Walsh Hosts Business Workshops for Cody High School Students

Nine students from Cody High School in Detroit recently visited Walsh as part of the General Motors (GM) Student Corps Program. GM Student Corps matches teams of high school interns with retired GM executives and college interns to plan and execute community service projects. The goal of the program is to help young people from underserved school districts transform their communities and jump start their futures through paid internships, important life skills training, career and college preparation. Their visit to Walsh helped them explore career opportunities and success through higher education and included workshops in financial education, information technology, and communication.

Financial Literacy

The first breakout session took place in the Finance Lab, with students sharing their life goals by the time they turn 25. Team Cody is filled with future Detroit firefighters, activists, entrepreneurs, nurses, authors, philanthropists, world travelers, and military service members. One student expressed his desire to renovate abandoned homes in Detroit to help others live better lives.

Walsh Finance Department Chair and Professor John Moore, Ph.D., CPA, and Assistant Professor Stephen Sholty, MBA, CTP, presented financial concepts including compound interest, saving money, investing in stocks, and setting financial goals for the future. Students learned how they could significantly impact their futures by starting to save money at a young age. Professors Moore and Sholty encouraged Team Cody to try and save $23 each week and see how quickly it starts to add up. The students loved this idea and one student even stood up and verbally committed to begin saving so he could start making a difference for his financial future.

Hands-On Programming

Next, students visited the Cyber Lab for a hands-on micro:bit programming workshop with Christopher Heiden, Walsh IT/Decision Sciences Associate Professor. Several students were not familiar with the cybersecurity field and were excited to learn about programming, coding, and how companies use servers to store data. Each student received workshop materials to take home to further spark their interest in programming.

Professor Heiden was impressed by the natural technology talent in the room. One student even expertly demonstrated a complex program on his micro:bit to the team.

Plans for the Future

In a working lunch session, students had a chance to practice business communication skills. Each student stood and delivered their “elevator pitch” to the room, and GM leaders discussed and demonstrated the importance of nonverbal communication as well. The students also met with members of the Admissions and Advising team to learn about the path from community college to Walsh, getting involved in Student Life activities, and why a Walsh education is unique.

Susan Foley, Vice President and Chief Advancement Officer, gave the students a behind-the-scenes tour of the Troy location, including the library, where they took advantage of a free book cart, the small auditorium, where one student stood at the podium to feel like a professor, and employee-only area where a young entrepreneur took advantage of a photo-op at an empty desk.

“Team Cody students have the drive, passion, enthusiasm, and ambition to make the most of their potential,” said Foley. “We enjoyed spending the day with them and look forward to seeing what their promising futures hold.”

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