How did you spend summer vacations growing up? That time away from school might mean family vacations, BBQs, and beach time for many, but it also means working that first summer job. 

DTE partners with Grow Detroit’s Young Talent (GDYT) to help young Detroiters get that crucial first job experience to set them up for success later in life.  

Hundreds of young Detroiters came to Little Caesars Arena on Friday, May 17 in hopes of finding the right job for summer or exploring career options. The 2019 Summer Career Connections Fair, a partnership between many local organizations, brought dozens of employers to the arena to hire students for the summer. 

Our company was well-represented, with employees from overhead, underground, engineering and gas operations chatting with young people about working for DTE. Students could try on personal protection equipment and ask questions about working in the energy skilled trades.  

“Students and adults who entered the DTE Exploration Zone left feeling engaged, excited and informed,” says Laurie Washington, program manager in Workforce Development/Career Awareness. 

Sean Foley, underground cable splicer, and Michael Bolling, underground cable supervisor, shared the benefits in working for DTE to young people crowded around their table: working with your hands, traveling, being outside, and – most importantly – working with great people.  

Along with the DTE booth, our interview station was busy all morning, with employees interviewing 21 interested candidates. Four students were selected for our 8-week Summer Youth Internship Program, and we are now extending offers to additional candidatesWe also referred many students to other DTE student programs and partner programs.  

How do you prepare for multiple interviews? Daziah Parkera Michigan State University junior studying electrical engineering, says that she “looked at videos, looked over my resume, practiced my elevator speech and practiced answering interview questions that I thought they might ask.” Parker’s preparation paid off: we hired her for an internship. 

Students who weren’t quite ready for the interview stage had a choice between workshops to help them practice interviewing skills, work on communication, and explore employment and career opportunities. 

“Partnering with GDYT and providing unique experiences at career fairs is another example of our company supporting youth,” says Alicia Harris-Turner, Manager-Employment Strategy. “Students were able to ask questions to new apprentices and long-time employees, get hands-on experience with equipment and learn about the benefits of working with DTE.”