February 2022 Newsletter

Kyla Carlsen, Co.act Detroit; Kelly Maxwell, DDNRC; Courtney Smith, Detroit Phoenix Center; and Kevin Thompson, Good Inc.

B+I Public Panel Event Feb. 18 – Stronger Together: How Nonprofits Can Collaborate

Board Fellows Forum
Fri, Feb. 18 @ 10 -11:30 am ET
Virtual Event – Open to the Public

Each year, the Ross School’s Business+Impact Initiative places a cohort of Nonprofit Board Fellows to serve as non-voting members on boards across Southeast Michigan. The Ross community prides itself on using business to create a more equitable and just society, and for over 20 years this program has served as an action-based opportunity for graduate students to become involved in, and contribute to, local communities and causes. The program hosts an annual panel discussion with representatives from local nonprofit organizations. This event is open to the public and we invite you to join us!  This year, the theme of the forum is “Stronger Together: How Nonprofits Can Collaborate.” We believe that collaboration between nonprofits will only become more instrumental in combating injustices across America. Join us for a panel discussion featuring four local nonprofit experts: Kyla Carlsen, Co.act Detroit; Kelly Maxwell, DDNRC; Courtney Smith, Detroit Phoenix Center; and Kevin Thompson, Good Inc.


Dimitri Alejo Giraldo poses side by side with Jason Gordon, internship funder

Impact Internship Funding – Round One Application

Application Due:
Tues, Mar. 1 @ Noon ET

Each summer, Business+Impact awards competitive grants for summer internships to MBAs and BBA juniors in the Ross School of Business as well as MPP students in the Ford School of Public Policy.
There are two deadlines to apply: Tues, Mar. 1 by Noon ET and Friday, April 15 by Noon ET. Award decisions will be made in two rounds after each of these dates and they are based on the level of need (taking into account other funding being received), consideration of the position, the organization’s impact, and the quality of the application.



Ariel Cruz (MBA ‘22), Pablo Hernandez (MBA ‘21), Joi James (MBA ‘23), Loren Townes Jr.

The +Impact Studio Welcomes New Ventures and Mentors

The Michigan Ross +Impact Studio is excited to be growing! The Impact Studio Founders Program is a community where impact-driven student innovators can nurture and launch their early-stage ideas to make significant, positive change in the world. This Winter 2022 semester, the studio is welcoming three new founders, as well as an +Impact Studio Program Manager to help lead the studio and support its growth.


Young woman writing in a journal

Designing for Wellbeing: Student Innovators Use U-M Research to Enhance Mental Health on College Campuses

In Winter 2021, students in the +Impact Studio course BA670 interviewed local small business owners, finding a strong theme of mental health and well-being challenges in their community. Students engaged U-M faculty members Dr. Ethan Kross and Dr. Sue Ashford about their research, and what emerged was a prototype for a research-based journal that puts Kross and Ashford’s research into practice to enhance well-being. Applebaum Impact Design Fellows have developed the prototype over the last year and are partnering with OptiMize this semester to test it with student innovators.


Ross Event Highlights:

Professor Andy Hoffman smiling

CPO: Andy Hoffman: Management as a Calling
Thur, Feb. 17, 4-5 pm ET

Asia Business Conference logo, showing words and a geometric symbol.

Ross: Asia Business Conference
Feb. 11-12, 18-19

Picture of Ross Impact Gateway websiteA Searchable Platform for All Things Impact at Ross and Across Campus

The Business+Impact Gateway provides you with a single location for all things impact. Here you’ll find all of the activities, people and key partners working to use their learning to make a real impact in the world. 


Cover of Innovation in Impact Report with diverse group of 4 students showing a Michigan Ross flag

Read the B+I Innovation in Impact Report

Recently released by Business+Impact, the Innovation in Impact Report notes all the ways the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan has recently innovated for positive societal impact and sustainability through research, education, and outreach.


Hattie McKinney, BA ’16, JD ’22, founder of Great Quality Developments

Great Quality Developments Wins the 2021 Michigan Business Challenge — Seigle Impact Track

We’re excited to share that the winner of the 2022 Michigan Business Challenge – Seigle Impact Track is Great Quality Developments ( Hattie McKinney, BA ’16, JD ’22). The venture won the finals on Fri, Feb. 11. Great Quality Developments is a community focused, mixed-use development company that specializes in integrative developments that increase affordable housing, homeownership, and community resources in Detroit, MI. Clear Computing won second prize in the Seigle Impact Track. This competition, co-sponsored by the Zell Lurie Institute and Business+Impact, began in November with 40 teams. The Round 1 video pitch took place in mid-November, while the Round 2 video pitch took place a month later, and the eight semi-finalists pitched on Fri, Jan. 21.


