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Where We Serve

American Connection Corps Members currently serve in 37 different communities across 14 states. Over the next several years, we aim to expand our footprint of locally-rooted service in rural and emerging communities to all 50 states.


What is an emerging community?

With our national headquarters proudly rooted in Wichita, Kansas, we see personally how it looks and what it means for a place to emerge from periods of disinvestment and economic stagnancy and chart a future for itself as a vibrant, robust community that invests in the next generation of talent.

Perhaps a major employer or industry has left, a natural disaster has hit, or there have been several decades of young people moving away. We serve in communities ready to tell a comeback story.


While we know census numbers don’t always tell the full story, emerging communities tend to have populations of 500,000 people or less, and the comeback always begins with a group of committed people who believe in their place and are fighting an upswing.


How do you define rural?

Technically, the federal government only considers a community “rural” if the county in which it is located has a USDA Beale code rating of 4-9. But in reality, we know these formal definitions do not always accurately reflect reality, and many of the communities we serve still lack basic internet and other modern utilities and infrastructure required to grow and thrive. 


American Connection Corps members are placed in rural or semi-rural communities in backbone organizations that are in a position to best support an area’s growth and development. These include local county and city governments, regional planning commissions that serve predominantly rural areas, and 501c3 nonprofit and community-based organizations. ACC Members serve a wide range of towns and cities that can range from three-digit populations to more than 60,000. In some cases, members serve in organizations or state agencies headquartered in a regional metropolitan area, or state capitol, but that serve a larger region of rural communities.

What does locally-rooted mean?

We prioritize selecting members who are connected to the place they are serving. Perhaps they already live there and are looking for an opportunity to step into a leadership role in their community and be connected to a national network of peers doing the same. Others are homecomers, people born and raised in the community and choose to return. Some are recent retirees that have come home or who have chosen to make this place their home for the next chapter in life. Others may have gone to college there and want to know the region beyond the four walls of a university. Some might be rural-curious, eager to mend geographic divides, or are hungry to learn deeply about a place and call it home. 


Locally-rooted means being attentive to the particularity of the place we are serving with no national agendas or preconceived perceptions of what this place needs. American Connection Corps Members put ideology and prejudice aside, listen deeply, roll up their sleeves, and get to work.

View our 2023 Service Locations to date:

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