The importance of establishing meaningful connections that make an impact throughout the community drives a passion for giving back to those less fortunate.
Miles Urban is a Manager of a Solution Activation team at Highmark Health. He attended Penn State University where he received a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering.
Are you from Pittsburgh? Have you ever lived anywhere else?
I was born and raised in the eastern suburbs of Pittsburgh in the Monroeville/Murrysville area. I previously lived in Savannah, GA for two years after college, but I moved back to be closer to family, friends and to enjoy more seasons.
How did you choose the career you’re in today?
I went to Penn State University for Industrial Engineering. I did work-in-process improvement in manufacturing before finding my way into healthcare. My communication and technical skills led me into project/program management and now I’m leading a team of project managers. Together, we help drive big ideas forward to get things accomplished.
What is your favorite book or TV show and why?
I’m a big reader. I mostly enjoy non-fiction, but I like to alternate as much as I can. My favorite book from this year has been Hidden Valley Road. It’s an investigative report of a family with twelve kids (ten boys, two girls), six of whom were diagnosed with Schizophrenia. It’s a wild read that goes through the history of mental illness, how it’s evolved and the intricacies of life in such a family dynamic.
What are some of your hobbies or favorite things to do outside of work?
I love running, especially downtown since we have great access to the rivers, bridges, and trails, reading (open to recommendations) and spending time around the city with friends and family.
Why do you think it’s so important to give back to your community?
To me, giving back is more than just making a pledge or donating “things.” I enjoy being involved in the community through volunteering at events or being a part of a non-profit board. Those types of activities allow me to see first-hand what’s going on in the communities around us and allows me to make tangible contributions that truly make a difference. I also enjoy making connections with people that I may not otherwise get the chance to meet.
Why do you volunteer with United Way?
At the end of the day, everyone in the community, the country, and the world, are just doing their best to be happy and make a life. United Way offers me opportunities to learn about people that I wouldn’t normally connect with in my everyday life, and I appreciate that. It has opened my eyes and heart to so many people within our great community.
What is your favorite United Way memory?
I was able to go shopping with some teens for winter clothes during one of the Project Bundle-Up events. It was extremely humbling to be a part of that and see the kids excited to have new clothes for the season. They left with huge smiles and life essentials that a lot of people take for granted.