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Old 12-14-2011, 05:53 PM
 
Location: Chicago
6,360 posts, read 7,625,099 times
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I'm curious to know if most Iowans are aware of how much an impact the University of Iowa has in metropolitan Chicago?

I'm one of those people from suburban Chicago who went to the university (too far back to remember...let's just say the SUI days and not elaborate.)

For years the university has been a totally hot place for suburban kids in the Chicago area. You will not find one top flight suburban high school here where Iowa is not one of the major destinations for college.

and there are very, very few who do not sing the praises of both university and IC. And the school's academic reputation here is exceedingly high.

You see Hawkeye spirit wear everywhere in the area. And you know the strength of the Iowa alums, considering that game a few years back against NIU (acutally a home game for Northern with a crowd heavily in gold and black).

I've always seen a strong connection in Iowa City to Chicago which seems to influence (IMHO) far more than any other major metro area (sorry, DM, I'm not counting your as major). So the connection goes both ways.

Again, curious......Do Iowans realize how strong that Chicago-UIowa link is?
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Old 12-14-2011, 06:23 PM
 
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Having lived in both cities (Chicago and Des Moines) I would say no. I also went to U of Iowa in the early 2000's. Des Moines is really in its own world, haven't ever lived in other city like this where civic fanaticism runs this rampant. Even this Iowa Caucus (got in trouble for laughing at that word once LOL) every 4 years seems more like it should be the "Des Moines caucus" only.

Most Iowa fans in Iowa, didn't even goto Iowa. In Chicago, they probably did. It's actually somewhat rare to meet someone even in Des Moines who went to Iowa (it seems ISU dominant). I can honestly say, I've met very few. I went to one of the larger 4-A high schools and only like 12 people out of my graduating class went to Iowa. More went to ISU, then a lot to community college.

UIowa seems to have a stronger academic presence in Chicago, everyone has heard of it, knows it's a fun party school, seen as a good place to spend your college years. In Des Moines, I've sensed jealousy before over having "gone to Iowa - but not with ISU" (from the people who have never left Des Moines in their lives), plus the mentioning you went to Iowa can easily bring up and Iowa vs ISU debate, and those can get very frivolous.

Also, Des Moines and Iowa City generally don't like each other from what I've observed. On this forum, can be obvious. Iowa City actually has a higher cost of living and this upsets the Des Moines fanatics, lol. The nightlife is better there too. Iowa City actually is liberal, where Des Moines, it comes across rather feigned, simply to emulate bigger cities.

Last edited by tollfree; 12-14-2011 at 06:34 PM..
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Old 12-14-2011, 09:00 PM
 
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I grew up in Iowa and live in Chicago and I agree at first I was surprised to see so much Hawkeye spirit. But Big10 schools all seem well represented in Chicago, and it makes sense. College grads are going to be drawn to the nearest big city.
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Old 12-15-2011, 04:53 AM
 
Location: Chicago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dport7674 View Post
I grew up in Iowa and live in Chicago and I agree at first I was surprised to see so much Hawkeye spirit. But Big10 schools all seem well represented in Chicago, and it makes sense. College grads are going to be drawn to the nearest big city.
you're absolutely right about B10 schools being well represented in Chicago. But a lot of that comes from grads who move here after graduation.

if you look specifically at where Chicago area kids go to college, you'll find that all Big Ten schools are not alike. What happens when you get past discussing the Univ of Ill? You'd find that two B10 schools dominate over the others: Iowa and IU.

There are many things that give Iowa an edge. Let's dismiss Nebraska from discussion as it is far too new in the B10 to be part of the culture of our region.

There is a reason why Iowa attracts so many Chicago area kids. Actually, many reasons. It's close enough. The school is very good. Both city and university offer a great opportunity for four years....and are known for it.

