The new magnetism of mid-size cities

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For many millennials, second cities are becoming their first choice.

If, 10 years ago, you had asked 28-year-old Sarah Luckett Bhatia if she’d eventually return to her hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, she “would have laughed in your face.”

Even just a few years ago, the prospects of coming home to Derby City would have seemed slim. Bhatia moved to Chicago for school, studied at Columbia College, and immediately got a job in corporate planning and strategy. Like many 20-somethings, she steered her life and career trajectory toward big cities and the opportunities they promised.

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