On April 14, The Children’s Foundation initiative Entrepreneurs For Kids, hosted it’s public launch with featured guest speaker, Mary Culler, president of the Ford Fund. Culler is known for her entrepreneurial approach to business and as a result, inspired and motivated the E4K community at this inaugural event.
The moderated conversation focused on Michigan Central Station’s redevelopment and the vision of an innovation hub that will invigorate the surrounding neighborhoods as well as keep Detroit a “center of mobility.” The Station will support retail, food, and other small businesses, serving as a pillar for local entrepreneurs.
This effort works in concert with E4K, a business community of entrepreneurs who want to inspire youth. As E4K grows and continues its work coaching tomorrow’s leaders, alongside its Academic Partners, more Detroit students will know their dreams are worth investing in and working towards, learning to build their lives and careers with curiosity.
Christian Jones, a 2020 graduate of the Give Merit FATE program (one of E4K’s Academic Partners), co-moderated the conversation and thoughtfully reminded us that mental health support along with mentorship around business and career readiness is imperative for a young person’s success. He goes on to mention that having an inclusive space, such as the Station, where young people can gather and see its local businesses supported by the community, would also have an immeasurably positive impact on the mental health of today’s youth, a subject that is becoming widely discussed and finding important advocates such as The Children’s Foundation and E4K.
The conversation deftly covered a high-level vision of where innovation is headed and how local efforts can bring Detroit to the forefront of that innovation with our youth and entrepreneurship at the helm. The event ended with keen questions from attendees that Culler and Jones handled expertly and professionally, sharing their thoughts and experiences on subjects such as the pandemic, mentorship, and the thing they have in common, that connects us all — big dreams.
More information on Michigan Central Station is available at Michigan Central Station | Ford Mobility Innovation.