Summer 2022 Newsletter

Open Road at Ross Delivers Impact for Social Entrepreneurs

This Spring, six teams of Michigan Ross MBAs spent a month helping social entrepreneurs across the United States with the business challenges they face. These intrepid travelers of Open Road at Ross were focused on everything from fitness to inclusive spaces, to AAPI restaurateurs.  Business+Impact and the Zell Lurie Institute are proud to partner on this program, funded by the Ford Motor Company Fund.

2022 Impact Internships Reach Across the USA

This year, Business+Impact’s Summer Fund is financially supporting the summer impact internships of 29 University of Michigan students, and overall we are supporting 57 U-M students in several types of summer experiences.

Each summer, Business+Impact awards competitive grants for summer internships to MBAs and BBAs in the Ross School of Business as well as MPP students in the Ford School of Public Policy.  MBA funding comes from the Give-A-Day Fund, a student-led MBA pay-it-forward fund, and from General Motors. Additionally, the Gordon Impact Entrepreneurship Fund provides support for BBA or MBA student internships with ventures or funders seeking to create societal impact. 

Finally, In combination with providing a meeting space and Studio resources, B+I has made a significant financial investment for Ross BBA interns in the Detroit Neighborhood Entrepreneurs Project +Impact Studio for Local Business — providing robust skill-building opportunities for students, which in turn helps Detroit-based small businesses.




+Impact Studio Stories

As we reached the end of the academic year, our +Impact Studio class (BA670) held a Demo Day.  Now you can read the Michigan Ross story about demo day and see the Demo Day Outputs page and the class’s unique How-To Website, featuring solutions for new businesses.

Also, the Detroit Neighborhood Entrepreneurs Project (DNEP) +Impact Studio for Local Business for consulting undergrads has been meeting in the +Impact Studio, as they develop pivotal solutions to Detroit businesses. Read student stories about the experience from Grace Aretakis (BBA ’24) and Allison Wei (BBA ’25).

Our podcast series, Social Impact Design for Business, has been generating episodes recently, and we want to focus your attention on our recent interview with Bama Athreya of USAID on “AI and the Gig Economy in the Global South.

Finally, Erik Portillo (BBA ’23), who is the goalie for UM Hockey and will be joining the NHL after graduation, has been working with the +Impact Studio founders’ business Dualete, which partners college athletes with school-age athletes to encourage mental health awareness. Erik and seven other student athletes were feature in an Ross athlete profile from Michigan Ross.

Black woman explaining something to Black man in group setting.

Board Fellows Partner Organization Applications

Applications Due
Sun, June 26

Are you a nonprofit organization in Southeast Michigan that is curious about the Board Fellowship program? Graduate student Fellows serve as non-voting board members during the academic year and complete a strategic project that can provide valuable capacity in areas such as strategic plan implementation, sustainability strategies, business plans, and dashboards. As you consider getting involved, watch our overview for prospective organizations.



Ross DEI Research Awards

B+I is a proud sponsor of these awards, first instituted in 2021, which celebrate and honor the work of undergraduate and graduate students as well as faculty members. Recipients included:

  • Noor Sheikh-Khalil
  • Suibhne Ó Foighil
  • Reuben Hurst
  • Justin Huang and Julie Lee Cunningham
  • Jim Omartian
  • Maxim Sytch

The event also recognized the second recipient of the annual J. Frank Yates Diversity and Inclusion Teaching Excellence Award, Chris Rider.

Each award winner, in addition to being recognized for their contributions to diversity, equity and inclusion, presented a short TEDx-style lightning talk.  


