FLINT, Michigan — On March 9, The Flint & Genesee
Chamber, the University of Michigan-Flint School of Management
(SOM), and Entrepreneurs Society
announced a partnership that will involve a series of new programs and initiatives aimed to stimulate economic growth in Genesee County.
"The Flint & Genesee Chamber is a determined network of community members. Its efforts bring a wide range of valuable resources to individuals and businesses in Genesee County, all for the purpose of supporting our local economy and community members," said Dr. Michael Witt, University of Michigan-Flint lecturer of Entrepreneurship and Business Law. "The Entrepreneurs Society and School of Management are delighted to work with the Flint and Genesee Group to amplify this effort."
The University of Michigan-Flint shared in a news release that through this partnership, Genesee County is expected to be a top-five community in Michigan based on jobs, talent, livability, and equity by the year 2040.
"This is a goal outlined in the Group’s vision statement, created with extensive input and partnership with the county’s political and business leaders and community members," said Witt. "To accomplish this, the Group has four divisions: the Flint & Genesee Chamber, Economic Alliance, Education & Talent, and Explore Flint & Genesee."
This is essential in cultivating a successful economic pipeline for growth and productivity.
A higher look at the University of Michigan-Flint Business Engagement Center.
According to Witt, the partnership started during a conversation with the new President of the Flint and Genesee Chamber, Andy Younger. Witt said he and a plethora of organizations like the student organization at the University of Michigan-Flint, Entrepreneurs Society, headed by Garrett Prince, Evan Johnson, University of Michigan-Flint SOM staff person Alexis Menard, met with Younger to discuss how The University of Michigan-Flint and the Flint and Genesee Chamber could work more closely together. From that meeting, the partnership began and is expected to be “an ongoing and permanent fixture of the Flint community.”
When asked what two groups are intended to be the most impacted, Witt said that the new partnership most impacts students and local employers' growing businesses and their futures here in the Flint community. “We want our best and brightest to build their vision here and to work with companies that can use their skill sets.”
Through this partnership, University students will be able to gain further exposure through conducting research on tough problems confronting Flint local employers and working to provide solutions that will break economic barriers in the community. This learning opportunity is also expected to connect students to internships, employment opportunities, and new business ventures.
The University’s partnership with the Chamber celebrated this collaboration with a new video and podcast series, Genesee County Visionaries
. This series focuses on local business and non-profit leaders' role in growing the Greater Flint area, according to the news release.
“This series is a great way to recognize the business leaders in our community and learn more about their visions and what drives them to succeed,” said Andrew Younger, Executive Director of the Flint and Genesee Chamber in the news release.
It is important for the Group’s leadership that both the University of Michigan-Flint and the Genesee County citizens know that this partnership was created with their success in mind.
“We are open for business in Flint. We have talent, resources, and a willingness to make this wonderful place even better. The University of Michigan-Flint and the Flint and Genesee Group are here to help.”
For more information on The Flint & Genesee Group, visit: flintandgenesee.org
And to view the first episode of the Genesee County Visionaries podcast series, click here.