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"Giving back to my community" is the often-heard phrase stated by MSU students from Detroit when asked about their participation in the Detroit Spartans Pilot internship program in their Detroit home communities during the summer of 1998.
Providing that opportunity in Detroit and preparing students for that opportunity, stage-wise, in a series of career preparatory steps, from our campus preparation in a student's freshman year and continuing throughout his/her undergraduate years, have become a primary focus of MSU LINK staff.
Many Detroit Public Schools science teachers and Science Department Heads have an eight-year history with MSU through the Center for Microbial Ecology's Science in the City program with high schools of the Detroit Public Schools. As one of twenty-five Centers for Science and Technology, established by the National Science Foundation in 1991, the MSU Center's educational outreach program has now broadened into the MSU LINK pilot program, in its third year of funding by the Office of the Provost. The Detroit Spartans component of LINK, in turn, is now open to all MSU undergraduates from Detroit wishing to undertake this career preparatory experience while contributing to the resurgence of their city.
The Detroit Spartans is a three-phrase program:
The Detroit Spartans are MSU undergraduates from Detroit who are preparing themselves, early in the undergraduate years, for future careers. Many of the Detroit Spartans are targeting their careers in their home city of Detroit, and their preparation includes an intern-training program: a community service program as a first internship, and a corporate program for a second internship. Training occurs both on campus skills development and off-campus workshops: from learning how to prepare resumes, interview for jobs, mentor children, assume leadership tasks, participate in other professional development activities. These students will be ready for the work world when they graduate!
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