The Southland Young Professional Summit in Atlanta, Georgia from June 9th-11th was full of excitement, fun and problem-solving. Five representatives from District 7710, Jheanne Schack (e-Club), Catherine Doyle (Raleigh Midtown), Jason Potts (North Raleigh), Marie Howard (Kerr Tar Region) and Joyce Mckinney (Southwest Durham) attended the summit. Young Rotarians and Rotaractors, from ages 25 to 45 from zones 33 and 34 came together to figure out what the problems and solutions are to recruiting and maintaining young professionals (YPs) in Rotary.
The summit was energetic and a place where ideas and action were catalyzed for change. We came away knowing that YPs don’t want to be sold something but want to buy into ideas and something bigger themselves. We found that the ideal way to get more YPs involved in Rotary is the same way we recruitment new members in general. The majority of YPs join for professional development and for community service, but stay in Rotary because of the fellowship and the fun they have in being a part of their community and global organization that changes the world.
As a district, we decided to tackle YPs involvement by continuing and supporting our district’s YP committee, the New Generations Committee, that engages in quarterly socials and community service. In addition, we are planning a professional development workshop on topics that appeal to young professionals such as public speaking, communication, and networking. The summit was an experience that changed my perspective on Rotary and will be an experience I will never forget.