#MENTAL HEALTH MATTERS
ACTIONS FOR THE MOVEMENT WE REALLY NEED
ALSO INSIDE Should you rent or buy? • Get fitting on a budget • How to shop grad schools? • and more...
2 THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL
05 Fitness Doesn’t Have to Break Your Budget
Learn how to earn and keep your summer body on a budget
06 To Rent or To 08 Finding Your
Way out of Food Deserts
Real advice making the big property decision from a local real estate expert
The best places to score groceries in any neighborhood
Graduate School Shopping Smarts
How to make your next education decision count
Relive the TN Moments
Check out the best photos from the biggest recent Thursday Network events
for the long haul
15 How to
Leverage Your LinkedIn
Network Digital ...inside this issue EDUCATION
Real insights for turning your network into your next job
THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL 3
2016,How to Stay in the Loop... Dear Members, I’m so happy to connec t with you through our 2nd issue of #TNDigital. The 2015 -2016 ser vice term is proving to be amazing as we continue to see our o r g a n i z a t i o n a n d s i g n a t u r e e v e n t s g r o w. F r o m r a i s i n g m o r e t h a n $ 2 ,0 0 0 f o r o u r a f f i l i a t e t h r o u g h # G i v i n gTu e s d a y a n d t h e “ L i g h t U p t h e Ev e n i n g ” f u n d r a i s e r a t S T K , w e s t a r t e d t h i s t e r m o f f with a bang! Fa s t f o r w a r d a n d y o u ’ l l r e m e m b e r J o i n We e k 2 0 1 6 a n d a n ex p l o s i v e 1 6 t h A n n u a l M L K B l a n ke t a n d To i l e t r y D r i v e . T h i s e v e n t c o r r a l l e d m o r e t h a n 5 0 0 Thursday Network volunteers, community and religious leaders who endured a cold and windy day to ser ve sandwiches and deliver care packages to a r e a r e s i d e n t s s u f f e r i n g f r o m h o m e l e s s n e s s . We added 52 new members in Februar y alone. In March, w e h e l p e d h o s t a n a m a z i n g W h i t n e y M . Yo u n g , J r. Unsung Hero’s Gala and “ Soiree Noire” which included r a i s i n g m o r e t h a n $ 5 ,0 0 0 a n d c o n n e c t i n g s o m e o f t h e m o s t i n f l u e n t i a l m o v e r s a n d s h a ke r s i n t h e c o u n t r y. At little over half way through the 2015 -2016 ser vice term we selected the two dynamic recipients for our “I EMPOWER ” Scholarship. D u r i n g o u r A n n u a l Yo u n g B l a c k s G i v e B a c k M o n t h , we shared the message of health and wellness with thousands, provided groceries for families, and raised awareness about the impor tance of mental health in our communities. This great momentum we have wouldn’t be possible without the amazing suppor t and engagement of e a c h a n d e v e r y m e m b e r, i n c l u d i n g y o u . Yo u m a d e the National Day of Ser vice in April a success.
Yo u h o s t e d t h e N a t i o n a l U r b a n L e a g u e A n n u a l L e g i s l a t i v e P o l i c y C o n f e r e n c e . Yo u h e l p e d l a u n c h our first Annual Micro - grant Pitch Competition & Conference in suppor t of minority young professional entrepreneurs. And let’s not forget , you represented well at the 2016 National Urban League Conference in Baltimore, M D a n d w e r e r e c o g n i ze d a s t h e N a t i o n a l C h a p t e r o f E xcellence for the second year in a row! We w a n t y o u t o s t a y c o n n e c t e d a s w e c o n t i n u e o u r work in the community and creating a positive change as a par t of the Urban League Movement , both locally a n d n a t i o n a l l y. To m a ke s u r e y o u d o n ’ t m i s s a b e a t , c h e c k o u t a f e w ways below to stay in the know of what is going on!
facebook .com / ThursdayNetwork t w i t t e r. c o m / t h u r s d a y n t w k instagram.com / thursdaynetwork thursdaynetwork .org Yo u c a n a l s o e - m a i l a t p r @ t h u r s d a y n e t w o r k . o r g t o m a ke s u r e y o u g e t o u r We e k l y D i g e s t e m a i l i n b e t w e e n #TNDigital issues. Thank you again for making this year a success and we hope you enjoy this issue.
