News and Events from the College of Human Sciences

Greetings from the Iowa State University College of Human Sciences. We hope you take a moment to learn about the exciting work our alumni, students, and faculty are doing to advance the science and technology of living and learning. Their research and outreach in the areas of education, health, families, and consumer sciences are key to improving people’s lives. Thanks for being part of our world.

January 2014
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Ann Gansemer-Topf's quest to improve student success has included finding solutions for the sophomore slump. “The first year, everything’s exciting,” she said. “In the second year, you still have pressure and you’re not far enough along yet to see the end. It’s called the sophomore slump.” Her research led to more support for students in their second year. Read more

Iowa State is working with the University of Pretoria to help drive economic development in South Africa. The collaboration includes implementing marketing strategies and food safety practices that have been successful here. Gerrie DuRand spent the fall 2013 semester as a visiting scholar here and will continue the collaboration with Iowa State this year. Read more.

SoJung Lee is one of the first researchers to study the impact that fandom — the fascination with public figures — has on tourism. “I was always wondering why [the fans] travel to Korea so many times and why money doesn’t matter for them, even if they are not rich,” said Lee, an Iowa State assistant professor in apparel, events, and hospitality management. Read more  

Top Stories

Iowa State integrates science with apparel design, product development

A cadre of Iowa State researchers is emerging on the national scene with its work of integrating science and technology with design — helping to improve apparel for law enforcement and others.

“People just think clothing design is about fashion,” said Ellen McKinney, an assistant professor in apparel, merchandising, and design. “But there’s this whole realm of function. It’s a lot more science than people think.”

Iowa State professors in apparel, merchandising, and design recently placed as one of four finalists in a national competition aimed at extending the life of police soft body armor. They went head-to-head with an Indiana aeronautics and engineering team, a South Carolina business consulting company, and a New Mexico federal science research center in the U.S. Department of Justice challenge. Read more.

ISU volunteers help with Moulton Elementary service project

Volunteers from Iowa State University worked side by side with Moulton Elementary School students and teachers to measure and fill 14,472 nutritionally balanced meals that will be shipped around the world to fight hunger.

Faculty and staff from ISU’s School of Education, Student Financial Aid and Extension and Outreach volunteered at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day event as part of the university’s partnership with Moulton and King elementary schools.

ISU President Steven Leath last year announced the partnership with the two schools. He encouraged third- through eight-grade students to take part in the program that could earn them a full-tuition scholarship to Iowa State. Read more.


Degree program changes allow AESHM students to graduate more quickly

New degree program options in apparel, events, and hospitality management at Iowa State University offer students the chance to earn a master’s degree more quickly.

“To be able to attain both my bachelor’s and master’s degree in just five years was impossible to pass up,” said Evan Billek, a junior in hospitality management. “I feel having my master’s degree by the time I’m 23 will help me advance up the ladder more quickly with the company that I work for.”

Programs allowing students to simultaneously work on their bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in apparel, merchandising, and design and hospitality management are now being offered from the department. Read more.


Iowa State student prepares museum collection highlighting benefactor

As Iowa State’s Textiles and Clothing Museum prepares to feature items next fall from Agatha Huepenbecker Burnet’s estate, a graduate student is fulfilling the vision of the late professor emeritus.

Jennifer Farley Gordon is the first recipient of the Agatha Huepenbecker Burnet endowed assistantship. Burnet was an Iowa State professor in textiles and clothing — now apparel, merchandising, and design — for 37 years and was chair of the department for 20 years.

“She was a huge proponent of the museum,” Gordon said of Burnet. “She saw how much value was there for students to have access and a hands-on-experience with historical pieces.” Read more.


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Eulanda Sanders gives keynote address at George Washington Carver commemorative dinner


Three CHS graduate programs chosen for Presidential Scholars funding



Martin Luther King, Jr. Day marked the one-year anniversary of Iowa State University's partnership with King and Moulton elementary schools in Des Moines. Watch video.


Children learn about nutrition, gardening, culinary skills, and physical activity at the week-long Immersion in Wellness camp at the Iowa 4-H Center. Among the teachers: food science and human nutrition professors Ruth Litchfield, Christina Campbell, and Lorraine Lanningham-Foster. Campers are encouraged to enroll in a research study conducted by ISU Extension and Outreach. Watch video.


Iowa State student Carter Collins shows off his favorite places on campus before leaving to study abroad in Scotland this semester. His top pick: the courtyard of Lagomarcino Hall, home to the School of Education along with the dean's office and communications office of the College of Human Sciences. Watch video.