The Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics held a year-end celebration event on April 28 at Reiman Gardens to honor the 12 affiliated students who will earn their undergraduate or graduate degrees from Iowa State University this spring or summer, as well as three students who graduated in December 2021.
Anita Rollins — Ames City Council member and long-time leader in the Iowa State and Ames communities — was the guest speaker for the evening. In her talk, “The Power of One,” Rollins shared examples of three young women who found the strength to show leadership during difficult times in our country’s history. She encouraged the students to search within themselves to find their own personal leadership stories.
To conclude the event, the graduating students in attendance were recognized in a slide show and presented with a small gift from the Catt Center.
Graduates sharing their future plans include:
Heather Baier is graduating in August with a degree in mechanical engineering and a minor in general business. From Altoona, Iowa, she was a Phyllis Davis Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2019-2022. Following graduation, Baier will be going to work in Minnesota as a development engineer at Daikin Applied.
Alyannah Buhman is graduating in May with a degree in criminal justice and minors in political science and sociology. Hailing from Le Mars, Iowa, she was a Maxine M. Burch Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2021-2022. She will be attending law school at the Sandra Day O’Connor School of Law in Phoenix, Arizona.
Morgan Fritz is graduating in May with a degree in political science. From Lake Mills, Iowa, Fritz was the Katherine Bruntlett Annin Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2019-2022. After graduation, she will be working for U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley’s re-election campaign until November, then plans on doing public policy work in Iowa.
Teagan Gara is graduating in May with a degree in journalism and mass communication and political science. She was the center’s Sharon and Alice Rodine Leadership and Advocacy intern from 2020-2022. After graduation, she will be returning to her home in Hampshire, Illinois, to spend time with family and plan her future in political communication.
Meg Grice, an Elizabeth Hoffman and Brian R. Binger Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2020-2021, graduated in December 2021 with a degree in public relations and international studies and minors in general business and French. From Humboldt, Iowa, Grice is employed in the corporate reputation practice group at FleishmanHillard.
Grace Jakes, who is from Indianola, Iowa, is graduating in May with a degree in animal science and global resource systems. Jakes a Claire B. Andreasen Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2019-2022, will be attending Colorado State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine to pursue a dual DVM/PhD program with the goal of focusing on nutrition and food security, and how they impact public health.
Carrie Ann Johnson will graduate in August with a Ph.D. in rhetoric and professional communication. She has been a graduate assistant with the Catt Center since August 2019, helping set up and run the center’s multi-year undergraduate research project. Although her post-graduation plans are not yet set, Johnson says that she will be continuing to encourage and mentor women into the political arena in every way she can.
Grace Johnson graduated in December 2021 with a degree in public relations and a minor in political science. From Clive, Iowa, she was a Phyllis Davis Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2020-2021. She is currently sharpening her public relations skills through freelancing while searching for a full-time job in the Des Moines area.
Isabelle Kaiser graduated in December 2021 with a degree in history and anthropology. She was a research intern on the Archives of Women’s Political Communication from January 2020-December 2021. A native of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Kaiser will be attending the Drake University Law School starting in June.
Abby Mankins is graduating in May with a Master of Education degree in student affairs. From Des Moines, Iowa, Mankins was an intern with the Catt Center in the fall of 2019, a Helen Jensen Howe Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2019-2020 and an Elizabeth Hoffman and Brian R. Binger Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2020-2022. She will be moving to Fort Collins, Colorado, to work for Colorado State University’s Career Management Center as a career counselor and employer engagement coordinator for their College of Business.
Amy Smith is graduating in May with a Master of Arts degree in political science. Hailing from Winterset, Iowa, Smith was a Haselhoff Family Legacy of Heroines Scholar from 2020-2022. After graduation, she will be working in Des Moines for a political officeholder.
Jessica Stabler, a Carrie Chapman Catt Legacy of Heroines scholar from 2020-2022, is graduating in May with a degree in political science and management. From Colorado Springs, Colorado, she will be returning to that state to work as an area manager for Amazon, managing a delivery facility, including personnel, machinery and business analytics.
Other graduating seniors include Delaney Conrad, an animal science major from Solon, Iowa, who was a Claire B. Andreasen Legacy of Heroines Scholar from 2019-2022; Rylie Smith, a political science and psychology major from Waukee, Iowa, who participated in the center’s undergraduate research project and was a Catt Center intern this spring; and Hayat Sumael, a criminal justice and political science major from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, who was the Jane Greimann Legacy of Heroines Scholar this spring and a voter engagement intern.