News

    Get to Know Nikki: Alumni Coordinator

    Though she's been assisting us since 2015, we're thrilled to officially welcome Build graduate Nikki Pardo to our Build team as the Alumni Coordinator! She will manage communications with Build graduates to keep them engaged in our community. Get to know Nikki a little bit more in this Q&A.   Where were you born and raised? I was born in Detroit and raised in Lathrup Village, Michigan. However, my heart will always be with Southwest Detroit, where I lived for several years. What made you want the position of Registration and Recruitment Coordinator at Build Institute? I wanted the position as the Alumni Coordinator because having been a Build...

    A Spirit of Detroit: Build grad reflects and thanks those that have helped

    I’m a relative newcomer to Detroit, having moved here in 2012 to teach elementary school on the west side of the city. When I tell my friends and family on the east coast why this city is so special to me, the spirit of Detroiters always stands out in my mind. Everyone I meet is passionate and involved in something to create a stronger Detroit – whether it’s working with youth, rehabbing a home, starting a business, organizing a block club, volunteering in spare time, and much more. Doing all these things is not the unique part, but it’s...

    Build in Huffington Post

    "There is no lack of people within Detroit's neighborhoods who want to collaborate. April Boyle, Executive Director of Build Institute, a network of grass-roots programs that train people to bring their business ideas to life, says more attention and investment needs go to into community entrepreneurship. To date, Build has graduated 600 aspiring and experienced community entrepreneurs. Build fosters growth for what they call Main Street entrepreneurs-- brick and mortars or mom and pop lifestyle passion businesses--that are looking to open businesses in their community. "We need both the investment paid to tech and high-growth companies but we also need...

    Welcome Eric: Recruitment and Registration Coordinator

    We're so excited to welcome Eric Dean to our Build team as our new Registration and Recruitment Coordinator. Eric will manage all the registration process for our Build classes as well as outreach to more aspiring and established entrepreneurs. Get to know Eric a little bit more in this Q&A.   Where were you born and raised? I am born and raised in Detroit, MI. I love to traveling and sightseeing but nothing beats Detroit. What made you want the position of Registration and Recruitment Coordinator at Build Institute? Each one of the Build staff, graduates, and volunteers I met were very welcoming and...

    Build Facilitator: Top 5 Pieces of Advice from a Startup Lawyer

    Our Build facilitator Tifani Sadek of Sadek Bonahoom is known as the small business lawyer in Detroit. She's worked with tons of companies including many of our own Build grads. Here she shares her top pieces of legal advice for entrepreneurs. Do not get your legal advice from the internet. It is a good idea to get a good general background so that you can have a knowledgeable conversation with your lawyer, but do not get your legal advice from the internet. I have seen startups bring me some of the worst contracts I could ever imagine that they found on...

    Woodbridge Bikes and Coffee: The story of partnership through Build

    For many of our graduates, Build Institute is a place to toss around a business idea, find support in an entrepreneurial environment, and get connected to a network of doers that welcome collaboration. For some, Build becomes the place where they found exactly what they needed to launch their idea – a business partner. Jonathon Colo and Benjamin Kehoe applied for the same Build Basics class in Spring 2015 with similar business concepts, but with no knowledge of one another. Neither of them went into the Build class with the sole intention of finding a partner, but knew it was...

    Kiva Zip’s Impact: Three borrowers share their experience, growth, and success

    Kiva Zip, a 0% interest, crowdfunded micro-loan program, has been in Detroit for 3 years and has had tremendous positive impact on small business owners. This program, now powered by Build Institute,  fills a gap in Detroit for entrepreneurs trying to access capital to take their business to the next level, and creates community where individuals from Southeast Michigan and all over the world can have an active role in creating opportunity and rebuilding Detroit for as little as a $25 loan. In only a few years there has been more $106,200 over 27 loans funded in Detroit and that number is growing every month....

    Embracing Human Nature: Entrepreneurship

    It’s a funny thing about humans, our propensity to be natural-born problem solvers. We constantly want to fix things, to improve and make them better. This past year I’ve learned that’s why so many of the people moving to or staying in Detroit have intentionally done so. Detroit is a place full of problems that need solutions and, for the determined problem-solvers, it has become their home. Over the course of the last year, I’ve also embraced a new word for these innate problem-solvers-- entrepreneurs. Think about it. At their core, entrepreneurs...

    Forward Cities Featured Post from Build’s Executive Director April Boyle

    "When I first heard of Forward Cities and their goals of advancing minority ownership and commercial corridor redevelopment I was over the moon with excitement, as these are the key tenants of our work at Build Institute.  I was able to attend the very first convening in New Orleans in December 2014 and was taken with the parallels in the stories of the natural disaster, which many argue was manmade due to faulty levies, and the unquestionably manmade disaster in Detroit after 50 years of disinvestment, structural and institutional racism, the housing...

    Sidewalk Ventures: Are you ready to start raising community-based investment for your business?

    "Seeking community-based investment is exciting. With the right team in place, it can be relatively user-friendly and easy to understand, but it still involves asking people to take real financial risk with you. There will be some serious issues to address and information to provide. You're an entrepreneur, so you're probably a doer and you like to get things moving, but it's important to make sure you're prepared before you start looking to the community for investment. Want to know if you're ready?  Start by answering these questions.." Read more at Sidewalk Ventures here.