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WSU VP for economic development comments about young talent in Detroit, Revitalization Fellows Program

February 26, 2013

Ned Staebler, vice president for economic development at Wayne State University, commented in a story about the search for young talent in Detroit. "Less than 25 percent of Michiganders have a college degree," he said. "In Minnesota, it's closer to 35 percent. We have a shortage of talent relative to our peers. And young talent, in particular, is very mobile. " To start to address the problem, Wayne State will open admissions for its second class of Detroit Revitalization Fellows, a two-year program largely supported by the foundation community, designed to attract, train and launch high-quality, leadership-ready talent into the city, with an emphasis on revitalization work. The competitive program (the first class attracted 650 applicants for 29 spots) seeks to settle an array of young professionals in jobs in and around the city. Connecting them in a group will, it is hoped, break down some of the barriers that can grow between organizations working in related fields. Of the first class, Staebler said, about half have ties to the region and about half came from out of town. "We want new blood," he said. "There's no quota on anything, but we wanted diversity in lots of things - skills, race, geography, professional interest, etc. You get better results that way."