Student Life

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Memorial Union- Activities and Services

The Memorial Union is an historic building that is regarded as the heart of campus life and the center of informal education at Iowa State University.


Arts, Entertainment, Recreation:

  • CyBowl & Billiards: bowling, billiards, video arcade, table tennis
  • Maintenance Shop: live music, comedy, open mic 
  • Student Union Board: weekly films, comedy, music, diverse programs, special events, much more
  • Art exhibits and art-for-rent
  • Workspace: art and crafts classes for fun, studios for work in wood, photo, pottery; button maker
  • Big screen TVs; pianos to play
  • Lectures

Student Organizations

  • Student organization offices and meeting space; recognition process.

Dining & Shopping

  • Food Court & MU Market & Café
  • University Book Store

Study Spots

  • Multicultural Center
  • Browsing Library & Computer Lab; Chapel;
  • Lounges: Main, West, Pride, Commons & more


  • Meeting rooms, catering
  • Parking ramp
  • Copy Center
  • Soults Family Visitor Center
  • ATMs, Mshop Ticket Office, Lockers (in the MCC)
  • U.S. Post Office – full service
  • Student Legal Service

Distinctive Feature

  • Gold Star Hall, an active memorial to Iowa State service personnel lost in the nation's conflicts

Student Activities Center

Director of Student Activities, Asst. Director - Memorial Union

George Micalone

Assistant DIRECTOR - Student Organizations, leadership and service

Kevin Merrill


Tim Reuter

Coordinator for Leadership and Service

Ashley Dorris

Coordinator for Art Programs

Letitia Kenemer

Coordinator for Entertainment Programs

Jim Brockpahler


Dustin Smothers


Katie Haygood

SAC Secretary

Brigitte Milhous

The Student Activities Center (SAC) in the Memorial Union is committed to helping students learn inside and outside the classroom by offering countless ways to get involved at Iowa State through leadership, service, arts, entertainment and recreation activities.

The Student Activities Center includes: the Workspace (arts studio), the Maintenance Shop (entertainment venue), CyBowl & Billiards (recreation center/ bowling alley), Cyclone Cinema, leadership and service programs, art galleries in the MU, and management of the recognition of over 900 campus and student organizations. For a complete list of recognized organizations visit

The staff provides assistance to student and campus organization leaders, members and advisers on an individual or group basis. Available on the SAC website are resources for student and campus organizations including the event authorization process, publicity and promotion ideas, constitution writing guidelines, and officer transition information. The Student Activities Center is home to the Leadership and Service Center which provides hands on support for students interested in leadership and service opportunities and student organization officers looking to better their clubs. In addition the SAC offers a 3-credit course called Leadership ISU, where students learn leadership capacity through a series of activities and seminars, as well as many other leadership conferences and retreats. Reservations for the Lynn Fuhrer Lodge are managed by this office as well.

The Student Activities Center coordinates the Co-Curricular Transcript (CCT), an online system to help students manage their experiences, achievements and involvement while as an Iowa State student. Faculty and staff can add verified entries while students can add their own self-managed entries as well. Entries are added to one of the following categories: Campus Involvement, Community Service, Honors and Awards, Internships and Study Abroad, Leadership Experience, On Campus Employment, Publications, Recreational Activities, Research, and Seminars and Workshops. From there students can create customized and comprehensive transcripts to use when applying for jobs, internships, scholarships, graduate school or leadership opportunities. 

Annual SAC events include: ClubFest & Spring ClubFest (organization involvement fair), WelcomeFest (Ames and ISU opportunity fair), ISU AfterDark (substance-free alternative program- six times per year), Iowa State Leadership Experience (one-day leadership conference), Winterfest (celebration of all things winter) and Cyclone Carnival (spring activities for students, alumni and community members). Student Activities Center staff advise key student organizations and events including: Student Union Board, AfterDark, Dance Marathon, Freshmen Council, Campus Service Crew, Cyclone Carnival, and WinterFest.

More information is available at the Student Activities Center, located in the East Student Office Space in the Memorial Union (across from Panda Express); online at; or by calling (515) 294-8081.


Throughout the academic year, the Committee on Lectures brings to the campus a number of speakers eminent in national and international affairs, the sciences, and the arts. In addition to giving formal lectures, a number of these speakers meet with students informally for meals and discussions. Through these lectures and discussions the students are given a well-rounded presentation on a range of subjects including popular culture, educational and economic philosophy, the arts, and technological and scientific development. Past speakers include evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins and physicist Michio Kaku; activist Gloria Steinem; writers Margaret Atwood and Cheryl Strayed; and former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

The World Affairs Series is an annual series of speakers on a topic of international interest. The National Affairs Series invites speakers on a topic of national concern. The Committee on Lectures also sponsors or co-sponsors dramatic and film events.

Students are encouraged to contact the lectures program office and become involved in the planning of these events.

Honor Societies

Honor societies at Iowa State University provide opportunities for students who excel in the classroom and want to network with others in their major. Members of these honor societies are eligible for transcript recognition through the Office of the Registrar. The complete list of honor societies can be found on the student organization website at