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Trying to keep rural towns alive

A small group gets the discussion rolling at the Big Rural Brainstorm in Newton, Kan.
WenDee Rowe LaPlant
Kansas Sampler Foundation
A small group gets the discussion rolling at the Big Rural Brainstorm in Newton, Kan.

This week on the show, people in rural areas are trying to figure out how to keep youth – and jobs – in their areas. Plus, college graduates could have a better opportunity getting a job than graduates have in the past.

Ten years ago, 20 percent of Americans lived in rural areas. But according to the latest Census, that number has fallen to 16 percent. Not only are small towns getting smaller... the populations are aging. Young people are moving away. Calling it a "severe crisis," President Obama even created a White House Rural Council to find ways to spur economic growth in small communities. But the best ideas for renewing rural America may not come from the top. In this report for Harvest Public Media, Kansas Public Radio's J. Schafer shares the "on-the-ground" perspective from the "Big Rural Brainstorm," a two-day gathering held earlier this year in the small town of Newton, Kansas.

A recent report says graduate employment opportunities are the best they have been in years.  KBIA’s Orla O’Murray has the details.

A recent survey conducted by Parade.com found Columbia Missouri is the hardest working town in America.  According to Parade.com, reasons include an unemployment rate of six percent, the amount of hospitals and hospital beds per capita, and the amount of colleges and universities.  More than eighty percent of Columbian households are dual income, and the city ranked second in most likely to work on weekends.

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