March 2020 Newsletter

How to Have an Impact During a Coronavirus Outbreak

The news about coronavirus may leave some people feeling helpless, like there’s nothing to do but wait for the worst. But that’s not true. In fact, there are plenty of actions you can take to help those around you, and yourself – and to feel like you’re really making a difference.

Read more from Michigan Medicine on still making an impact

Read more from Sue Ashford on working from home

At Ross:

Learn Design Thinking for A Better World – Info Session 3/18

Virtual Information Session
Wed, Mar. 18 @ Noon – 1 pm – ONLINE

Are you a graduate student at the University of Michigan? Register for the new graduate +Impact Studio Course (BA 670), selected as a 2019 Poets & Quants “Most Interesting Class.” Taught by Ross professor Jeffrey Sanchez-Burks, the Fall 4.5 credit design thinking course will teach you practical work skills in ethnography, ecosystem mapping, ideation, prototyping, and business model design, addressing challenges determined by the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and research from our award-winning faculty.

To learn more, check out these resources:

Register for Course
Attend 3/18 Virtual Session

B+I / Aspen Event Focused on Collaboration between Business and Research

On Thurs-Fri Mar. 5-6 Business+Impact hosted “Igniting Impact: Enhancing Business Practice and Research through Greater Collaboration” at Michigan Ross. Co-sponsored by the Aspen Institute Business and Society program and Responsible Research in Business and Management, the event featured keynote speakers and breakout design sessions focused on collaborations between business and research that are aimed at the greater good.

Read more
See complete agenda
See photos

Michigan Business Challenge Seigle Impact Track Winner Announced

The winner of the 2020 Michigan Business Challenge – Seigle Impact Track is Lillian Augusta – (Jannice Newson [MS ‘20] & Nana Britwum [MS ‘20]) a biodegradable hair braiding product made from Phragmites, which is an invasive plant species. The Seigle Impact Track competition, co-sponsored by the Zell Lurie InstituteBusiness+Impact, and the Erb Institute, began in November with over 50 teams. Eight semi-finalists competed on February 8 for the four finalist spots in the Seigle finals competition.

Read more
See photos



Make an Impact with Your Internship

Round Two Application
Due Fri, Apr. 17

Business+Impact’s Summer Fund awards competitive grants to Ross and Ford masters students and BBA juniors. Students completing internships in the nonprofit, public, or private sectors may apply if the organization has a clearly defined social mission. The final round of applications ends Fri, Apr. 17.


Virtual Information Session for Nonprofit Organizations

Wed, May 13: Noon – 1 pm – ONLINE

If you are a Southeast Michigan nonprofit organization interested in our Board Fellowship Program, you can learn about the program at a virtual information session open to Ann Arbor and Detroit area orgs. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about the program requirements and hear from nonprofit leaders currently participating.


One 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:


Semester in Detroit

Application Deadline
Tues, Mar. 31

The fall program is open to students from UM-Ann Arbor, UM-Dearborn, and Grand Valley State University. Students are in classes for 8-11 hours per week (fall students can choose between one or both SiD electives) and intern for 16 hours per week. You can earn up to 18 credits toward your U-M degree and intern with community-based organizations.

More Info



Award Nominations and Scholarships

Application Deadlines: Wed, Apr. 1

The Center for the Education of Women is seeking proposal submittions for the Carol Hollenshead Inspire Award for Excellence in Promoting Equity and Social Change, with $1000 for individuals; $2000 for groups. Apply by April 1.

More Info on Hollenshead Inspire Award

At the same time, the Center is accepting applications for the CEW+ Scholarship, which awards students of U-M up to $11K for women and underserved students seeking graduation from U-M. Apply by April 1.

More Info on CEW+ Scholarships

In the Impact Community:

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. Our 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

Halcyon Incubator Fall 2020 Fellowship Application

Application Deadline
Tues, Apr. 8

The application to join Halcyon Incubator’s 13th Cohort next fall is now open! Fellows receive five months rent-free housing in D.C., a $10,000 stipend, and access to our community of social entrepreneurs, mentors, advisors, investors, and supporters.

Application info

Proposals for Upswell 2020

Submit by May 15

Think about the enormous potential when thousands of changemakers – each one with unique perspectives, experiences, and skills – gather in Pittsburgh this October 14-16 for Upswell.  From quick talks to creative problem-solving to bold prototyping  you may propose events for a wide range of activities on the Upswell schedule.

