The University of Iowa unity mural, on Aug. 30, 2018. Credit: Lauren Wade/IowaWatch

U.S. Department of Education data from 155 Iowa college campuses showed 13 incidences of hate crimes on those campuses in 2016, the most recent year for which data exist.

Of these, seven were motivated by race, while two where gender-related, one was motivated by religion, one by ethnicity, and two by national origin, the data reviewed by IowaWatch show. Other categories reported to the education department but with no crimes were sexual orientation, gender identity and disability.

Julian Neely, Iowa State University Student Government president Credit: Courtesy of Julian Neely

Dealing with bias- and hate-related incidences on campus “becomes a job, in a sense. A full-time job,” Julian Neely, Iowa State University’s Student Government president, said in an IowaWatch report.

Hira Mustafa, University of Iowa Student Government president Credit: Courtesy of the University of Iowa Student Government

He and Hira Mustafa, the University of Iowa’s Student Government president, are among student leaders in Iowa working on ways to overcome the negative impact of bias- and hate-related incidences at Iowa colleges and universities.

“I try to focus on educating with empathy, taking a step back, and having a discussion on where they got their ideas, seeking to understand where they’re coming from,” Mustafa said.

Type of work:

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