Academic Partnerships and Scholarships

The IAAPA Foundation supports students who are pursuing a career in the attractions industry through the IAAPA Foundation Scholarship Fund. The IAAPA Foundation is currently providing scholarships for selected students at the University of Central Florida's Rosen College of Hospitality Management who are following the Theme Parks and Attractions Track. Apply at

The Foundation recently partnered with the San Diego State University's School of Hospitality & Tourism Management, providing funds for students and faculty to attend IAAPA Attractions Expo in Orlando.

If your school would like to partner with the IAAPA Foundation, please contact us at

Scholarship Winners for 2017-2018


(From left to right) Frank Hamedl, Ashley Kaczor, Jarret Geist

Future Leaders

In coordination with our partner colleges and universities the IAAPA Foundation designates qualified students as "Future Leaders" for the attractions industry. These students are connected to the IAAPA Foundation for mentoring opportunities, IAAPA membership, and receive complimentary registration to IAAPA Expos and educational programs for as long as they remain full time students.

Meet our Future Leaders from Rosen College:

Frank Hamedl
Fishkill, New York

   Ashley Kaczor
Lake Worth, Florida
 Matthew Temmer    Jarret Geist
 Matthew Temmer
Land O'Lakes, Florida

 Jarret Geist
Allentown, Pennsylvania
 Bridget Frost    
 Bridget Frost
Orlando, Florida 

Educators Roundtable

The Educators Roundtable is held annually at IAAPA Attractions Expo in November and brings together educators and industry professionals. Plans for expansion are underway—this year a professor from Rosen College will spend a semester at Silver Dollar City as a part of the program. He'll gain further working knowledge of the industry to bring to his students. To find out more, contact the IAAPA Foundation at

JA Worldwide

JA Worldwide (Junior Achievement) is a global nonprofit youth organization serving more than 10 million students in more than 100 countries. It’s mission is to inspire and prepare young people to succeed in a global economy. JA has regional operating centers in the Americans, Asia Pacific, Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa.

Parks and attractions provide a compelling opportunity for youth to experience and understand many aspects of global business through connection to the industry. The excitement and appeal of attractions and the turnkey work readiness and entrepreneurship curriculum of JA create a powerful vehicle for our partnership together to inspire and prepare young people to be work-ready, career-minded, and engaged global citizens.

JA students at IAAPA Attractions Expo (IAE) 2017.

In 2017, the IAAPA Foundation and JA Worldwide created the Business of Fun contest, which tasked students with developing an innovative idea for the attractions industry. The winner received a four-day trip to IAAPA Attractions Expo in Orlando, Florida. Sylvia Chong, a 17-year-old from Singapore, won the contest in 2017 for her idea "A Token for a Queue." She proposed using personalized tokens to hold guests' spots in a ride's queue rather than standing in line themselves. Read the highlights from Sylvia's trip here

Learn more about JA Worldwide at

JA and Foundation
From left to right: Brandi Conforti of JA Worldwide, 2017 Business of Fun contest winner Sylvia Chong, Herschend Family Entertainment COO Jane Cooper, and Carolyn Bassett of JA Worldwide.