UNI alum Blake Thomas

Former UNI football player tackling disease research

As a Waterloo West High School graduate turned University of Northern Iowa football player, Blake Thomas has been a Cedar Valley native his entire life. Thomas wanted to make an impact in the classroom as well as on the field, and he initially decided to pursue a major in biology and pre-med. His intention was to go on to medical school, but that all changed when he took public health courses with Disa Cornish, an associate professor in the health, recreation and community services department. 
UNI physics student Madelyn Johnson.

Modeling COVID-19 infection

The dots bounced and collided across the computer screen. Their movement was random, but University of Northern Iowa physics major Madelyn Johnson saw a purpose in the chaos.
UNI student Mary Carmen San Elias Martinez

Have you had a COVID talk with your roommate yet?

While Panthers have done a great job of working together to slow the spread of COVID-19, case levels nationally are expected to begin rising as we enter the fall and winter months. Having a frank conversation about safety precautions is a good way to ensure that everyone in your residence, whether on or off campus, stays safe.  We reached out to some UNI public health students to ask how they’ve handled it.
Masked UNI students walk on campus.

Contact tracers help UNI answer the call

Answering the phone has never been more important. Since the beginning of the semester, UNI contact tracers have been hard at work helping prevent the spread of COVID-19 by notifying students of their required quarantine for those in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.
3-D illustrations of cancer cells.

Physics, big data and the quest for a cure

What if you could locate a cancer cell, and use the cell’s natural repair process to destroy it? You’d be one step closer to a cure for cancer. And that’s exactly what students in the UNI Department of Physics are working on. This summer, a group of three undergraduate students in the department have partnered with the University of Iowa Department of Biochemistry in a unique, collaborative research effort to study cells, and their natural self-repairing mechanisms.
UNI senior Nolan Ford

UNI student researches cure for the cancer that claimed sister's life

By the time Nolan Ford was in second grade, he had learned lessons in courage and dedication that would last a lifetime and define a career path. That’s when his sister MacKenzie lost her fight with a rare, deadly form of cancer she had struggled with for most of her life. She was only 9.
UNI student Tyler Hospodarsky

‘Don’t be like me:’ UNI student shares lessons from COVID-19 fight

Tyler Hospodarsky knows he’s one of the lucky ones.  The UNI senior, a sports PR and communication double major, woke up June 24 with a pounding headache that grew worse as the day went on. He soon tested positive for COVID-19, quarantined himself and has made a full recovery after temporarily losing his sense of taste and smell.
UNI President Mark A. Nook wears a mask on campus.

Panthers wear masks - President Nook included

As students and faculty return to campus this fall, one of the most important things we can do to keep everyone safe is to wear a cloth mask or other face covering. One study estimated that the COVID-19 pandemic would grind to halt if 80 percent of people simply wore one.