There’s been a lot of TALK about ‘Brain Gain’ in rural Minnesota. The community of Worthington, MN, and AgStar have teamed up to DO something about it!
As reported by Daily Globe reporter, Alex Purdy:
The AgStar Fund for Rural America awarded a $1,000 grant Thursday to the “Brain Gain” effort in Worthington.
What is ‘Brain Gain’? Traditionally, it’s the term that describes gain of human capital from the migration of highly skilled individuals. Minnesota’s ‘Brain Gain’ has been a result of 30 or 40 year olds either returning to their home community to care for an aging parent, escape the rat race of urban life and/or find a more suitable environment for raising their child(ren). Check out our February 2013 blog on ‘1099er’s economy’ by Ben Winchester and Bruce Schwartau, University of Minnesota Extension Researchers.
This gain has come to be with little or no effort on the part of the community they are returning to. Worthington is one of many communities that has recognized this movement and has taken steps to embrace and capitalize on it. By marketing our rural communities as desirable to these highly skilled newcomers, we have new collateral to catch the attention of our youth.
The Daily Globe goes on to report:
“There is a huge shortage of young people going into trades like plumbing and electrical work,” said Cheryl Avenel-Navara, who wrote the grant. “With this grant, we can provide more opportunities for people to pursue more of those types of jobs.”
Avenel-Navara said attracting young people to the area starts with area businesses.
“We believe that the involvement of area businesses with our students is a great way to encourage them to go on to look at careers and pursue careers in their own community,” Avenel-Navara said.
“For AgStar, the Brain Gain program fits so well with our mission of enhancing life and agriculture in rural America,” explained Scott Gundermann, home mortgage specialist for AgStar. “To keep our rural communities thriving, it’s imperative we retain and attract youth to ensure future success.”
Darlene Macklin, executive director of the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce, helped accept the award on behalf of the Chamber.
“We are very fortunate to have members on our committee that are all very willing to do what’s good for our students,” Macklin said.
Advanced Ag, Bioscience, IT Security… all emerging career opportunities within rural Minnesota that we need our youth to fill quickly. Kudos to Worthington community leaders and AgStar for their forward thinking and initiative! Way to get things done.MVTV Wireless Your Broadband Internet Provider ‘Connecting Rural Minnesota’