What We’re About
Recently, I wrote an article explaining why I felt it was important to be a member of Kootenai County Young Professionals. While I felt I made a compelling argument, there’s still one burning question that needs to be answered:
Who are We?
And, as you know, I aim to be transparent whenever possible. So, here it is - this is the #1 question that I am asked by the community.
The mission of Kootenai County Young Professionals, or KCYP, as we’re more casually known, is: To enrich and engage young professionals by providing opportunities for philanthropic & social interaction, leadership, personal and professional development & community involvement in the Kootenai County area.
So, let’s unpack that.
First and foremost, we aren’t your typical networking organization. Yes, many of our evening events are social and a great place to connect with others, but there’s a deeper meaning to what we do. As of the time that I am writing this, we are planning our summer social. This is going to be the first time in several months that we are able to get KCYP members together in a large capacity since the beginning of summer, and we’re excited. We’ll be meeting at a new bar in town, play some games, eat (delicious) burgers from a food truck, and really just enjoy the company of our peers. Still, philanthropy is in the fabric of our organization. At this event, we’ll use the opportunity to highlight a new group in town and share with our members a new and very important mission of theirs and how we, as members of KCYP, can help.
Additionally, we pride ourselves on providing our members with learning opportunities. We’ve done courses for first-time homebuyers, we’ve done farm-to-table education classes, difficult conversations in the workplace, etc. These typically take place in the morning and last about an hour. It’s a great way to start your day, in my opinion!
And finally, community involvement; I’ve talked about how philanthropy is a key part of what we do, but it goes beyond that. One of my absolute favorite events that we’ve done (and continue to do) is Wood Stock. If you haven’t heard of it, it’s a resource-raising event for those in need of firewood each cold season. The manual labor is definitely something to prepare yourself for, but pairing wood splitting, loading, and delivery with a lumberjack competition and warm food is incomparable! This is an event that I look forward to each year and is just one example of how we are involved in our community.
All this to say that there is a place, and an event, for everyone here. Which leads me to the #2 most asked question that I’m asked:
What age is a young professional?
The simple answer is that we don’t have a maximum age for our members. Being young in mind and young in heart is all that we ask of our members; outside of that, age isn’t a factor in what we do. I think where this often gets confusing is with our “Top 30 Under 40” award. Technically speaking, this award belongs to the community, and we are the vessel that executes it. Even though there is a cap to age on this award, don’t let that be a deterrent from joining us! You are welcome!
But even with all this information, I still go back to that #1 question- “Who are we?”
And my personal answer is this:
We are the sum of our members! Our members are KCYP- we’re bankers, recruiters, realtors, business owners, coaches, chiropractors, and everything in between. We exist because we not only see the value that our work brings us but the value that we bring to our community. We crave knowledge and personal development, and we believe in giving back to the community that has given so much to us.
If you haven’t already, I personally invite you to come meet us at our next event. Let us show you who we are and how you can be a part of everything that makes up KCYP.
Shane Solorza has been a KCYP Member since 2019 and has served on the board since Jan 2020. By day, he is a Recruitment Marketing Coordinator for Amazon.com Workforce Staffing supporting Customer Fulfillment in New York. Strike up a conversation with him talking about your dogs, his dog Aspen, or your favorite coffee shop!
***NOTE FROM KCYP***
At the time of posting this article, we are accepting nominations for our Top 30 Under 40 Awards - those who are making a difference in our community, and have outstanding business accomplishments. Click HERE to nominate a worthy professional today!
The Summer Social was a huge success and we were able to support a local organization making an impact in this community! If you are interested in joining us at future events, check out our events calendar HERE. We hope to see you soon!