Reader Reply: March 2023

What would you tell a high school or college graduate to encourage them to remain in North Dakota?

Young people are advised to follow their dreams. Young people are advised to make their own way in life. Young people are advised to do what they know and young people are advised to grow where you are planted.

As individuals, they may be products of their environments, for good or bad. They will face hardships and blessings, roadblocks and opportunities. My job as a parent is to demonstrate right and wrong and support my children’s decisions. I have remained in North Dakota and have no desire to move, even seasonally, at this point. Our children can’t stay if their career opportunities are not here. But they might be one day. The love of the land and a love for the people of North Dakota is a seed planted, tended, nourished and then we wait to see what fruit it bears.

To remain in North Dakota might not be the best thing for that graduate at that time. One of my sons was presented with two job offers before his 2022 college graduation. Neither were in the state. He asked me for advice. I said, “See what the world has to offer. You can always come back if the opportunity arises.” But to not leave may leave a spot that longs for the adventure of youth that was missed.

North Dakota communities, large and small, need young people who are committed to make a better life and a better community. Help these graduates who choose to stay in your communities, for they may create the opportunities that will bring back the men and women who went on their adventures.

Jerry Saude
Capital Electric Cooperative

The people of North Dakota have an exceptionally strong work ethic. This is beneficial to both aspiring young managers, and to those who yearn to be part of the workforce, as the majority of co-workers serve as an encouraging motivator to their peers.

Another positive trait of North Dakotans is their desire and willingness to help those less fortunate than themselves. If a person falls on difficult times, someone is sure to cheerfully offer assistance. When high school and college graduates choose to remain in North Dakota, they become part of a group that is the “best of the best!

Yvonne Sortland-Stegner
Formerly of Slope Electric Cooperative

I would encourage every high school and college graduate to stay in our state. North Dakota has a lot to offer to our young adults. There are many good opportunities, as far as available careers and jobs.

It’s always nice to be in a hometown where there is less crime and you may be able to live closer to your family. Family is a very important factor this day and age. Also, sometimes the cost of living is more expensive out of state.

Parents and grandparents feel very honored to have their children and grandchildren remain in the state where the families grew up.

Ileene Albin
Northern Plains Electric Cooperative


APRIL: What steps would you recommend to encourage more to enter the health care field?
Deadline for submission: March 13

MAY: What “hidden gem” in the state would you encourage others to visit this summer?
Deadline for submission: April 12

We want to hear FROM you: Submissions should be no more than 250 words, typewritten or in legible handwriting. Include your name, complete address, daytime phone number and name of your electric cooperative. Note: Magazine staff reserves the right to make editing changes and cuts. We pay $25 for each letter we print. Email to or mail to READER REPLY, North Dakota Living, P.O. Box 727, Mandan, ND 58554-0727