DBusiness Daily Update: Foundations Commit $12M+ to 78 Metro Detroit Arts Groups, and More

Detroit Sound Conservancy in Detroit received Detroit Arts Support funding. // Courtesy of Detroit Arts Support


Detroit Sound Conservancy in Detroit received Detroit Arts Support funding. // Courtesy of Detroit Arts Support
Detroit Sound Conservancy in Detroit received Detroit Arts Support funding. // Courtesy of Detroit Arts Support

Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.

Kresge, Erb, Hudson-Webber Foundations Commit $12M+ to 78 Arts Groups

Detroit Arts Support (DAS), a collaboration between The Kresge Foundation, Fred A. and Barbara M. Erb Family Foundation, and Hudson-Webber Foundation., is granting metro Detroit 78 arts and cultural organizations in metro Detroit more than $12 million over the next three years.

DAS aims to strengthen the arts and cultural sector through consistent support for a diverse set of organizations, which will use the finds for their general operations.

Grant recipients range from small to large organizations spread throughout the region, including Detroit Opera, Huron Valley Council for the Arts, and Sphinx Organization.

The three participating foundations shared a single application and review process before making independent decisions. This partnership streamlined the application process for nonprofit arts organizations while offering shared learning opportunities and improving systems for data collection and analysis necessary for the participating foundations to make funding decisions.

“Metro Detroit’s array of arts and cultural organizations is one of our greatest strengths, one of the keys to our resilience,” says Wendy Lewis Jackson, managing director of Kresge’s Detroit Program. “We seek to support them for their unique roles in anchoring us to tradition and opening windows on our future possibilities.”

The funding process also included focus groups that informed participating arts advocates, community leaders, and artists about the breadth of creativity in the region’s cultural sector. The focus groups provided DAS applicants with feedback about perceptions of their organizations from current and prospective supporters, and they helped DAS funding partners discover arts groups beyond those they have existing relationships with. Taking place over four days, these focus groups represented an important learning component of DAS and emphasized the initiative’s core values of transparency and mutual benefit.

Detroit Arts Support grants provide unrestricted operating support to nonprofits in the performing, visual, and literary arts, as well as to arts service, education, media and broadcasting, and cultural organizations.

For more information, visit here.

Lawrence Tech to host MIOSHA Training Institute Construction Boot Camp

The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA), in collaboration with Lawrence Technological University’s Construction Safety Research Center in Southfield, is offering a two-week training program teaching MIOSHA’s construction safety standards, job site hazard recognition, and hazard abatement.

The MIOSHA Training Institute Construction Boot Camp will be conducted March 6-16 at Lawrence Tech.

The program is recommended for employers who want to understand employer responsibilities, know how to recognize workplace hazards, and how to protect workers from occupational hazards on construction sites. It’s also recommended for contractors, safety and health coordinators, project managers, job superintendents, and others interested in construction safety and health information.

This boot camp will allow participants to complete training in two weeks rather than in individual MTI classes for months.

Upon completion of this boot camp, class participants will receive:

  • A 30-hour OSHA Construction Course card.
  • A MIOSHA Level 1 Construction Safety and Health certificate.
  • Two electives toward a MIOSHA Level 2 Construction Safety and Health certificate.

This course is open to anyone interested in improving workplace safety and health, not just MTI graduates.

Classes will take place from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, March 6-9 and March 13-16, in Room 406 of LTU’s A. Alfred Taubman Student Services Center.

The course cost of $382.50 includes all course materials but does not include lunches on class days. This cost is half the price that MIOSHA and LTU plan to charge for future sessions. To register, visit here.

Seven Local Black Small Business Receive $5K CBBB Awards

The Washington, D.C.-based Coalition to Back Black Business (CBBB) has awarded $5,000 grants to 324 Black small business owners in 40 states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Seven of the businesses are in Detroit.

Detroiters receiving CBBB awards are:

  • Janice Mitchell of local retail shop Boutique by Janice.
  • Yonika Porritt-Ledbetter of Sun Earth Gold.
  • James Chatman of Family Table Detroit.
  • Monique Bounds of Unique Monique Scented Candles.
  • Tonyal Reid of Muscle Truck Light Hauling and Moving.
  • Raymond Brock of Brock’s Plumbing Sewer.
  • Gwen Thomas of Fresh Perspectives Seminars, a public relations and marketing firm.

