We had the good fortune of connecting with Megan Fitzpatrick and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Megan, maybe we can start at the very start – the idea – how did you come up with the idea for your business?
When I started working in education in 2007, I was passionate about making young minds love and understand math. I know I know, math is not everyone’s forte, however, it’s the only true global universal language and I wanted to share that experience with younger generations. As I progressed in my educational journey I began to realize that our current system was not set up for the thoughtful and critical thinking needed to develop, not just mathematically-minded students, but youth who were more connected and well-rounded as a whole. This is when the rose-colored glasses came off and I realized that if I wanted to make a bigger impact on education it needed to be done outside the classroom. I founded The Fitz Solution in 2014 as a private tutoring and educational consulting company. I maintained my position at MDCPS making the company my side hustle. As the years progressed and the focus on testing and data in the classroom became more and more important, my passion dwindled, and knew I needed a change. I left the classroom in 2015 and attended the FIU PMBA program at the Brickell campus. Through combining my educational pedagogy, business planning, and private tutoring clients I created The Ultimate Selfie. The Ultimate Selfie is a curriculum designed to guide tween, teens, and young adults in identifying their core values, strengths, and passions so that they can live a life aligned to those personal qualities. The immersive curriculum is designed both asynchronous and synchronous to guide the participants through a self-discovery process that defines their networks and personal goals to have tangible steps to a filterless version of their future.
What should our readers know about your business?
Growing up in South Florida was an experience where I learned about loyalty and pride for your neighborhood. I am a graduate of Miami Southridge then attended Saint Mary’s college which was not only 1000 miles away in physical distance but also worlds away in culture. Being able to see education from all different avenues is one of my special powers. I also consider this to be a differentiator in my views of education. Returning to Miami after graduation I was filled with hope and excitement. Entering my first classroom I still remember the overwhelming feeling of happiness I experienced. It was a teacher who showed empathy and compassion for me when my mom died. She humanized a teacher and showed me the real role a teacher plays in the lives of their students. This was my commitment, I could impact one life the same way she impacted mine I was doing my part. Thank you Ms Carmenate! Education and I are partners in crime. Fast forward 13 years, and today I have founded The Fitz Solution and created The Ultimate Selfie. Working in the public school system had its challenges and walking out of the classroom was one of the hardest decisions I have ever made, I felt as if I had abandoned my students. This was a guilt I did not anticipate and had to process. As my business grew my desire to make students better future leaders and more confident citizens also grew. I founded The Fitz Solution with the mission ‘Empower Tomorrow’s Leaders Today’. Initially, I began offering private tutoring, college preparation, and test preparation services. While providing these services I began to build relationships with my clients creating a holistic approach to private education services. After completing my first business plan at FIU I made a connection between its components and my desire to make better students. You see, developing a SWAT analysis, an exit strategy and projection goals can all be applied to creating a successful plan for teens. The Ultimate Selfie is the legacy of Fitz Solution. Combining years in the classroom, personalized educational consulting, and business planning make this curriculum that develops students on academic, social and professional levels. As the creator of The Ultimate Selfie I call this ‘facilitating Non-Googleable knowledge’. When Ms. Carmente humanized teachers for me I realized how impactful education truly is and how it transcends the classroom. The Fitz Solution is a business committed to making generations better one filter-free selfie at a time.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
“Taking your talents to South Beach” commonly quoted from Lebron’s decision to play for the Miami Heat. However this far from the only experience for those visiting Miami. I really enjoy the pockets of locals only surprises mixed with some clique tourist spots. A driving tour of the beautiful views from 395 to 195 offers newbies a panoramic view of the Miami skyline and beach line. Sunset and sunrise are great times for these adventures. Picking up some sandwiches from La Sandwicherie on South Beach after a yoga class at first street park on the weekend would be on the list. Dancing the night away at Ball & Chain and sipping on mojitos after the walking tour of the local Calle Ocho also gives for a great night out. Admiring some of the local art in Wynwood followed by some treats from the Fireman Derek’s. Finally, some chill pool time with my family while we BBQ churrasco with homemade chimichurri.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Gratitude is a key component for me as a person and a core value of my company. My story has unfolded in a way that has chapters of tragedy and triumph. I lost my mother at 16, she was my best friend and my number one reason for making the decisions I have made in my life. Her way of connecting with people, even strangers, is how I run my current client relationships. Clients are family. In her loss, she gifted me with her best friend, Barbara Blanck who I fondly call Aunt BJ (Barbara Jane). My mom and her were soul sisters that met in college. Throughout my childhood, she was the fun aunt who would get us ice cream before dinner and at the same time lend an understanding ear. As I have grown into adulthood she has become a confidant for me. She has guided me with love and acceptance through my failures and my victories. My brother and sister, Sarah and Thomas have been one of my biggest inspirations. My sister’s ability to see through negative and objectively react is an inspiration. My brother has been able to see me for all the gifts I bring to the world and reminds me of this regularly. His calm and caring nature is exactly what I need during tough times of running a business. To each of you, Thank YOU!
Al Delcy Ambrosio Photography