This week was a big one for Iowa’s Community Colleges. On Wednesday, we honored students from across the state at the PTK All-Academic Honors event. We are so proud of these students for their commitment to academic excellence and their futures. On Thursday, we held Community College Day on the Hill. Over 200 Trustees, students, staff, faculty, and leaders attended, and we had impressive displays in the Rotunda. Despite that fact that much of the legislature’s work ended on Wednesday unexpectedly this week, we were able to connect with many legislators during an important week in the legislative process. Following our time at the Capitol, we held the Student Legislative Seminar at an event space a few blocks from the Capitol. A panel of legislators shared their experiences and Director of Equity and Inclusion Roy Salcedo led a session on civic leadership. It was a great day for advocacy, connection, and learning.
In the legislature, the budget process is moving forward now that the tax bill has passed and been signed. We expect to learn more about our appropriations soon. It’s a great time to reach out to your representatives, especially if you couldn’t connect with them on Thursday. Even if you were able to, a follow-up email is a great tool for solidifying our message. On Wednesday, the House passed the bill adding all part-time students to the Last Dollar Scholarship. They also added an amendment to allow for more local control and flexibility on the regionally selected high-demand occupations covered under the program. These changes will greatly strengthen this important program for our students. Please thank your House members for moving this forward and ask Senators to support it as well. On Thursday, the governor signed HF2416 into law. This bill allows for people to only compete in K-12 and higher education athletics (including Community Colleges) with teams according to their sex at birth. The bill takes effect immediately.