Submission info

38th Annual Women of Color Task Force Career Conference

Women on a Mission 2.0: Leadership, Citizenship, & Advocacy

The Women of Color Task Force is excited to be hosting its 38th annual career conference on Friday, March 6, 2020. All U-M staff, faculty, students and the public, regardless of gender or ethnicity, are invited to register to attend this inclusive professional development event. Attendees may select from a variety of workshop sessions designed to support their professional and personal development.

The conference keynote will be a conversation with Dr. Joy DeGruy, nationally & internationally renowned researcher, educator, author, & presenter, and Dr. Julianne Malveaux, economist, author, social and political commentator, & businesswoman. They will discuss inclusive citizenship and the role of women as transformative change agents for voting rights, economic policy, prison reform, and access to education.


Please note that the keynote lecture (8:30-10:30am at Hill Auditorium) is open to the general public and no registration is required. However, pre-registration is required to attend the Career Conference workshops and luncheon.



7:00 am: Conference Check-in & Continental Breakfast / Vendor Showcase (Michigan League)

8:30 am: Keynote Session (Hill Auditorium)

10:30 am: Break and Networking / Vendor Showcase (Michigan League)

11:00 am: Morning Workshop Sessions (Modern Languages Building and Michigan League)

12:30 pm: Networking Lunch & Vendor Showcase (Michigan League)

2:00 pm: Afternoon Workshop Sessions (Modern Languages Building and Michigan League)

3:30 pm: Networking & Reflection (Michigan League Concourse & Hussey Room – 2nd Floor)

4:30 pm: Conference concludes

Click here to view complete conference information here


The deadline to register for the conference is February 26, 2020 at 11:59pm (or until sold out).


Download a print version of the workshop descriptions here.
Download a print version of the registration instructions here.


If you need any accommodations, please contact Janice Reuben at 734-764-6005 by February 21, 2020.


For additional information or inquiries regarding the annual WCTF career conference, please contact Janice Reuben at 734-764-6331 or the CEW+ office at 734-764-6005, or via email at

Michigan University-wide Sustainability and Environment (MUSE) Conference 2020

The purpose of the conference is to foster connections and new collaborations across the broad suite of sustainability and environment-related research at the University of Michigan. We welcome participation from those advancing knowledge through work in the humanities and the social, physical, natural, and engineering sciences.

Rebuilding a World-Class City


The 10th Annual Detroit Impact Conference is sponsored by the Detroit Revitalization and Business Club at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan. This conference will be an exploration of the history and future of Detroit at a critical juncture of revitalization and development.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Rebuilding a World Class City.” This theme seeks to highlight the fact that Detroit has been, and will once again be a thriving and globally recognized urban center. The narrative arc of the conference will connect the highs and lows of Detroit’s past with it’s fast moving, dynamic present and aspirations for the future. It will explore innovation across industries (established and emerging) and at different levels of scale and space (from large corporate expansions to small business driven revitalization of neighborhood main streets). Across these conversations, attendees will be encouraged to consider the interaction of historical, economic, and policy contexts. Through this theme, the conference seeks to: 1) showcase the wide variety of innovative developments currently happening across Detroit and 2) inspire students to be thoughtful, considerate citizens and contributors as they engage with the city.

8:30am – 9:30am
Arrival and Check-in

9:30am – 10:00am
Opening Keynote: Discussing of Detroit’s history to contextualize present revitalization

10:15am – 10:45 am
Detroit’s Rising Industries: Overview of major industry trends that are diversifying and strengthening the present and future composition of Detroit’s economy.

11am – Noon
Industry Breakouts I: Healthcare, Mobility, and Big Tech

Noon – 1pm
Lunch and Project Showcase

1pm – 2pm
Industry Breakouts II: Clean Energy, Advanced Manufacturing, and Tech Entrepreneurship & Startups

2:15pm – 3:15pm
Revitalizing Main Street: Panel discussion with small business owners and entrepreneurs who are driving essential development in Detroit’s neighborhoods.

3:30pm – 4:45pm
Envisioning Future Detroit: Closing discussion of the opportunities, challenges, and objectives for the eveolving shape of the city, from commercial corridors to infrastructure to affordable housing

4:45pm – 5pm
Closing Remarks

5pm – 8 pm
Evening Reception: Join peers, speakers, and alumni for a celebration of Detroit and the 10th Annual Impact Conference at an event space in downtown Detroit


NI19: Widening the Lens

When was the last time you gathered under one roof with 1,500 people who care just as deeply as you do about social impact?