Diverse group of eight Ross faculty and students who received diversity awards last year, standing in front of Ross.

Ross DEI Research Awards Program

Applications Due
Mon, Feb. 28

Carolyn Yoon, Associate Director for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, is please to announce that the Business +Impact initiative at Ross, in collaboration with the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee and the Dean’s office, will hold the second annual research awards to celebrate and honor research related to diversity, equity and inclusion conducted at the Ross School of Business. Applications are now open until February 28. Please send your submissions to eogreen@umich.edu.



Ariel Olaiz (Ross '07), co-founder of ePesos, wearing an ePesos shirt

ePesos: Fostering Economic Inclusion in Mexico

Last year Business+Impact introduced a new series on U-M alumni who have created social enterprises and continue the work of entrepreneurship after graduation. Previous Social Enterprise Spotlights included Thawra and FoodFinder; now we focus our spotlight on ePesos, a tech platform expanding economic inclusion to the population least affiliated with the banking system in Mexico.

Ariel Olaiz, BBA ’07, has come full circle — from studying business at the base of the pyramid at the Ross School of Business to fostering economic inclusion in Mexico. Olaiz says his U-M education comes into play every day in his role as co-founder and chief financial officer at ePesos. We caught up with Ariel to learn more about his experience running a company in the FinTech space.


At the University:


Black History Month

Black History Month poster for U-M, featuring smiling black people in cartoon formatMulti-Ethnic Student Affairs affirms and celebrates  the lives, success, struggles and beauty of the Black and Afro-descended peoples from around the globe.  The theme for this year’s Black History Month is: Black Joy.  Below are some highlights:


Seeking Sustainable Food Leaders

Apply by
Wed, Feb. 16

UMSFP logo, with hands planting a seedling.

UM Sustainable Food System (UMSFP) is a student-led organization that coordinates, connects, and supports U-M students that are developing innovative solutions to food system problems. SFP is seeking a group of 14 students that collectively manage all of UMSFP’s programs and operations. LT members work 5-12 hours per week managing one program, supporting the organization’s collective goals, and participating in weekly meetings. The ideal candidate is a creative, food-loving self-starter who is committed to social justice and collaboration. Pay starts at $15/hour.

Learn More and Apply


A Conversation on Academic Freedom and Responsibility in a More Diverse, Equitable, and Inclusive Campus Community

Tues, Feb. 22 @ 4 – 5:30 pm ET
Virtual Event

Poster showing diverse group of speakers in Academic Freedom presentation.Faculty have the benefit of academic freedom that encourages a search for deeper knowledge and understanding, and the academic responsibility to ensure that complex content is presented through inclusive pedagogy that promotes positive learning environments. This community conversation will further explore the principles and practices of academic responsibility and academic freedom, and how these are effectively exercised in a  diverse, inclusive and equitable campus community.

More Info & Registration


20th Peter M. Wege Lecture: Expanding the Base for Climate Action and Social Justice

Wed, Feb 23 @ Noon
Online Event

Poster for Wege Lecture, showing Dr. Ayana Elizabeth JohnsonJoin an engaging conversation about climate action and social justice with Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson. A marine biologist, policy expert, writer, and Brooklyn native, Johnson is the co-founder of Urban Ocean Lab, a think tank for costal cities, as well as co-creator of the Spotify/Gimlet podcast, ‘How to Save a Planet,’ which focuses on climate solutions. The event will be moderated by SEAS assistant professor Sara Hughes and will include a live Q&A with students.

Info & Registration


Cultural Humility Workshop

Thurs, Feb. 24 @ 10:30 – 11:30 am ET
Virtual Event

Picture showing fingers changing letter cubes from "Humanity" to "Humility"In this one-hour workshop, facilitated by OHEI’s Michael Herrington, cultural humility is defined, and behaviors and practices that foster better relationships are explored. Through self-reflection and dialogue, participants will examine how our respective cultures and identities influence our interactions with others and how to better navigate cultural interactions and relationships. Open to all in the U-M community.

