Meet MSHF Scholarship Recipient Kelly Marciales

Kelly is pursuing her Design Thinking certificate at Cornell University. On what drew her to the program, Kelly says, “In my work as a community organizer and program developer, I was always balancing between the human needs and expressed frustrations with current programs and I was developing innovative cohorts with unique curricula. I felt that the Design Thinking tools were a good fit for the types of human-centered programing I wanted to produce. The certificate program at Cornell placed me in a team of other innovators who were engineers, analysts and program developers from around the world. It was exciting to blend community organizing methodology with a Design framework.”

Kelly currently works for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and after completing her certificate, she plans to begin working with a small team that and train them to us Design Thinking tools so they can implement them in their program creation. She says, “It brings us out of our own ‘wants’ and helps us listen intently to the people who will be accessing our content.”

Her best study tip she also calls a life hack: have a planner that breaks up your year into months and weeks. One with reflection sections to evaluate where you did great and where you need to focus on improving next week is especially helpful. Kelly says, “I use this to help me schedule time for course work, field work, reading and submitting assignments.” Her recommendation is Panda Planner. Outside of school, Kelly loves to travel! She says, “My job takes me all over the country, but I really enjoy having a great meal in a new place with friends I just met.”

Of her MSHF scholarship, Kelly says, “I am grateful for the MSHF Scholarship because I was able to get this certificate at the time when I needed it the most: building national training programs. Financially, the certificate would not have been feasible until later in my career but MSHF made it possible now where I can benefit from the education, putting the learning into practice immediately.”

Interested in learning more about Mat-Su Health Foundation scholarship programs? Click here to register for an upcoming virtual MSHF Scholarship Info Session!