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'We Are Lincoln'

Putting words into action  Part 4

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[December 19, 2013]  Last week Wednesday as the second meeting of the "We Are Lincoln" group began to wind down, Patrick Doolin said he would like to see a progress report at the January meeting that showed: "This is what we talked about, and this is what we did about it."

He noted that he wanted this movement to progress from talk to action, and in one month he wanted them to be able to check off what they have done.

Doolin's comments then segued into a discussion about smart goals. Moderator Michael Gowin said the group needed to set smart goals that are measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound.

Gowin said the action to take place should be identified, and then the progress documented to show how it is moving along. The goals chosen should be reasonable and attainable goals. He said each goal should have a timeline of sorts that outlines when the goal should be achieved.

Patrick Doolin also commented that what the group is talking about is a master project that will never be completed; it will always be changing and evolving into another step.

Jeanette Harris said one project she would like to get involved in would be a collaboration of all public service agencies, where multiple agencies could meet and share resources and information. Aaron Cantrell said he would volunteer to work with her on that project.

April Doolin said she would post a comment on the Facebook page asking people to list their action item from tonight. She asked the group to be proactive in posting to the page, letting the public know what is being worked on and encouraging others to join in.

Another member of the group said there needed to be something that addressed the youth and young adults in the community. She said there are lots of young people wandering about aimlessly because there isn't much for them to do in Lincoln.

Patrick Doolin said this had come up at the last meeting, and it was Craig Lindvahl who said that no matter what town you live in, the kids of that town are going to say there is nothing there for them to do.

This moved the group into talking about education and retention. Andi Hake, director of the Lincoln/Logan Chamber of Commerce, said the chamber does have a college outreach program and scholarship programs. She said she didn't know how many other organizations in town have scholarship programs for the local colleges.

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Robert Bagby talked about the Lincoln High School Foundation and said it has given out $72,000 in local scholarships. He said the high school partners with Lincoln College to give kids an opportunity to earn college credits while in high school. The high school also offers a vocational program and is working on a partnership with Heartland College to get vocational students enrolled there to finish their associate degree. He said LCHS also has its own alternative school and will soon graduate the 100th student from the alternative school.

Also on hand was next year's president of the Lincoln Jaycees. Tom Hackett said that while the Jaycees have been in Lincoln for 60 years, they are currently one of the lesser known organizations in town. However, he said one of his goals this coming year is to correct that and bring more attention to the organization.

He told the group that Jaycees is a youth-oriented program for young business people. He wants to increase involvement of those young professionals, and he wants to do more in the community to help local youth. He encouraged those in the room to offer comments and suggestions and to get involved with the Jaycees.

At the end of the night, Gowin had a list of projects that will be the first priorities of the We Are Lincoln group. He asked if the group could get together in a month and talk about the list and what has been accomplished. After a few moments of discussion, the group came up with a tentative date of Jan. 9 for the next meeting. The date and time will be confirmed on the Facebook page.

The Facebook page for We Are Lincoln can be found by pasting the following URL into your browser: https://www.facebook.com/wearelincolnillinois.

[By NILA SMITH]

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'We Are Lincoln'

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