Graduate and undergraduate students work in teams on projects identified by staff at different Detroit based community organizations. Recent projects have included nutrition and cooking classes with youth, activity based STEM projects, community gardening, media literacy, and arts and crafts.
At Bailey Park Neighborhood Development Corporation, students worked on a project that focused on receiving community feedback and improving the data collected from the census that did not accurately reflect the residents in the McDougall-Hunt neighborhood. They went around the neighborhood and listened to the needs/questions of the residents, received critical feedback and learned what goes into community-based research. This project helped develop community outreach, data collection/evaluation, communication, and relational skills that are so necessary for anyone who is interested in community advocacy work.
Each semester a student involved with the Detroit Initiative acts as a liaison between the community agencies and the DI courses. This student acts as a bridge between the two parties, working with the two parties to address any issues that occur and ensuring there are clear lines of communication.
The Detroit Initiative believes in ensuring a true partnership with the community agencies in which it supports. Each year, the Detroit Initiative student group holds fundraising activities and submits funding proposals on behalf of the agencies.