Kaitlyn Miklovich is a 2019-2020 Fellow. Kaitlyn graduated from University of Detroit Mercy’s School of Architecture where she got her Bachelor’s and Master’s in Architecture. She hails from Clifford, Michigan.

Tell us about your host company and your role in the organization.
My Challenge Detroit host company is Mosher Dolan, Inc. At Mosher Dolan I am a project manager on the Goldfish Swim Schools team, working primarily with contractors, owners and architects to ensure the buildout of the physical space goes as planned.

Tell us about your most recent challenge project; what did you learn from the experience?

Challenge Fridays went virtual during COVID-19!

My most recent project was with the Downtown Detroit Partnership and the Greektown Neighborhood Partnership. My team worked to better engage Randolph Plaza, an up and coming nexus of Detroit between Greektown and downtown, enabling new methods of engagement that instill pride in the area. I learned that the way you may interact with a space once or twice overtime might not mean much to you, but for someone who interacts with the space multiple times a day, it is completely different, but very important perspective.

How do you feel you have positively contributed to the community this year?

Researching books with Miss Mary during interviews for Challenge No. 3 with Sinai-Grace Guild CDC.

I feel I have positively contributed to the community by increasing the capacity of the amazing Challenge Detroit partners—they on their own are doing great things, but we were able to help propel them further in their work, as well as help them dream of what their non-profit organization could be.

Since becoming a Fellow, what have you learned?
Something new to most of us has been working during the pandemic. I have never held a remote position, let alone taken many online classes. It was very different from meeting in person with the larger cohort, but it certainly didn’t slow us down on challenge projects! I learned how to communicate differently and more effectively with team members who were both near and far.

How do you believe your fellowship year will shape your career moving forward?
This fellowship has helped shape my career already. It has shown me that there are many hardworking people out there and it has inspired me to work harder each and every day on both myself and for others.

Please share the most memorable moment you have experienced as a Fellow. Why was it memorable and how has it impacted you?

Presenting a deliverable to other cohort members during the design thinking process.

My most memorable moment was during the first challenge, where we worked with the Detroit Public Schools Community District on creating a district-wide conference. After presenting our project, Sharlonda Buckman, the assistant superintendent, stood up and couldn’t speak, but instead cried in appreciation of our work. It showed me right away that the work we were doing as a cohort mattered to people and it really made a difference in many lives.

If someone reading your interview is considering applying to be a Fellow, why would you encourage them to apply?
Being a part of Challenge Detroit is an amazing opportunity to meet and network with an extremely diverse group of people; from non-profits to your next door neighbor. I would encourage young people to apply because they have the chance to meet so many passionate people in the city of Detroit.