Academic Courses

Career Leadership Academy logo

Course Description

Career Leadership Academy, now celebrating its tenth year at University of Iowa, is a one-of-a-kind academic program that stands out for its innovative approach to leadership and career preparation.  Over 1000 UI students have participated in this two-part course series, earning academic credit, developing an edge as leaders and connecting with professionals in their career field.   

  • I think the most valuable part of CLA was learning about what employers want and what they look for, along with taking steps to get myself on the career ladder. Prior to the start of this course I hadn't thought much about what I wanted to do and what I was going to do after I graduate, but this course has made me take steps in thinking and actually doing in the future. - Spring 2017 student
  • The most impactful thing for me was what I learned about myself. I found out that I have the strengths necessary to be a great leader and I had never really realized that before. That improved my confidence for sure. - Fall 2016 student 

CLA is more than a class.  As a CLA student, you will build relationships and develop key skills essential to starting your career.  Opportunities to interact with employers include speaking engagements, networking events, panels, mock interviews, service projects, and professional feedback on your presentation skills.


Career Leadership Academy Part 1: Leadership in Practice

MyUI Course Name: LS:2002  Career Leadership Academy Part 1

Career Leadership Academy Part 1: Leadership in Practice (LS:2002) – is the first course in the Career Leadership Academy series. It will fulfill requirements for the Enterprise Leadership major, the Bachelor of Liberal Studies program and the Certificate in Leadership Studies. The course covers leadership history and concepts, goal setting, personal values and ethics, leadership skills, and career development information. Students will learn about group dynamics and team-building, giving and receiving feedback, understanding difference, preparing and delivering presentations, communication and listening, problem solving, and dealing with difficult people. The purpose of this course is to increase students’ understanding of themselves and others. Students will build skills and reflect on individual interests, abilities, and values in relation to leadership and career development. Students will apply what they learn in class to the real world through experiential learning activities including a Strengths-based teams workshop, employer interactions, and a group presentation project.

Career Leadership Academy Part 2: Leadership in Action

MyUI Course Name:  LS:3002 Career Leadership Academy Part 2

Career Leadership Academy Part 2: Leadership in Action (LS:3002) – is the final course in the Career Leadership Academy series. It also counts towards the Certificate in Leadership Studies, the Enterprise Leadership Major, and the Tippie College of Business’s Research, Internship, Study Abroad and Experiential Learning graduation requirement. The purpose of this course is to increase students’ understanding of how to interact and work with others as effective team members and engaged citizens. The semester-length course covers transferable skills, collaboration, conflict resolution, motivation and delegation, interviewing, understanding power, networking, and working on a team with various stakeholders. Students will also learn about professionalism and office communication, effectively using LinkedIn, marketing their skills, dining etiquette, negotiating salaries, understanding benefits, realistic expectations in the world of work, and building a career. Students have the opportunity to develop those skills and apply what they have learned in CLA. Students will accomplish this by conducting a service project with a community partner of their choosing. This project work is intended to connect what students learned about themselves in CLA Part 1 to community needs and the agencies that address those needs.