This is great news for our hometowns, but there is a caveat. Despite these high levels of engagement, only 25% of students said they felt they played a role in their community. These students are involved. They want to play a role in shaping their community. It is essential that the adults in their life provide them with a place at the table.
At the Nebraska Community Foundation, our number one community economic development priority is attracting people. We are proud of the progress made through philanthropy in hundreds of NCF’s hometowns to retain those who are already part of the community with us.
Jeff Yost, guest column September 2021 – page 2
and attract newcomers who want to be in community with us. The Nebraska Community Foundation 2021 Youth Survey showed us that keeping students in the places that raised them may be even more achievable than we once thought.
In the 21st century economy, people can choose to live and work almost anywhere, as long as they have direct access to a computer and a stable internet connection. For this reason, many experts say places like Greater Nebraska are in the midst of a golden opportunity to attract young people who will allow our rural communities to grow and prosper.
The coronavirus pandemic resulted in the largest remote working experience in history and proved that there is a lot of work that can be done successfully just about anywhere in the world. It could have a huge impact on our people attraction efforts. Nebraskans have long known that local quality of life offerings can rival those of any other state. What if thousands of jobs can now be done from anywhere in the world. . . why not here in Nebraska?