What are the essential skills and competencies young professionals need to compete and succeed in Kansas City’s regional workplace? The Essential Skills Study addresses this question by asking young professionals, 1-5 years into their career, about the skills they utilize most in their current jobs. The survey project is led by Dr. Karin Chang from the Urban Education Research Center, in partnership with The Debruce Foundation, KC Rising, KC STEM Alliance, Prep-KC, and the Kauffman Foundation.The study is part of a regional effort to rethink education and real-world learning opportunities in Kansas. Over 400 employees participated in the study including young professionals in engineering, architecture, information technology, finance, manufacturing, education, and life sciences positions. Release of findings is scheduled for April 2021.