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Millennials Gather at KIC to Explore Post-College to Career in Ketchum


It was standing room only when more than 45 people gathered at the KIC for Under 30: WTF am I doing here? on Tuesday evening, Jan. 23. This was the first in a series of KIC events designed create a forum for young entrepreneurs  — or anyone 36 and under thinking about what their next step professionally might be, to convene, connect, and grow their skills.  

“The Sun Valley area has a large crop of smart, resourceful, and energetic post graduates who have found their home here, but not yet their career,” said Annie Pokorny, event emcee. “In order to remain here in the Wood River Valley, millennials must be able to link their traditional dreams of success with living here in the mountains. Tapping into my experience as an athlete and into the network of support provided by the KIC have been extremely helpful to me.”

Pokorny is a former full-time athlete who recently returned to the Wood River Valley to build a post-competitive and post-college career. She has engaged with the KIC for its mentorship program and educational resources and would like other millennials to learn of all the opportunities available through the KIC. Pokorny continues to build her writing portfolio, presented at TEDx, and recently signed on as reporter for media giant ESPN.

Generously sponsored by local businesses Sawtooth Brewery and Play Hard Give Back event topics and speakers included:

  1. Jan W. Hegewald: From ski bum to SKI-E-O Jan, a KIC Board Member wore his dad’s ski sweater from long ago to greet the group. He went from service industry to getting his MBA and working for one of Fast Company’s 50 most innovative companies in the world. He discussed:
  • Living my 6th grade dream
  • It’s okay to make a goal, bro
  • Framework for creating a vision and making and achieving goals.
  1. Courtney Hamilton: Don’t be afraid of leadership. She went from college athlete to Ketchum City Councilwoman and discussed:
  • A young voice has power in our town.
  • Why voting is important and how our demographic is working to define Ketchum’s future.
  • The younger perspective matters.
  1. Annie Pokorny: Shifting the ski town paradigm to leverage Ketchum as a platform for success. She went from full-time athlete to writer and still has the job description “figuring it out,” and covered:
  • Why defining Ketchum as the “real world” is important to your career growth
  • How to build a resume the includes your Ketchum experience
  • How to begin recognizing networking opportunities in this powerful town
  • How to leverage resources like the KIC

“Understanding and supporting millennials’ career needs, as well as their desire for upward mobility are critical to fostering the next generation of innovation in the Wood River Valley,” said KIC CEO and entrepreneur Kathryn Kemp Guylay.

We promised to follow up with a resource (we recommend The Freedom Journal by John Lee Dumas). If you prefer a PDF, please contact info@ketchuminnovationcenter with the subject line, “TFJ PDF”.

Link to Courtney Hamilton’s Leadership presentation here.
The KIC will has started a Young Innovators web page and KIC Young Innovators FB group dedicated to young adults . The Website page will have a place for a headshot, brief profile and “what you are looking for” career-wise at this time. This directory of sorts will support community building and networking. Feel free to email your headshot and brief bio to to have us set up your profile.

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