BY CHRIS ZADOROZNY, Staff Writer
Lou Glazer and Shanelle Jackson, both prominent figures in Michigan, and more importantly, Detroit, finished off the Destination Detroit Speaker Series.
Glazer, President of Michigan Future Inc., talked about the future of Michigan and Detroit in particular. Glazer, the only speaker who was not involved in some way with politics, presented a more interesting side of Detroit. He used statistics, graphs, and maps to show Detroit’s fall. There were maps of population density in Detroit, Grand Rapids, Lansing, and Minneapolis. Education was also a topic of discussion for Glazer.
Seeing the maps and where people have moved to, and the population density of Detroit and other cities, shows that people seem to be giving up. Ignacio Marquez, a junior majoring in political science, enjoyed the presentation by Glazer. “It was very informative knowledge, and I think that he should advise all mayors of Metro Detroit and get in touch with each other and figure out the problems,” says Marquez.
Glazer said that there are three things he would do to help the city of Detroit get back on track–reverse cuts to higher education, anchor Metro Detroit to the city through public transportation, and restore historic tax credits (Brownfield) to give older buildings the chance to breathe and live again. Glazer said, “I can see the Downtown being revived and growing, but the rest of the city continuing to depreciate,” about seeing the city of Detroit in 10-15 years.
Representative Shanelle Jackson spoke Monday evening, February 20 in CASL 1072. Jackson graduated from the University of Michigan-Dearborn with a degree from the College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters in 2003. She is currently in her third term as the representative of the 9th District of Michigan.
Strong Cities, Strong Communities, was something that Jackson stressed is big for Detroit. President Barack Obama started this pilot program that will help cities like Detroit get back on their feet. The program will help private business and local government partner together.
Rehman Bhatti, a freshman majoring in marketing, attended the final speaker series featuring Jackson. “Representative Jackson was motivated, she cares, and showed passion for what she was talking about,” said Bhatti.
Jackson also talked about how more people need to volunteer in the city. “Become an ambassador. Get involved,” she said.
The Destination Detroit Speaker Series for the whole month of February was put on by the Political Science Association, College Democrats, College Republicans, Pi Sigma Alpha, Women in Learning and Leadership, the SOAC, and the Black Student Union.
If you were inspired in any way by any of these speakers, or if you didn’t get a chance to make it out, and are still looking to help the city of Detroit in your own way, volunteer in the city, write, blog, take pictures, talk about the good parts of the city, and become an ambassador. The more people that take pride in the city we call The D, the better it will become.