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Sarah Schnell, 26 

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Forty Under 40

Sarah Schnell, 26 

A Forty Under 40 winner shares how her perspective changed when she sustained an injury.

April 5, 2021
Sarah Schnell

Sales Designer

McDaniels Kitchen and Bath / Lansing, Mich.

 An Injury and a Revelation: 

I broke my ankle in 2016, my senior year at Kendall College of Art & Design. It changed my perspective about the built environment. Everyone gets injured at some point, and it can happen any time. The spaces you live in need to reflect that, especially if you’re aging in place. As a designer, I consider a house’s main floor—the laundry, the kitchen, the bedroom, the bathroom—the aging-in-place level, and I think about what might eventually need to be installed, like grab bars in showers and tubs.

Everyone gets injured at some point, and it can happen any time. The spaces you live in need to reflect that, especially if you’re aging in place.

I joined McDaniels right out of college, so my mentors have been my coworkers, especially designers Nicole Dagen and Tracie Tiedt, who support me and have worked with me out in the field. In my role as sales designer, I manage the project and serve as a liaison between the customer and the installer. We also have products that I sell.

I see my future as a kitchen and bath designer with this company, which has been around for a long time and has a great reputation. With my recent promotion, I think I’m close to where I want to be.

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