Too few people in Charlotte interact across class lines. That hurts everyone.

My experience at University of Michigan reminded me that having social capital is part of how I got my first job out of college at Deloitte, and it’s part of my story in applying to Harvard for graduate school. Throughout my journey, I have spent time with Black and white people, whose worlds were bigger than the one that I knew growing up as the daughter of an educator and steel mill supervisor. Social capital — the networks, connections and access to people who produce information, resources and opportunities — carries tremendous power for creating access to greater opportunity.
Our city has been tackling this concept for years. In March 2017, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Opportunity Task Force released an extensive report identifying social capital as one of two omnipresent factors (segregation being the other) with a profound impact on economic mobility, social mobility and general quality of life. At Leading on Opportunity, we work alongside individuals and organizations across the area to collectively carry the torch of the task force’s foundational work. In the past few years, we’ve seen a groundswell of efforts aimed at addressing social capital.

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