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The DTE Energy Foundation has given $500,000 to the city to fund 333 summer jobs for young people in Metro Detroit, officials said this morning.

The grant, which officials say is the largest private donation in the effort, will support the Grow Detroit’s Young Talent Program run by City Connect Detroit. The program has a fundraising goal of nearly $1.5 million.


The initiative was announced this morning during a summit that will help identify hundreds of summer jobs for young people aged 14-24, officials said.

“Summer employment is one of the best ways to help young people prepare for their future and to start them on the road to success,” said Fred Shell, president of the DTE Energy Foundation. “It introduces them to the demands, expectations and rewards of the workplace – being responsible, being a good team member and being proud of a job well done.”

Last year, City Connect Detroit launched the program with support from the Skillman Foundation. The campaign raised more than $1 million that helped to provide work for 600 teenagers and young adults.

“DTE Energy Foundation’s generous gift will allow us to make a tremendous step forward in transforming our community by increasing job opportunities for young people,” said Geneva Williams, City Connect Detroit’s founding president. “The creation of sustainable, high-quality jobs not only has a huge impact on our youth, but also provides a great value to employers. The summit will address strategies and tactics to accelerate youth employment.”

The summer jobs program begins in July and goes for six weeks. For more information, call (313).879-1476 or go to


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