But there is another very important consideration: again with Nebraska aside, the state of Iowa differs from other states in the B10 footprint because it is relatively small and less urban. But while the state's population is noticeably smaller than the other states, the university (which still smaller than the others) is still comenserate with what we consider to be "Big Ten size". What does that mean? It means there are far more "slots" to be filled at Iowa than other Big Ten universities because the state is so small. Those slots get sucked up by lots of Chicago area kids who are happy the opportunities to go to Iowa are there.

on a different subject that were brought up here, I found it intereresting to read what some think is DM's relationship with UIowa. And in so reading, it got me thinking of geography and how it really works. State boundaries tend to be arbitrary and tell little about cultural differences. For one thing about UIowa's appeal to Chicago that comes with accessibility of getting there is that Iowa City and the university are in eastern Iowa. Far eastern Iowa. And frankly, the culture of that region is in many ways a lot like that of what's across the Mississippi. eastern Iowa tilts very midwestern while much of the rest of the state, while not being in the Great Plains, relates better to that region.

Which brings me to another question for your folks (and Btw...thanks for answering the issues I've raised):

we know that Iowa tends to be very much of a Hawkeye state in sports. ISU comes off (IMHO) as a distant second in support. Given what has been written here about what might be an awkward relationship with the university in DM and elsewhere outside of the eastern Iowa region, could one conclude that Iowans tend to support Iowa over ISU in strictly athletic terms, but when athletics is removed from the mix, there is less of a gap between the two instiutions which might arguably be supported in more equal ways?

In other words, do Iowans tend to support the Hawkeyes (which can have a state wide appeal much like the Huskers do in Nebraska, even though UNL is the only major school there where Iowa has Iowa and ISU) much more than they do the university?


And truthfully could one also conclude that the number of Chicago area and out-of-state students that attend UIowa may be a negative to some Iowans because it dilutes the "Iowa nature" of the state and gives an impression of an institution that may not be representative of the state as they would like (in other words, UIowa is its own world, in Iowa, but not always a part of it). Or am i reading far, far more into this than I should?

Last edited by edsg25; 12-15-2011 at 05:02 AM..
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Old 12-15-2011, 08:32 AM
 
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We had a ton of Des Moines kids in my dorms and classes at Iowa. I guess most of them went on to other states as opposed to back home to Des Moines? I do notice of everyone I went to Iowa with, a vast majority of them have peppered out across the country. I have five good friends in Chicago who went to Iowa. Me, one girl from Naperville, one from Des Moines, one from Dubuque and another from Chicago burbs.

As far as Iowa impact in Chicago? It is pretty huge. There's a large suburban Chicago base of kids who went to Iowa and then moved into the city, as well as another group who grew up in Iowa and then moved to Chicago after graduation. Most of them tend to be on the north side.

I see Iowa flags hanging all over the place when I gaze out the train on the way to work in the mornings. One morning I counted six of them. I see people downtown with Iowa hats on during the winter a lot, and last night at dinner the guy next to us was wearing an Iowa jacket.

Football Saturday's the north side goes crazy at sports bars, and there are actually a large number of Iowa bars packed with people...

Four Shadows (my favorite)
Merkles
Barleycorn
Big City
Sedgwicks
Hawkeye Bar and Grill
Goodbar
Theory
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Old 12-15-2011, 08:57 AM
 
Location: Greater Seattle, WA Metro Area
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I believe it. I went to Iowa and had just as many friends from Illinois as I did from Iowa. Although Urbana-Champaign is a fun town!!
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Old 12-15-2011, 09:18 AM
 
Location: Des Moines
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RonnieJonez View Post
Having lived in both cities (Chicago and Des Moines) I would say no. I also went to U of Iowa in the early 2000's. Des Moines is really in its own world, haven't ever lived in other city like this where civic fanaticism runs this rampant. Even this Iowa Caucus (got in trouble for laughing at that word once LOL) every 4 years seems more like it should be the "Des Moines caucus" only.

