First Amendment Days

First Amendment Days

First Amendment Days is a weeklong celebration of our First Amendment freedoms – religion, speech, press, assembly, petition. A diverse assortment of speakers, events and activities are offered on campus every spring as a creative way to engage students and the entire Iowa State community to better understand the power of free expression. First Amendment Days is also designed to provide opportunities to exercise our five freedoms.

Now in its 19th year, First Amendment Days is the longest-running continual student-led First Amendment celebration at any university in the U.S. The celebration is organized by the First Amendment Committee, which is made up of members of the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication and the Iowa State Daily Media Group.

Save the date for our 20th annual First Amendment Days, April 11-15, 2022!

First Amendment Campus Collaborations

Iowa State University Library First Amendment libguide

available all week

Want to study up on the First Amendment? Check out the extensive resources available in this Iowa State University Library First Amendment libguide curated by Charles Yier of the Iowa State University Library in conjunction with First Amendment Days.

Iowa State Daily – Letters to the Editor

available always

We encourage students to exercise their freedom of the press by writing letters to the editor to the Iowa State Daily and other news organizations. See the Iowa State Daily’s policy for letters to the editor.

First Amendment Pet Film Competition

In celebration of First Amendment Days, the First Amendment Committee hosted a First Amendment Pet Film Competition. Students were challenged to demonstrate one of the five freedoms protected by the First Amendment – speech, press, petition, assembly and religion — in a video that’s 60 seconds or less.


students marching with flag of Iowa
Students march during the 2004 First Amendment Day celebration.

FAD Through the Years

The inaugural Iowa State University First Amendment Day celebration took place in 2003 and was organized by Mark Witherspoon, Iowa State Daily emeritus editorial advisor and former Greenlee faculty member. The Greenlee School has organized a celebration every year since. See how First Amendment Days has evolved through the years.


Event Contacts

  • Julie Roosa, adjunct assistant professor and First Amendment specialist, Greenlee School
  • Mark Witherspoon, emeritus editorial advisor, Iowa State Daily Media Group