Mayor Duggan opens application portal for 10th year of GDYT summer jobs program for more than 8,000 Detroit youth

  • Portal now open for youth to sign up at through May 31, 2024.
  • Employers and partners can also sign up via the same website.
  • Grow Detroit’s Young Talent program has provided more than 70,000 summer work experiences for Detroit youth since 2015.


The 10th year of Detroit’s summer jobs program for the city’s youth, Grow Detroit’s Young Talent (GDYT) kicked off today, opening the application portal for thousands of Detroiters between the ages of 14 and 24.

Mayor Mike Duggan was joined by City Council members, employers, program partners and youth participants at the downtown headquarters of long-time GDYT partner DTE Energy for the event, which will see more than 8,000 young Detroiters participate this summer.

The application portal at will stay open until May 31, 2024, and is open to youth who wish to participate as well as to Metro Detroit businesses looking to host young people this summer.

“When we launched GDYT in 2015, we knew there was a need for a centrally coordinated approach to bring all the various summer employment opportunities together, so our young people could more easily access them,” said Mayor Mike Duggan. “This is our 10th year and we are so appreciative of all of our funding partners and employment partners that have helped make GDYT a national model for summer youth employment programs.”

Joining the Mayor at today’s event was Detroit City Council President Mary Sheffield, a strong supporter of opportunities for Detroit youth.

“There really is no substitute for the experience that our young people get through GDYT every year,” said Council President Sheffield. “Whether they are participating for the first time, or whether they are a multi-year participant, GDYT provides the building blocks that they need as they consider what careers interest them or what majors they are interested in pursuing at post-secondary level.”

DTE Energy has been a partner and supporter of this program since Grow Detroit’s Young Talent was launched in 2015.

“DTE Energy is honored to continue our commitment to Grow Detroit’s Young Talent by providing pivotal work experiences for the city’s youth,” said Joi Harris, president and chief operating officer, DTE Energy. “Nurturing bright, young minds and showing them a variety of career pathways is an invaluable way to enable successful futures for all.”

The GDYT program is managed every year by Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation (DESC) as the lead implementation agency and fiduciary, partnering with a wide range of employers, foundations, philanthropic donors and community partners.

“The ability for our youth to access opportunity every summer cannot be overstated as we look to build the city’s leaders of tomorrow and in this, the 10th year of GDYT, we will reach just under 80,000 total summer jobs created since 2015,” said Dana Williams, President and CEO of DESC. “We absolutely could not do this work without the unwavering support of our partners, including the Mayor’s Office for Executive Level Resource Development and Oversight, and Connect Detroit as our Summer Youth Employment Coordinator and Implementation Partner.

“Whether it is providing a work experience, or supportive funding, or mentoring about being work-ready, or managing a bank account for the first time, our youth get so much more out of GDYT every year than just a paycheck.”

Every year, a wide range of opportunities is made available to Detroit youth, from experience with the Police and Fire Departments, to employment with numerous City of Detroit Departments, and in industries ranging from IT to skilled trades to healthcare.

“Grow Detroit’s Young Talent is a program that opens the door for our youth and helps to build a pipeline for talent,” said Bridget Hurd, vice president of Inclusion and Diversity and Chief Diversity Officer at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. “Blue Cross is glad to be a longstanding partner in this program, which exposes young people to what opportunity looks like and because of that increased awareness, helps participants envision a future of possibilities.”

Partnering with GDYT

Funding for GDYT every year comes from a number of sources, including the City of Detroit, employers, foundations, and many individual private donors. More information can be found at and those interested in supporting the program can do so in several ways:

  • Become a Funding Partner by making a financial contribution to the GDYT program to support summer work experiences for Detroit youth.
  • Become an Employer Partner by providing a job at your designated worksite and sponsoring a six-week paid work experience (120 hours).
  • Be recognized as an Affiliate Partner by directly hiring youth through an existing summer program that you operate.
  • Volunteer to support key program components (career fairs, work-readiness training, etc.)
  • Explore options to provide year-round and/or permanent employment opportunities to Detroit youth.

Process for Successful Youth Applicants

After an individual expresses interest in a summer work experience through, the applicant will be randomly selected through a lottery system. Selected youth must complete all enrollment forms and upload the required documents into the CareerEdge portal. All properly registered Detroit GDYT youth will receive a minimum of 12 hours of work-readiness pre-training before the start of their summer employment.

In early May, select partners will have the opportunity to interview youth candidates at a GDYT-sponsored career fair for Career Pathways Internships, Industry-Led Training, and Pre-Apprenticeships. Eligible youth may also select their own summer work experience during our virtual Career Fair in June. Successful GDYT-registered youth will also attend a Youth Orientation where they will receive additional materials regarding timekeeping, benchmark achievements, and the GDYT Handbook. For more information about the youth applicant process, refer to GDYT’s Roadmap to Success at

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About GDYT

Grow Detroit’s Young Talent (GDYT) is a citywide training and employment program for young adults between the ages of 14 and 24. The program seeks to provide over 8,000 young Detroiters summer employment opportunities in partnership with Metro Detroit corporations, non-profit organizations, municipal departments, local businesses and the philanthropic community. The strategic goals of GDYT are:

  • Ensure young adults have meaningful summer work experiences that create pathways to future opportunities.
  • Connect young adults to providers and employers that can support their career goals.
  • Introduce employers to the next generation of Detroit’s workforce.
  • Align Detroit’s youth workforce development programs to streamline service delivery and improve outcomes.

Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation is the lead agency for GDYT and also administers the Detroit at Work program on behalf of the City of Detroit. Connect Detroit is DESC’s contracted Coordinator and Implementation Partner working with key community and faith-based organizations, municipal departments, and the Junior Fire Cadets.