The Benefit v.14 Young Professionals Party, a high-profile preview cocktail reception and networking event, takes place on Friday, 6 – 10 pm at Crane Arts.
Our featured YP organization is Young Involved Philadelphia. YIP empowers young Philadelphians by promoting the city’s unique value and all of the ways to get involved. The key is to harness Philadelphia’s potential today, so that they can be realities for our youth tomorrow. President Nick Marzano answers a few questions for us about the value of being young and involved—and just what there is to love so much about Philadelphia.
What value do you feel young people offer to their community?
There is this balance. On the one hand, it’s important to have the experience and historical perspective to not repeat mistakes of the past. On the other hand, there’s immense value in new perspective that’s unchained from the past and can envision a new future. While people of any age can and do embody both sides of that coin, young people are intrinsically essential to that second half.
How can the Young Professionals party help young Philadelphians get involved?
I see the YP party as encouraging philanthropy, encouraging the valuation of arts and culture, and connecting young people to great organizations that tap into other interests.
“Bid Up, Stand Out” is the tagline for this year’s event. What ways do you see Philadelphia standing out as a community?
There is an energy in Philadelphia right now that combines a lot of concern with a lot of cautious optimism that we can get better if we embrace these challenges as opportunities to come together as individuals, organizations, and neighborhoods. A lot of cities feel like a rat race. Philadelphia isn’t perfect, but I think we want to see the whole city together at that finish line.
#whyilovephilly is an annual party hosted by YIP and a hashtag it endorses. What does your organization love about Philly?
Wow, lots. That’s why the hashtag is intentionally broad. That energy I talked about previously is really at the core of this. We love the new and returning faces and organizations that come together every year for events like our State of Young Philly series. It’s hard to name any one specific thing, but it’s hard to deny how great the pop-ups were in 2013. Places like–to name just a few–the PHS Pop-up Garden, the Oval, various events at the Porch at 30th street, and Winterfest allowed us to re-imagine Philly spaces and how we interact with them