DBusiness Daily Update: Michigan Awards $17.8M in Going PRO Talent Fund Grants to 300+ Businesses, and More

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.
More than 300 Michigan businesses will get a combined $17.8 million to boost workforce development. // Stock photo

Michigan Awards $17.8M in Going PRO Talent Fund Grants to 300+ Businesses

The Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) announced more than 300 Michigan businesses will receive a combined $17.8 million from cycle 2 of the Going PRO Talent Fund (Talent Fund) to boost workforce development across the state.

The Talent Fund provides businesses with the resources they need to train, develop, and retain current and newly hired employees. Including this awards cycle, the initiative has supported high-skill, in-demand job training for more than 210,000 Michiganders since its launch in 2014.

Cycle 2 includes 365 awards granted to 356 employers. The Talent Fund will enable them to train nearly 10,000 Michiganders — 3,144 new hires and 6,823 existing employees. The funding also will support 1,678 registered apprenticeships to grow the state’s skilled workforce and help Michigan navigate the complexities of a rapidly changing economic landscape.

In addition, the Legislature approved $54.8 million for Going PRO Talent Fund for the fiscal year 2025 budget, allowing LEO to continue to equip businesses with talent retention and training resources.

“The Going PRO Talent Fund demonstrates Michigan’s commitment to growing our workforce and providing businesses with the resources they need to thrive and contribute to our economy,” says Susan Corbin, director of LEO. “This initiative is a testament to the power of collaboration between the state, employers, and local agencies working together to build a stronger, more resilient Michigan.”

The list of grant recipients and more information about the Going PRO Talent Fund can be found here.

Lawrence Tech in Southfield Gets $1.7M Grant to Improve Rural Health Care

Lawrence Technological University in Southfield has received a $1.7 million five-year federal grant to improve the availability of health care in rural areas of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula.

The grant, from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration, will place second-year students in LTU’s Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies program in rural hospitals and clinics, improving access to care for residents of those areas.

Partner health care locations for the program will be in Huron, Lapeer, Ogemaw, Sanilac, Shiawassee, and Tuscola counties in the mid-Michigan and Thumb areas. Partners that have agreed to take the LTU PA students on rotation are Marlette-based Aspire Rural Health System, Midland-based MyMichigan Health, and Owosso-based Memorial Hospital System.

The initial year of the grant will see nine LTU PA students sent to the rural partner care settings. That number will gradually rise every year of the grant, which extends through 2029, to 21 students. Funding under the award is $259,701 the first year of the program, gradually rising to $414,389 the fifth and final year of the program.

The grant will provide students with a stipend for living expenses away from home, and also funds attendance at conferences, additional courses in counseling for students, exam preparation costs, and administrative expenses.

Michigan Communities Awarded $66M in Federal Funds for Road Safety Projects

The Michigan Infrastructure Office announced the U.S. Department of Transportation has awarded RAISE (Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity) grants to three key infrastructure projects in Detroit, Menominee, and Kalamazoo.

The grants, totaling more than $66 million, will support transformative developments to enhance connectivity, safety, and quality of life in those communities.

The city of Detroit received $20.7 million to fund the construction of two shared-use paths that will be part of the Joe Louis Greenway and Iron Belle Trail systems. Improvements will be seen on Woodmere Street and include a shared-use path that will be constructed within the right-of-way between Fort Street and Vernor Highway. Improvements also will be made to Dequindre Street, including a shared-use path and a sidewalk that will be constructed within the right-of-way between Mack Avenue and Warren Avenue. Construction is expected to begin in October 2025.

The city of Menominee received $21.2 million to make improvements to its marine terminal, operated by KK Integrated Logistics. These improvements include reconstructing a deteriorated dock wall, installing approximately three rail spurs with switching capability, adding covered storage and purchasing and installing various cargo handling equipment to redevelop Menominee Harbor’s general cargo transportation terminal. Construction is expected to begin in January 2026.

