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Economic Well-Being

Meet Five Young Detroiters Getting Their Start in Philanthropy

When you visit The Skillman Foundation’s office, chances are you will be greeted by one of five young Detroiters who help work our front desk. These talented young people are all participants in The Skillman Foundation high school internship program, an initiative the Foundation has proudly supported in partnership with local schools since 2006.

Each year, these students work alongside our Operations Team on a variety of projects that connect them with Skillman staff and provide opportunities to develop key workplace skills that will help them late in life.

The 2018-2019 cohort of interns features students from Cass Technical High School and Cristo Rey High School across all grade levels. We are extremely proud to work alongside this year’s group of interns!

 

Mikael Thornton IIIMickeal Thornton, intern at The Skillman Foundation

School: Detroit Cristo Rey High School

Grade: 11th

What do you want to do after high school?

I really want to attend either the University of Michigan, Michigan State University, or Wayne State University and study media. I’m also interested in photography, so I’m considering a career in that too.

What is your favorite thing about Detroit?

My favorite thing about the city is the downtown area, especially in the summertime because there’s a ton of stuff to do. There’s always a lot of people and good food to enjoy.

What does opportunity mean to you?

To me, opportunity means getting a chance to learn and experience new things. It gives you what you need to create something new for yourself or your community.

What is one fun fact about you that people may not know?

I love eating pizza. I once ate 16 slices in one sitting. By myself.

 

Tyler PattersonTyler Patterson, intern at The Skillman Foundation

School: Cass Technical High School

Grade: 12th

What do you want to do after high school?

For my undergrad degree, I’d want to attend either Florida A&M University or Spelman College and then go to Harvard for my graduate degree. After that, I want to become a criminal defense attorney and eventually open my own practice.

What is your favorite thing about Detroit?

My favorite thing about Detroit is the music because I’m a big fan of Motown. I love the food here too.

What does opportunity mean to you?

In my opinion, opportunity means building connections and relationships between people and communities.

What is one fun fact about you that people may not know?

I love music and my favorite song is “Fire and Desire” by Rick James.

 

Samantha AvinaSamantha Avina, intern at The Skillman Foundation

School: Cristo Rey High School

Grade: 10th

What do you want to do after high school?

I want to go to college and study culinary arts. A love for cooking runs in my family and it’s something I’d like to do professionally.

What is your favorite thing about Detroit?

I love downtown because its pretty and you see a ton of people and nice looking office buildings.

What does opportunity mean to you?

To me, opportunity means showing kids that we are there for them and helping them see a better future for themselves.

What is one fun fact about you that people may not know?

I know how to swim. It’s one of my favorite things to do in the summer.

 

Angel JaramilloAngel Jaramillo, intern at The Skillman Foundation

School: Cristo Rey High School

Grade: 12th

What do you want to do after high school?

After graduating from high school my plan is to attend Wayne State University or Siena Heights University and study either pre-med or sports management. I also want to play basketball wherever I end up going to school.

What is your favorite thing about Detroit?

I really like the people that live in my neighborhood because they’re so diverse. There are people of all different races, religions and cultures which has allowed me to experience a lot of different things.

What does opportunity mean to you?

To me, opportunity is a chance to grow and further your education. It makes it possible to better the environment around you.

What is one fun fact about you that people may not know?

Sometimes I can be quiet at first, but when you get to know me you’ll realize that I’m a chill person.

 

Rebecca LeivaRebecca Leiva, intern at The Skillman Foundation

School: Cristo Rey High School

Grade: 9th

What do you want to do after high school?

I would like to become an actress.

What is your favorite thing about Detroit?

My favorite part about Detroit is the strong sense of community we have here.

What does opportunity mean to you?

To me, opportunity means getting a chance to achieve what you want to do in life.

What is one fun fact about you that people may not know?

An interesting fact about me is that I am from Guatemala.

 

We have a talented group this year and we are excited to see them continue to grow as students and professionals. Next time you stop by our office, make sure to say hello!

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