At NI19, you will:

  • Connect to changemakers, innovators, sustainability leaders, activists, influencers, students and companies.

  • Be inspired to tackle today’s biggest challenges.

  • Learn how to make an impact from where you are.

Register Here!

Language and Rhetorical Studies Conference

Join us for a conference on “Language, Rhetoric, and Digital Publics: Making Space for All.”

Cheryl Ball, Director of the Digital Publishing Collaborative at Wayne State University, and Erika Sparby, Assistant Professor of English at Illinois State University, will present keynote talks.

Racial Equity Workshop

Taubman College in partnership with the School for Environment and Sustainability and the University Library invite you to dig deeper on equity issues. Join us and The Racial Equity Institute (REI) in a two-day long process – that helps to provide talking points, historical factors and an organizational definition of racism. REI believes that organizations are often working in very intentionally civil ways yet operating from multiple understandings that rely more on personal feelings and popular opinion. This creates complications to the goal of eliminating racial and ethnic disparities and producing equitable outcomes.

Help us plan for the event by RSVPing (we want to make sure we have enough food for everyone!)

Breakfast and lunch will be provided. Let us know if you have any other needs that may prevent you from participating. Also let us know if you need any accommodations or anything else you would like us to know.

For more information, contact Taubman DEI Specialist Joana Dos Santos at

Sustainable Brands Flagship Conference 2019

Transforming Brands Through Sustainable Innovation. Come join us at our flagship event where global brand and sustainability leaders unite to shape the future of commerce worldwide.

Register Now! U-M Alumni can use Code ERB30 to save 30% on the registration fee!


Living a Digital Life: Objects, Environments, Power

Everyone thinks they know what digital means. So pervasive are digital technologies in the 21st century that it is difficult to find critical distance from this immersive new world of ubiquitous connectivity, social media feeds, smartphones, mobile apps, responsive design, algorithmic recommendation systems, and voice-controlled home shopping assistants. While the question “what is the digital?” is compelling, the more pressing question might be instead: what does it mean to be alive in the digital age?

Across campus, this question will emerge in courses, colloquia, lectures, and informal conversations among students, faculty, staff, and peers. Critically engaging with the big issues, urgent consequences, and radical possibilities for grappling with the meaning of life in this era of digital ubiquity. Whether defined as “animated corporeal existence,” “vitality,” or “to continue, to remain,” we see a profound opportunity to approach the digital world through a spectrum of the meaning of life-ness – alive, liveness, animated, lifelike, life-adjacent, consciousness, awareness, attention, awoke.


10:00-11:30 AM Session 4: (Digital) Politics + Resistance – Who matters online? How do the politics of race and power play out on our online platforms?
11:30-1:00 PM Lunch
1:00-2:30 PM Session 5: (Digital) Labor – How can we reconcile automation and Human-Computer Interaction in the sharing economy?
2:30-3:00 PM Coffee Break
3:00-4:30 PM Session 6: (Digital) Speculation/Memory – How do we memorialize with technology whose data never seems to let us forget?
4:30-5:30 PM Keynote: Adam Greenfield – Author of Radical Technologies: The Design of Everyday Life


Shannon Mattern, The New School

Ridhi Tariyal, Founder, NextGen Jane

Molly Wright Stevenson, Carnegie Mellon University

Jerry Davis, Ross School of Business, UM

Nicole Ellison, School of Information, UM

Andrew Ibrahim, Staff Surgeon, UM and Chief Medical Officer at HOK Architects

Mark Lindquist, School of Information, UM

Sarah Murray, LSA, UM

Upali Nanda, Taubman School of Architecture and Urban Planning, UM

Megan Sapnar Ankerson, LSA, UM

Kathy Velikov, Taubman School of Architecture and Urban Planning, UM

Anna Watkins Fisher, LSA, UM

Positive Business Conference

Workers’ well-being is a key factor in determining an organization’s long-term effectiveness. Toxic, stress-filled workplaces may not only impact an employee’s health and well-being, but they can also affect an organization’s profit margins and performance.  Creating positive organizational cultures is a win-win for all.

Join us for the Positive Business Conference, and discover the ways organizations are fostering well-being for their employees and communities while producing great value for customers and investors. Leaders are eager to share their stories, as well as researched-based strategies, tactics, and tools, for how to build stronger, more connected teams and companies. The theme of this year’s event is “Improving well-being and performance by building a thriving workplace,” as our driving purpose is to spread knowledge and foster a community of leaders to make the world of work a better place.

Register Here.