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UNI implements programs to support for low-income, first-generation and non-traditional students

Talk of Iowa, hosted by Charity Nebbe

Although the cost of college seems to always increase, a college graduate still earns more, on average, than someone who didn’t graduate. But some communities face barriers to earning a degree or obtaining needed training.

The path through higher education looks different for many students. The University of Northern Iowa has implemented incentives to reach low-income, first-generation and non-traditional students to help them earn a degree and provide support along the way. UNI President Mark Nook and Nickole Dillard, the director of TRIO programs at the Center for Urban Education (UNI-CUE) join Talk of Iowa host Charity Nebbe to talk about resources available to students.

Later in the hour, writer Benjamin Percy shares how his daughter’s search for female representation in coming-of-age movies inspired his screenplay of the James Ponsoldt-directed film Summering, which features four girls on the brink of middle school and realize their lives are about to change forever.


  • Mark Nook, University of Northern Iowa president
  • Nickole Dillard, director of TRIO Educational Opportunity Center
  • Benjamin Percy, author and screenwriter
Charity Nebbe is the host of IPR's Talk of Iowa
Caitlin Troutman is a talk show producer at Iowa Public Radio
Samantha McIntosh is a talk show producer at Iowa Public Radio. Prior to IPR, Samantha worked as a reporter for radio stations in southeast and west central Iowa under M&H Broadcasting, and before that she was a weekend music host for GO 96.3 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Natalie Dunlap is a rising junior at the University of Iowa majoring in journalism and minoring in gender, women's & sexuality studies. She is from Iowa City and in her free time enjoys getting coffee and reading downtown with friends.