Fellow Profile: Poorvi Modi

| Poorvi Modi, Microsoft Civic Tech Fellow in Detroit

Poorvi Modi, Microsoft Civic Tech Fellow in Detroit

Where are you from?

Born and raised in Michigan, but most recently spent 3 and ½ years in Seattle!

School/grad year/major:

I am about to start the second year of my MBA program at the University of Michigan and will graduate in 2019. I also attended the University of Michigan for undergrad, where I majored in Industrial and Operations Engineering and minored in Political Science. GO BLUE!

Last thing you searched on Bing:

NYC weather

Why did you choose Microsoft’s fellowship program?

I am extremely excited to be able to leverage Microsoft’s vast resources to help empower Detroit residents, whether that be through advances in civic tech or increased digital literacy.

What’s your favorite tech project in the Chicago/Detroit area?

One program that I was recently introduced to that I am super excited to partner with closely is Parkman Coders. This program has done a great job getting kids excited about technology, by combining Computer Science classes with hands-on activities such as planting a garden.

Who is your civic tech mentor/idol?

I’m still relatively new to the space, but I definitely have a deep appreciation for all the fearless leaders I have met within the Detroit community thus far! The amount of time and effort they have dedicated to furthering the Detroit community is truly an inspiration.

What projects are you working on for your position as tech fellow for Microsoft?

My main goal is to ensure that Microsoft has a meaningful presence in the Detroit community. To do this I will be working closely with existing partners such as Data Driven Detroit (D3), Grow Detroit’s Young Talent (GDYT), Detroit Public Library (DPL), and Detroit Economic Solutions Corporation (DESC). Additionally I will be working to understand the current tech landscape in Detroit, and to identify new potential partners for Microsoft.

What excites you about civic tech?

Being able to use technology solutions to help people have a voice within their community and make their interactions with the government more efficient and effective.

What’s one problem you hope civic tech will solve for cities?

I hope that as civic tech advances, it increases a city’s ability to use data to make smarter, more inclusive decisions.