More Info


40th Annual Women of Color Task Force Career Conference

Fri, Mar. 4

Diverse group of women watching a presenter, with Women of Color Task Force Career Conference logo in front of them.Save the date for the 40th anniversary Women of Color Task Force (WCTF) career conference on Friday, March 4, 2022!! This historic event will be a virtual 1-day conference featuring a keynote fireside chat with Tamika D. Mallory, one of the organizers of the 2017 Women’s March on Washington and co-president of The Women’s March, Inc. Ms. Mallory will be discussing the conference theme: “The Time is Now!” 

See Sessions & Register

Also, the Center for the Education of Women (CEW+) has opened applications for four fellowships covering bold advocacy, study abroad, women’s research, and women’s health. Applications are due at 11:59 pm, Mon, Feb. 21.

Find out more and apply


Engelhardt Social Justice Fellowship

Apply by
Fri, Mar 11

Cartoon drawing of a city, showing streets and buildings.The Engelhardt Social Justice Fellowship (ESJF) offers an opportunity for students and non-profit organizations to propose a mutually beneficial summer project. Students whose projects are selected will be paid $5,000 for ~300 hours of work with the sponsoring organization. Interns and organizations create their own work schedule, but the required hours must be completed by August 31, 2022. Fellowship recipients must be available from Monday, May 9th, 2022 through Friday, July 8th, 2022.

Apply here


Desai Summer Interns Sought

Apply by
Sun, Mar. 13

Diverse group of 10 students with "Paid Startup Internships" as a border above the photo.Desai is hiring software development, design, business development and generalist interns who will help portfolio companies with business development, financial modeling, product QA/testing, customer development/support, user acquisition, user experience, design, marketing and market research. Students who thrive in a fast-paced environment and are currently enrolled in the University of Michigan are welcome to apply. Interns will work virtually, full-time and should have a strong interest in 1) technology and startups, 2) great execution, organizational and communication skills 3) desire to learn more about startups and entrepreneurship and 4) the ability to work individually and as part of a team.

More Info


Learning Levers

Proposals Due
Mar. 13, 2022

James A. Kelly Learning Levers logo in maize and blue.Bring your passion and make an impact on pre-K–12 Education. The James A. Kelly Learning Levers Prize is a student pitch competition that supports scalable, research-based ideas that promote learning in pre-K–12 education. All U-M undergraduate and graduate students from the Ann Arbor, Dearborn, or Flint campuses can enter as individuals or teams.

Learn More


Dinners for Democracy

Dinners Mar. 9, 10, 15, 23, 24

Poster for Dinner for Democracy on Gender and Climate, with a globe at the top.Dinners for Democracy are nonpartisan presentations and small group discussions on topics students care about. Participants can expect to gain:
– A deeper knowledge of the issue and an opportunity to discuss your thoughts
– Information about how your vote in local offices can affect the issue
– Additional resources you can use to learn more
– Free food! Virtual attendees receive a $15 gift card as a thank you for participating. You’ll have an opportunity to select from a list of restaurants/stores at the end of the event. You are welcome to participate in as many dinners as you like, though gift cards are limited to one per student per topic.

More Info


In the Impact Community:


Detroit Financial Well-Being Innovation Challenge

Apply Now

Logo for United Way's Detroit Financial Well-being Innovation Challenge, in blueThe Detroit Financial Well-being Innovation Challenge is committed to gathering and acting on feedback from community residents who have first-hand experience with the financial difficulties the Challenge is trying to address. Here are a few ways you can participate in the Detroit Financial Well-being Innovation Challenge as an individual.

Learn more

Apply for the SafeHouse Center

Winter 2022 Training
February 17-20

Applications open
Mon, Feb. 21

Blue save-the-date image for SafeHouse Training dates.SafeHouse Center provides support for those impacted by domestic violence or sexual assault. SafeHouse provides free and confidential services for any person victimized that lives or works in Washtenaw County. At this time our next training will be May 19-22 for the Shelter & Helpline Program. Applications will open on February 21 for May’s training. 

Application link

Detroit’s Green Task Force

Attend and Get involved

Detroit's Green Task Force logo.The Green Task Force advises Detroit City Council on sustainable principles and practices to better serve the City of Detroit. Focused on moving the needle in all areas of sustainability, the Task Force has focus groups to build comprehensive progress.

Attend and Get Involved

Public Allies

Apply Now

Logo for Public Allies of Metro Detroit, showing a cartoon hand print in African style.Public Allies Metro Detroit is a program of the U of M-Dearborn, and a proud member of the AmeriCorps national service network. The program is made possible through funding of the Corporation for National and the Community Service and Michigan Community Service Commission. Apply now for fall opportunities.

Application info

Some images in this newsletter are Pre-COVID.

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