Connect 2140 links young professionals with city

Kristine Young

Kristine Young

In a town where everything seems to revolve around SDSU, it can be tough for young professionals in the area to connect to the community and meet new people.

But they now have an outlet and resource to get involved, meet new people, and improve their professional and social skills.

Connect 2140 is a new Brookings Chamber of Commerce-affiliated organization in Brookings designed to help young professionals get involved and feel connected to Brookings.

Alex Kringen, events chair for Connect 2140 and assistant athletic director at SDSU, said Connect 2140 started about nine months ago.

“It’s a great group to meet … people who are young in their careers, and [want to separate] from the ‘college crowd’ which is very easy to get lost in with SDSU having such a huge impact on the city,” Kringen said.

According to the Connect 2140 Strategic Plan, its mission is “to promote the development, connection and retention of emerging industry leaders in the Brookings area.”

Nick Wendell, the Connect 2140 president and assistant director for student activities at SDSU, said the purpose of Connect 2140 is being an organization for young professionals to work together, network and make a difference in the community.

There are about 43 members and the group meets monthly, Wendell said. Each member pays membership dues, which vary in cost depending on whether or not they work for a chamber-affiliated business.

Wendell said the group does a variety of things at their meetings, such as discussing issues that affect young professionals, focusing on social and community service or sometimes bringing speakers to teach them about current professional matters.

Kringen said some of the things the group talks about at meetings include learning how to have a work-life balance, managing stress, networking with young and experienced professionals, getting actively involved with the community and having a voice in decisions, “as well as being and having mentors that can not only help you, but that you can help as well.”

Kringen said Connect 2140 is a valuable organization that can benefit young professionals.

“If a young professional wants to get the most out of their experience in Brookings, this is a great group of young, ambitious, talented people that will one day be leaders in their organizations,” Kringen said. “It’s a great way to meet people that share similar interests and are at the same point in their professional and personal lives.”

Wendell said the ultimate goal of Connect 2140 is “to make more than just an organization, but be a movement of young professionals and connect generations.”

For more information about Connect 2140, check the group’s Facebook page.