Daniela lives and breathes the word “intention” in every facet of her life.
The oldest child by five years, Daniela became self-sufficient and mature from a young age. She could usually be found in her backyard, either on the swing set, in a tree, or digging up frogs. She played piano, percussion, and soccer throughout middle and high school, though, given her incredibly mellow disposition, she “struggled with the whole aggression piece.” Daniela found an outlet for her gentle, loving spirit in high school, when she began volunteering for outreach organizations in inner-city Akron and Cleveland. Whether she was assigned to a mundane task, or something more directly people-oriented, Daniela found fulfillment contributing in whatever way she could. “I loved the opportunity to break out of my comfort zone, to just jump into it and learn how to love and help people the best I could. To see the joy of those who have so much less than we did was incredible.”
Her passion for nonprofit work is a testament to the intentionality with which Daniela treats the humans surrounding her. She’s interested in developing an authentic understanding of others, and is willing to not only ask the questions -- but truly listen to the answers -- that spark deep, thoughtful connection. Daniela is a believer in the true goodness of the human spirit, and seeks to share in that through intimate, heartfelt relationships. She’s never felt like she needed to be surrounded by a huge group of friends to be happy -- from a very young age, Daniela has been satiated having one or two full, intimate friendships, centered on love and understanding. Such is the thoughtful, generous, and compassionate sort of approach Daniela takes in many aspects of her life.
Daniela has always loved crafts and being artsy, but she never thought it’d play a serious role in her life until she was encouraged by her graphic design teacher senior year of high school to consider it as a career path. Though unsure at first, Daniela quickly came to enjoy the challenge of her first few classes in the Visual Communication Design program at Kent State University, and determined early in that the world of design and creativity was something she was truly passionate about. “I love that it keeps growing and changing.” During her internship at ipso, Daniela hopes to determine if the web is a design platform she enjoys. “I know it’s an important and practical skill -- I’m excited to develop and learn as much as I can.” She loves incorporating design and craftiness in her personal life, too. Her wedding venue, in fact, will be decorated with a smattering of handmade, Daniela originals: watercolor invitations, hand-lettered welcome signs, personally crafted wedding gifts.
As for her long-term dreams, Daniela would love to own her own shop someday, where she can sell both her design work and handmade things.
Q&A with Daniela
What's the best part of your story so far?
All of it. I feel like everything leading up to this point has shaped me to be who I am. I also get to be a part of a bigger picture, as I am just one small thread in a large woven tapestry.
What organization or company inspires you and why?
Feed my Starving Children. They provide meals for needy children all over the world and save millions of lives. You are given the opportunity to help by more than just donating; you can go to a “mobile pack site” with friends and family to help pack food for needy children. Their goal of getting people involved to provide food while sharing the gospel inspires me.
What is something no one would ever believe to be true about you?
My fiance is the only person that I ever held hands with/dated...Also, I thoroughly enjoy plants, but struggle to keep them alive.
What are you passionate about related to the work you do in serving others?
I am passionate about others feeling valued, cared for, and loved.
What does flourishing mean to you?
Becoming. Expanding. Expounding. Evolving. Discovering. It’s the moment of convergence when natural skill and talent meet passion and personality.
In an alternate life, what would you want to give a try?
Travel around the world and documenting my experiences through photography. Specifically places like Iceland, New Zealand, and Banff.
What are you doing when you feel most like you?
I feel most like me when I am spending time with my fiancé, family and friends, hiking, or painting.
What aspect of ipso's culture resonates with you the most?
The aspect of ipso’s culture that resonates with me the most is the environment. It is evident that people enjoy being here, are passionate and work hard at what they do, and care about others.