The city of Kalamazoo received $25 million to rebuild and convert five segments of streets from one-way to two-way roads to create a connected multi-modal network. Segments include West Michigan from Douglas to Michigan, South from Stadium to South Pitcher, Lovell from Stadium to Portage, Stadium from Lovell to Michigan, and Douglas from Kalamazoo to West Michigan. In total approximately 3.5 miles will be improved with complete street enhancements. Construction is expected to begin in August 2027.

EMU is First in Nation to Host Refugee Students Through Welcome Corps on Campus Program

Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti announced its participation in the Welcome Corps on Campus program at its June 20 Board of Regents meeting, making EMU the first university in the nation, and one of just 18 universities this year, to host students as part of the initiative.

Launched by the U.S. State Department in partnership with six nationwide NGOs, including the Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration, the program aims to support refugee students whose studies have been interrupted.

“The Welcome Corps on Campus program offers students a path to citizenship while enabling them to complete their studies at American universities,” says James Smith, president of EMU.  “We are committed to providing refugee students with life-changing educational opportunities. Our efforts reflect the University’s All Are Welcome Here campaign, which celebrates the inclusivity of the EMU community.”

The program matches universities with refugee students who have undergone a multi-part screening process and a rigorous application. Students must meet EMU’s admission requirements before progressing through the program.

The Welcome Corps on Campus program at EMU depends primarily on charitable support. For more information, or to contribute, interested parties can give to the “New Future Fund” on the EMU Foundation website.

DDP and BIZ Call for Opinions in Annual Perception Survey

The Downtown Detroit Partnership (DDP) and the Downtown Detroit Business Improvement Zone (BIZ) are calling for Detroiters and metro Detroiters to participate in their biannual perceptions survey.

The organizations use this survey to shape and inform their business and development decisions for the following year. Participation in the survey can help inform DDP and BIZ initiatives for the upcoming year. Previous results and insight can be viewed on DDP’s Stakeholder Insights Dashboard.

To participate, visit here. 

Rhonda Walker Foundation Launches New Brand Identity and Website

The Rhonda Walker Foundation (RWF), a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering and inspiring teen girls to unlock their full potential, has launched its new brand identity and website. This recent development represents RWF’s ongoing commitment to amplifying opportunities for Detroit’s youth through education, mentorship, and empowerment programs.

The new website, which can be accessed at rhondawalkerfoundation.org, provides a platform for visitors to explore the foundation’s mission, impact, success stories, and ways to contribute. Designed with a user-friendly interface and vibrant visuals, the website showcases the work carried out by RWF.

Visitors to the website can learn about RWF’s programs, including academic support, leadership development, and wellness initiatives. The website also features stories of success and testimonials from beneficiaries who have experienced the positive impact of the organization’s programs.

In addition to providing valuable information about the foundation’s work, the new website offers multiple avenues for community members to get involved. Whether through donating, volunteering, or becoming a mentor, individuals can play a vital role in advancing RWF’s vision where every young girl has the opportunity to thrive, succeed, and become a catalyst for positive change.

Detroit Sports Commission Announces $225K in Grants to Advance Youth Sports

The Detroit Sports Commission (DSC) has awarded $225,000 in community grants to non-profit organizations across the seven districts of the city of Detroit. The funding is part of the DSC’s Living Legacy Initiative, which launched with the record-breaking 2024 NFL Draft.

The grants, by district, include:

  • District 1: Brilliant Detroit Brightmoor, Leland Community Center, Wellspring-Kumon
  • District 2: Detroit Volleyball Coaches Association, Racquet Up Detroit
  • District 3: Eastside Cowboys, Regent Park Community Association, Conant Gardens Neighborhood Development Corporation
  • District 4: A Drop of Hope, Building D4 Community, Community Care Organization
  • District 5: Eastside Raiders Youth Sports, Northwest Goldberg, Black United Fund
  • District 6: Equity Alliance of Michigan, Alternatives for Girls, Brilliant Detroit
  • District 7: Evergreen Block Club, DeSoto Ellsworth Block Association, Littlefield Community Association
  • At Large: Children Spa for Children with Disabilities, College Park Community Association, O’Hair Park Community Association
  • At Large: Fresh Perspectives College & Career Readiness, Education at Scale, Detroit-Windsor Dance Academy