Impact News & Notes

Goal is to shrink Gulf dead zone, but that’s not happening – featuring Don Scavia

The Burden of Code-switching

Do urban gardens lead to gentrification? Not in Detroit, study finds

Museum of Natural History looks at pandemic’s inequities

Faculty members receive Harold R. Johnson Diversity Service Awards

Looming nuclear plant closure may put Michigan climate goals out of reach – featuring Todd Allen

Grants advance U-M partnerships, collaborations with Detroit

Short-changing Michigan local governments has resulted in deteriorating water systems and other services– featuring Stephanie Leiser

University wins zero-waste award in national competition

After decades of neglect, bill coming due for Michigan’s water infrastructure – featuring Sarah Hughes

Grant supports workforce development for Black youth

Dillahunt shares her tech journey from family to Detroit nonprofits

Stateside Podcast: Rethinking Plastic Recycling – featuring Anne McNeil

Five faculty projects honored for teaching innovations, including DEI work

Detroit illegally overtaxed homeowners $600M. They’re still waiting to be compensated – featuring Damani Partridge

Earth Day Eve

Wrongful conviction tracker hits milestones: One decade and 3,000 cases – featuring Samuel Gross

Climate change and Michigan: Challenges and opportunities

How violence against Asian Americans has grown and how to stop it, according to activists –  featuring Melissa Borja

Grant supports workforce development for Black youth

Picture of Ross Impact Gateway website

A 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. 


At the University:


Community and Civic Engagement at UM

Fri, July 22 @ 2-2:30 pm ET
Virtual Event

As you make the University of Michigan your new home, there are many opportunities for you to connect to the Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County communities. Whether you’ve always had a passion for community service, or are looking for other ways to engage with the local community, join the Ginsberg Center as we provide an introduction to Washtenaw County and discuss the various ways you can connect meaningfully as a UM student.

More Info


Get Volunteer Support for Your Team

Apply Now

Have an information-based project you’re having trouble prioritizing? Your organization can get the help you need from the University of Michigan School of Information (UMSI). Organizations and units on the U-M campus are invited to host a student team who will provide high impact deliverables on your project. Interested? Don’t wait! The submission deadline is today (Tuesday, June 22nd)

Apply here


Leadership Dialogues: Paul Polman

Wed, June 29 @ 12:30 pm ET
Virtual Event

Paul Polman, former CEO of Unilever and co-author of Net Positive, joins Professor Andrew Hoffman to discuss how business can be a force for good, accelerating action to tackle climate change, inequality, and other important issues facing society. To create what Paul calls a “net positive world,” Polman will discuss how business education must change to bring about this important shift. 

Register here


Poverty Solutions Speaker Series

Logo of multicolored blocks and the name "Real World Perspectives on Poverty SolutionsComing this Fall
Register Now

Real World Perspectives on Poverty Solutions introduces key issues regarding the causes and consequences of poverty through a lecture series featuring experts in policy and practice from across the nations, with the goal of building a community of learners to engage in these issues together.  It is listed as a one credit class, and is open to all students.  Sessions will take place on Fridays at Noon at the School of Social Work this Fall.

Register Now

In the Impact Community:

Planted Detroit Internship

Apply Now

Planted Detroit is an indoor, vertical hydroponic CEA (Controlled Environment Agriculture)
farm in the Islandview neighborhood of Detroit. Planted Detroit is currently seeking applicants for a business analyst intern. This is paid internship for second half of the summer. Planted Detroit’s business analyst intern plays a vital role in a company’s business analysis and will assist in making recommendations for  projects under their care.

Application info

Public Allies

Apply Now

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

A Conversation with Drew Dixon

Thurs, June 23 @ 7 pm ET
Virtual Event

Join the Net Impact Black Professional Chapter (NIBPC) in welcoming Drew Dixon in a fireside chat with Philip McKenzie. Ms. Dixon is a perserverer, a silence breaker, producer and writer who was seen in “On the Record” (2020). Mr. McKenzie is a producer, writer, and activist.

Learn more

D Prize

Picture of dandelion with spores blowing and the word "D-Prize"Extended Submission Date:
Sun, June 23 @ Midnight PT

The world has already invented ways to end poverty, yet the best interventions are not being distributed at mass-scale. Can you design a business or NGO that addresses subjects from education to health access? If selected, you’ll be awarded up to $20,000 to launch a pilot in any region where extreme poverty exists.

Info and Application

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