Kyle Week 1 – Letter to Kyle – Detroit Community-Engaged Research Program

Kyle Week 1 – Letter to Kyle

Dear Kyle,

This is a big experience for you. This internship is going to grow you both professionally and personally. It is your first time moving out and living on your own, which will be its own challenge. In addition to moving out this is a new internship. It is much more traditional than your first grantwriting internship. This internship is 9-5 instead of all from home. The internship is with the Nortown Community Development Corporation (Nortown CDC). Over the next 9 weeks you will be learning about Nortown, District 3 and the whole city of Detroit.

Your big research project will be to research the life and work of Colonel Philetus W. Norris. He is a frontiersmen who was an explorer, road builder, Union soldier (Civil War), land developer, politician, archeologist, poet and second superintendent of Yellowstone National Park. Your research will be focused on his life and work and his founding of the Village of Norris which is in what is now known as Nortown in Detroit. Your research will make Nortown more relevant and marketable. This will help Nortown CDC with applying for and getting greater funding for the organization. This ties into your past grantwriting experience with the Warrendale Community Organization (Detroit, MI). In addition to the research you will be recording 2 oral histories from residents of the neighborhood. This will preserve the history or the neighborhood for future generations.

Your current perception of Detroit is that there is a lot of important work to be done to improve the lives of the citizens of Detroit. After reading How to Kill a City, you’ve learned a lot about gentrification and how it displaces the citizens of Detroit who already live here. You also feel that it is vastly different from the suburbs where you have been living for most of your life. You feel that it is more dangerous and needs to be respected more than the suburbs in order to stay safe.

Over the course of this program you are hoping to gain experience living on your own, friends from the program and work, valuable work experience from Nortown and a greater understanding of the city and the people who live here. Overall, you are hoping that this program grows you as a person for the better.

Good luck over the next 9 weeks!



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