When asked how the $5,000 grant help their businesses, the new round of recipients shared that they used the funds to pay rent and invest in new marketing (56 percet), expanded or replaced inventory (45 percent), paid rent/utilities (40 percent), paid their employees (37 percent), repaid debts or loans (16 percent), and bought personal protective equipment (PPE) (9 percent).

The CBBB is a multi-year initiative founded in 2020 by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation with a $10 million commitment from American Express to support Black small business owners and the communities they serve as they recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and chart a path forward. The initiative is led in partnership with four national Black business organizations: the National Black Chamber of Commerce; the National Business League; the U.S. Black Chambers, Inc.; and Walker’s Legacy.

For more information of the CBBB, visit here.

Jefferson East to Host Small Business Resource Fair Feb. 20

Jefferson East Inc.’s Business Services Team (JEI) is hosting a Small Business Resource Fair at its Neighborhood Resource Hub (14300 E. Jefferson Ave.) from 12-4 p.m. on Feb. 20.

The event is the first in a series that aims to support local entrepreneurs and small business owners with the funding and tools they need to grow and fuel the city’s entrepreneurial revolution.

Every month, JEI will host a Small Business Resource Fair or open hours for Detroit’s District 4 and District 5. District 4 events will take place on the fourth Monday of the month and District 5 events will be conducted every second Monday of the month.

Business Resource Fair dates for District 4 include Feb. 20 and March 20 and dates for District 5 include April 10 and May 8.

Partnering with JEI on the fairs is the Detroit Economic Growth Corp., Detroit Means Business, Motor City Match, and the University of Michigan Center on Law, Finance, and Policy.

While at the events, small businesses will receive technical support, help with filing grants, assistance in the area of business law and accounting, and tips to launch and grow businesses.

Corrections Officers Now Eligible to Attend Michigan’s Community Colleges Tuition-free

Corrections officers needing college credits now are eligible to attend one of the state’s 31 community colleges tuition-free under a new grant program, according to the Michigan Community College Association.

Current state law requires state corrections officers to complete 15 college credits as a requirement for employment. To help officers complete this requirement, MCCA established the Michigan Corrections Officer Grant Program to support tuition and fees at any of its colleges. Funding for the program was included in the Fiscal Year 2023 State Budget.

“Corrections officers are critical to the safety of our communities and Michigan community colleges are pleased to make it easier for them to obtain the credit they need,” says Brandy Johnson, president of MCCA. “Our colleges are located in every corner of the state, making them more accessible for learners that are working and attending classes at the same time.  This grant program removes barriers to success for our state’s corrections officers.”

To be eligible for the Michigan Corrections Officer Grant Program and free tuition, corrections officers must meet the following criteria:

  • Be employed by MDOC.
  • Earned fewer than 15 college credits.
  • Received approval from MDOC for the program.
  • Enroll at a community college in Michigan.

“This grant program is going to make a huge difference for corrections officers needing to complete their education requirements,” says Heidi Washington, director of MDOC. “The ability for our officers to complete their credits at any of the 31 community colleges tuition free is a great opportunity.”

To learn more about the program and how to apply, visit here.

Shelving.com to Host Bocce Ball Event to Benefit Capuchin Ministries March 24

Shelving.com, a family-owned provider of corporate and consumer shelving and storage solutions in Madison Heights, will sponsor the 11th annual Bocce with the Brothers fundraiser on from 6 p.m.-midnight March 24, at Villa Penna in Sterling Heights.

Doors and bocce courts open at 5:30 p.m. One hundred percent of the funds generated from the event will directly support the Capuchin Ministries and its valuable programs.

Bocce with the Brothers fundraiser is celebrating its 11th year with an evening that includes musical performances, buffet dinner, and live and silent auctions. There also will be a late-night afterglow party, featuring a live band performance and appetizers.

Louis Vanaria, Irish actor and singer, and Aaron Caruso, operatic and crossover singer, will be the guest hosts for the evening. Brothers of the Capuchin Ministries will be in attendance to play unlimited bocce ball and chat with guests.

“Our team at Shelving.com greatly values the partnership we have developed with Capuchin Ministries over the past 11 years, and it’s truly an honor to give back to this nonprofit that is so near and dear to our hearts,” says Michael Schodowski, president of Shelving.com. “We deeply believe in the importance of a strong and connected community at Shelving.com, and the Bocce with the Brothers fundraiser gives everyone the opportunity to celebrate together while supporting a phenomenal local cause and learning more about the Capuchin brothers’ mission, programs and the individuals they assist.”

