas team with Toys for Tots for Dec. 12 outdoor concert
  • Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity adjusts hours
  • Encourage grad students to apply for Weiss Dissertation Memorial Scholarship
  • W-2 forms will be available on HR Self Service web site
  • Resources available for UI faculty, staff members impacted by flood
  • See which Learning and Development courses are right for you

(Full details)


  • Research suggests lower costs result from streamlining corn seed supply chain
  • IEM within less than half percentage point in presidential race prediction

(Full details)


  • Ingram named interim UI associate provost for undergraduate education
  • Recent deaths

(Full details)



Vershawn Young
  Vershawn Young
His mother showed him the value of education, and his teachers recognized his desire to learn and pushed him to do well. But Vershawn Young's path to three advanced degrees and a faculty position at The University of Iowa wasn't always peachy. Young often felt obligated to downplay his African American characteristics in order to be taken seriously. Because of that challenge, he studies black “performances” and is making an argument for integrating black English into academic settings. Young took a moment to discuss his work with fyi. He also opened up about his love for cooking soul food, a surprising professional aspiration, and why he selected an in-your-face title for his first book.




“Saying you spend half an hour a day playing sudoku and you won’t get Alzheimer’s, or playing any of these brain games and you’ll lose less gray matter than somebody who doesn’t—well, nobody has ever done that study."

Nancy Andreasen
(Sunday Times, Nov. 16)

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