Young Erie Professionals (YEP) got a visit from Loving Giving Local this week.

The group has been around for two decades and inspiring Erie’s next generation of leaders.

When you graduate from college and find a job in Erie, how do you stay connected? How do you find professionals your age to network and socialize with?

That’s the role of YEP, which is open to anyone over 21.

“Our mission is to attract and retain young professionals and develop emerging leaders. Not only are we the future generation of Erie, but we’re also raising the next generation as well.  So what we do in the community is very vital,” said Ashlyn Kelly YEP president.

YEP aims to mobilize young, emerging leaders to create positive change in Erie County and to provide opportunities for professional development.

“We have a variety of different programs and events that we put on. We do monthly service projects. We have different panels and speakers series where we have different leaders in the community that talk and inspire our members,” Kelly added. “We also do different lectures and wellness activities, because the overall health and well-being of members are also important. We also have off-the-clock happy hours and a variety of social events, because you need those for a great networking opportunity.”

YEP’s new home is at Radius Co-Works in Erie’s downtown renaissance center.

The Loving Giving Local donation will be used to help the organization establish its independence as a local nonprofit.

“The Young Erie Professionals have been doing great things in Erie for over 20 years. For us today to be able to bring Loving Giving Local right here and know that this donation is going to stay right here in Erie, it’s going to support this generation and future generations of young professionals right here in Erie,” said Joe Askins, sponsor, Auto Express.