A new organization for young professionals who live or work in McDowell County is about to kick off a calendar of events for 2020.

The recently formed McDowell Young Professionals (MYP) will hold a kickoff event on Tuesday from 6-8 p.m. at Keeper’s Cut Meadery, located at 175 W. Henderson St. in Marion. During this event, the leaders of MYP will unveil a calendar of events for the coming year and talk to prospective members about joining this new organization.

“Our goal is to give young people here in McDowell a way to connect with their community, to grow professionally and also to have a lot of fun,” said Tiffany Childers, who is the professional development advisor for MYP.

The McDowell Young Professionals was started because there was no comparable organization here. Misty Cox works at MAHEC in Asheville but she lives here in McDowell.

“Through work, I was invited to join the Asheville Young Professionals,” said Cox, who is 25. “We got the idea to start one for our community and have it as a resource for professionals in our area.”

Cox met with other local young professionals like Childers, who is 26 and works for Affinity Living Group in Hickory, and Casey Young, who is 28 and works at Marion Pharmacy. Together, they and others held a couple of interest meetings but Tuesday’s gathering will be the inaugural event for MYP.

To qualify as a member, you should be a professional who lives and/or works in McDowell County and be between the ages of 21 and 39.

“Professional is used loosely,” said Cox, who is the chairwoman. “If you live and/or work in McDowell County and want to be a part of a group that focuses on service, professional development and social activities, then we are all for you.”

Steve Bush, executive director of the McDowell Chamber of Commerce, helped this new organization get started.

You can apply to join online or on paper. Members will pay annual dues. They are $60 annually for an individual and $48 annually if your employer is a member of the Chamber of Commerce and sponsors you. The money from the dues will go towards the events held by MYP.

The new organization will hold activities every month and they will rotate between social events, service events and professional development events.

To find out more, young professionals are encouraged to come to Keeper’s Cut Meadery Tuesday evening and hear what is in the works with MYP.

“We’re open to everybody,” said Cox. “If anybody is interested, they are welcome to come by and learn.”

For more information, visit the Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/mcdowellyp/

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