Monday, September 26th, the Create Columbus Commission is hosting their second, YP Government Day, a day-long series of meetings with local elected and civic leaders about issues and opportunities that will make our city more attractive to young professionals / millennials, thus contributing to its sustained success.

As Columbus continues to create its future, the community would be remised to leave young professionals out of the conversation. More importantly the city would be advantaged if young professionals were at the decision-making table.

For the past year, the Create Columbus Commission – the leading authority on the young professional experience in the area – has lead action and discussion around four core focus areas that help attract and retain young talent in the city:

  • Improved personal financial health and wellness
  • Decreased dependency on personal vehicles
  • Amplification of the urban pulse
  • Positioning young professionals as co-creators of the city

The conversations on Monday will cover the progress of the Commission thus far, and the plan for its work into 2017 and beyond.

Topics will include:

Prospective Student Loan Debt Incentive Program In Columbus

Prosperity is one of the Create Columbus forums, primarily focusing on tackling the national issue of student loan debt. In 2016, this forum has completed research suggesting that young professionals are much more likely to move to and remain in Columbus if the city offers a loan forgiveness program. Government Day serves as the official launch of Columbus’ first-ever student loan debt formal research study. This study, underwritten by White Castle, with additional support from the city of Columbus, will help determine incentive design and the optimal way to implement a program that attracts and retains talented millennials in the Columbus Region.

Recognizing YP Co-Creators in Columbus

Active engagement and intentional collaboration of young professionals sit at the core of the Create Columbus Commission (CCC). To that end, the CCC has recognized one exceptional YP leader each quarter of 2016. In conjunction with City Council, the CCC launched the Create Columbus Visionary Award to hold up young community leaders who exemplify leadership and co-creation. Suzy Bureau, Blake Compton, and Dr. Chenelle Jones were each recognized at a City Council meeting, on a dedicated section of the Create Columbus website, and in the press.

The YP Rider – Decreasing Dependency on Personal Vehicles

More than half of millennials would consider moving to another city if it offered a broader range of transportation options. Across the country, millennials are currently only buying 47.5 cars per 1000 people, compared to Baby Boomers at 63.5 cars per 1000 people. With less and less YP’s buying cars, they’re also not getting their driver’s license. Only 2/3 of 16-24 year-olds have their driver’s license, the lowest percentage in the last 50 years. The Create Columbus Commission is tasked with optimizing how to leverage current public transportation options and shape the experience of the YP Rider in Columbus. The commission knows it must have a pulse on future public transit options for the city, but it’s important to focus on how they can influence Columbus in the short-term.