Alina Canca, Business Administration Senior

The Empowerment Plan Intern Fights Homelessness in Detroit

Keep yourself busy, and work hard to impress everyone and yourself.

Originally studying psychology, Alina Canca once hoped to help patients in children’s hospitals, but soon discovered it was not her perfect fit. Now, as a senior studying Business Administration with a minor in International Business, she has found a way to combine her heart for people with her capabilities as a young professional.

Canca is an intern in Detroit at The Empowerment Plan, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping the homeless. The expanding company, led by 24-year-old CEO and product designer Veronika Scott, hires and trains women from shelters to make a coat/sleeping bag hybrid, each of which they hand-deliver to a homeless individual on the street. The whole company is dedicated to helping people succeed and even allows for employees to work half days on Thursdays and Fridays to accommodate GED classes.

“I wanted to intern here because I wanted my presence to make an impact,” Canca said. “I knew that I wouldn’t be happy working where I couldn’t be surrounded by strong individuals day in and day out. Everyone here has such a special story.”

Canca said that her job description changes day by day. She works closely with the CEO, production manager, and marketing manager regularly, but also offers help to the seamstresses when she is able to. The company is still young and growing, so she likes to help everyone she can and gain as much experience as possible.

“The most valuable piece of information I’ve learned from my internship so far is to not wait around for someone to tell you to do something. Keep yourself busy, and work hard to impress everyone and yourself. Show how smart and hardworking you are on a consistent basis, and challenge yourself,” Canca said.

Even after a few short weeks at her internship, she considers it to be “eye-opening and life changing.” She has abandoned procrastination in favor of working harder and pays more attention to what she does and says on a daily basis. She has been inspired by how much each day in itself can affect a person’s life.

Canca noted that Ferris and her program helped prepare her for every aspect of this internship. The wide array of business classes she took gave her a “business base” that she has been able to build upon since starting with The Empowerment Plan.

To learn more about The Empowerment Plan, visit their website, like them on Facebook, or follow them on Instagram. Each $100 donated goes toward sponsoring a coat that they hand-deliver to a homeless individual on the street.