Engaging Youth and Young People 

HTC helps hometowns cultivate a sense of belonging, investment and community involvement among their youth so that remaining or returning home is seen as an attractive option.

In a survey of more than 2,100 middle school and high school youth from across Nebraska, 52 percent said they see themselves living close to their hometown sometime in the future. More than 40 percent said they were interested in owning their own business in the future, and more than 50 percent said they would like to take an entrepreneurship course. 

As a part of the first assessment phase, HTC can conduct a similar survey in your community to help identify how youth feel about their hometown. It will then help you develop strategies to ensure your community’s qualities will encourage youth to stay, or return home after college, and build a life in a community that provides them economic and social opportunities. 

For more information about conducting youth surveys or promoting youth involvment in your hometown, contact the Heartland Center for Leadership Development or the RUPRI Center for Rural Entrepreneurship


"HTC cuts to the core of our overriding economic and community development principles. We say out here in the Loup Valley that we are building for the future. Yet,  if we don’t ask our future what they want, then how do we know what we need to do? When we go about doing that, we HAVE to engage those that we are building for. They are our future business owners, our future leaders and having their input is essential to us developing a coherent strategy that keeps their wants, wishes and dreams in mind."

- Caleb Pollard, Executive Director of Valley County Economic Development 


HomeTown Competitiveness
P.O. Box 83107
Lincoln, NE 68501-3907