Millennials Change the Story of Northeast Indiana

February 21st, 2012

February 21, 2012

Millennials Change the Story of Northeast Indiana
Vision 2020 launches program to engage young people in the regions vision

FORT WAYNE, IN - Millennials are thinkers, doers, innovators, and creators - right now, our region needs them to help change the story of Northeast Indiana. Millennial 2020 is launching today with the widespread distribution of a survey to help our region's young people do just that.

Millennial 2020 is an extension of Vision 2020, a regional initiative stewarded by the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership and the Regional Opportunities Council focused on creating a vision for our region's future. This program will give area Millennials between the ages of 15 and 25 a voice by empowering and engaging them in the regional visioning process through three main components. Millennial 2020 will begin with thousands of surveys being dispersed to young people living in the region with plans to collect at least 10,000 usable surveys by June of this year. Questions on the survey ask millennials how they would shape our region's future and what would keep them here.

The second component, a leadership body called the Millennial Leaders Alliance (MLA), will convene for the first time in March, bringing together current and emerging leadership to help bridge the gap by providing a direct connection among generations. The MLA will guide the Millennial 2020 process overall and will act as the champions for the projects that come out of the survey component. Recruitment is currently underway for MLA members.

"What we've found among young people both here in Northeast Indiana and throughout the country is that they are driven to places that are very opportunistic. They want to be involved in the process of bettering their community. If they don't feel as if they can make a difference, they leave. That's what Millennial 2020 is all about - giving young people in our region a voice to create the kind of place where they want to live," said Nick Arnett, Millennial 2020 Coordinator.

Upon completion of the survey process this summer, the third component will take place in the form of a summit held to give young people an opportunity to analyze the findings for themselves and take action on what's presented. The MLA will work to pair visions and aspirations outlined in the process with work that's already being done through Vision 2020.

"We are really excited to launch this critical component of Vision 2020," said Katy Silliman, Director of Vision 2020. "It's not just about giving millennials a voice, it is also about integrating them into community leadership and empowering them to help us change our story."

The Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership was formed in 2006 to help build a globally competitive economy in Northeast Indiana. It is a public-private partnership focused on generating business leads and building regional capacity through product development and effective regional collaboration. In 2010, the Partnership launched Vision 2020 to bring the region together around five key areas for economic growth: 21st Century Talent, Competitive Business Climate, Entrepreneurship, Infrastructure and Quality of Life. Through its combined efforts in business development and capacity building, the Partnership supports its 10 member counties: Adams, Allen, DeKalb, Huntington, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben, Wabash, Wells and Whitley counties.

More information about Millennial 2020, applications for the Millennial Leaders Alliance, and an online version of the survey are available at the program's website,


Courtney Tritch
Director of Marketing
Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership

Categories Press Releases