Problems college students face, ranging from dealing with unfair landlords to coping with illnesses that affect school work and relationships, drew the most attention of all the 2015 IowaWatch stories that were written.

Yet, interestingly, stories from previous years got the most attention on our website in 2015, led by one about whether or not feeding tubes always are a good idea for elderly people. That story on feeding tubes still draws comments from readers seeking good information about this life-altering decision for an elderly loved one.

Here are links to the most read IowaWatch stories written in 2015.

Some College Student Renters Must Battle Unfair Charges, Rigged Damage Deposit Requirements


By Alex Parrott, July 30, 2015
Hundreds of college students who rent private apartments while attending Iowa’s three public universities routinely are being taken advantage of by landlords who unfairly withhold security deposits that might be owed back to the students.

Plenty Of 2015 College Grads Will Continue Exodus Trend From Iowa

Credit: Lyle Muller/IowaWatch

By Lauren Mills, with reporting from a team of student journalists, May 10, 2015
Iowa’s population has remained largely stagnant over several decades and, despite state efforts to entice young workers to stay, many Iowa college graduates leaving the state are keeping it that way.

Narrower Focus In 2015 Attempt To Legislate Dog Breeding Facility Inspections In Iowa

Female shih tzu
Credit: USDA photo taken by Jeff Baker

By Lyle Muller and Jacob Luplow, Jan. 1, 2015
A renewed attempt was made again this legislative session to strengthen Iowa’s ability to inspect and regulate large dog breeding facilities in the state, but with a scaled-down focus. It failed to emerge from the state Legislature, though.

Response To Refugees In Iowa Has Changed In 40 Years

C. 1975

By Clare McCarthy, Aug. 5, 2015
Refugee assistance in Iowa is not the same as it was 40 years ago. State refugee services still exist but as part of the Iowa Department of Human Services and has been renamed the Bureau of Refugee Services. Moreover, federal grants that once supported assistance programs no longer exist and Iowa has not made refugee services the priority they were during the fall of Vietnam in 40 years ago.

Frustrated Patients Disrupted While Iowa Figures Out How To Make Medicinal Marijuana Practical

Quincy and Maria La France
Credit: Undated photo submitted by Maria LaFrance

By Krista Johnson, Oct. 30, 2015
At first glance, Iowa’s Medical Cannabidiol Act seemed like a major breakthrough for Iowans who had been advocating for medical marijuana, but the act leaves out two important pieces to the story: where the caregivers and patients can obtain the CBD and what is being done for those who feel the need for medical marijuana but do not have epilepsy. Changes to address those issues in the law don’t appear to be coming anytime soon.

Top 5 Until Last Day of 2015

Little-Recognized Illnesses Follow Iowa College Students To The Classroom

Aimee Loats
Credit: Megan Quick/For IowaWatch

By Kate Hayden, Steffi Lee, Megan Quick and Ben Rodgers, April 21, 2015
While challenging for college students, hidden illnesses also challenge colleges and universities that deal with disabilities rarely encountered but which drastically impact how students deal with their studies, an IowaWatch/Simpson College journalism report revealed.

Top read stories at in 2015, overall:
1. Stomach Tubes to Feed Elderly Often Unnecessary, May Be Harmful; By Gabe Gao, Jan. 29, 2012
2. Students Battling Depression Reveal Their Personal Struggles To Graduate; By Linh Ta, March 2, 2014
3. Graffiti: The Art of Expressive Vandalism; By Danielle Wilde, June 17, 2013
4. Student Depression Often Hidden From Friends, Professors; By Rana Moustafa, March 2, 2014
5. Iowa Chinese Students Struggle To Adjust, Feel Lack Of Support; By Lu Shen, June 24, 2014

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