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Why You Should Consider Joining the Young Professionals Connection Board

Young Professionals Connection (YPC)

September 13, 2018

Looking back, I was far from who I am today because of Young Professionals Connection (YPC).

Sure, I may have built a network elsewhere or been given other opportunities, but being introduced to YPC, growing and learning alongside my peers, and leading that group into the future has truly taught me to be a better leader.

It was these experiences that have guided my career to where it is today and will continue to push me further in my work and life.

YPC offers opportunity

As a YPC board member for five years, I met thought leaders, role models, CEOs, kindred spirits and Greater Des Moines’ (DSM’s) best doers. I was introduced to unfamiliar missions, given a platform and a hand to help. I’ve sipped lots of coffee across the table from inspirational individuals and could nearly fill a shoebox with the amount of business cards I’ve amassed. YPC gives you opportunities few others can.

I now sit on boards including the Great Outdoors Foundation, the Emerging Leaders Collaborative and several committees dealing with transportation in our region. I was introduced to these organizations through my work with YPC. I was able to speak freely about my thoughts on public transportation as a board member and built a reputation as an energized young leader with whom community stakeholders could lean on for a balanced and reliable millennial perspective.

YPC impact

What makes YPC stand out is our mission to attract and retain young talent in DSM. Like many other boards, the work of YPC board members include networking and promotion, member engagement, event planning, leading meetings and committees, communicating with leaders and seeking out sponsors. But what truly unifies us is our single mission to make DSM a place where people want to work and live.

The difference here is that YPC is a learning ground. Typical board members start with very little knowledge of how to do these things, and YPC teaches one how to be successful in these fields. With this knowledge, board members are able to find great success and opportunities upon “graduation.”

Don’t get me wrong, my success didn’t happen overnight, and nothing was a hand out. YPC gives you opportunities. It takes a motivated individual to make the most of them. A lot is asked of as a YPC board member, and the amount of work this board does I would put up against any other in the region.

So, if you’re looking to become more engaged and involved, my suggestion would be to do what I did. Jump in with both feet, work hard and take every single opportunity you can. Do your best to turn those advantages YPC gives you and turn them into impact.

And do it today.

Young Professionals Connection (YPC) aims to attract and retain young professionals in Greater Des Moines (DSM) by connecting emerging leaders to each other and to the community through social, civic, charitable and professional development endeavors. Learn how you can get involved.

Cory Sharp

Cory Sharp is past president of the Young Professionals Connection (YPC) and an architect passionate about Greater Des Moines (DSM), music and the great outdoors. He can normally be found playing with his dog Emma, enjoying time with friends at local craft breweries or out networking at various community events.