Partnerships with purpose
In Designing Real World Impacts, participants choose a problem they see impacting the lives of people in their community and conduct an in-depth research study to learn more about what the problem looks like in their community and beyond. Student teams identify which local professionals and organizations are already working in response to the problem and what resources and services currently exist.
Participants in Designing Real World Impacts build their leadership and networking skills by scheduling and hosting meetings with these partners (virtually and in person) to gain a deeper understanding of the problem and to examine opportunities and gaps in our current systems.
Student teams are encouraged to create opportunities to travel off-site to visit their community partners, tour their facilities, and connect with people who are most directly impacted by the problem. Participants engage in these interactions as young professionals with the goal of forming meaningful and lasting relationships and cultivating a diverse professional network.
Examples of partnerships include:
Naim Al-Amin with SWAGG Inc, to support reentry and entrepreneurship programs for returning citizens
Sheila Albers with JOCO United to advocate for police reform and CIT Training mandates
Young Family Farm to support their efforts in response to food insecurity in Kansas City
Susan Engel with St. Michael's Veterans Center to promote awareness and engagement with veterans in our communities
Ursula Copeland with KCMO Public Health Department to support efforts to improve access and quality of care for young mothers
and increase COVID-19 vaccination rates in teens
Cori Wallace with Della Lamb Community Services to support refugee and immigrant teens by providing opportunities to build community
Tyler Lumpkin with MOCSA (Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault) to reduce the stigma around sexual assault and increase education for teens
Founder of No shame kc
Co-Founder of Relentless Pursuit Outreach and Recovery
Defense 4 the Defenseless team has greatly benefited from connecting with Ingebjorg Gibson with Relentless Pursuit Outreach and Recovery and Christine’s Place. We were able to get a more in-depth look at the problem of sex trafficking in the Kansas City area. Ingebjorg played a big part in our project, thanks to her we were able to visit Christine’s place and got to see the problem in the present moment. Also, we were able to do our empathy interview with some of the women that were there at Christine’s Place. Ingebjorg shared exactly what these women need in order to regain their self-dignity and feel human again. Ingebjorg has given us feedback on impactful solutions and which ones would be beneficial, not only for us but for the women as well. From this we were able to gain a good relationship, a role model, and most importantly an understanding of what is needed in our community, We are looking forward to continuing to stay connected to Ingebjorg through our projects in the future.
Kamryn McKibben and Isabella Cherry, Defense for the Defenseless
NICOLE RAWSON, MBA
SCreen Time Clinic owner
Gretchen Shanahan, B.A.
Screen Time Clinic Certified Digital Wellness Educator
We have had an amazing experience connecting with Gretchen via zoom and email. She has helped mentor our team and understand this issue more locally. She has shared amazing resources such as the "Wait Until 8th" campaign and how the surrounding community and school districts are currently tackling this problem. She has given our team great feedback on which schools we should share our solution with and polishing up our final product. From this connection we gained a passionate and intelligent mentor and role model. Looking forward, we plan to continue to stay connected with Gretchen in the coming months after sharing our solution.