As businesses grow and develop in Detroit, students searching for a place to live, work and have fun after graduation are looking to the city.
Since 2000, the number of young people with bachelor’s degrees living in downtown Detroit has grown by 59 percent, according to the Detroit Regional Chamber.
Sociology senior Philip Lewis said he plans to work in his hometown of Detroit after graduation and give back to his community by helping underprivileged students, hopefully through Teach for America or MSU’s branch of the National College Advising Corps.
“You kind of have to be from there to realize why you want to stay,” Lewis said.
Jim Martinez, director of communications for the Detroit Regional Chamber, said the city plays a large role in the success of Michigan’s overall economy.
“Successful and prosperous regions and states (have) strong urban centers, strong vibrant cities that offer the opportunity to attract talent,” Martinez said. “There are so many opportunities in Detroit for young people to launch their careers.”
Martinez said the increase in young adults living downtown demonstrates the increase in job opportunities for recent graduates in the city.
“When students from other parts of the state and other parts of the country come to Detroit and see all the opportunities and growth going on, they (will) fall in love with it,” Martinez said.
Muna Danish, communications resident with D:hive, said D:hive is working to attract and keep young talent in the city.
D:hive, 1253 Woodward Ave., is a welcome center in downtown for visitors to help find a place to live, opportunities to get involved in the city, job opportunities and help with starting a business.
Danish said in particular there are many opportunities for information technology positions and entrepreneurs.
LiveWorkDetroit! is one of the programs run in part by D:hive. The program brings college students from across the state to Detroit for a tour of the city and a chance to network with possible employers.
The next event is Jan. 26. Students can register on the program’s website at liveworkdetroitjan2013.eventbrite.com.
Lewis said he sees new businesses opening almost every time he visits the city, and he pictures this new atmosphere continuing in the city’s future.
New attractions to Detroit include the largest Buffalo Wild Wings establishment in the country at 1218 Randolph St., and there’s talk of a new Detroit Red Wings arena.
“I would think in about 10 years, (it will be) just the lively, bustling economic booming city,” Lewis said. “I think it would just be a great look for Michigan.”
Danish, who also lives in the city, said she enjoys visiting new businesses.
“I hope to stay in Detroit,” Danish said. “It’s really grown on me and I didn’t expect it to. (It’s) easy to build your professional and social networks.”