The summer has been great in Flint & Genesee as once again our community enjoyed thousands of visitors here for our many events and activities; for example, the monthly art and jazz walks, the grand opening of the new Flint Farmers’ Market, the Warrior Dash and Be a Tourist events, and of course our flagship events Back to the Bricks and the CRIM Festival of Races.

As we now transition from summer to fall, the Flint & Genesee Chamber will continue to highlight attractions and the unique amenities that our region offers, and promote positive news.

This week brought on the beginning of a new school year, so education and training are top of mind. A few days ago, Flint Community Schools unveiled two new STEM labs at Brownell-Holmes STEM Academy. They are the first labs of their kind to be used by elementary students. This is outstanding news for over 900 K-6 students who will have the valuable hands-on experience with science, technology, engineering and math. While the district has its challenges, this really is great for the students. Even kindergarteners will be able to get in on a STEM education.

In addition, our YouthQuest afterschool program has expanded to all Flint schools and beyond K-8 to include high school students at Northwestern and Southwestern. We saw a need for a teen program that is different from our TeenQuest program, which focuses on job preparation. YouthQuest will give high school students enriching activities to expand upon their academic subjects as well. You will see more of a club format; for example, underwater robotics and scuba diving. Again, this is all great news for our youth.

As business leaders we know that one of the surest ways to create a better future for our community, our region and our nation is to improve the quality of education. Through the Chamber’s youth education programs, we are working along with our partners to do just that. I invite you to join us… to get involved. Become a TeenQuest/Summer Youth Initiative employer or sponsor a youth education event. There are a myriad of ways to be engaged. If you would like more information, please contact Rhetta Hunyady, Vice President, Education & Training. She can be reached at rhunyady@flintandgenesee.org.

In the meantime, let’s stay focused on the positive and keep moving forward!

Tim