NCC Offers Various Student Activities

Northwest Iowa Community College Offers Various Student Activities

The primary purpose of Iowa’s Community Colleges is to train Iowa’s current and future workforce. Northwest Iowa Community College has a reputation for offering high-demand, quality, affordable and accessible educational opportunities for members of its service territory – and beyond.

Today’s prospective college student has thousands of options when considering their next step after high school graduation. Students are looking to check multiple boxes during their college visits, and NCC is able to fulfill a number of these…

  • High-demand programs
  • Quality education
  • Affordable tuition & numerous scholarship opportunities
  • Excellent graduation, transfer and career placement rates
  • Safety – NCC is among the safest community colleges in Iowa

Another item that is typically toward the top of a student’s checklist is campus life. Since officially becoming a comprehensive community college in 1993, offerings outside of the classroom have continued to adapt and change with the student population.  NCC offers a variety of student activities, organizations, extra-curricular activities and intercollegiate athletics – and within the next couple of years, these offerings will expand even further.

Student activities at NCC are free, or a very small cost, for students to participate, and there are numerous activities available.  Housing & Student Activities Coordinator, Jena Schouten, stated, “One great thing about student activities here at NCC is that offerings change from year to year. Activities are planned based on current student interests and requests, so if students’ requests are reasonable, I do my absolute best to make it happen. For example, we recently took a trip to the Black Hills, South Dakota, which we had never done before.”

One annual week-long activity that is a favorite among students and employees is Days of Thunder, which serves as the College’s homecoming week. Held annually in the fall semester, the week typically begins with free donuts and commences with the NCC Thunder’s home sports shooting competition. Other activities that take place throughout the week include offerings such as Pickleball, Dodgeball, Basketball and Video Game tournaments, Puppy Therapy, Mini-Golf, Goat Yoga, Tug-of-War, Family Day and more. Programs and departments compete to accumulate points by participating in activities throughout the week. The program that racks up the most points is named the winner of NCC’s infamous “Steal Your Thunder” Trophy and gets to display the trophy in their classroom or lab throughout the academic year.

Another component to campus life is the Lifelong Learning & Recreation center, or LLRC. The LLRC has aided in giving the campus a more collegiate feel. The facility was established in 2011 through a partnership between the College and the City of Sheldon. The LLRC houses an indoor track, recreational courts, cardio equipment and a weight room for both collegiate and community use.  NCC students receive a free membership to the facility, which also includes access to unlimited group fitness classes. The facility offers students an opportunity to work on not only their physical health, but also their mental health. According to a study completed by the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association, campus recreation participation strengthens student engagement and results in positive academic outcomes. Participants report a higher sense of belonging, improved feelings of well-being, more positive psychological outcomes, higher cumulative grade point averages, and higher levels of physical health and quality of life compared to non-participants.

Greta Giese serves as the Director of the LLRC and has seen many lifelong and unexpected friendships formed under the LLRC’s roof.  Giese has witnessed college students, area high school students and community members come together for various activities. Giese stated, “Individuals visit the LLRC to work on their physical health, not realizing that they are working on so much more than that. It is gratifying to see all of the connections made and lifelong friendships established under our facilities roof. The LLRC creates even more connections between the College and the Community, and both students and community members benefit greatly from this.”

Along with student activities and the LLRC, the final component that has further enhanced campus life is the addition of intercollegiate athletics. Since August of 2019, NCC has offered Sports Shooting, which has been a great addition to student life. In their first state team competition during the Fall of 2019, the team took home 4th place team honors. Also, in 2019, two of NCC’s athletes finished in the top 10 at the Iowa Scholastic Clay Target College Championships, and three others finished in the top 20.
In the Fall of 2021, the team took home 6th place in the Scholastic Clay Target Program, or SCTP, Collegiate Trap Championship. Most recently in the fall of 2022, the team took 7th place overall out of 16 two and four-year colleges at the SCTP Iowa Collegiate Championships.

NCC’s Sports Shooting Athletes have not only found success on the shooting range, but also in the classroom. Over 80% of the NCC Sports Shooting Team members were selected as Academic All-Region Performers in the ICCAC Fall 2022 Academic All-Region. To be selected for this recognition, individuals must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or above. One NCC athlete that received this recognition was Skyler Mullinix. Skyler has been competing with the NCC Sports Shooting Team since he began at NCC in the Fall of 2022. He is pursuing the Associate of Arts, or college transfer, program with a goal to transfer and pursue a degree in Chemistry. Being a local resident from the College’s service territory, Skyler chose not to live on campus while attending college. “Being an Associate of Arts student that does not live on campus can make it more difficult to meet people since all of your classes are with different groups of students. As a member of the Sports Shooting team, I have been able to make friends with students from other programs and make a lot more connections at NCC. I love the camaraderie on the team and how accessible it is to participate,” he stated.  Skyler has enjoyed his experience on the team so far, and looks forward to future opportunities that will arise through his involvement.

In the Fall of 2024, NCC will add onto its roster of athletic offerings by beginning a men’s and women’s soccer program. The College will compete with the Iowa Community College Athletic Conference as a Division 2 program.  Beginning another successful athletic program requires a lot of moving parts to come together. The College is thankful for its partnership with the Sheldon Community School District and the City of Sheldon on the turf field and digital scoreboard. College officials are also currently planning for the construction of another on-campus housing facility (Sioux Hall) to be completed by Fall of 2024. Subcommittee work is currently taking place on a variety of other items such as athletic scholarship procedures, conference affiliation paperwork, hiring an athletic director and coaching staff, and athletic recruitment. Sports Shooting has proven to be a great addition, and the College is eager to expand athletic offerings even further.

Campus life offerings will continue to adapt and change with NCC’s evolving student population.

For more information about educational opportunities at NCC, either on campus or online, call 712-324-5061, 800-352-4907, or visit
Northwest Iowa Community College – Your Success is Our Story!