msaper – Detroit Community-Engaged Research Program


Week 9

Reflecting on my expectations of what I thought I would be working on, my guess that there was maybe too much to do and not enough time was correct. I have touched on a little bit of the things that were mentioned in my post, but also not been able to dive deep into any …

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Week 8

I’ve learned so much from Jamon Jordan’s tours that we’ve done this summer. On our last tour it was really informative to learn about the history behind all the new places that are gentrifying Detroit to hear about the systematic destruction of Black Bottom and Paradise Valley, and gave insight into what is happening today. …

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Week 6: Work Style

I’ve been learning a lot about what I need in order to do well at work this summer. Because the org is very small, I’m often working alone. I’ve found that I do best on days when we have group meetings because talking to other people helps me focus even though that sounds counterproductive. I …

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Week 5: Water Shutoffs in Highland Park I’ve been thinking about this MetroTimes article a lot recently by Eleanore Catolico. It’s called “Why there’s no end in sight for Highland Park’s water affordability crisis” and covers the history and present moment of the water shutoff crisis in Highland Park. It is very connected to the work I’m doing at Soulardarity because …

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Week 4

This week I’m supposed to reflect on the culture at my site. Most days, it’s just me working alone, so I guess the culture is kind of isolated. This is juxtaposed with community meetings with food, and time to talk to people and get to know them. I much prefer the big group settings, and …

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Week 3

I’ve been observing that even though my organization is small, they have big ambitions. A lot is resting on the organizing that they do, but ultimately, it’s a community effort, not just one organization. I’m also noticing how much grant writing and maintaining a nonprofit takes. I haven’t had a lot of time to learn …

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