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Those red lights at great heights make the sky safer to fly

power plant stackw with beacon lights

They burn at night like red fireflies, their gentle blinking strangely soothing for something designed to prevent aviation catastrophes. Known in the dry professional lingo as aviation warning beacons (although, really, red fireflies is so much more poetic), the beacons warn pilots of what lies below—usually buildings, broadcast transmission masts, and anything else they need to stay away from.

The bulbs are about eight inches long and burn at 620 watts, fairly unspectacular looking, like Christmas tree lights on steroids. Dozens of them are found at the highest points of the UI campus, alerting pilots flying into the Iowa City Airport or the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics’ helipad.



Fiddlers on roofs! Funk and blues! Ballet shoes! Hancher announces its 2010–11 season

  Fiddler on the Roof

Hancher continues its commitment to connecting great artists with great audiences both locally and around the state with the announcement of the University of Iowa organization's 2010–2011 season.

The "Can't Contain Us!" spirit once again infuses the season as Hancher will present world-class artists in venues throughout the community and the state.

News in brief

The University of Iowa has named three faculty members as this year's recipients of the Michael J. Brody Award for Faculty Excellence in Service to the University and the state of Iowa. The recipients, who will be formally honored during the Faculty and Staff Awards Banquet in October, are Samir Bishara, Bernard Sorofman, and Katherine Tachau.




  • Carver College of Medicine receives award from American Academy of Family Physicians
  • UI Juneteenth celebration, June 19, observes the end of slavery
  • University to host creative writing seminar for professionals in human services
  • State Fair exhibit needs volunteers
  • See which Learning and Development courses are right for you

(Full details)


  • UI researchers find teen driver study improves driving safety
  • Insight into structure of HIV protein could aid drug design
  • UI team designs award-winning model to spot unknown drug side effects

(Full details)


  • Thorne named head of occupational and environmental health

(Full details)


Photo feature: Gold dome shines in the summer sun

Old Capitol stars in this summery look at the University of Iowa campus.

See the photos...



Eric Forsythe
  Eric Forsythe  
Ask Eric For-
sythe to name his favorite roles, and he’ll mention King Lear, Sherlock Holmes, and Tartuffe. Another role the University of Iowa theatre arts faculty member is fond of: Iowa Summer Rep artistic director, a position he’s held since 1986. Forsythe, a recipient of the University’s Philip G. Hubbard Award for Outstanding Education, has directed well over 150 stage productions, served as the national and international voice for companies such as AT&T and DuPont, and taught a first-ever course for professional stage directors in Venezuela. Before Summer Rep 2010 raises the curtain, Forsythe spoke with fyi about his favorite moments at Iowa, what he finds most exciting about this year’s production, and a career move that favored the stage over the stethoscope.




"Most people today buy political information because they like to hear it and they agree with it. People tend to read blogs that support their existing beliefs, left and right. So it's no surprise that they buy books that basically tell them what they want to hear. … People feel good about hearing their own anger and excitement articulated by someone else."

David Perlmutter, dean of the School of Journalism in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
(Los Angeles Times, June 4)

More quotes...



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