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United Prairie Bank launches Graduate Lending Program

MANKATO -- The Graduate Lending Program has been developed in an effort to train and retain ambitious future leaders for United Prairie Bank.

The trend toward rural areas with lower population growth has led to United Prairie to take a proactive approach in maintaining continuity and stability in leadership in rural locations.

"The thriving agri-business economy in rural markets makes this an important endeavor in continuing to provide excellent service to our customers through grooming talented, young candidates to become our future leaders," a United Prairie Bank press release said.

The Graduate Lending Program identifies candidates who are recent or soon-to-be college graduates recommended by the leadership of one of our branches as someone with potential and must fit the following additional criteria:

* Exhibit a desire to live long-term in a specific area, or are tied to the area by a family farm operation.

* Majoring in business, management or finance.

* Show above average "emotional intelligence" and personal fortitude.

* Have leadership capability.

Candidates in the program, called analysts, will spend time in the deposit, loan administration, commercial and ag credit analysis and loan portfolio management areas of the bank's operations.

This experience will help the analysts gain a full understanding through working with local branch leadership and the centralized credit analysis area.

The analysts will test on each of the four main areas to ensure knowledge and understanding levels are achieved. Candidates showing promise in time will enter into a long-term arrangement with the organization to set expectations for future opportunities.

The Graduate Lending Program is currently at capacity with four Analysts currently on staff. Analysts Clay Sharkey, Brett Block, Spenser Bradley and Tyson Weber make up the first participants in the program.

The United Prairie Management Team is hopeful this program will thrive and continue the organization's high-level of service for future generations in our branch offices.

"With the help of our teams and our market presidents, we can develop a talent pool that will work to the advantage of our company and our communities for years to come," said Scott Bradley, United Prairie CEO.