From Observer to Conversation Starter: All the Reasons to Attend Immersion Day

By Anna Fontus, Metro EDGE Member, Community Engagement Committee


ICYMI (but I’m sure you didn’t) Sacramento rents are rising faster than anywhere else in the country, according to data analysis by multiple real estate companies. Headlines like “New year, same rising rents in Sacramento region” (Sacramento Business Journal) are becoming less and less surprising, while regional anxiety around housing affordability becomes more established.

Only a few years ago, it used to be that if you were “watching the market” you were gearing up to buy a house. In 2018 it’s not a stretch to say that housing’s a universal topic, popping up in conversations from staff meetings to drinks with your friends, and also cutting across populations of all interests, income levels, ethnicities, and of course, ages. Trust me; I would have done something else with my Monday afternoon if housing wasn’t an issue sucker punching young professionals trying to make a name for themselves and a positive impact on the community…aka Metro EDGErs.

The agenda for Immersion Day is packed with a representative of each piece of the housing puzzle, and a new perspective on how the crisis is absorbed by different members of the community. I know if housing was already your thing, you would have signed up already.

If you’re still not convinced, you might want to give it a second glance because…

  • This housing crisis is creating problems we haven’t even experienced yet. Like severe drops in birth rates. A 24% drop in Oakland occurred. *Insert Handmaid’s Tale reference here* More info here:
  • Understanding how efforts in other sectors can impact the crisis—including ones in our own lines of work. For example, workforce shortages in the construction sector consistently inflate cost of production and in many cases translate into higher rents for all of us. Personally as an education/workforce policy analyst, it’s an opportunity for me to understand how challenges with housing may impact workforce supply and demand. With our diverse set of panels, there’s no doubt you will find implications for your day to day work as well.
  • As more variables come into play, livability in Sacramento becomes a larger and larger question mark. Being in the room with regional and statewide experts will give you a chance at positioning yourself for success in an era of uncertainty!

For our Immersion Day activities, Metro EDGE intentionally selects topics and agendas relevant for our members, but also aims to provide an opportunity for our members to understand the experiences of our different community populations. Whether you are new to Sacramento, or have lived here your entire life, don’t miss out on this opportunity to network with your fellow EDGE leaders, inform yourself about a topic with strong regional and national implications, and invaluable education about people and places in Sacramento you’ve never experienced before! I hope to see you there and at In the Mix after! Cheers!


Anna Fontus is a policy analyst at Capitol Impact where she evaluates local, state, and federal policies as they impact K-16 education and workforce development programs. When asked about her favorite part of her job, she can’t choose between engaging community stakeholders, analyzing legislation, or leading policy work groups—she is also super grateful that most of the time it doesn’t feel like work! Outside of the policy world, Anna is an active fitness instructor, overbearing cat mom, and insatiable foodie. She can’t wait to meet you at Immersion Day (or the after party)!