Who should attend?

The Heartland Economic Development Course (HEDC) is designed to serve the needs of both full-time practitioners and people in ancillary positions, i.e., representatives of public, civic, and private sectors. Participation in the course offers a rare opportunity to exchange ideas and become familiar with economic development programs and activities. Participants have included representatives from federal, state, regional and local planning and development agencies, financial institutions, public utilities, chambers of commerce, and local, state, regional economic development organizations and volunteers.

The course uses a variety of training methods and formats to cover critical economic development topics. Also featured is the Heartland One to One Professional Consultation Program. Participants can pre-schedule a one to one meeting with our faculty or "seasoned" Board members throughout the course and find answers to specific challenges.

Prospective participants should register as early as possible. Upon satisfactory completion of the course, participants receive a course certificate and continue their training with the International Economic Development Council's professional development series, or University of Oklahoma’s Economic Development Institute.

What is the course fee?

Registration for the 2024 Course is $995 for members of the Kansas Economic Development Alliance, Professional Developers of Iowa, Missouri Economic Development Council, Nebraska Economic Developers Association, Oklahoma Economic Development Association and professional developers in South Dakota, and $1,095 for non-members. The fee includes full breakfast Tuesday through Friday, lunch Tuesday through Thursday, the reception on Monday evening, dinner on Tuesday, and dinner on Wednesday. Fees do not include the cost of lodging or alcoholic beverages.

HEDC Registration Closes March 25, 2024​ or when the course is at capacity. You can be placed on a waiting list in the event of a cancelation.

What about accommodations?

The Adams Pointe Conference Center is connected to Courtyard by Marriott. HEDC has arranged a special rate for course attendees of $129.00 plus tax per night. Click here to book at the Heartland Course rate. The last day to book at this rate is April 2, 2024. If the room block is full, there are several other hotels in the area.

Are meals provided?

Yes, several meals and breaks are included in the course fee (offsite meal menus & locations are not yet confirmed):

  • Monday evening: Welcome reception with hearty appetizers
  • Tuesday: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner & Break Service. Tuesday evening is the Heartland Networking Fiesta at the neighboring Adams Pointe Golf Course clubhouse 
  • Wednesday: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner & Break Service. Wednesday afternoon includes a tour of the area which concludes with a KC BBQ Dinner
  • Thursday: Breakfast, Lunch & Break Service. Thursday night is dinner on your own - dine with your state cohorts!
  • Friday: Breakfast & Break Service 

Please note the following: An email addressing specific dietary restrictions will be sent out prior to the course.  The hotel is experienced in accommodating dietary needs.  Please hold off on sharing needs until the Chef is ready - we will let you know well in advance.

What is the dress code?

Casual. The Conference Center can be chilly and the weather unpredictable, we recommend layers.

Are there refunds?
  • Registration may be canceled by March 25, 2024 for a full refund. Cancellations received by April 8, 2024 will be refunded at only 50% of the course fee. on or after April 8, 2024, no refunds will be issued.
  • Any registered attendee who does not submit a cancellation and does not attend the course is required to pay their balance in full.
  • Substitutions are welcome with prior notification.
When do classes begin?

The course starts promptly at 8:00 a.m. on each day of the course. Ample breaks are provided throughout the day.

How will I receive course materials?

Agendas, presentation slide decks, handouts, and other resources and information will be uploaded to a shared webpage in the weeks prior to the course. Participants will also receive an IEDC Introduction to Economic Development Manual as supplemental reading upon course check-in. Students are welcome to bring their laptop or tablet to the sessions for note taking, etc. Please try to refrain from checking emails during faculty presentations.

Does the Conference Center have Wi-Fi?

Yes, the Conference Center has Wi-Fi available for course attendees.

What if I have to miss a session?

Heartland staff will work with you to accommodate some conflicts with your schedule. Please contact James Hoelscher prior to the session to make necessary arrangements.

What is the difference between a Basic Economic Development Course and a conference?

IEDC certification requires that Basic Economic Development Course participants attend all training sessions and activities. Conferences offer opt-in and opt-out sessions based on topics of interest to participants. Heartland is a Basic Economic Development Course - not a conference.

Do I receive a certificate of course completion?

Yes, upon satisfactory completion of the course, participants will receive a course certificate. Many participants move on to additional training from the International Economic Development Council, or the University of Oklahoma’s Economic Development Institute. The Heartland Course fulfills a prerequisite to sit for the CEcD exam.