Foundation Programs

The ABI Foundation has three core programs that help to develop Iowa’s workforce and leaders at every stage, from high school students to professionals.

Leadership Iowa

Leadership Iowa is a premier statewide issues-awareness program bringing together top Iowa professionals to learn about issues impacting the state in a way they never have before. With a goal to instill passion in our current and emerging leaders, Leadership Iowa allows participants to have a variety of experiences and build a new network of program participants that reaches across geographic, professional and economic lines.

Program participants attend one session each month from October–June (class observes a one month winter break). Sessions take place in a different region of the state each month and is focused on a specific topic. Topics typically include government, agriculture, education, healthcare, economic development and other pertinent issues facing the state. Each session features presentations and discussion with acknowledged leaders and experts in their respective fields, along with activities and opportunities to network.

Participants must be nominated to apply and 40 applicants will be selected. The nomination deadline is May 1 for the upcoming class beginning in October; nominations collected after will be considered for the following year. Click below to nominate a business leader or learn more about the Leadership Iowa program.

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Leadership Iowa University

Leadership Iowa University is the ABI Foundation's newest program. Modeled after Leadership Iowa, Leadership Iowa University is a professional and personal development program for college student-leaders. Throughout their time in the program, participants are exposed to Iowa professionals by way of networking events, engaging round-table discussions, business visits and a mentorship with a professional who works in their desired field. Students not only learn about issues facing the state, but also opportunities they never knew existed in Iowa.

Leadership Iowa University includes a fast-paced weeklong session in Des Moines and surrounding areas. The 2020 program will take place August 9-13. Participants also have the opportunity to attend the Young Professionals of Iowa Conference in the fall and be assigned a mentor during their spring semester. Eligible applicants must attend an Iowa college/university and must have completed their freshman year to apply.

If you know of a college student who should be nominated to apply for the Leadership Iowa University program, please click on the "Nominate" button below. Click on the "Learn More" button to be directed to the Leadership Iowa University website.

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Business Horizons

Business Horizons is a unique, action-packed week of teamwork, learning, and fun for high school students across the state of Iowa. The program offers students the opportunity to learn about the world of business from the professionals and build upon their strengths through real world experiences.

During the week, students are grouped into teams, or “industries,” with the guidance of business professionals. They are challenged to engineer a product and work together to write a marketing and business plan, create a television infomercial, make financial decisions, and formally pitch their idea to a team of investors. Students also hear from expert speakers, network with young entrepreneurs, tour local businesses, and learn why Iowa is a great place to live and work. Students continue to benefit from Business Horizons well beyond in high school.

The hard decision has been made to cancel the 2020 program due to COVID-19. Unfortunately, what makes Business Horizons the ‘best week of the summer’ cannot be recreated online, so the ABI Foundation now looks ahead to the summer of 2021.

Do you know a high school student who should attend Business Horizons or would you like to learn more? Click on the buttons below to be directed to the Business Horizons website.

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