Most Iowa fans in Iowa, didn't even goto Iowa. In Chicago, they probably did. It's actually somewhat rare to meet someone even in Des Moines who went to Iowa (it seems ISU dominant). I can honestly say, I've met very few. I went to one of the larger 4-A high schools and only like 12 people out of my graduating class went to Iowa. More went to ISU, then a lot to community college.

UIowa seems to have a stronger academic presence in Chicago, everyone has heard of it, knows it's a fun party school, seen as a good place to spend your college years. In Des Moines, I've sensed jealousy before over having "gone to Iowa - but not with ISU" (from the people who have never left Des Moines in their lives), plus the mentioning you went to Iowa can easily bring up and Iowa vs ISU debate, and those can get very frivolous.

Also, Des Moines and Iowa City generally don't like each other from what I've observed. On this forum, can be obvious. Iowa City actually has a higher cost of living and this upsets the Des Moines fanatics, lol. The nightlife is better there too. Iowa City actually is liberal, where Des Moines, it comes across rather feigned, simply to emulate bigger cities.
I don't think you can take the opinions of one person as fact. I live here too and know and even work with plenty of U of I alum, so I'm not aware of any phenomenon of Iowa grads being of a rare existence in Des Moines. I have no doubts that Iowa State is integrated into the life of Central Iowans more so than Eastern Iowans, naturally.

I think people in Des Moines know that Iowa City is a special place and don't hold any ill will towards it. While Des Moines has made tremendous strides, probably even taking over the cultural hub status of Iowa IMO, we're well aware of the great night life, better urban street life amenities, and good quality of life offered 2 hours to the east. I don't get any gist at all of Des Moines people thumbing their nose at Iowa City. If anything, there seems to be a commonly accepted "pass" that Des Moines and Iowa City both seem to get on this forum that you don't see with most other metros in the state. You don't see a lot of negative comments about either, unless we're talking about odd civic fanaticism (I would take this any day over lack of pride in your community) or feigned liberalism. That may be a true comment, but I find it odd how often RonnieJonez brings this up. Call it feigned liberal fanaticism.
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Old 12-15-2011, 02:02 PM
 
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^ I completely agree. Des Moines and Iowa City tend to be the really bright spots of the state on a national stage and on this forum. They seem to be the places most pushed into the 21st century. Not that Cedar Rapids, Davenport or Boone are all trapped in the past or anything, they just don't have that push going on like DSM and IC. Polk/Dallas and Johnson counties were responsible for a large portion of the states growth the past 10 years. Throw in Linn county just to the north of Iowa City and you're got 4 counties that grew by the entire amount the state did the past 10 years. You can't ignore that. DSM and IC/CR are consolidating power.

Coming from the other angle, Iowa City, I certainly don't think there's any ill will or bad feelings against Des Moines. Honestly it's the only other city in Iowa that my friends and family travel to in Iowa for the most part - and they all look forward to and enjoy going there. My parents go to Broadway plays in Des Moines multiple times a year, and my friends go there for a variety of things.

I think Des Moines and Iowa City are very linked within the state, not the opposite.
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Old 12-15-2011, 02:26 PM
 
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Not really true. There was an indoor rainforest supposed to be built years ago, around 2004. Originally supposed to be in West Des Moines, then got moved to Coralville. The Coralville version was also larger.

Neither ended up being built. Eventually, Pella was decided on, which is closer to Des Moines of course.

Again, was never built. In the process, Des Moines didn't want Iowa City to get it. Just imagine if it had gone to Omaha, lol.
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Old 12-15-2011, 03:04 PM
 
Location: Chicago
6,360 posts, read 7,625,099 times
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You want an interesting fact? I'll give you an interesting fact:

2011-12 University of Iowa freshman class:

2,062 Iowa residents (45% of total....with 44% from other states and 11% other countries

1,524 students from Illinois

First-Year Student Profile - Who's at Iowa - Undergraduate Admissions - The University of Iowa (http://www.uiowa.edu/admissions/undergrad/whos-at-iowa/first-year-profile.htm - broken link)
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