A chapter in adventure

At Iowa State, we have amazing professors. One of the reasons they’re so outstanding is because they write the textbooks that are being taught in classrooms around the world. But our professors aren’t the only ones working on these books -- Iowa State students are getting the opportunity to help.

Such was the case with Introduction to Wood and Natural Fiber Composites. Author and Iowa State senior lecturer Douglas Stokke enlisted three of his natural resource ecology and management (NREM) undergraduate students to assist him. Gabbi Frerichs, senior in environmental science and forestry, served as editorial assistant. Alexa Dostart, senior in forestry, created numerous original drawings for the book. And Crystal Krapfl, sophomore in forestry, helped formulate important tables and literature citations. Now their hard work could soon be seen around the world -- because this book may be translated into Chinese.

What did these students think about this unique opportunity? Simply put, they were ecstatic. Says Frerichs, “When I realized that I was actually helping a professor write a textbook that would be used around the world, I was extremely excited. There aren’t many places that provide opportunities like this.” Dostart shares this enthusiasm, saying, “I’m very happy I transferred to Iowa State when I did, otherwise I wouldn’t have had this opportunity.” Krapfl says she learned a lot in the process, like how to meet deadlines, be dependable and take initiative.

Students across all departments at Iowa State receive unique academic opportunities every day. Sometimes they get to help write a textbook. Sometimes they pack their bags and study in another country. Other times they assist professors with their research. But no matter what the opportunity may be, you’ll always find an academic adventure waiting for you during your chapter at Iowa State.