U-M leaders, innovators react to news of the Detroit Center for Innovation

“The economic success of our state is tied to the success of Detroit. It’s our largest city and it plays an important role in Michigan’s economic well-being. This new Detroit Center for Innovation will benefit not just Detroit, and the region – but also the entire state of Michigan.”

~ University of Michigan Regent Chair Ron Weiser, Ann Arbor

“The new Detroit Center for Innovation will help cement the university’s relationship with the city, and I’m excited to see the university continue to grow its presence in Detroit. The city of Detroit’s success is important not just to the state of Michigan, but to the University of Michigan as well.”

~ University of Michigan Regent Jordan B. Acker, Huntington Woods

“The Center will strengthen the regional economy by attracting and developing talent, promoting innovation, and supporting entrepreneurship in Detroit and the region. It’s an exciting opportunity for the University of Michigan to leverage its educational and research capacity in pursuit of something truly ground-breaking.”

~ University of Michigan Regent Michael J. Behm, Grand Blanc

“The University of Michigan was founded in Detroit more than two centuries ago and since that time has continued to work in partnership with the city and its schools, residents and community organizations. The Detroit Center for Innovation builds on that long history and signals our sustained commitment to the city of Detroit and its continued success.”

~ University of Michigan Regent Mark J. Bernstein, Ann Arbor

“Adapting to the technology of the future will be critical to the success of this city and this region. The Detroit Center for Innovation allows the University of Michigan to leverage its academic and research strengths to help ensure this critical need is met.”

~ University of Michigan Regent Paul W. Brown, Ann Arbor

“I am excited to continue the University of Michigan commitment to improving educational opportunities in our state and expand experiential learning for our students. Our commitment to Detroit, where the University of Michigan began in 1817, will broaden in this collaboration, from the Rackham Center in the New Center area to our initiatives with Detroit public schools to our summer college internships to this announcement today of the Detroit Center for Innovation. The Detroit Innovation Center is an incredible example of the possibilities for job creation, technological advancements, cross disciplinary studies, retention of our graduating youth and recruitment of young people to Michigan. It’s an incredible example of how education is an economic driver—investing in education creates economic opportunities for everyone.”

~ University of Michigan Regent Shauna Ryder Diggs, MD

“We are excited about the potential of this new public-private partnership in Detroit.  In the coming weeks, we will assemble an interdisciplinary committee of U-M faculty to explore academic opportunities at the Center.  We look forward to engaging with Detroit leadership, its business community and its key educational stakeholders in developing a shared vision for this important project.”

~ Martin A. Philbert, U-M provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs and professor of toxicology

“University of Michigan-Dearborn began as an experimental and innovative campus; 60 years later we are excited to be a valued partner in building a new exciting and entrepreneurial venture — the Detroit Center for Innovation. Our students and faculty are thrilled to be part of the transformative programs that will connect entrepreneurship, technology, research and innovation defining the careers of tomorrow.”

~ Domenico Grasso, chancellor, University of Michigan – Dearborn

“This is a monumental moment for Detroit and our great state as the University of Michigan, Detroit-area businesses, and public and private sectors come together to position our regional economy and workforce to lead in the emerging industries of the future. Michigan Ross has a long-standing history of partnering with Detroit-area companies and entrepreneurs to grow and diversify their businesses, while making a positive economic and social impact throughout the region. We are excited for Ross faculty to be a part of creating this transformative center for innovation with world-class research and academic programs that will produce a comprehensive and competitive talent pipeline for generations to come.”

~ Scott DeRue, Edward J. Frey Dean, U-M Stephen M. Ross School of Business

“We plan to be enthusiastic participants in the new Detroit Center for Innovation. The School of Information has a long history of involvement with the city, from graduate Clara Stanton Jones, the first woman and first African-American director of the Detroit Public Library, to present day projects to foster economic growth in the Eastside Community Network, provide user testing of civic tools for the City of Detroit, encourage high school girls in STEM pursuits, and many others. Our students spend hundreds of hours each year in Detroit working on civic projects as volunteers during their fall and spring breaks and as summer interns at several local businesses. We look forward to the numerous research and educational opportunities this new center will present for our faculty and students to contribute to the growth and development of Detroit.”

~ Thomas A. Finholt, dean, U-M School of Information

“As we move forward in the 21st century, I believe the Center can play an important role in charting a path for southeast Michigan, Detroit — and beyond. The creation of new information, mobility, security and infrastructure systems, for example, to tackle the emergence of mega-cities or renewing of older communities, will be among the most challenging issues. The College of Engineering is committed to the economic development of this region, as well as to educating tomorrow’s intellectually curious and socially conscious engineers. I am pleased that we’re bringing both together in this vibrant new center of activity in the heart of downtown.”

~ Alec D. Gallimore, Robert J. Vlasic Dean of Engineering, the Richard F. and Eleanor A. Towner Professor, an Arthur F. Thurnau Professor, and a U-M professor of aerospace engineering

“When Mythic first launched in collaboration with U-M, we were constantly on the lookout for talent, funding, and connections to strategic partnerships. Deep technology startups take a long time to incubate, and strong support from universities like U-M and the industry partners they can bring along are critical to surviving the early years. It is inspiring to see U-M further embrace this with the launch of the new collaborative initiative in Detroit. I am confident that these new efforts by U-M and key corporate and community partners working together in Detroit will result in attracting more entrepreneurial students, faculty, and growing the innovation ecosystem southeast Michigan.”

~ Mike Henry, CEO, Mythic, a top AI chip company

“This is a transformative project in the history of our region, with impact beyond U-M and Detroit. The Center promises to be a gravity well for talent and capital, producing exciting new startups with ties to local industry that have the potential to sustain a long-term engine of growth and investment.”

~ Dug Song, co-founder and former CEO of Duo Security, now part of Cisco

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