The class of 2026, with more than 5,000 students, is the third largest on record. As a result, the University has seen an uptick in club activity around campus. More than 3300 students attended the student organization fair which consisted of more than 300 clubs. Between the beginning of August and the middle of September, more than 200 student organization events have taken place.
Dr. Jamarco Clark, Associate Dean of Students and Director of Leadership & Engagement, sees these numbers as a signal of the class’s eagerness to be engaged in campus activities. “[The large class size] gives both the students and the organizations even more opportunities to engage with each other."
Engagement is valued by the university as a crucial aspect of student success. “Every student on campus should find at least two things to be involved with during their time at Iowa, doing so allows a student to create community for themselves."
The increase in student organization activity was foreshadowed by the level of participation in orientation and OnIowa, two programs dedicated to initiating new students to the University. “From OnIowa to Engaged Hawkeyes week, it was very clear to our team that this incoming class was eager to engage. I think when looking at the turnout at the student engagement fair as well as other events we have had to this point – this class continues to show that engagement is something they will continue to want,” Clark says.
Vice President for Student Life Sarah Hansen finds this engagement promising. “Engagement is a jump start to developing a sense of belonging within the Hawkeye community. The fact that our first-year students are so engaged so early is a testament to their enthusiasm and will be a great asset to their success at Iowa.”