Yours in the Movement, Kendra Oates, PR Committee Chair Thursday Network
Thursday Network ...how to get involved COMMUNITY SERVICE COMMITTEE Contact James Jeter firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com MEMBERSHIP COMMITTEE Contact Brian Hence firstname.lastname@example.org
FUND DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE Contact Capree Bell email@example.com PERSONAL & PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE Contact Ashley Garvin firstname.lastname@example.org
PUBLIC RELATIONS COMMITTEE Contact Kendra Oates email@example.com CIVIC ENGAGEMENT COMMITTEE Contact Sean Robinson firstname.lastname@example.org SOCIAL & CULTURAL COMMITTEE Contact Kyle Williams email@example.com
4 THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL
AvalonBay Communities, Inc. is proud to support Thursday Network in building strong communities in the Greater Washington area.
CREATING A BETTER WAY TO LIVE. Photo of Avalon First & M in Washington, DC
THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL 5
GET FIT WITHOUT WALLET PAIN$ 4 REASONS FITNESS DOESN’T HAVE TO BREAK YOUR BUDGET Health is wealth, not a financial burden ...or at least it shouldn’t be. It’s well known that exercise should be a regular part of a health and wellness regimen. However, the cost of a gym membership can be a deterrent for those on a strict budget. If one has to choose between groceries and a gym membership; the groceries will win out 100% of the time. One of the many great things about living in an area built around “the fittest city in America” is that there are many low- to no cost options to pursue a fitter lifestyle. Here are a few reasons getting fit locally won’t cost as much as you think:
1 . T H E C I T Y I S YO U R GY M
2 . T H E W E B WO R KS W E I G H T- L O S S WO N D E R S
3 . T E A M WO R K M A K E S T H E D R E A M WO R K
Literally. There are a multitude of recreation
A good Google search can usually turn up
Sometimes the hardest part of starting a
a free class or two. Additionally, there are
healthier lifestyle is motivation. Joining a
online publications whose sole objective
group for encouragement and accountability
is to spread awareness of the fitness
can be a good way to maintain a consistent
options in the city. One example of such
fitness routine. Running groups are quite
publications is Active Life DC. This resource
popular in the area such as the District
provides information regarding free and
Running Collective. There are also weekly
low cost classes, training tips, and class
classes such as Nike Training Club which is
held at the Nike store in Georgetown at 3040
centers in the District and they all house fitness centers with cardio machines, free weights, and some host various fitness classes. In an effort to promote a healthier lifestyle among D.C. residents, access to these fitness centers is completely free with registration. Prior to January 1, 2016, membership was $125 per year with proof of D.C. residency. To find the closest recreation center as well as a schedule of
M St. NW.
classes please visit the D.C. Department of Parks and Recreation website.
Continued on page 09
Artice by Natalie Pierre-Louis, Thurdsay Network Member
6 THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL
To Rent or To Buy?
EXPERT ANSWERS TO ONE OF THE YOUNG PROFESSIONALS’ GREATEST DEBATES Affordable rental housing in the Washington D.C. Metropolitan area has been cut almost in half over the past decade according to the DC Fiscal Policy Institute. A clear indicator of this fact is the growing gap between expendable take home income and money spent on
housing costs. These combined factors make the rent versus home purchase debate a more
Article by Anthony Graham, Licensed Realtor with the Keller Williams Capital Properties in D.C. and Md. on a mission to build thriving communities through real estate.
N AT I O N A L
critical question than ever for Greater Washington young professionals who are likely just establishing their financial foundation.
U R B A N
L E A G E
Y O U N G
P R O F E S S I O N A L S
Meet Your Leadership at www.nulyp.org Rent vs. Buy: Are you having the great debate? We want to talk to you. To be featured in our next issue, deciding when and where to buy a home in the Greater Washington Area.
email firstname.lastname@example.org to share your thoughts on
THREE HOUSING DECISION FACTORS When answering the big “Rent vs. Buy” question, there
THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL 7
Signs the answer is “Yes, you should buy.”
are a few critical factors to consider as a young profes-
Here’s how you know homeownership is the
right move for you:
Career Flexibility: Do you need it?