DJ Frank Krause from Uptown Sound will provide music during the event, and live entertainment will be performed by the Capuchin Soup Kitchen Choir, Noelle Borgia from Piano by Noelle, accordionist Joe Recchia, and youth singers Isaac Murray and Dominic Arkensberg.

Speed painter Dave Santia will be in attendance to sell his original works of art during the live auction. This year, one of the live auction gifts is a one-week trip for two to Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Florida, including a $600 airfare credit and a stay at a one-bedroom, one-bathroom condominium. A wide variety of desserts also will be provided by On the Rise Bakery Café, one of the Capuchin Soup Kitchen programs.

Tickets to the event are $75 per person and include dinner, beer, and wine. Tickets only are available for purchase in advance and include reserved seating. Sponsorship and program advertising opportunities for Bocce with the Brothers also are available. Sponsorships are $575 and up, and program advertisements are $75-$250.

For more information and to donate, visit here.

Hundreds of High School Students Expected to Explore STEM Careers at WCC Event

Washtenaw Community College (WCC) in Ann Arbor will showcase the world of STEM and STEAM careers and educational opportunities the week of Feb. 28-March 2.

The 2023 STEAM Week + Campus Explore events will draw hundreds of area high school students and community members interested in exploring science, technology, engineering, arts, and math careers. WCC also is partnering with the state of Michigan’s MiSTEM Network to honor high school STEM teachers.

The events, which will be conducted both virtually and on campus, will feature WCC’s university and industry partners along with college experts and faculty members, who will share inspiring stories and lead interactive workshops and career presentations.

All STEAM Week activities are free and open to the public.

Among the speakers will be WCC alumna Aisha Bowe, a former NASA rocket scientist, future commercial astronaut, and founder and CEO of STEMBoard, one of America’s fastest growing tech companies, according to Inc. 5000. Bowe raised nearly $2 million in venture capital last year to fund LINGO, self-paced kits that help more than 5,000 students in 10 countries learn coding at home.

Bowe, who transferred from WCC to the University of Michigan where she earned a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering and a master’s degree in Space Systems Engineering, is preparing to become the first Black woman to fly commercially into space with Blue Origin and the sixth Black woman to cross the internationally recognized boundary of space.

WCC’s STEAM Week highlights:

Day 1 – Keynotes by Dr. Victor Vega, Interim VP of Instruction; Dr. Tracy Schwab, Interim Dean Math, Sciences & Engineering Technology; and Aisha Bowe, CEO STEMBoard.

Virtual sessions will include “Cool Careers: The Liberal Arts in STEAM,” Professional Faculty Hava Levitt-Phillips; “Detroit College of Creative Studies;” “Plane Waves Instruments: Demonstration/Telescopes and Astrophotography,” Plane Waves Team and Chris Miller; “Astrophotography,” Brian Ottum; “Imposter Syndrome Workshop,” Dr. Susan Montgomery.

Day 2 – Keynotes by Devon Keen, Director, Inclusion, Equity and Outreach and Graduate Student Research at the University of Michigan; Matt Nelson, Director of Communications at the University of Michigan; and Eric Aiken, Program Manager for Student Support and Development at the University of Michigan.

Other sessions will include a nursing simulation and tour, as well as in-person tracks on advanced manufacturing, welding, HVAC, auto service, body, transportation and motorcycle programs. An in-person session on campus will include a “Venom Research” presentation by WCC Professional Faculty member David Wooten.

Day 3 – Keynotes by Marly Earlywine (FAME USA), Shamar Herron (MichiganWorks! SE) and Mohan Thomas (MiSTEM).

Virtual sessions will include “Careers in Computer and Information Science,” Sandra Lopez of the University of Michigan School of Information; “STEM Career Exploration and Outlook,” WCC Professional Librarian Sandy McCarthy; and “Careers in Engineering,” Sarah Snay from the University of Michigan Engineering.

To register or view a detailed schedule of the week’s events, visit here.

WCC’s STEAM Week events will be capped off with an Educator of the Year banquet hosted on campus in conjunction with the State of Michigan’s MiSTEM Network. Area high school STEM teachers will be honored at this event.