I’m Not Planning On Leaving
It might be a tall claim to make when I’m only twenty years old, but I don’t intend to leave Detroit. Sure I’ll go back to Ann Arbor to finish up undergrad and perhaps to complete a master’s program, but my future seems tied to Detroit. There is really only one direction for the city to go and it’s both exciting and challenging to be here while it changes its trajectory.
The city is in a different position than it was five years ago. There are more eyes on Detroit and more organizations formed within Detroit all hoping to see the brightest possible future for the city. Five years won’t be enough time to see systemic changes really take place or the city clean up all of its blighted areas. It might be enough time, however, to see the city progressing in a positive direction. It’s my opinion that DetroitWorks will come to pass without making any serious contribution and that it will be all of the grassroots organizations, rather, that will continue to grow and foster the birth of other similar groups. I think more and more attention will be paid to the neighborhoods by way of a growing urban agriculture movement and the local communities that will hopefully grow around it. If public support grows for the green movement, I think Detroit would do itself a favor if it freed up land for use in the development of parks, agriculture, and other green projects.
My current dream is to open a consulting firm for non-profit organizations in the city of Detroit with one of my good friends from the U of M who also has a love for the city. Although it’s not much, my work doing analysis for D-YES has inspired me to think of the possibility of doing similar work to advise the improvement of other non-profits. The firm would employ and mentor local high school students to foster an interest and aptitude in mathematics, a subject that is often considered too hard and uncool to be good at. I realize that it’s a bit of a pipe-dream, but it seems possible. My plan is to earn a master’s degree and hopefully return to the city to work for a non-profit or start a firm such as the one I described. It seems to me that I could meet such a goal in five years. Being a young person in Detroit is as exciting as it is challenging (something I mentioned in my final reflection) and I’d like to put my energy towards the future of Detroit in the most effective way possible.