1. Stability is paramount Homeownership means planting roots. It means you’re will-
Career stability as a young professional isn’t a guaran-
ing to stay in the space long term. You’ve established your-
tee. Landing that new position, pay raise, or promotion
self professionally and your pay is no longer in flux. You’ve
for experience might require a move to a new city. This
made a commitment to a particular city and are ready to
makes flexibility important; and when it comes to buying,
explore what that stability can do for you financially.
it’s a high value factor to sacrifice. The first young professional factor to consider is, “how likely is it that I’ll need to move?”
2. You’ve done the pre-work to reap the long term benefits. The upfront cost associated with becoming a homeowner
Financial Risk: More than an ATM
outweigh the upfront cost of renting significantly. When considering a home purchase, you have to create a long-
When considering a home purchase, many young profes-
term strategy with your return on investment being the
sionals have yet to critically consider the level of impact
end goal. Although the hurdles are higher for ownership,
their credit score and savings have on their housing
the benefits include the ability to grow equity and to take
situation. In a rental, the hurdles to get into a space are
advantage of tax deductions. Over time you’re likely to
much lower than when looking to purchase. You pay a
recoup initial costs and even make a little greater return on
security deposit, you pay your rent, and when you move-
investment in a market area like ours.
out, you get your security deposit back.
Neighborhood Non-Negotiables: The “Real” Side of Real Estate.
Help with the Hurdles In the Greater Washington area the Greater Washington Urban League’s Home Buyer program HPAP allows FirstTime Home Buyers in D.C. to take advantage of both down
Renting is a lot like dating. Swapping properties and com-
payment and closing cost assistance, which are significant
munities isn’t a huge deal. You can explore the parts of
parts of the upfront costs. This program and others like it
town you like, change your commute to work, shop your
have allowed for countless individuals and families to see
neighbors and ultimately always have the opportunity
their return on investment far outweigh their hurdle for
to decide you don’t like a space and easily negotiate to
HOMEOWNERSHIP HELP FROM GWUL GET HELP
3. You’re ready to commit to your neighbors and community Being a homeowner is not just about you or your family’s life. It also includes your neighbors and your surrounding community. Your duty as a neighbor includes taking actions like keeping up the appearance of the property, patronizing local businesses, and attending community
To get detailed information about the Greater Washington
meetings because all of these things help you do your part
Urban League housing assistance programs, visit
in making a community great.
https://www.gwul.org/programs/housing or contact Derek McDaniels, director of housing and
From neighborhood commission elections and school board
community development at email@example.com.
decisions, to development proposals and safety measures, homeowners drive the quality of life in a local jurisdiction. If
GWUL programs include
you’re ready and excited about that responsibility and look
• Credit and Homeownership Counseling
forward to investing in a community that you genuinely
• Home Purchase Assistance Program (HPAP)
love, you’re ready to own.
• Inclusionary Zoning (IZ) Program • Negotiated Employee Affordable Home Purchase Program (NEAHP)
Overall the decision to rent or to become a homeowner is a grand one and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Don’t decide blindly. Talk with professionals who deal in this space like reputable Realtors, mortgage lenders, and financial planners who can help you strategize and decide with your best interest in mind.
food desert 8 THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL
THE HUNT: WHERE ARE THE
“HEALTHIEST” GROCERY OPTIONS?
Shanelle C. Patterson, Advocate for our community.
A recent comprehensive review of data sponsored by the Prevention Institute of Oakland, CA found that residents who have access to supermarkets tend to have healthier diets.
It’s No Secret...
