Hard to beat for visionary leadership
As an active member of the Tippie student body, Kira Price has become the kind of leader she always strived to be. She’s also learned that her will to succeed comes from within.
“It’s the work you’re willing to put in, your self-motivation and drive, that will get you where you want to go,” she explains.
It was that same intrinsic determination that that helped bring Kira to the Tippie campus in the first place—even when the odds were stacked against her.
From first-generation to Hawkinson
Kira pretty much always knew she wanted to study business—she excelled at math in high school and enjoyed working with numbers. But as a first-generation college student from a single-parent family, this quant-savvy student was aware that if she didn’t find a way to fund her own college tuition, there might not be a way forward at all.
“I wanted to continue my education as far as I could take it. The University of Iowa offered me a full-ride scholarship, so that was a huge factor in choosing to come here.”
Since arriving on campus, Kira’s seen nothing but success. She chose to major in both finance and accounting and was accepted into the prestigious Hawkinson Institute, an undergraduate investment banking program that prepares high-potential students for positions in finance.
“I focused on finance because I love looking at trends and patterns, analyzing numbers, and coming up with solutions to problems that maximize profitability.”
Through the Hawkinson Institute, she landed a summer internship at Midwest Growth Partners in Des Moines in a pre-financial analyst role. The position was a perfect fit, giving her the opportunity to analyze different companies to determine whether or not they’d be a good investment for her organization.
Preparing to lead
While her internship will prepare her for a potential career in investment banking, Kira has her sights set on a management position in the future.
“I’m not just one of those people who likes to sit down and get my part done,” she says, “I like to make sure that everyone’s staying on track and working towards a goal.”
To develop her leadership skills, Kira is complementing her double major with a Leadership Studies Certificate. She’s also vice president of the Multicultural Business Student Association (MSBA) and vice president of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) for Delta Sigma Pi, Tippie’s coed business student fraternity.
“I’m the first person to hold this DEI position,” she explains, “so I had to make it my own. I knew that before we could focus on recruitment, we had to increase the cultural intelligence and awareness of those within my fraternity.”
To do so, she introduced cultural conversations into Delta Sigma Pi. Discussion topics included implicit bias, being yourself in the workplace, and workplace discrimination—areas that had not been addressed by the previous government.
“We can’t increase the diversity of our members until we can learn about and appreciate diversity itself,” she says. “These kinds of problems won’t go away until we can change peoples’ minds and hearts.”
Kira’s keys to success
With unstoppable positivity, vision, and drive, Kira has made her time as a Tippie student matter. She also gives credit to the support she’s gotten along the way.
This is truly an environment where the people around you see what you’re doing, they want you to succeed, and they’re happy for you when you get things done.”
And for those coming to Iowa City from a smaller community, like her hometown of Clinton, she advises: “It might seem scary to be all on your own and have to figure it out for yourself in a new environment. But if you put yourself out there and give the effort, it’s an amazing experience and helps you develop your character and who you are as a person.”
Whether you find her studying in the BizHub or lunching at her favorite downtown restaurant, Formosa, Kira now surrounds herself with the “beautiful souls” she’s found at the University of Iowa.
“People who are super genuine and smart and open and willing to tolerate and understand and accept so many things—these are the beautiful souls,” she explains, “and I’ve found more of them here than anywhere else.”