Iowa Student Personnel Association
Iowa Student Personnel Association provides high-quality and affordable professional development while seeking opportunities to cultivate leadership, advocacy, and meaningful relationships for higher education professionals throughout the state of Iowa.
Equity & Inclusion Statement
Iowa Student Personnel Association (ISPA) affirms and supports the unique identities in our community by striving for social justice and practicing inclusive engagement.
ISPA values and appreciates diversity by providing opportunities to engage in continued conversations and participate in meaningful professional development. ISPA celebrates all facets brought to our community by striving to work inclusively and welcome all voices.
The Iowa Student Personnel Association (ISPA) we know today began as a series of meetings between Senior Student Affairs Officers (SSAOs) at Iowa State University (ISU), the University of Northern Iowa (UNI), and the University of Iowa (UI) in July 1969. A close group of SSAOs working at each institution met monthly in a central location (usually Toledo, Iowa) to exchange information. The SSAOs in attendance sometimes dedicated meetings to an area reporting to all of them, and invited directors from those areas to the meetings to join the conversation.
The group saw much success from these meetings. Several months in, the group decided to invite both private and smaller schools to attend the monthly meetings. Wartburg College, Simpson College, ISU, UNI, UI, Luther College, Cornell College, Morningside College, and Grinnell College were among the first schools to attend the regular meetings. Increasing group membership representative of all higher education experience levels prompted the group to begin meeting once a year instead of monthly. This annual meeting is recognized today as ISPA's annual conference. The original annual conferences were held each fall at ISU. ISPA's annual conference is still held every fall, and have been hosted by institutions across the state of Iowa. Previous hosting institutions include Grinnell College, St. Ambrose University, and ISU.
ISPA credits much of its success to its passion for helping higher education professionals connect through professional development opportunities, share ideas, and work together to further higher education in the state of Iowa. ISPA began and remains NASPA and ACPA neutral. All national groups are welcome to be a part of ISPA.
Site background image by photographer Carl Wycoff
The following individuals previously served as Presidents of ISPA.