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Cass Corridor Commons/U-M Semester in Detroit Program

Organization Location

Detroit, Michigan

Supervisor

  • Darryl Jordan, Co-Director, East Michigan Environmental Action Council
  • Craig Regester, Associate Director, U-M Semester in Detroit Program

Background/Context

For the past four years, the U-M Semester in Detroit (SID) program has developed a strategic community partnership with the Cass Corridor Commons (The Commons) – a grassroots community center located in the center-city with a long history of social movement activism.  The Commons is owned and operated by the East Michigan Environmental Action Council (EMEAC) and currently houses several other community organizations involved with social and environmental justice work around Detroit. SID students live in the Commons during their time in Detroit in a cooperative-style living environment. In addition, SID holds classes and other programming in the Commons. For more information about the U-M Semester in Detroit program, visit www.semesterindetroit.com. For more information about EMEAC, visit http://www.emeac.org/.

Description of Role

The overarching goal for this fellowship is to help strengthen the strategic partnership between The Commons and the U-M Semester in Detroit program. The particular work-plan for the student fellow would be co-developed between Cass Corridor Commons and SID staff/faculty and would subscribe to the specific scholarly focus of the prospective fellow. 

Some potential areas of focus could include:

  • Building on the visioning work conducted by graduate student participants during the May 2018 Rackham Institute for Social Change collaboration with Semester in Detroit and the Cass Corridor Commons.
  • Developing historical archives of the Cass Corridor Commons, conducting oral history interviews of previous and current users of the space, helping to develop permanent displays in the building that showcase the historical significance.
  • Helping to further develop and implement a comprehensive fundraising campaign for the Cass Corridor Commons which could include: donor outreach, event planning, grant-writing, and more.
  • Improving the communications strategies for the Cass Corridor Commons, including website and social media presence, e-newsletter campaigns, audio/video production, and more.
  • Conducting a study of the current spatial organization of the multi-complex Cass Corridor Commons and making recommendations for cost-effective building improvements.
  • Assisting with the Semester in Detroit summer 2019 Detroiters Speak series – a public/community classroom initiative co-directed by Cass Corridor Commons and SID staff.

Time Commitment and Stipend

  • 3 days per week, 12-16 weeks.
  • $5,040 – $6,720
  • Travel allowance: $400
  • Note: this position requires commuting to Detroit, Michigan