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Ten Minutes to Anywhere

December 1, 2005View for printing

“Ten minutes to anywhere…including work, school, shopping and home,” is the theme of Fairmont, MN (population 10,889) to bring home their mid-career graduates. They are in their second year of promoting the town to students who graduated between the years 1972 to 1985. They mail out a series of postcards, all with the same theme of moving back home.

Mike Humpal, assistant city administrator told me, “We are looking for those who liked growing up here. We are trying to get them to check out our website and hopefully get them to either the MN or US job banks so that they can see some of the jobs that are available in the area.” He added, “We’ve surveyed 18 who have moved back in the last 2 years and found that none of them came for the jobs. They all came back to take care of parents or for their kids or even to be able to live on a lake. They all knew that they could find a job if they got back here and that’s what they did.”

Fairmont hasn’t had a huge brain drain, like a lot of areas. Mike told me that they found that over 50% of their grads still live within a 25 mile radius of home, but the population of Fairmont is 17% older than the US average (41.3 years vs. a 35.3 national average).

I like their approach. I’m hopeful that other towns will follow the example of Fairmont to proactively bring back some of the brain bank of their towns.

posted by Jack Schultz at BoomtownUSA http://boomtownusa.blogspot.com/2005 ... ywhere.html

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Many thanks to Chris Gibbons for bringing this to our attention. Russ
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