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Partnership Reinforces Commitment to Workforce Development, Community Engagement and Education

Related Companies and Olympia Development of Michigan today announced a partnership with Project Destined to offer a real estate internship program for students in Detroit. The partnership, which builds upon the internship program that Olympia Development launched last year, demonstrates Related and Olympia Development’s commitment to ensure that the Detroit Center for Innovation and The District Detroit have a positive impact on the community.

Project Destined was launched in Detroit in 2016 with a focus on increasing the number of diverse owners and leaders in the commercial real estate industry. The social impact platform, now active across 30 markets, partners with corporations, schools and nonprofits to train students in the fundamentals of commercial real estate. Students learn through immersive sessions where they analyze live deals with experienced architects, contractors, bankers and developers.

Beginning today and through the end of June, 20 Detroit Public Schools Community District high school students will learn about real estate, business, investment and management. The spring virtual internship program is organized into four, two-week rotations where interns will develop their team building and work experience and skills related to market research, project analysis, property valuation, deal financing and more. As part of the internship, students gain hands-on experience and learn alongside a team of fellow interns. Each team has a dedicated Project Destined alumnus who serves as a Program Manager, and each works closely with a set of company executives who provide mentorship and oversight throughout the internship. The internship program will also include a fall internship class.

Olympia Development of Michigan first announced its partnership with Project Destined last year. In addition, Olympia Development supports Detroit Public School Community Districts students through a variety of programs, including a recurring internship for Cass Technical High School students and other direct learning experiences.

“We look forward to continuing our support of Detroit schools and our cooperation with Project Destined, which will increase access to jobs and opportunity for young Detroiters to positively impact the future of their schools, city and beyond,” said Rian Barnhill, Vice President of Government and Community Affairs at Olympia Development of Michigan. “Making the real estate development industry equitable and accessible for all is core to achieving the enormous potential for social and economic impact of the Detroit Center for Innovation.”

This marks the first partnership between Related Companies and Project Destined in Detroit.

“We know how critical it is to empower the next generation of talent building our neighborhoods,” said Ryan Friedrichs, Vice President of Development at Related Companies. “The opportunity to partner with Project Destined and work directly with students from Mumford, Cass Tech, Henry Ford, Renaissance, Central and other Detroit high schools who have applied, further develops this pipeline of talent for our City and our community.”

Project Destined has been increasing its outreach in support of Detroit students.

“After a successful Detroit partnership last year for Project Destined, we are proud to partner with Related Companies and continue our work with Olympia Development to make the commercial real estate industry more equitable,” said Cedric Bobo, CEO and Co-Founder of Project Destined. “Our program provides students with the skills and resources to make an impact in their communities and across Detroit.”

This program is one of many opportunities in which Detroit schools’ students learn from industry experts.

“Project Destined’s partnership with the Office of College and Career Readiness provides real-world opportunities for our students to gain professional experience. We see students participating in the program becoming future leaders who drive Detroit’s growth story,” said Alycia Meriweather, DPSCD deputy superintendent of partnerships.

Julio Richardson, 2021 Cass Tech graduate and Project Destined intern said, “With this program I saw how it was to come together with a team and build greatness. I learned a lot from the program that will be helpful as I begin to venture into real estate. I am grateful for this opportunity, it was truly life changing.”

Lauren Davenport, a recent graduate of Randolph CTC, participated in Project Destined with Olympia Development last year. “The program provided me with the opportunity to become a leader and owner in my hometown of Detroit,” Davenport said.