While indeed a large variety of reasons contributed to Detroit’s decline, undoubtedly the number one factor was economics. As the American automobile industry lost its competitive edge to that of other countries, jobs left the city. As jobs left the city, so too did the people. Many of those who stayed were unemployed or at least underemployed. With unemployment and large population decreases comes a host of social problems, many of which can be observed in Detroit.
While the automobile industry has made something of a comeback in the area, it will likely never return to the levels seen in the 1920s-30s. Rather than flee the city, though, many people have decided to create jobs for themselves by starting a business. These aspiring entrepreneurs may be inexperienced or lack education in how to start their business and translate their idea into a viable source of income.
This is where D:Hive’s Build class comes in. The class is designed to be as affordable as possible, and helps these people turn their dream into a reality. Their graduates have been quite successful, opening up brick-and-mortar retail locations, restaurants, profitable websites, and more. Improving the economic situation in the city of Detroit is vital to its future success. Without jobs, a city is doomed to failure. The government gets less revenue, people have less disposable income, the arts and culture cannot be revitalized, and more. Yet most of these people cannot find work, so they have to create work for themselves.
I have seen how many areas of Detroit appear to be completely and totally uninhabitable for new business—in neighborhoods like Brightmoor or Osborn, one would seemingly have to be crazy to start a business there. Yet people are doing it because D:Hive provides them with the skills and knowledge they need to be confident in bringing their business idea to their local neighborhood community. By revamping their curriculum to make it up to date, providing alumni with greater resources and networking opportunities, and more, I am helping this vital program become even better and directly assisting the city’s economic revival.