I’m about to enter the professional world. While exciting, I wonder if I’m fully prepared.

Sure, I’ve completed the requirements for my college degree, I’ve interned at a reputable marketing agency, and I’ve asked my mentors countless questions.

Concerns remain: How can young professionals make an impact in already established industries? How should young professionals go about representing their organizations in new, creative ways?

As I begin to ponder my post-grad involvement in the community, I’m torn. Boards and committees are time-proven options. Nearly every professional I know has served on one or is serving. They create a platform for bringing professionals together for purposes unachievable alone.

I’m exploring these sorts of opportunities, but I want to contribute in other ways, too. I ran my first marathon last October. While 26.2 miles sounded like a good idea when I began training, executing proved much tougher.

Jordan Bradbury poses with her father, who helped her train and also ran the marathon alongside her.

As a marketing student at WSU’s Barton School of Business, I contemplated what I wanted to advertise for five hours while running.

Serious runners get creative with this portion of the race. Then it hit me: I should display our agency’s name. I approached our president and creative director about the possibility, and she quickly agreed. It was truly an incredible feeling hearing “Go, Greteman Group!” during mile four of the race. I won’t soon forget it.

It’s time for fresh thinking. The National Business Aviation Association got creative in 2014, debuting a program for young professionals. Its goal: attract qualified newcomers to business aviation and foster professional development. As baby boomers retire, the next generation needs to be at the ready. The initiative helps grow and nurture young talent in the industry.

Talented young professionals all too often graduate and leave Wichita. I see the brain drain as many of my fellow graduates move to communities they perceive to be bigger or better.

Jordan Bradbury is brand coordinator for Greteman Group and will graduate from Wichita State University in May with a degree in marketing and management.

Growing up in Wichita, I’ve witnessed first-hand the impact companies have made, which inspired me to see what I can accomplish here.

Feeling valued from the start at a company is huge to the millennial generation. I’m a testament of that. From the beginning, I was welcomed as a team member with potential. I have been challenged professionally and I have honed my skill set. And who to better serve with this skill set?

The community that helped make it happen. Wichita offers rewarding career paths and opportunities for personal growth. Brainpower fuels our economy, particularly here in the Air Capital.

I encourage other young professionals to represent their companies in creative ways.

Let’s be part of the solution. Join in on the discussion groups on LinkedIn. Check out the professional groups in the area. Start something of your own. Young professionals, it’s time for us to step up.

This column ran in the March 18 issue of The Wichita Eagle.