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Here's how thousands of Detroit can get a paying summer job in 2019

Grow Detroit Young Talent heads into its fifth year

Gail Fulton is a shining example of the potential youth have in Detroit.

The Eastside native and Cass Tech alumna has been working as an assistant to Detroit City Council liaison Stephanie Washington, having landed the full-time job after working at the City of Detroit with the Grow Detroit Young Talent program.

“You don’t necessarily have to be the best and the brightest automatically because you’ll grow. And I think there’s a lot of growth with GDYT students who want to pursue full-time careers,” Fulton says.

Now in its 5th year, GDYT is the lead coordinator, fundraiser and marketer for the city’s efforts to provide summer employment opportunities for youth ages 14-24. Last year, 8,210 youth were employed at 669 work sites through 233 employers for six weeks. Prior to GDYT, approximately 2,500 Detroit youth would have summer jobs each year through a series of smaller independent programs.

Youth in Detroit have an opportunity to work in several fields, ranging from tech to engineering, from finance to education, and from government to public safety.

"Don’t let anyone tell you what to do, because there are many opportunities for you to follow a career path that could end up changing your life."

The importance of having a summer job was highlighted by Nicole Sherard-Freeman, CEO of city workforce agency DESC.

“We are now seeing sustained growth in opportunity in Detroit, with increases in economic investment and decreases in unemployment” said Sherard-Freeman. “In order for those positives to be further sustained, we need the next generation of Detroit talent to be ready to take those opportunities. Having a summer job and being able to demonstrate experience is a key step to advancing on a career path along with showing an employer that you have the skills and the work ethic they need.”

The application period for Detroit youth to enter GDYT begins January 31 and closes March 15. After interviews in May and orientations in June, youth employees begin with their respective employers on July 8.

“I would tell someone who wants to do GDYT to just do it. It only takes a few moments to fill out the application, submit all of your documents, and then hopefully if you meet the criteria, you’ll get a call,” Fulton says.

“Once you get that call, vocalize what you want to do. Don’t let anyone tell you what to do, because there are many opportunities for you to follow a career path that could end up changing your life.”

To apply or to learn more, visit