Queer Influencer Program

The Queer Influencer program is a new initiative of Iowa Safe Schools, designed to build the LGBTQ leaders of tomorrow. Applications are open to any student entering their junior (11th) or senior (12th) year in high school. This exclusive program provides leadership development opportunities, and will motivate and inspire students to become influencers in their community through active engagement and problem solving.

Explore the Queer Influencer program’s mission, objectives, benefits, and application details below!


The mission of the Queer Influencer program is to inspire the next generation of LGBTQ leaders by engaging students with opportunities to enhance confidence, health, innovation, problem solving, and engagement in their communities.


LGBTQ students are the leaders of tomorrow! Iowa Safe Schools is excited to offer this program as a stepping-stone for youth to become active participants in their communities and foster change. Through hands-on activities and experiential mentoring, students will gain a better understanding and motivation to invest in their future as leaders and influencers.


This exclusive 10-week program will be held every Saturday at the Iowa Safe Schools office (unless advance notification is given) from August 29, 2020 through October 31, 2020. At the end of 10 weeks, students who graduate from the Queer Influencer program will be able to:


Saturday, August 15th – Welcome Session Saturday, August 22nd Saturday, August 29th Saturday, September 5th Saturday, September 12th Saturday, September 19th Saturday, September 26th Saturday, October 3rd Saturday, October 10th – Capstone Presentations Friday, October 16th – Spirit Awards & Graduation ***Sessions in bold are REQUIRED to be eligible for admittance into the Queer Influencers program***


Benefits of the Queer Influencer program include:

  • 1 of 15 highly competitive spots in the program
  • 1 Queer Influencer backpack
  • 1 Queer Influencer notebook
  • 1:1 Resume development
  • A finished portfolio
  • Exclusive mentoring opportunities
  • …and much more!

Who Should Apply?

LGBTQ or Allied students are eligible to apply if they meet the following requirements:

  • Students must be entering their Junior or Senior year of high school (11th-12th grade)
  • Excited to influence their community and create positive change
  • Sincerely interested in learning leadership skills and professionalism in networking
  • Commitment to attendance and completion of the program
  • Enthusiastic about forming connections with business and non-profit leaders in Iowa

Application Details

  • The Queer Influencer program is tuition-free, and free to submit an application
  • Applications will be accepted until 8:00AM on May 29th, 2020
  • Applications must be complete and submitted with appropriate signatures and all supplemental materials to be considered
  • Acceptance letters will be sent via email by June 9th, 2020. Cohorts are limited to 15 applicants per program
  • There is a $25 acceptance fee due at the welcome session on August 29th, 2020 if a student is accepted to the program. If the acceptance fee is a barrier to a student accepting a seat in the cohort, please email the Program Directors to request a scholarship application.

Attendance & Communication Policy

  • Applying students must be able to commit to all the class dates and stay for the entire session, and should discuss transportation with their parent/guardian before submitting an application
  • All correspondence throughout the Queer Influencer program will be given through email. It is expected that students who are accepted check their email often and respond promptly to the Program Directors
  • Accepted students will miss no more than two sessions to eligible for graduation from the program. Any missed sessions must be made up by independent study projects that are pre-approved by the Queer Influencer Program Directors
  • The welcome session, capstone, and graduation ceremony are required sessions. Students unable to attend any of these three sessions are asked not to submit an application to the program
  • If a student needs to miss a session, one-week written notice must be given to the Queer Influencer Program Directors
  • Unless advanced notice, all sessions will be held at the Iowa Safe Schools office in Des Moines

Make-Up Policy

  • As soon as you are aware that you will miss a session, please send written notice to the Queer Influencer Program Directors. Your email should include: the date you will be missing and what you would like to complete for a make-up
  • Make-up projects must be completed and submitted to the Directors within two weeks of the missed session

Download the application here!

Remember, all materials including Letters of Recommendation must be submitted by May 29th, 2020 at 8:00AM. Any applications submitted after this time or that do not have all materials will not be considered for the program. Letters of Recommendation can be filled out here: If you have any questions about the application, please email Kaylyn Fisher, Queer Influencer Program Director.