Application Process

Applications for the 2019 Emerge Iowa training are now closed. Stay tuned for updates on future training opportunities!

Please read through all of the information below in its entirety. It is important to have a complete understanding of the application process and training program before you apply.

We encourage you to begin your application well in advance of the closing date due to the detailed nature of the application.

Who Should Apply?

Emerge Iowa seeks Democratic women who are committed to effective political leadership and are interested in running for elective office and who have:

  • Evidence of political leadership experience or potential, and meaningful involvement in the workplace or community;
  • Interest in running for political office;
  • Ability and desire to build effective networks;
  • Ability to articulate a personal political vision;
  • Commitment to full participation and the attendance requirements of the training.
  • Applicants must be women who are Democrats and who reside in the state of Iowa.

Emerge Iowa will select 25 women from across the state who meet the above criteria and who we believe have the potential to be political leaders.

Emerge embraces diversity and encourages applications from all women regardless of age, race, color, national or ethnic origin, marital status, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, socio-economic status or physical ability. Our mission to build the bench of Democratic women ready to run for office acknowledges both systemic and historic barriers to running for office as well as the barriers women impose on themselves.

To be considered for the 2019 Emerge Iowa training program, applicants must complete a written application by December 21, 2018.

Time Commitment

The success of the Emerge Iowa program depends upon commitment to the program’s entire schedule by each participant. Over the six-month period, approximately 70 program hours are scheduled. Some time outside of regularly scheduled trainings will be necessary for homework and training preparation. While emergencies sometimes arise, attendance at the first day of training is mandatory and absence for any reason will result in a deferral to the following year. Please review the schedule below to ensure your availability to attend every training day.

2019 Training Dates

Locations subject to change

January 26 and 27 – Des Moines

Session 1: Public Speaking, Campaign 101: Strategy, Timeline and Planning

February 23 and 24 – Des Moines

Session 2: Cultural Competency, Media and Messaging

March 9 – Ames

Session 3: Networking, Fundraising

March 27 –Des Moines

Legislative Shadow Day at the Capitol

April 27 – Iowa City

Session 4: Field Operations

May 18 – Fort Dodge

Session 5: Labor, Endorsements, Digital

June 1 – Des Moines

Session 6: Ethical Leadership and Graduation


Emerge Iowa will review completed written applications and select finalists for in-person interviews. Finalists will be invited to attend an interview with the selection committee.

A non-refundable application fee of $20 is required and must be submitted along with a completed application. The application fee can be paid here or by mail with a check payable to Emerge Iowa, P.O. Box 3868, Urbandale, Iowa 50323.


Tuition for the six-month program is $750. Payment plans and scholarships are available and Emerge Iowa will assist program members with fundraising their tuition if needed. Financial need should not be a barrier to applying to the program.

The six-month program does take place in various parts of the state one Saturday each month, but travel and overnight accommodations may be necessary depending on your proximity to training. Emerge Iowa will endeavor to assist with supporter housing when needed, but travel costs are not covered by the program.

If financial concerns are holding you back from completing your application, please reach out to Financial need should not be a barrier to applying to the program.