When given the opportunity to work at any number of non-profits in the Detroit area, Brittany Mitchell chose GRDC because she “wanted to work in a true community.” Brittany knew a little about Grandmont Rosedale before she started as a graduate student in the Master’s Social Work with a concentration in Innovations in Community, Policy, and Leadership at WSU. When earning her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education, Brittany pre-student taught at Cooke Elementary School and “fell in love with the neighborhood.”
LONG AND VARIED EXPERIENCE
As the Community Security Coordinator Intern, Brittany brings a good deal of varied experience with her. Brittany has worked in customer service, volunteer management, administration, leadership and community development. Brittany has been involved with Blight Busters, the Heidelberg Project, Recycle Here! and Mariners’ Inn. She has worked with people from 2-82. She currently teaches fourth grade at an elementary school on the east side. The principal was kind enough to offer Brittany a flexible schedule so she could intern while teaching. Brittany’s schedule is pretty busy. Since starting at GRDC in September, Brittany has helped out at the Northwest Detroit Farmers’ Market and with the Vacant Property Task Force Meetings, Crime Prevention Task Force Meetings, and Neighborhood Safety Meetings. Kitty Yarbrough, GRDC’s Community Engagement Manager, is especially “excited about Brittany’s varied experiences and what she’ll be able to bring to this community.”
Brittany has a particular interest in environmental science. After finishing her undergrad degree, Brittany went to work as an AmeriCorps Intern working for the non-profit Green Living Science: Detroit Environmental Education Programs. As an Education and Volunteer Coordinator, Brittany built an Earthship – a self-sustaining solar house made of natural and upcycled materials from Recycle Here! in Detroit. Dubbed the Green Dragon, this Earthship became a great educational model for students. As GRDC continues to incorporate green infrastructure in the Grandmont Rosedale neighborhood in the building of its second green parking lot this spring, Brittany hopes that she will learn even more about sustainability.
FINDING A HOME IN NORTHWEST DETROIT
Brittany has not hesitated to become invested in our community. She told her dad about the community in Northwest Detroit and how she was looking to buy a home here. Her father was pretty skeptical. When she brought him to check out a home she had her eye on in the neighboring Schoolcraft Improvement Association community, “he was blown away.” When a neighbor came out of her home to introduce herself to Brittany and her dad and to explain that “Everyone has lived here a long time. It’s an active community,” Brittany’s dad was impressed and Brittany knew she had found a home.
Brittany will be an intern at GRDC through April, but as she is now a resident, Brittany will surely fulfill her objective to “expand her knowledge of GRDC and the neighborhoods.” Welcome, Brittany! GRDC is fortunate to have you as a co-worker and neighbor.