A new venue in the heart of downtown Iowa City aims to transform the late-night scene for the safety and well-being of students.
Graduate Iowa City Hotel recently donated $50,000 to the University of Iowa in support of weekend programming throughout the academic year that gives students an alternative to alcohol-related activities downtown. Through the partnership, students on the UI's Campus Activities Board host events such as magic shows, acoustic music, and a comedy series at the hotel and its Poindexter Coffeehouse.
"We are thrilled to provide a safe and exciting environment for this alternative programming where students feel supported and included," says Nik Kern, general manager of Graduate Iowa City. "We feel that, in a way, we are the living room to the community, so this is another opportunity for students and locals to experience and create memories at the hotel."
The UI has seen a 28% decrease in high-risk student drinking over the past decade, a statistic that Division of Student Life leaders only seek to improve with an ideal location on the Ped Mall to host fun, alcohol-free events. The partnership with Graduate Iowa City also enhances funding for UI student organizations to host other late-night cultural events, dances, and recreational programs.
"I would love to see students and the community come together at our events and connect over a laugh or a latte," says Katie Rasmuson, CAB executive director and a UI junior in nursing and public health. "Being a part of a community really helps students feel at home in a new, big place, and this partnership is something that will hopefully bring that to students."
View photos from the first show, featuring magician Eric Michaels, on the Division of Student Life's Flickr Site