Engage with your peers at community coffee on Valentine's Day

By Matt Giles - Associate Producer
Headline Goes Here

Credit: Engage

ANN ARBOR - If you've never been to one of Engage's community coffee events, Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. is your perfect time to start. Engage helps connect people all around Ann Arbor who are interested in widening their network, personally and professionally. They also hold weekly community coffee events, with Wednesday's being a special Valentine's Day theme. 

Valentine's Day can be a lot of fun, but it can also be rough, even if you have a significant other. The purpose of this event specifically is to bring someone who means a lot to you, or reach out to someone who you'd like to get to know better, and invite them to join you for a cup of coffee. 

“Valentine’s Day is such a great opportunity to pause and look at the people around us. Whose day can I impact in a positive way? How can I use my words to let someone know they are valued? How can I use my actions to include someone who who feels alienated? It’s a great day to reach out to someone and say ‘Hi. I see you. You are not alone," said Engage Founder, Brooke Boyle by email.

“We structure Community Coffee in a way that includes newcomers and those who wouldn’t naturally enjoy networking. And as a result, 61% of our attendees are newcomers to the event and 15% of those are from referrals. This week we are asking people to bring a friend. Reach out to some one and invite them in.”

This week's event series is open networking style, with a reciprocity activity and facilitated introductions from Boyle. No speaker or skills development this week.

Still a little hesitant? Here are some testimonials from those who have attended previous community coffee events:

  • "Everyone felt like they were coming with an open mind and enthusiastic attitude and it was palpable."
  • "I would definitely come to more Community Coffees and I recommend it especially to someone on the quieter side that wants a good, curated, guided experience to make friends in a non-pressure setting.” 

Here are the specifics to know for Wednesday's Valentine's Day-themed community coffee:

  • Be prepared to provide your preferred email address upon check-in
  • Each time you attend an Engage event -- among other types of Engage participation -- you get an Engage point. You can see people's point totals on their name tag to see who is new and who has been involved in Engage in various ways. If you notice someone with a low number of points, be sure to say hello and welcome them. If you see someone with a lot of points, find out what they've been doing with Engage and what keeps them coming back.
  • Phone down. (If you can. Engage knows this isn't feasible for everyone).
  • If someone joins the dialogue, make room for them.

What you should bring: 

  • Bring the aforementioned person. These are all really cool people who are sometimes lonely. Take a step to include someone else in your day.
  • Don't forget your Engage button. It's your ticket to a free cup of coffee. And this week's host -- Electric Eye Cafe -- is offering a free refill for Engage attendees. Can you feel the love?

Check out more Ann Arbor events on the A4 Community Calendar 

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