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Young Professionals Connection, an initiative of the Greater Des Moines Partnership, continues to closely monitor the changing developments of the COVID-19 pandemic. Following local, state and federal health guidelines, YPC-hosted events have been transitioned to virtual events, postponed or canceled during this time. Select an individual event below to learn more.

Signature Events

Central Iowa Young Professionals (YP) of the Year Awards

The Central Iowa Young Professionals of the Year awards are an annual event presented by YPC and Juice and sponsored by Bankers Trust. The awards recognize young professionals who have dedicated their past year to increasing the livelihood of the Greater Des Moines (DSM) community in various ways. Award categories include:

YPC Amy Jennings YP Impact Award

This award is presented to a young professional who has made a significant impact on the young professional community and showcased a dedication to creating a vibrant community that attracts and retains YPs.

YPC Ashley Okland YP Community Service Award

The Ashley Okland YP Community Service Award is given to a young professional who exemplifies the volunteerism and spirit of late Young Professionals Connection (YPC) board member Ashley Okland in giving of their time, talents and other resources to community organizations. The award is open to any young professional younger than 36 in Des Moines.

Juice YP of the Year

This award recognizes a young professional who has made significant contributions for civic, charitable, entertainment or quality of life in Des Moines. The award is open to any young professional younger than 36 in Des Moines.

DSM Creative of the Year

The creative award goes to the person pushing creativity in their field, whether it be art, graphic design, music, food styling, interior design, architecture or another area of work or study. This person uses their creative ideas to spur changes within the workplace or immediate community and within the region. The Creative of the Year is someone who takes risk, stays committed to their ideas even if they are different and is committed to making Des Moines a desirable place to live.

YPC Gala

Each year YPC celebrates another year of success. During the YPC Annual Gala, young professionals and business leaders will join together to reflect, connect and further engage with Des Moines.

This formal gala features a networking hour, three-course dinner, YPC review and preview, presentation, and live entertainment.

"This event isn’t only a great opportunity to celebrate what YPC has done in the past 16 years, it is an opportunity to look to the future and poise the organization and Des Moines for future success."

 -Abby Rodewald
2017 YPC President

Sips, Samples and Sights

YPC is excited to host its annual Sips, Samples and Sights tour. Attendees will experience Downtown Des Moines (DSM) through a one-of-a-kind walking tour guided by the Iowa Architectural Foundation. During stops along the tour, attendees will enjoy free samplings of unique foods and eclectic wine and beer in addition to networking with 60+ like-minded young professionals. This event continues to be one of the highest-rated events YPC provides to members.

Kick-Off Party

YPC also hosts an annual Kick-Off Party to jumpstart the year. YPC celebrates the previous year and looks forward to the future as an organization. If you're new to YPC, this event is a great opportunity to learn about the individual committees and the various goals that YPC has for the year. You will also have the opportunity to meet the incoming Board.

Prizes and giveaways! We have many prizes to give away during the event, so keep an eye on the YPC Twitter account or Facebook page for a sneak peek at what's in store.

One Des Moines

YPC has a new event, One Des Moines, where area nonprofits, young professionals and community members at large unite for a city-wide day of service. One Des Moines introduces young professionals and community members to a number of Des Moines nonprofits and engages participants in different service activities around the metro.

“One Des Moines is an opportunity to share in the successes of local nonprofits and a premier chance for young professionals to find their passions to give back to the city that gives so much to them.”

 -Abby Rodewald
2017 YPC President

YPC also views this event as an opportunity to educate employees and employers on the mutual value of community engagement, particularly when supported by volunteer time off benefits. More details about the event will be announced in coming months.

Volunteer Fair

The YPC Volunteer Fair connects Des Moines residents of all ages and interests with more than 70 nonprofit organizations that are actively seeking volunteers and support. Attendees will have the opportunity to speak with a diverse selection of organizations on ways to get involved. Participants can also listen to breakout sessions, providing more insight on ways to get involved. No registration is necessary, and the YPC Volunteer Fair is FREE to attend! Mark your calendars, and get ready to get involved!

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