Centers & Institutes

Centers & Institutes

Drake’s centers and institutes focus the expertise of Drake’s faculty and students on issues of scholarly and societal importance. Work in the centers shows Drake at its best, applying insights and ideas from the academy in practical and productive ways with a substantive impact. For students, the centers provide the chance to understand key contemporary issues and take advantage of distinctive opportunities for personal and professional growth.

The Adult Literacy Center offers reading instruction to more than 100 adult students each year, with tutoring provided by trained volunteers from the Drake community and greater Des Moines.

The Agricultural Law Center supports courses, publications, conferences, research initiatives, and a certification program, focusing on legal issues involving food and agriculture.

Principal Center for Global Citizenship prepares students to function successfully in different cultural contexts through programs such as the Chinese Cultural Exchange Program, the Global Ambassador Program, and the Global and Public Health Concentration.

The Center for the Humanities encourages excellence in humanities research, teaching, and campus and public programming through speaker events, symposia, and grants.

The Center for Professional Studies in Drake’s Zimpleman College of Business sponsors programs such as the Business Leadership Certificate and the Certified Public Manager Program, as well as customized training programs to meet the needs of businesses and other organizations.

The Ron and Jane Olson Institute for Public Democracy is a hub for democratic discourse, dialogue, and action focused on renewing a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. We prioritize collaborative, innovative, and novel approaches to the project of sustaining multi-dimensional public participation and civic leadership.

The Constitutional Law Center at Drake’s School of Law fosters study of the roots, principles, and development of the U.S. Constitution. It is one of only four constitutional law programs established by the U.S. Congress and funded by the federal government.

The Harkin Institute for Public Policy & Citizen Engagement is dedicated to advancing dialogue about the issues that define our public life. 

Donald V. Adams Leadership Institute Connection is the defining characteristic of the Adams Leadership Institute—connecting students' in-class and out-of-class learning experiences and connecting the insights and experiences of our alumni and community leaders with the talents of current faculty, staff and students.

Drake Undergraduate Science Collaborative Institute promotes a culture of scholarship among students and faculty by providing support for research and by sponsoring the Drake Science Colloquium Lecture Series and the Drake University Conference on Undergraduate Research in the Sciences.

Entrepreneurial Centers support the young business people among Drake’s students through such programs as the major in Entrepreneurial Management and the minor in Entrepreneurship, and programs for regional business people, including business plan competitions and venture capital conferences.

Jay N. Darling Institute communicates Darling’s legacy by inspiring others to make the world a better place. The Institute models excellence and elevates our ability to create sustainable change through collaboration and action.

Legislative Practice Center combines classroom study and hands-on experiences to help students in Drake’s School of Law develop a deeper understanding of the legislative processes.

Middleton Center for Children’s Rights works to improve services to children and families involved in the legal system through the Children’s Rights Clinic, interdisciplinary training, and policy making.

National Rehabilitation Institute supports students interested in pursuing graduate study in Rehabilitation Administration and Rehabilitation Counseling, with funding through the U.S. Department of Education.

The Rolland and Mary Nelson Institute for Diplomacy and International Affairs provides in-depth international knowledge and experiences for students who wish to pursue careers in international public affairs. Initiatives include Global Pressing Issues grants, visiting diplomats, international simulations, an Undergraduate Conference on Global Affairs, and a student conference fund.

The Robert D. and Billie Ray Center is dedicated to improving civility and developing ethical leaders throughout the world. Built on the cornerstone of the Six Pillars of CHARACTER COUNTS! The Ray Center helps create strong, vibrant communities that value positive, healthy relationships and respectful behavior.