Denise Gleich

2016 A Community Mentor


What makes you a Difference Maker?

Through Women in Learning and Leadership, I was given the opportunity to become a mentor at Vista Maria, which is a residential facility for at risk youth from September of 2014 to the present day. Our mentoring group meets with the youth every other Saturday for the school year. Due to this experience we assist to promote confidence, trust, and improve the well being of the youth.

Campus Achievements:

Student Outreach and Academic Resources Mentor Program, President of American Association of University Women, Treasurer of American Association of University Women, Member of Women in Learning and Leadership - Assistant Mentoring Coordinator, Member of Association of Nontraditional Students

Leadership Experiences:

I helped organize and spoke at class events, such as Power and Privilege in Southeastern Michigan. Our event was “Hoodwinked and Bamboozled,” and we discussed the foreclosure epidemic, racial, and economic bias that is occurring in Detroit. Furthermore, I participated in “The Meeting of the Minds,” which was held on campus last spring, for Inside Out Prison Exchange class. The presentation consisted of research projects completed by UM-Dearborn (outside) students, and Macomb Correctional Facility (inside) students. The topics were policy proposals related to unconscious racial bias, parenting education (for families who have an incarcerated parent), mental health promotion, judicial procedures, policing practices, and economic development.

What is your Dream Career?

My life long goal is to become a substance abuse counselor, and open my own private practice.

What was your Defining Moment at UM-Dearborn?

Walking through the doors of the University of Michigan-Dearborn was my most defining moment. I never imagined in my wildest dreams that I would be a university student. I decided that I would have an experience, and not focus exclusively on academics. I would get involved in college culture, community service, and most importantly stretch myself mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.