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2011 Rural Partners Forum

November 16-17, 2011

North Raleigh Hilton


The 2010 U.S. Census delivered a wake-up call:  Rural North Carolina is losing young adults at an alarming rate – in some counties by as much as 25 percent in the last decade.


Our young people are our greatest asset.  We must give them a reason to stay or return – and create communities that will attract others.


Forum Handouts


Speaker biographies
Special guests

Young & Rural: A Snapshot of Rural North Carolina's New Generation

A Profile of the New Generation in Rural North Carolina (county data)


Announcement materials

New Generation Initiative


Program overview booklet



Billy Ray Hall, "Young and Rural: A Snapshot of Rural North Carolina's New Generation"



Keeping Our Commitment to Generation Next An introductory video explores what it takes to prepare young people to become community leaders and communities to attract and retain young people.


Attracting Young People to Return One young man’s commitment to his community leads him home and to elected office.

Supporting Young Farmers A fourth generation farmer builds a future in agriculture by acknowledging and adapting to changing consumer demand.

Encouraging Entrepreneurship “No problem” becomes the catch phrase for one young entrepreneur, who started his first business at age 11.

Connecting Schools With Communities Along with its academic curriculum, Caldwell Early College High School teaches appreciation for local heritage and service to community.

Sparking Innovation The Innovators Academy, a project of East Carolina University, teaches creative thinking and design skills to middle school students.

Tackling Rural Issues Through a 4-H project, a high schooler finds a way to address hunger in her community.

Building A Promising Future An innovative program prepares young people for life through a combination of GED preparation, training in construction trades, leadership development and life skills.

Empowering A New Generation A school-based philanthropy project guides young people through all the steps, from soliciting grant proposals to making awards.



Press releases

Statewide initiative to engage rural young people with their communities


Forum Sponsors

The Rural Partners Corporate Group provides financial support and advice for Rural Center programs throughout the year.


In addition, we are pleased to recognize our 2011 Rural Partners Forum sponsors.