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New Campaign Hopes To Bring Greensboro's Young Professionals Back Home

Skyscrapers beneath a partly cloudy blue sky in Greensboro, N.C.
Elijah Mears
Whips of clouds reflect in the facade of skyscrapers in Greensboro, N.C. Boomerang Greensboro wants former residents and college graduates to return to the city.

If you're a recent college graduate who grew up in — and recently moved away from — Greensboro, you may soon receive a box of local chocolates, or (if you're lucky) some Chad's Carolina Corn.

It's part of a new campaign called "Boomerang Greensboro," and it's designed to woo young people back to the third-largest city in North Carolina.

Boomerang Greensboro
Boomerang Greensboro wants former residents and college graduates to return to the city.

The effort, led by Action Greensboro, officially launched in February. The non-profit community development organization has compiled lists of college graduates who've moved away and sent 100 gift boxes thus far, encouraging them to return "home" and put down roots.

They hope that those who do return will increase the city's tax base and build the community.

"What we're seeing in national data is that people are more interested in moving to cities our size right now," said Cecilia Thompson, Action Greensboro's executive director. "This is really our moment, in terms of capitalizing on people that are working remotely."

Thompson says the COVID-19 pandemic has made mid-sized communities like Greensboro enticing. So far, she says, nine people have moved back to Greensboro, mostly from New York.

Thompson said this campaign will be ongoing, with no end date in sight.

"We realize this is sort of a marathon and not a sprint," she said. "We're not offering cash incentives, but we think there's a lot of value here in terms of the cost of living and just the overall quality of life in Greensboro."

Naomi Prioleau joined WUNC in January 2017.
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