Ten GM Student Corps interns will be in school this summer not because they messed up, but rather to clean up. These kids will be at their school, Osborn High, to clean and remodel.
Mentored by GM retirees, the interns are part of a program aimed at beautification projects that are planned and executed by the students in their schools and communities. These kids will be part of an overall makeover in the east side community expected to attract 12,000 volunteers early next month. The program is now in its third year.
Students will do a little bit of everything including building benches, installing solar panels, repairing an existing pond, and repairing, cleaning, organizing and painting an unmaintained greenhouse. They’ll also learn to grow vegetables.
“The students are very interested in leaving a legacy,” said Osborn GM Student Corps team retiree Deborah Easternhall. “They want to look back on their work and say ‘We did that.’”
From August 3-7, the Osborn team will unite with other GM Student Corps teams and Life Remodeled, which Detroit-based non-profit that remodels one Detroit high school and the surrounding community each year. Working alongside the kids will be 3,000 volunteers from GM.
This year’s $5 million is focused on Osborn High, nearby Pulaski Elementary School and 4.5 square miles of the Osborn community.
Last year Life Remodeled worked at Cody High School in northwest Detroit. There was room by room remodeling and businesses donated materials and labor for roof repairs, a state-of-the-art medical simulation laboratory, a STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) lab featuring a $300,000 industrial robot and a new football field valued at $1.2 million, allowing the first home games for the Cody Comets in seven seasons.
“I hope Life Remodeled will be able to do the same type of transformative things that they did at Cody over at Osborn,” said Cody Student Corps lead retiree Dawin Wright. “When the community comes out like that it shows the students and staff that people still care.”
In addition to Osborn and Cody, GM Student Corps schools volunteering in Life Remodeled 2015 include Pontiac High School, Central Collegiate Academy, East Detroit High School, Flint Southwestern Academy, Hamtramck High School, Harper Woods High School, Henry Ford High School, Madison High School, Melvindale High School, River Rouge High School and Van Dyke Lincoln High School. A total of 130 students, 55 GM retirees and 14 college interns from the University of Detroit Mercy and the University of Michigan-Flint will participate.
It is indeed a summer school of altruism.