It’s no secret. A healthy diet can prevent
What’s also shocking is that this number
diseases and conditions that can have a
reaches more than 72% in areas East of
Depending on where you live in the D.C.
seriously negative impact on our overall
the River – Wards 7 and 8 and the racial
metropolitan area, finding affordable,
health and life.
disparities in some areas are even more
healthy food choices can be as frustrating
alarming. For example, in D.C. “less than
as finding Carmen Sandiego. This lack of
What is a secret is that many of us who call
one in every 10 White District residents are
access to affordable, healthy food choices
the D.C. metropolitan area our home aren’t
obese, whereas one in every three African
is commonly known as “Food Deserts or
making healthy diet choices according to
Americans in the District are obese.”
“food insecurity,” according to The United
States Department of Agriculture (USDA). While many things can attribute to a
According to the D.C. Department of
person being overweight, two factors that
Whatever the name, the problem is the
Health, “more than 50% of all adults living
can have far reaching effects are that (1)
same: There is a lack of availability of
in D.C. are overweight or obese.”
there aren’t many affordable, healthy food
nutritionally adequate food sources and
choices in the areas where we live, and (2)
resources in too many local areas.
we don’t know where to find healthier food options.
THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL 9
4 REASONS FITNESS DOESNâ€™T HAVE TO BREAK YOUR BUDGET Continued from page 05
4 . WA L L S A R E O P T I O N A L D.C. is made for outdoor workouts. Full of parks (some of which contain fitness equipment), hiking trails, and bike paths; thereâ€™s no shortage of space to work up a good sweat. Some popular sites in the city are the National Mall, Rock Creek Park and Anacostia Park. D.C. is also very pedestrian friendly, so a simple run in the neighborhood is also an option. These are just a sprinkling of the resources available to young professionals determined to stay fit without breaking the budget. What would you add to the list? Visit facebook.com/ thursdaynetwork to share your cost-friendly fitness secrets available in our city.
Share your fitness tips on Twitter using
A R E YOU PLUGG ED I N? facebook.com/ThursdayNetwork
instagram.com/thursdaynetwork Continued on page 10
10 THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL Continued from page 8.
Where are the “Healthiest” Grocery Options? As you should know, healthy eating begins in your own kitchen. So, when considering where to go, I would suggest starting at your neighborhood grocery store. Unfortunately, for those living in what has been determined to be a below or low poverty neighborhood, finding a decent grocery store in your area may be difficult -- Ward 7 and Ward 8 only house 7 (4 and 3, respectively) of the 43 full-service grocery stores in Washington, D.C. We can delve into an entirely different conversation as to why this is the case, and maybe we should later. However, the question at hand is where are the “healthiest” grocery stores? My research has turned up the following results for the Thursday Network service area:
Ward 1 1914 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20009
For those of us who do not live near any of these grocery stores
1101 25th St NW, Washington, DC 20037
and do not want to rely on neighborhood “convenience” stores or
gas stations, here are some resources for farmers’ markets that
10741 Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, MD
may be in your area:
20901 Montgomery County
• FreshFarm Markets Directory
6831 Wisconsin Ave, Bethesda, MD
• The Washington Post Farmers’ Market Map and local guide
• Maryland Department of Agriculture Farmers’ Market Guide
• The Downtown Bethesda Farmers’ Market Guide
H, 12268 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 20852
This issue of “Food Deserts” is a very complex one and hopefully this article will help you on your healthy food search. This conversation is far from over, so stay tuned to #TNDigital for more information on finding healthy food whether you need it delivered
Ward 2 1440 P St NW, Washington, DC 20005
or need help eating out.
Help Others Get Healthy Food
2201 I St NW, Washington, DC 20037
If you would like to support Thursday Network’s efforts to help
combat hunger one family at a time, you can donate to our Food
2323 Wisconsin Ave NW,
Pantry. To find out how, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Washington, DC 20007 Ward 3 4530 40th St NW, Washington, DC 20016 833 Wayne Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20910 Montgomery County 4420 Willard Ave, Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Got Ideas? Are you passionate about bringing healthy food to communities in need? If so, email your thoughts to email@example.com or join our Commmunity Service
Prince George’s County
Committee Meeting on the 4th Monday of
9001 McHugh Drive, Lanham, MD 20706
each month at 7p.m.
