Get Involved


Sponsor a High School Ambassador: The Iowa HOBY Leadership Seminar operates on a cash budget of about $35,000. Almost two-thirds of these funds come from community organizations, small businesses, and corporations who believe in HOBY’s mission. Please consider including HOBY in your budget. Iowa HOBY offers two giving levels to sponsor a high school student’s attendance at the leadership seminar:

  • Gold Ambassador Sponsor: $395
    This amount supports the HOBY organization and also helps ensure additional students have the opportunity to attend Iowa HOBY!
  • Silver Ambassador Sponsor: $225
    The amount helps sponsor the local seminar and covers costs of items such as room/board, training materials, and activities for the three-day leadership seminar.

Gift in Kind: In addition to financial support, the seminar relies on “Gift in Kind” donations to offset seminar expenses. Gift-in-kind items range from snacks to printing. We can put everything to good use. Our greatest needs are postage, program printing, snack foods, office supplies, and commemorative seminar pins.

In Your Community

Community Leadership Workshop (CLeW): CLeWs are essentially one-day HOBY seminars. In general, only one sophomore student attends the HOBY leadership seminar from their high school. In contrast, CLeWs typically allow for 5-15 students from approximately 10 high schools in a geographic area to experience HOBY. CLeWs consist of panel discussions, keynote presentations, and leadership, teambuilding, or volunteer exercises. A community organization can work with a selected school to host a CLeW. HOBY Alumni from the community are a great resource to utilize when planning a CLeW. (Approximate time requirement is 20 hours of planning and one day for the workshop.)

Alumni: Past Ambassadors can provide the program for meetings. The Leadership for Service program introduced at the Leadership Seminars and CLEWs focuses on volunteerism. Each HOBY ambassador is challenged to complete 100 hours of community service in the year following the HOBY seminar. These students are energized, informed participants, ready to work on almost any community improvement project. (Time requirement depends on project.)

Seminar Planning Team

Committee Directors: The HOBY seminar is a 100% volunteer effort. Our planning committee consists of 10 to 20 adults. Committee Directors fulfill a variety of roles: student recruitment, program development, fundraising, facilities, and publicity. Jobs come in all shapes and sizes. Committee members are spread throughout the state of Iowa. We meet in person approximately every month from September through mid-May.

Facilitator: During the three-day seminar, the Ambassadors are divided into small groups. Each group will have approximately 10 Ambassadors. An adult facilitator is assigned to each group. The facilitators participate in all of the seminar activities with the Ambassadors. There are several designated “small group discussion” times after different elements of the program. This allows the large group to be broken down into these small groups. The facilitator is responsible for leading these small groups. This is the most intensive, one-on-one position with HOBY Ambassadors. It does require attending the entire seminar weekend. Most Ambassadors form a close tie with their small group’s facilitator and fellow Ambassadors. Often, these connections lead to long-lasting friendships and future working relationships. Time Requirement includes a pre-seminar facilitator training workshop and full-time participation during the three-day leadership seminar.

Panelist: During the seminar, the Ambassadors participate in a variety of activities. One of the key elements of a HOBY program is the panel discussion. There are five panels held during the seminar. Their topics include: education, media, volunteerism, entrepreneurship, and the future of our state. The panels consist of 3-4 panel members. Each panelist gives a 3-5 minute introduction to themselves and their background on the topic. The remainder of the hour is filled with a question and answer session with the Ambassadors. The Ambassadors follow the hour-long panel session with a half-hour, in-depth discussion within their small groups and ask specific questions to the panelist.

Other Program Elements: Other program elements include keynote presentations, team building exercises, goal setting sessions, volunteer project planning sessions, and some time for fun too. The seminar is a very full three days. If you, or someone you know, would like to be involved in the program development or presentations, the planning committee is always looking for new ideas. Approximate time requirement is a two hour panel session during seminar.

Iowa HOBY Corporate Board

The Iowa HOBY Corporate Board is always looking for enthusiastic volunteers. This board oversees HOBY activities in Iowa. Time Requirement is 1 conference call per month (typically the second Sunday of the month) and one in person meeting in August.

The Next Step

Contact the Iowa HOBY Leadership Seminar Chair if you or your organization is interested in participating or learning more about any of the opportunities described on this page.