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Summer Hawk Program Hopes to Draw In-State Students

IOWA CITY, IA (CBS2/FOX28) - Incoming freshmen at the University of Iowa can now take 12 credits during the summer at any time during their college career for free.

The Summer Hawk program was started for the 2013 freshman class, and there are 300 of them currently enrolled this summer.

Rising sophomore say it will help them finish their degrees on time, while giving them a chance to focus on more difficult course work.

"I mean, if you can take 12 extra credits, that will at least shave a semester off your school time. That's definitely an added bonus. I tell everybody about it and they think it's the coolest thing," said Summer Hawk student Haley Ver Steeg.

Graduating in four years instead of five can save a UI student nearly $20,000, president Sally Mason said. The program cost the university $1 million this summer, and may change depending on the number of students enrolled in future years.

Mason is hoping it will draw more in-state students to Iowa and help them finish their degrees earlier. The University of Iowa has the lowest number of in-state students out of all three state universities. It stands to lose about $60 million in a Board of Regents-approved plan to tie state dollars to in-state student enrollment.
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