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Intentional programming shapes the learning experiences of the Public Democracy Scholars and other Drake students with an interest in politics, community leadership, public service, law, policy, or social change.

Civic Leadership Academy for High School Students

Join us on July 8 - 10, 2024, as we host the Civic Leadership Academy - an exclusive opportunity for high school juniors to learn from scholars, policymakers, and thought leaders.

The Academy will immerse 25 select high school juniors in an intensive and rewarding leadership development program that will give students the skills to stand out as student leaders. Interested students need to apply through a written or video essay.

There is no cost to students to attend; meals, lodging, and fun evening activities will be provided. Students will be responsible for their own transportation to and from the Drake University campus in Des Moines, Iowa.

Submit your written or video essay by March 31, 2024. With any questions, email Hilary at

July 8-10, 2024 | Des Moines, Iowa | Drake University 

Click here to apply!



National Civility Summit for Local Government: Civility and Effective Leadership

Be the leader your community needs during divisive and difficult times. 

Click here to watch the full program.



Event Agenda: 

This event is hosted by: 




Ron and Jane Olson Institute for Public Democracy Summer Institute

Beginning in the summer of 2024, the Ron and Jane Olson Institute for Public Democracy will convene an intensive democracy-in-action experience focused on a contemporary issue capturing the public’s imagination. Public Democracy Scholars will work with faculty and staff from within the Institute to plan, develop, and implement this signature event (contributing to their Democratic Practice hours). These summer institutes, “Talking Politics, Practicing Democracy,” bring together civic leaders, policymakers, journalists, scientists, activists, scholars, and citizens. The summer institute will also include leadership training for high school students who will actively engage in the institute with summit participants.

University Calendar 
University News
February 23, 2024