CUSTER COUNTY—You may have seen some new faces in Custer County during the last few weeks and these ladies are here to stay! At least until August at the conclusion of their summer internship.
Rather, Jessica Weeder and Leanne Gamet are participating in a 10-week serviceship as interns with the Rural Futures Institute (RFI). In conjunction with the University of Nebraska system, RFI “encourages bold and futuristic approaches to address critical rural issues” by incorporating innovation and entrepreneurship.
The pair have been hosting meet and greet sessions to hear from community members. Young professionals in Broken Bow and surrounding towns are invited to attend “Refreshments and Feedback” from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Monday, June 25 at Legends Neighborhood Grill in Broken Bow.
All are invited to the final meet and greet at Prairie Grounds on Wednesday, June 27 at 8 a.m. These sessions are opportunities for the public to visit about ideas for the future and complete a survey of community needs.
Twenty-four RFI interns are stationed in 11 different rural Nebraska communities for 10 weeks working on projects for the rural future of the state.
“One of our main projects that we’re working on is assessing the needs of recreation in the town and then kind of seeing how the community could benefit from some new improvements,” Weeder said.
Jessica Weeder, a sophomore from Albion, is studying agribusiness and hopes to get into commodity marketing and/or ag sales. Paxton native Leanne Gamet is a senior studying ag communications with the desire to enter the field of marketing.
Both ladies attend the University of Nebraska—Lincoln and are stationed in Broken Bow working with the Custer Economic Development Corporation (CEDC), the City of Broken Bow, and the Chamber of Commerce.
“Being in the city of Broken Bow there’s so many opportunities and we’re meeting so many people that’s it’s going to really help shape us and what we want to do possibly in the future,” Gamet said.
At the end of the summer, all RFI interns will give a presentation to faculty and advisors about what they have learned and experienced over the summer.
“Personally I loved coming into town and seeing all the storefronts that weren’t empty and there’s so many different businesses and so many people that care about the community,” Weeder said.
“Ever since we got into town we’ve been greeted with open arms so it’s been really great,” Gamet said.