The Principal Community Scholars Program is a collaboration between Principal and Campus Compact that supports the leadership development of undergraduate students seeking a business or business-related degree. Students are selected through a competitive process to receive a $1,000 scholarship and complete a civic leadership curriculum and a community-based experiential learning project. The curriculum and project help students develop critical skills for their careers.
In its inaugural year in the spring of 2017, the program was piloted in partnership between Iowa and California Campus Compacts. 20 students were selected and reported improved student leadership skills, confidence, and efficacy to help them to see themselves as community leaders. 90% of scholars felt they were more aware of how to help their community and 95% felt they were more likely to create positive change in their community. The selected students also accomplished successful projects to address a community priority, including STEM research, establishing a food pantry, social entrepreneurship ventures, and sustainability initiatives among other things. We were delighted by the projects students completed and invite you to view reflection videos they created.
In the second year of the program, we are expanding and focusing by allowing students to apply from Campus Compact member institutions in selected Midwest states (IA, MN, MO, NE, SD, WI, and IL) and students attending minority-serving Campus Compact member institutions in other parts of the country. Students must be majoring in business or a related field (see the application for a full list) and must be nominated by a faculty or staff member from their institution who is willing to serve as an advisor on their project. The selection process will prioritize supporting students from diverse backgrounds and those with fewer resources to finance their education.
The program is sponsored by Principal, a global financial services company based in Des Moines, Iowa with locations throughout the United States and around the world. Principal is focused on investing in communities and encourages employees to get involved.