For those born and raised in Ohio, most aspire to get out and live by the beach. Wyatt (Kin) Sanders-Evans, however, did the opposite. As a native of Columbia, South Carolina, he was in for quite the treat coming to Ohio.
“I traded my flipflops for snow boots,” says Wyatt.
Wyatt started his college career at Charleston Southern University, where he received the World of Business Award as a freshman. Soon after, he transferred to The Ohio State University and found his true connection in the construction systems management (CSM) major in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering. He loves the specialization of his major and the connections he has made with his fellow students.
Wyatt has always had a knack for construction and developing. Growing up, he enjoyed putting together Legos. In the 5thgrade, he discovered the ultimate introduction to his future: RollerCoaster Tycoon, a popular PC game. Being particularly fond of amusement parks after growing up near one, this was the perfect outlet for his inner creativity.
Wyatt hopes to one day intermingle his childhood passion and career path by participating in the construction of theme parks like Walt Disney World, Sea World or Cedar Fair LP.
“I used to design and build my own theme parks every day. I think it’s kind of humorous, how life plays out,” Wyatt says.
When not in class, working, or visiting an amusement parks, Wyatt spends his free time shuffle skating, producing music, cooking, and volunteering. With the Todd Anthony Bell Resource Center, he has volunteered at the Academy for Urban Scholars in Columbus and the Columbus Preparatory School for Boys. He served as a mentor and role model for at-risk young men, emphasizing the importance of showing compassion to one another and encouraging them to take pride in their heritage, as he does.
“I expressed to the younger African American males to make sure they maintain a high self-esteem and positively self-identify themselves, despite the stereotypes and negative images black males are constantly portrayed as in popular news and media outlets.”
Students in the CSM program all complete an internship or co-op during their time at Ohio State. Wyatt is approaching his one-year anniversary of working at the John Glenn Columbus International Airport, where he works with the planning and engineering department. He has gained a multitude of industry-related experience while actively participating on several projects throughout his time at the airport.
Currently, he is aiding in the construction of ConRAC, a $140 million development housing rental car operations and garage parking. During his first months as a co-op, he was able to work alongside an Ohio State CSM alumnus on tenant work permits and the installation of PGA Tour Grill, a new dining area in the airport primarily focused on health foods.
However, Wyatt’s favorite memory during his co-op was when he and his coworkers were honored with an invitation from Vice President Mike Pence to take a tour of the Air Force Two plane.
Wyatt greatly appreciates the amazing opportunity he is given for working with the airport and the lessons and experiences he has consumed during his time there. He was taught patience, cooperation and the importance of quality leadership, communication and teamwork at all levels.
Wyatt thanks his family, friends and home church, the First Nazareth Baptist Church, for supporting him throughout his life.
For those who look up to him, Wyatt offers:
“Some will value your beliefs and extend a helping hand. Right place, right time happens all the time.”
By Helena Nguyen
and Chip Tuson