To fit a time like no other, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska’s (BCBSNE) Young Professional’s (YP) Connect put on a learning and development day for employees like no other.

YP Connect is a BCBSNE employee resource group (ERG) supporting YPs and their advocates. The ERG hosts a learning and development event annually, and this year’s theme was Evolution.

“This year’s event is truly a great example of adopting to change and truly embraces the theme, as the first ever virtual YP Connection,” said Marina Ostropalchenko, YP Connect president “We had a great participation with close to 100 people in attendance during the day.”

YP Connection, previously known as the YP Engage Summit, started with an ice breaker to help participants learn more about their coworkers.

The event also featured a variety of speakers that supported the three pillars of YP Connect: professional development, community involvement and networking.

The keynote speaker, Felicia Webster, set the tone for the rest of the day by inspiring participants to reboot their mind through gratitude, daily affirmations and more. Webster also shared ways for the attendees to get the most out of the day.

Tammy Talacko, BCBSNE nurse care manager, and Dr. Debra Esser, BCBSNE chief medical officer, discussed the scale of mental well-being and the importance of self-care.

Craig Moody, co-founder of Verdis Group, brought a community element to the event and shared his experience with the power of slow change. He discussed how to catalyze large-scale, systemic change for the better.

To wrap up the day, Meghan McLearney, owner of the Gravy Train and Omaha Soup Company, and Autumn Pruitt, owner of Hardy Coffee Co., participated in a Q&A session on overcoming challenges.

Once the event wrapped, attendees were invited to a virtual after party to continue the fun and networking.

“The best part of the after party was the final round of the scavenger hunt where folks were asked to find something they were proud of,” said Kenzie Pavlik, YP Connection: Evolution committee member. “Each participant shared about their selected item, the group was super engaged and it was really awesome to learn more about the people we work with on a daily basis.”

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