Philly Creative Guide

Event Spotlight

Juanita Berge | Philly Creative Guide Event Reporter

Innovation Philadelphia :: Young Professional Showcase
by Juanita Berge, 1 Sep 2008


On August 20, 2008 Innovation Philadelphia held the final installment of their three-part summer series for young professionals. The Young Professionals Showcases, as they were called, in conjunction with Center City District Sips, sponsored informal networking events this summer to bring together representatives from regional organizations to give young professionals the opportunity to get involved. They introduced this citys younger set to arts, cultural and civic associations in Part I, to professional development organizations in Part II, and to social networking organizations in Part III. I was privileged to attend Parts II and III this summer.

On June 18, Finn McCools at 118 S. 12th Street was the venue as over 10 of the citys arts, cultural and civic organizations met for the first of the Young Professional Showcases. Part I saw the following organizations inform participants about their initiatives, upcoming events and general operations.

They were:

  • Young Patrons of the Philadelphia Theater Company
  • Young Friends of the Brandywine Conservancy
  • Young Friends of the Philadelphia Museum of Art
  • The Raven Society of the Free Library of Philadelphia
  • University City Kiwanis Club
  • Young Friends of the Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
  • Young Friends of the Preservation Alliance
  • Make Philly/Hackory
  • Association of Young Americans
  • United Cerebral Palsy of Philadelphia & Vicinity Young Leadership Board
  • Young Friends of Project Home
  • Young Friends Society of the African American Museum

On July 16, the Professional Development Organizations were featured as Part II at Davios Restaurant at 111 S. 17th Street. There was a huge crowd. People stood shoulder to shoulder as they talked, educated, laughed, explained, requested, informed and enlightened. This was an opportunity to meet, learn about and join the Philadelphia regions leadership development organizations. Of the 19 member organizations, roughly half were in attendance that evening. Each had representatives there, explaining what their organization was about and what they could do for you. Many in the crowd engaged at some point in one-on-one talks with representatives in the adjacent room or on the rooftop deck that overlooked the city.

The participating organizations were:

  • National Association of Asian American Professionals Its mission is to cultivate and empower leaders for professional excellence; connect accomplished professionals for mutual success; engage and participate with the community-at-large; inspire leaders to make a meaningful difference in government, education, business and society.
  • National Bar Association - Womens Lawyer Division Its mission is to address the challenges to advancement in the legal profession faced by women of color in the Philadelphia area.
  • Philadelphia Young Non - Profit Leaders Its mission is to strengthen the nonprofit sector by expanding the knowledge, skills and network of our members through programs that are relevant and accessible.
  • The Urban League Young Professionals Its mission is to advance the agenda of the Urban League of Philadelphia by supporting the Three Es: Economic Advancement, Educational Achievement and Civic Engagement.
  • The Junior League An organization of women committed to promoting volunteerism, developing the potential of women and improving community through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers.
  • Young America Pac A bi-partisan group empowering Young Professionals and students in the Philadelphia region by linking them with the leaders, organizations and institutions that will shape their future.
  • Young Involved Philadelphia Since 2001, their committees of young volunteers have produced civic education forums, advocacy campaigns and smart social events that have made Philadelphia an even better place to live.
  • Young Professional Network A group of the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce and a professional development program designed to engage and introduce young professionals to the Greater Philadelphia regions vast resources and opportunities.
  • Younger Women’s Task Force – A project of the National Council of Women’s Organizations, it’s a nationwide, diverse and inclusive grassroots movement dedicated to organizing younger women and their allies to take action on issues that matter most to them. 

On August 20, Social Networking organizations were featured as Part III of the Showcase at Table 31 at the Comcast Centers outdoor plaza. 1701 JFK Boulevard was the place to be as another capacity crowd descended. Part III concluded the series with regional social networking organizations offering young professionals the chance for involvement in their local chapters. This networking event unfolded under the Table 31 umbrellas as once more people stood shoulder-to-shoulder for the event.

The 7 organizations represented that evening were:

  • Campus Philly A non-profit organization fueling economic growth by encouraging college students to study, live and work in the Greater Philadelphia area.
  • Network in Philly Offering free networking and business event listings for professionals in the Philadelphia, South Jersey and Suburbs region.
  • oung Professional Events – This is Philly and South Jersey’s source for events for young professionals in their 20’s and mid-30’s.  We have over 15,000 young professionals on our mailing list with networking and business events throughout the year.
  • oung Professionals Social Club – Its mission is to bring people together to meet in the Philadelphia area.  We organize social events including happy hours, dinners, groups for large events and more.
  • pcoming Events – UpcomingEvents.com publishes a multi-platform event information website reaching over 40,000 young professionals in Philadelphia each month.
  • rban Philly – Philadelphia’s #1 source for urban events.  Over 20,000 users.
  • WISHUNU – Written by a diverse group of in-the-know Philadelphians, this is your online source for an insider’s look at the Philadelphia scene.

The Young Professional Showcase is a product of Innovation Philadelphia’s Young Professional Consortium.  They have done an exceptional job this summer of bringing a diverse sampling of this region’s development, social, arts and cultural resources to a targeted audience.  In one of the summer’s hottest happy hour series IP drew young professionals out and into contact with  myriad organizations.  There was something for every taste and ambition.  If you could imagine it, there was likely some organization on board to help you realize it.  Kudos to IP for putting the innovative strategy of informal networking events together with such an inclusive list of organizations.  With several hundred people in attendance, they clearly have met and exceeded their goal for the Showcases.

Innovation Philadelphia is a non-profit economic development organization that serves 11 counties in Southeastern Pennsylvania, Southern New Jersey and Delaware. Innovation Philadelphia is working to establish the Greater Philadelphia Region as a national leader and world-class destination for Creative Economy industries, businesses and talent. Innovation Philadelphia leads regional efforts to attract and retain young professionals, ages 25-34, who are vital to fueling our workforce and economic growth.

The Young Professionals Consortium (YPC) is comprised of representatives from the Philadelphia Region’s young professional organizations. YPC’s mission is to attract and retain young professionals in the Philadelphia Region through connecting and engaging young professionals with a diversity of arts and cultural, professional development and social young professionals’ organizations and to expose them to the city’s resources.

Print Article  Brought to you by: Juanita Berge | Philly Creative Guide Event Reporter

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