Montgomery County 20600 Seneca Meadows Parkway, Germantown, MD 20876
Share your healthy eating tips on Twitter using
THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL 11
12 THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL
Real Search, Select and Succeed Talk Grad School Blues? Five Ways to
in the Graduate School Game0 by Dr. Erica Southerland
Thinking of attending graduate school? You are not alone. Millions of Americans begin postbaccalaureate (graduate) programs each year. Even though deciding to pursue higher education
SEARCH First, find out what programs are available. Once you
beyond the bachelor’s degree is quite
are aware of your options, you can make a better
common in this era, and, minorities are
decision to fit your wants and needs.
pursuing graduate education at higher rates than ever the decision to pursue
Research - Look-up programs that cater to exactly what you need or want
such a feat is never an easy one.
to learn. GradSchools.com is a great place to start. When researching schools and programs it is important to consider facts such as location
However, the doctor is in and we’ve
and format, faculty expertise, program reputation, diversity, and of course
compiled five easy-to-remember tips to
help you navigate the process and avoid a case of the grad school blues.
• Find the best program format for you. Where is the program located? Are the courses delivered online or in-person? If the program is completely online, you need to find out if the classes are synchronous or asynchronous – and if that best suits your learning style and availability. Already confused? Don’t worry, this article provides a great summary of the many course types available today. • Rankings are NOT everything. Let’s start there. The popular national and international ranking systems have plenty of bias, especially toward recognizing the true value of niche’ institutions such as Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). And, rankings alone cannot tell you what school or program is best for you. But, it is key to choose a program that has a respectable rate of graduates hired or placed in your chosen field – and relatedly a solid alumni network. This is by far not an exhaustive list, but here is a great place to start this part of your search. • Funding opportunities Find out if you have to pay for the degree out-of-pocket and/or through student loans. Or, are there funding opportunities available such as scholarships, grants, or assistantships.
THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL 13
SELECT • Reach Out Email, call, connect on LinkedIn, or even visit the school! Sometimes introducing yourself and expressing your interest in a specific program can go a long way. Also, be sure to check out recent work and training surrounding higher education done by the National Urban League. • Ruminate So now you’ve gathered information and built relationships – decision time! This is also the time to buckle down to study and pass that entrance exam
if required. Who knows, ruminate may even show up in your vocabulary section!
Congrats, you’ve decided to
For some, this step will mean
pursue a graduate degree (or
a literal move to attend your
for some of us, another grad-
new school. In other cases it
uate degree)! This is the time
means preparing your mind
to make moves. Submit your
and lifestyle to be the best
application. Make absolutely
student possible. You can
certain it is complete and you
also recycle your reaching
have followed all of the direc-
out skills in this phase. Your
tions. Get your acceptance
Thursday Network and other
letter – for some this may
NULYP colleagues may be
take more than one attempt,
working or attending school
but do not get discouraged
in a similar field. Reach out to
and keep trying!
your new classmates – they can be your best allies and study partners during the course of your program and some of your best contacts and perhaps even friends after graduation.
YOU HAVE OPTIONS
According to DC Homequest, Greater
This one is self-explanatory. Of course, register for your first semester or quarter
Washington residents have more than 37
and enjoy! If you have ef-
local options for obtaining post-graduate
fectively taken these steps
then you know you’re in the right place and you know you will succeed!
14 THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL
Share Your Story ARE YOU INTERSTED IN GETTING THE WORD OUT ABOUT THURSDAY NETWORK?
EDITOR’S NOTE One of the biggest ways to support Thursday Network is to help get the word out about events, issues, and GWUL programs. If you’re inspired and want to help share the TN story, there are plenty of
opportunties through our PR and other committees. To learn more email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Editorial Staff
Thursday Network Digital is a quarterly publication of the Greater Washington Urban League’s young professional chapter, Thursday Network. Produced and managed by the PR Committee, this publication aims to help young professionals positively change their lives, families, and communities.
