“No Growth Without Change” Rural Fellows Convene to Discuss Demographics in MinnesotaFebruary 11, 2022 By Bernie Evans Leave a Comment 2021-23 Rural Fellows participants (from top left to right): Bernie Evans (Program Director), Carla Durand (CI Staff), Andy Berry, Tony Romaine, Mindy Czycalla, Heather Culuris, Bryan Taffe, Nikoli Falenschek, David Lick, Hans Dahl, Nathan Wicks, Dean Aponte-Safe, and Maggie Berndt-Dreyer. “No growth without change” was a common theme at the February 7 – 8 meeting of the Collegeville Institute Rural Minnesota Fellows Program. The gathering focused on the changing demographics of Minnesota and its implications for the future. On February 7, the day began with keynote speaker Dr. Susan Brower, Minnesota State Demographer, who provided an overview of the changing demographics in our state. Luke Greiner from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development followed with an analysis on what these changes mean for the state’s economy and Bill Blazar, retired Senior Vice President from the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce spoke about our need for immigrant labor. The presentations concluded with Center for Rural Policy and Development research analyst, Kelly Asche, summing up the challenges and opportunities facing rural communities in Minnesota. On February 8, the Rural Minnesota Fellows engaged in theological and pastoral reflection on what they heard from the presenters. The Collegeville Institute Rural Minnesota Fellows Program brings together an ecumenical group of ministers from rural Minnesota with professionals from other sectors of rural Minnesota society in order to strengthen these religious leaders’ sense of themselves as civic leaders and public theologians. The second cohort began in November 2021. Learn more about the Collegeville Institute’s Fellows programs » Like this post? Subscribe to have new posts sent to you by email the same day they are posted.