A sister program to ARCADIS Global Shapers—City Shapers are young ARCADIANS eager to problem solve, volunteer, network, and have fun. With the mission of bringing the energy of Global Shapers into our cities, there are now City Shapers groups in Amsterdam, New York, and Chicago.
City Shapers started in The Netherlands as a year-round program with The Young Part (all young Dutch Arcadians), aimed at problem solving. They conducted 3 successful workshops, open to everyone.
New York’s City Shapers have been split into teams, tackling four New York-based projects: Redevelopment/development of Roosevelt Island, Greenhouse Gas emissions and de Blasio’s reduction goals, East Harlem Resiliency, and Epcal Development (a former air force base in Suffolk County). The teams are hard at work bringing their projects together, and are developing both internal and external pitches. Each team gave a presentation to ARCADIS CEO, Neil MacArthur at the beginning of July, to discuss their progress and receive constructive feedback.
City Shapers have the opportunity to collaborate with ARCADIS staff on proposals with the work they’ve done, and are connecting with their peers and new mentors through the experience.
The third program of its kind, City Shapers – Chicago currently has about 50 members. Chicago BUC Lead and Buildings Executive Vice President, Jack Hartman, linked up with 2013 Global Shaper Alumna Alecia Baxter, to organize this group. At their kick-off meeting in January, most City Shapers expressed a desire to learn more about ARCADIS and make our large company feel smaller. To help accomplish this goal, they stay connected through GroupMe, Yammer, Instagram and Twitter networks. By using these social media platforms, they can share news, exchange ideas, create events, or just say “hi.”
Over the past few months City Shapers have spent hours brainstorming creative solutions to complex issues, some of which were considered in submitted proposals.
In May, the Chicago City Shapers participated in the Chase Corporate Challenge, a 5k run/walk geared towards celebrating workplace camaraderie. It attracts roughly 25,000 runners and walkers from over 600 companies each year in Chicago alone and race proceeds are donated to not-for-profit organizations. Prior to the Challenge, the City Shapers held a t-shirt design contest, in which all race participants voted on the style that best represented our company. The winning design was then printed for the entire ARCADIS team to wear on race day.
Several City Shapers spent a recent Saturday morning volunteering at City Farm, a local farm that turns vacant city lots into productive farmland and supplies restaurants with locally grown, organic produce.
To continue to build their networks, Chicago City Shapers meet for after-work for happy hours. By building relationships and encouraging collaboration, City Shapers are contributing to ARCADIS’ successful future.
If you are a young professional working in the Chicagoland area, please reach out to Alecia to join the City Shapers! Feel free to reach out to Sarah Halle and Wietske Theloesen to learn more about the City Shapers groups in New York City and Amsterdam, respectively.