JOVAN HACKLEY, MANAGING EDITOR / ART DIRECTOR Content director and
strategist for Student Loan Genius and Fatherhood.gov
CONTRIBUTOR, MENTAL HEALTH
ERICA SOUTHERLAND, TECHNICAL EDITOR
TN Member & NULYP Public Relations Manager @DocSoutherland
CONTRIBUTOR REAL ESTATE
SHANELLE C. PATTERSON,
CONTRIBUTOR HEALTH & FITNESS
HEALTH & FITNESS
THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL 15
16 THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL
THREE ACTIONS-ITEMS FOR THE MOVEMENT WE REALLY NEED by Stephanie Hargrove and Jovan Hackley
Mental illness is a silent killer in the black
ronmental, and/or behavioral factors.
community. African Americans, just like
a broken leg? Would we hide it from everyone and resolve to never talk about it?
members of other racial groups, are suf-
According to Weir, “when it comes to men-
fering and dying from the symptoms of
tal illness, a one-size-fits-all approach does
If we did, we would suffer more and more
psychological distress. The major, lethal
each day and maybe even die from the
difference for the black community is that
injury. Every day you don’t seek treatment
African Americans are less inclined to seek
Weir’s words highlight one major theme,
for any ailment, you increase the pain and
treatment for psychological distress, pri-
the African American community really
potential destruction it could cause in your
marily due to the severe stigmas surround-
needs a mental health movement that
ing mental illness.
speaks to its needs.
Recently, the U.S. Health and Human Ser-
But what does that even look like? We’re
get that bad, because we don’t think it’s
vices Office of Minority Health found that
glad you asked! Here are three must-do’s
shameful. If a mental health movement is
while 54% of people think that depression
for a mental health movement that really
going to operate the same way, we have to
is a personal weakness, African Americans
improves the black community:
remove the shame.
1. Subdue the Stigma
That means we need more programs like
Most of us would never let a broken leg
surpass the average with 63% who have that belief. This data is just one reflection of the many major differences that affect African American mental health.
National Day Without Stigma in October The stigma of mental illness alone is
and the It’s Up to Us campaign in San
enough to deter people from reaching out
Diego that works to fight the stigma and
Kirsten Weir, in an article published by
for help. For a mental health movement
make mental health a regular part of our
the American Psychological Association,
to have the best impact, it must position
said that the root of mental illness can be
psychological distress in the same way as
caused by a mix of biological, social, envi-
any other illness. Would we be ashamed of
THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL 17
2. Increase Accessibility
3. Amplify Existing Efforts
While African Americans are 10 percent
If we didn’t offer resources in this article,
Health program lists a variety of
more likely to view mental distress as a
we would be part of the problem and not
resources and options for adults seeking
sign of weakness, the same study showed
part of the solution. The third thing a
mental health treatment.
that African Americans are 20 percent
mental health movement needs is more
more likely to report having serious
conversation about the resources that
These incredible programs are already a
psychological distress. In addition, 2005
foundation and a start for a new mental
limited income individuals. The Montgomery County Adult Mental
Census data showed that African
health movement in our area. However,
Americans were 7.3 times more likely to live
While accessibility is an issue in the black
they don’t amount to much if we don’t fight
in neighborhoods with limited to no access
community, there are currently resources
the stigma, bring resources closer, and
to mental health care services.
in place that offer help for those in need in
ultimately, make more noise about the fact
our area including:
that they exist.
the next step to dramatically improve the
The Access HelpLine at 1(888)7WE-HELP or
How can you help?
mental health gap in our community is to
1-888-793-4357, sponsored by the DC De-
bring the resources for mental health care
partment of Behavioral Health. The hotline
Start now by sharing this feature and fu-
closer to our communities.
offers help in finding affordable mental
ture articles to come in our mental health
health and sourcing emergency psychiatric
series to help start a #mentalhealthmat-
ters movement of our own and improve the
So fighting the stigma is a great start but
health of our communities. The Prince George’s County Behavioral Health Directory lists providers by specialty, insurance eligibility, and options for low/
18 THURSDAY NETWORK DIGITAL
Thursday Network Digital is a publication of the Greater Washington Urban League’s young professional chapter, Thursday Network. Produced an...
Published on Sep 26, 2016
Thursday Network Digital is a publication of the Greater Washington Urban League’s young professional chapter, Thursday Network. Produced an...