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The Week in Social 9/14-9/18

Everywhere you look, Iowans are uniting like never before. While times may be tough right now, we’re seeing it won’t stop the great people in the state from supporting one another. Many have taken to social media to help those in their communities, share helpful resources or to simply highlight something positive to bring joy to others. The Week in Social will round up the best of #IowansUnite and share these uplifting stories.

Dale Schroeder represented all the best attributes of “Iowa Nice.” The man had no living descendants but still left an indelible impact on the lives of 33 people with a gesture of extreme generosity — he paid for their college educations.

Schroeder, who passed away in 2005, served as a carpenter for 67 years, all with the same company. He had accumulated quite a bit of wealth in his life — though you wouldn’t have known it just by looking at him. "He had church jeans and work jeans," his friend Steve Nielsen said. "Went to work every day. Worked really hard. Was frugal. Like a lot of Iowans."

With no living family to pass his money to, Schroeder went to his lawyer and devised a plan. "He said, 'I never got the opportunity to go to college. So, I'd like to help kids go to college,'" Nielsen said. With just shy of $3 million, Schroeder was able to send 33 small-town Iowa kids to college. The group has dubbed themselves “Dale’s Kids,” and met earlier this month to honor the man who gave them a tremendous opportunity. The group is comprised of teachers, therapists, doctors and more, thanks to one kind Iowan’s actions.

The Principal Charity Classic had more than one winner this year: Iowa kids.

The in-person tournament was cancelled this year due to COVID-19, but through sustained support from fans, sponsors, volunteers and charity partners, $6.7 million was raised in support of Iowa kids, which surpassed last year’s tournament by more than $1 million. The Principal Charity Classic has raised more than $30 million since 2007.

“It is an incredible testament to the resilience and generosity of our community that we have once again raised the bar for this event,” said Dan Houston, chairman, president and CEO of Principal. “I am extremely grateful to charity partners, sponsors, ticket holders, volunteers and players for their unwavering support and making a difference in the lives of Iowa children.”

As part of the ongoing 100th anniversary celebration for Iowa State Parks, Iowans can participate in Statewide Volunteer Day at more than 30 parks across Iowa this Saturday (9/26).

The volunteer projects will focus on caring for parks after a busy summer season and clean-up efforts at parks impacted by August storm damage, according to Todd Coffelt, State Parks, Forests and Preserves Bureau chief.

“Iowa state parks are important places many people enjoy for their natural beauty and outdoor recreation,” Coffelt said. “We know volunteering in state parks is important to many people who want care for them, and Statewide Volunteer Day is a great opportunity to lend a hand.”

Interested in volunteering? Learn more here and be sure to share your actions on social media with the hashtag #IowaStateParks100.

University of Iowa engineers and neurologists have developed an algorithm that diagnoses Parkinson’s Disease through data from electroencephalogram tests, more commonly referred to as EEGs. The diagnosis can come with as little as two minutes of data, and the algorithm’s results are 85% accurate, outperforming current existing testing methods and clinical diagnostic accuracy.

The team is led by Soura Dasgupta and Nandakumar Narayanan, professors in the Department of Electrical Computer Engineering and Neurology Research, respectively. “Parkinson’s is a debilitating and often devastating disease,” said Dasgupta. “Our ability to diagnose it quickly and reliably through EEG data will undoubtedly help patients and their families.” To learn more about the rest of the team and their efforts, visit

Published September 21, 2020

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