FSU to co-host ‘Experience Tallahassee’ Jan. 12

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The festival will bring students from local colleges and universities together with community members and their families to help build connections between students and the diverse offerings of the city.

Florida State University, Florida A&M University and Tallahassee Community College are partnering with the Knight Creative Communities Institute to keep Tallahassee’s best and brightest university and college students in the community.

The institutions and the 2018 KCCI Catalyst class, a group of community members selected to develop project ideas to attract and retain young professionals, will host the “Experience Tallahassee” festival from 4 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 12, at Cascades Park. The event will highlight why Tallahassee is such a great place to live, work and play.

“We want to bridge the gap between Tallahassee’s institutions of higher education and the surrounding community,” said Elizabeth Emmanuel, 2018 KCCI Community Catalyst member and program coordinator for Leadership Tallahassee.

The festival will bring students from local colleges and universities together with community members and their families to help build connections between students and the diverse offerings of the city. The event will feature performances from local artists and arts organizations as well as food from local restaurants and vendors.

The main attraction will be a career-focused area for students to meet and network with local business owners, connect with area employers and receive information from the universities’ respective career centers.

“The networking area in the Edison is something new this year,” said Matt Corbett, FSU coordinator of student activities. “It’s going to take this event to the next level and provide students with a chance to consider next steps in their lives beyond college — really establish a relationship with the city.”

The KCCI team also created a Top 50 list of unique community experiences, which will be distributed at the festival. In addition, the creative map and Top 50 list can be downloaded for free at KCCITallahassee.com. The map was distributed to new and transfer students and their families and has been extremely popular on social media channels with students and locals alike.

“We created the Top 50 list and have worked with FSU, FAMU, TCC and community members to expand the Experience Tallahassee Festival,” Emmanuel said. “The goal is to draw students off campus and into the wider world of Tallahassee to experience all our city has to offer.”

Event sponsors include North American Properties, Tallahassee Memorial Healthcare, Northwestern Mutual, Early Learning Coalition of the Big Bend, CareerSource Capital Region, FSU College of Business, FSU School of Teacher Education, NAI TALCOR, Structure, Ajax Building Corporation, Front Street, Hancock Whitney, Oliver Sperry, Office of Economic Vitality, Southern Standard Construction, AIGA Tallahassee, Selfietally, Innovation Park, Arbor Properties and Tallahassee Planning Department.

For the latest updates on the festival, follow the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/experienceTLH/.

Knight Creative Communities Institute
The Knight Creative Communities Institute (KCCI) was created in 2007 and has annually selected Tallahassee residents and trained them on the concepts of the book, The Rise of the Creative Class. These Community Catalysts volunteer their time to learn the concepts and implement a project that enhances Tallahassee’s sense of place as a community that would be able to attract and retain the creative class, young professionals and college graduates. To date, KCCI has led 23 total projects and more than 240 Community Catalysts have volunteered their time to help create a sense of place throughout Tallahassee while engaging the creative class. KCCI is a program of The Village Square and is funded through private and public donations.