The Fichter family of Shenandoah has been selected this year to receive the Iowa State University Family of the Year award.
This honor is given annually to a family that has strong connections and a strong sense of pride for ISU. ISU President, Wendy Wintersteen will honor the Fichter family during the Family Weekend 2020 scheduled for Sept. 18 – 20.
Heidi Fichter, the daughter of Jean and Corby Fichter, is a senior at ISU and will graduate this year. The family selected to receive this award is required to have a student attending ISU during the year the award is given. Students attending ISU can submit their applications and a committee chooses the recipient.
“This is an honor that we were not expecting,” said Jean Fichter, “but we’re happy to receive it.”
The Fichter family members are Heidi, and her fiance, Chris; brother Adam, and his wife Marissa; brother Austin and his wife Jourdan; and their parents, Jean and Corby. Each of these family members attended ISU. Also, over 25 additional family members attended ISU over the past 100 years.
“My grandparents were from northwest Iowa and met at Iowa State,” said Jean. “They moved to California and then their daughter, my mom, came back to Iowa State, met my dad, got married and moved to northwest Iowa.”
Jean said it is unique that her grandparents graduated from Iowa State in 1920 and now their daughter, Heidi, will graduate in 2020.
Jean and Corby’s daughter-in-law Jourdan also has a strong family connection to ISU.
“Jourdan is from Ames and her grandpa was involved in the development of Cy the ISU mascot,“ said Jean. “He was one of the first to wear the Cy costume. She and her family are also very excited about this honor.”
Jean said being selected has been a lot of fun for a large group of their friends and family.
“We are thankful for the tradition of college education in our family for over 100 years,” said Jean. “We know it has taken a commitment of time and resources and we’re thankful it has been possible to have these opportunities.”
The Fichter’s have also been ISU sports fans through thick and thin and are expected to show up at church in their ISU gear after a big win.
“We’ve enjoyed the friendships that we’ve made there,” said Jean. “In the scheme of things, it's just fun and we’re thankful that we can enjoy it.”