Win tickets to see the smash hit musical Mamma Mia at the Roanoke Civic Center. Two winners will each receive four tickets!
Sunday, September 15, 2013
I grew up in this area. I am a proud graduate of Northside High School and continued my education at Radford University. I am very proud of the education I received within Roanoke County, and very proud at what Roanoke County has accomplished over the years within the public school system. Since college, I finally landed a job that I love and that allowed me to stay in the Roanoke area, and it also allows me to use my education that I have worked so hard for within my profession.
I love the fact that this area still has a personal feel and the fact there is a strong sense of a community that still resides within the Roanoke Valley. I also think we have the best of all worlds when you look at all the various things Roanoke has to offer (downtown atmosphere, great locally owned restaurants, museums, history, entertainment, outdoor life with lakes, trails, rivers, etc.).
My main concern for this community is that a number of childhood friends and college friends have left the area after school. The main issues that contribute to this are the lack of professional opportunities. While Roanoke markets to established families, it does not really market to the 35-year-old and younger, single professionals.
While the Roanoke Valley has started evolving and looking forward, there is still a mentality that looks back at what the past has brought and is hesitant to make necessary changes to move forward at full speed.
This trend will not only stall the growth of this community within the professional world, but also have a negative impact on the quality of life within the area. This will continue to force people, especially young adults entering into the professional world (which is our future), to move to other cities. This area has numerous colleges that are nationally recognized and are keeping students near home and also bringing new students into the area.
Roanoke County will benefit from electing Brian Lang for Hollins District supervisor. He has a clear vision of a great potential future for Roanoke County, and of how to get there. His ideas are not only innovative but provide bold leadership for the area.
These ideas consist of building regional cooperation to help strengthen the schools, which, in turn, will attract businesses to the area and prepare students for the transition to the professional world. By attracting new businesses, we then can retain the students graduating from our local colleges with gainful employment.
This will continue to strengthen our community because people will be able to stay in the area where they were raised and students who relocated to this area for school and developed relationships within the area will stay, too. The idea of developing dog parks not only shows compassion for a large number of people within the Roanoke Valley who have dogs, but will help strengthen relationships among community residents as they go out of their houses and neighborhoods.
Lang also has the vision of using the resources and space to turn a once highly traveled area of the Roanoke Valley back into something of value. The area I speak of is Hollins between Plantation Road and Hollins University.
The idea of relocating a library to this area will create traffic that will promote businesses. And creating a farmers market will allow the people of Hollins area access to the benefits that both Salem and Roanoke city have to offer.
Weather JournalStorm track isn't very snowy for us