The initiative has been made possible through the contributions from numerous local civic, corporate, and philanthropic organizations, including Visit Detroit, Michigan Economic Development Corp., Rocket Mortgage, Flagstar Bank, General Motors Co., Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, City of Windsor, Detroit Pistons, DTE Energy, Fifth Third Bank, Huntington National Bank, Ilitch Companies, Kaiser Enterprise, Knight Foundation, Meijer, Penske Corp., PNC Bank, The Skillman Foundation, Tourism Windsor Essex, Walbridge, and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

Detroit City Distillery Releases Two Limited-Edition Spirits for Fourth of July 

Detroit City Distillery (DCD) is releasing two spirits: Midnight Summer Rum, aged in toasted oak barrels, and an all-new limited-edition version of its popular Shut Down Single Barrel Bourbon, aged in Midnight Summer Rum barrels, in time for the Fourth of July holiday.

These two releases continue DCD’s celebration of its 10th anniversary with the release of a limited-edition bottle, showcasing either a brand-new creation or a gem from the distillery’s archives every month for the rest of 2024.

Midnight Summer Rum and Midnight Shut Down Single Barrel Bourbon will be available for sale online at $40 and $70 per bottle via detroitcitydistillery.com on July 3. Customers who purchased bottles online can pick up their purchases by visiting DCD’s Tasting Room at 2462 Riopelle St. in Eastern Market during open business hours: Wednesday-Thursday 4-10 p.m.; Friday 4-11 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m.-11 p.m., and Sunday noon-6 p.m.

DCD also will transform its Tasting Room and outdoor patio in Eastern Market into a festive Tiki Bar until the end of July. The Tiki Bar cocktail menu will include a wide variety of artisanal Tiki drinks with a mix of sweet, subtle, spicy, and savory flavors featuring the distillery’s craft spirits.

Detroit PBS Recommends Detroit Historical Museum’s Everyday Life on Hastings Street Exhibit

Detroit PBS is recommending that the community pay a visit to the Detroit Historical Museum’s In the Neighborhood: Everyday Life on Hastings Street exhibit, which captures the Jewish and Black communities that once lived in the thriving neighborhood on and around Hastings Street.

The exhibit, available until July 14, was produced by Jewish Historical Society of Michigan. It offers an engaging view of the struggles and vitality of this near-Eastside community, which was once the crowded, bustling landing spot for the tens of thousands of Jewish immigrants, as well as other migrant groups, who began settling in the area in 1881 to escape pogroms and violent antisemitism in Eastern Europe.

The neighborhood has long disappeared, beginning to be buried under the concrete of the Chrysler Freeway as early as the late 1940s, a victim of what used to be called “urban renewal.”

Two years in the making, the exhibit re-creates the humble households of these mostly working-class families includes furniture, utensils, place settings and religious artifacts that came primarily from the descendants of Hastings Street residents. The exhibit also makes use of virtual reality, century-old maps and arresting historic family photographs (some improved by use of artificial intelligence).

Dynami Foundation Presents $300K Grant for Lobular Breast Cancer Research

The Dynami Foundation, a nonprofit organization in Plymouth Township dedicated to advancing research and treatment for lobular breast cancer, has presented a $300,000 grant to support ongoing research and prevention efforts. This grant will fund critical studies and foster collaboration among top researchers at the University of Michigan, UPMC, and other leading institutions.

Founded by Flora Migyanka, a 12-year survivor of lobular breast cancer, The Dynami Foundation is committed to changing the landscape of breast cancer research. Despite being a common subtype of hormone-positive breast cancer, lobular breast cancer receives less than 1 percent of the total research funding. This substantial grant aims to address this disparity and drive forward the understanding and treatment of this disease.

“I founded The Dynami Foundation with a mission to improve the statistics and outcomes for lobular breast cancer patients,” says Migyanka, founder and president of The Dynami Foundation. “As a survivor, I have witnessed firsthand the challenges and gaps in research that patients face. This grant is a significant step toward moving the research needle and ensuring that lobular breast cancer receives the attention it deserves.”

For more information about The Dynami Foundation and its mission, visit dynamifoundation.org or contact info@uncorkforacure.org.