The Economic Development Corporation of Arnold, NE has been connected to Ogallala Commons since 2008. In that time, our experience with them has involved internships, Engagement Days, and a partnership that continues to grow and thrive. One bond that has helped to strengthen this partnership between Arnold’s EDC and OC has been that of Sandy Hicks, the EDC Director and an OC Board member.
Sandy became the EDC director a little over two years ago. The EDC is invaluable in the community, helping to assist local businesses with loans and grants, as well as providing valuable wisdom and support to help local businesses succeed. Sandy recently shared with us about the partnership between the Arnold EDC and Ogallala Commons, and why it has been such a positive experience for the community of Arnold, NE.
When Sandy first became the Director of Arnold’s EDC, the organization had already been connected to OC through the previous Director, Kristi Dvorak. Initially, the partnership between the EDC and OC involved creating internships for students. The community of Arnold has seen a great impact from these internships. Some of the recent projects that OC interns have assisted with include:
- helping to open and advertise for the Rialto Theatre (Lexi Strasburg)
- working with the new city park playground project (Dayna Larreau)
- participating in the cemetery website project (Dayna Larreau)
- historical registry project (Dayna Larreau)
While Arnold has seen a great benefit from OC interns, the partnership and the impact has continued to grow throughout the years. This year, Arnold held its first Youth Engagement Day, with 45 students in attendance who had the opportunity to learn about Arnold’s rural community and job opportunities and partnerships within OC.
Sandy also says that she sees the EDC’s partnership with OC as an investment in Arnold’s future. When we asked her what would would tell other communities who might be interested in working with OC, she said that this partnership has been a great way to “keep us engaged with our youth, and planning for our community’s future and theirs. Youth are our future!” We look forward to many more years of working with the Arnold EDC. We are grateful to work with you and your community!
All photos from the Community of Arnold’s Website. Used with permission.