‘Industry Club’ to offer paid retail, fashion experience to Detroit youth

The Industry Club plans to hire up to 200 young people for summer, after-school retail experience

A teenage boy at Détroit is the New Black's retail space on Woodward Avenue. Photo provided by Bedrock Detroit. (Bedrock Detroit)

DETROIT – The Boys & Girls Clubs of Southeastern Michigan (BGCSM) announced a new initiative that will offer hands-on experience for young people interested in careers in retail or fashion merchandising.

The initiative -- the Industry Club -- is partnering with the Détroit is the New Black store on Woodward Avenue to hire young up to 200 people each year who are 14 years old and above for after-school or summer retail experience.

“True equality can only be achieved through economic and social mobility and the Industry Club is designed to do just that,” said BGCSM President & CEO, Shawn H. Wilson. “Metro Detroit youth will gain the economic, cultural and social capital needed to become college, career and start up ready.”

Officials say young people participating in the Industry Club are expected to gain retail experience like stocking merchandise, ordering wholesale and fulfilling online orders. The Industry Club is meant to provide young people with access to the industry, mentorship and potential job placement while earning a wage, officials said.

Detroit’s Bedrock is providing the 2,400 square-foot retail space to the Industry Club for free in addition to a $25,000 grant, officials said.

Détroit is the New Black will also share its retail location on Woodward Avenue with the Corktown-based maker space Ponyride.

“Since Détroit is the New Black opened its flagship store in 2016, the signature clothing brand has offered retail floor space to other Detroit-based small businesses,” Thursday’s announcement reads. “That accelerator concept will continue through the Industry Club project, with Ponyride offering both brick-and-mortar, and e-commerce support to local women and entrepreneurs of color.

Learn more about Détroit is the New Black at their website here.

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About the Author:

Cassidy Johncox is a senior digital news editor covering stories across the spectrum, with a special focus on politics and community issues.