Caria is an incoming Freshman at Wayne State University. She acquired a love for education by being a member of the University of Michigan Medical School’s Doctors of Tomorrow (DOT) outreach program and serving as the youngest Henry Ford Hospital summer youth intern in the 9th grade. She also maintained a 4.0 or better throughout her entire student-career at Cass Technical High School. Caria obtained a full scholarship from Wayne State University and a 2021 summer internship with Ford Motor Co. through DAPCEP. You may also recognize her as a member of the Detroit Youth Choir seen on America’s Got Talent in 2019. Caria is also an accomplished photographer with her work being published in the Detroit News and at the Ford Motor Company Train Station development project. Her strong community presence started at an early age, becoming a member of Triumph Church at 3, volunteering and serving as a youth usher and performing in the church’s youth choir since the age of 5. She is now working toward becoming an engineer and making environmental changes that support the growth and functionality of urban communities. Her unstoppable drive has been fueled by inspiration from her mother and grandmother and the love of gaining knowledge. Congratulations to Caria Taylor for being this year’s Detroit Youth Empowerment Award winner for Excellence in Education!
On most mornings this summer you would have found Quinton at the Downtown Boxing Gym where he mentors and coaches anywhere from 7-10 students a day. Teaching his young followers the important life lessons of self-discipline, goal-setting and positive actions, is always at the top of Quinton’s agenda. He says he loves to mentor young people to pay it forward to the people who mentored him. A natural born leader, Quinton has gotten a head start on building his future having already established a thriving business in photography and film making. He has little time to engage in anything that isn’t serving his greater purpose. A 4.0 student at Cass Tech High School, Quinton invests only in the greater good of himself and gives back to his community daily. A leader-by-example, and a young man of honor, congratulations Quinton for being recognized as this year’s Detroit Youth Empowerment Award winner for Individual Community Impact.
The owner of an all-natural, handmade line of skin and body care products, Lauren knows what it’s like to be an entrepreneur with a passion for giving back. She founded the company during the pandemic. After months of product research and development, Lauren launched Luxe Essential Body Care and in a very short time, Luxe Essential Body Care products had been shipped across the globe receiving glowing reviews from her customers. Lauren uses a portion of the proceeds from the sales of her products to give back to the community. She continuously lives up to her motto, "It is a Blessing to be a Blessing" by donating toiletries, hats, scarves and gloves to women’s shelters and local organizations. Laurens dreams that one day she will start her nonprofit that teaches preteen girls how to take care of their hygiene and respect their bodies. She believes that all women, at any age, should feel special inside and out. Lauren is a student at Michigan State University where she will receive a bachelor’s degree in advertising 2022. Lauren, you are an empowered young woman who deserves to be recognized as this year’s Detroit Youth Empowerment Award winner for Entrepreneurial Spirit. Want to know more? Check out her company at www.luxeessentialbodycare.com or IG @luxeessentialbodycare
T’yara is a young woman with a big heart and a passion for giving back. She is currently completing her final year at Wayne State University with a double major in Mathematics and Engineering. At the age of 17, T’yara founded a community organization called Flora’s Touch. Through the years Flora’s Touch has provided much needed items to community members including hot meals, school supplies, blankets, feminine products, hats and coats. Flora’s Touch also assists people in accessing community resources by helping them apply for jobs, educational opportunities, and grants. The needs of her community are always in the forefront of T’yara’s mind, and more importantly, her actions. Despite her heavy school schedule and balancing two jobs, T’yara continues to give selflessly through the growth and development of Flora’s Touch. In 2015 she was presented the Presidential Prudential Award from President Barak Obama and is committed to carrying on that legacy. Some of T’yara’s longer term goals include opening Urgent Care facilities to serve those without health insurance and developing a line of prosthetics for children of color. Congratulations to T’yara McMillan for founding Flora’s Touch and for being this year’s Sustainable Program Award winner.
At the young age of 14, Khalayja identified a serious problem in her community and wanted to do something about it. She wanted to find a way to raise awareness among parents and children and community decision makers about the dangers of drugs. Though a Detroit-based nonprofit, The Youth Connection, she found her voice. Khalayja created a “photovoice project” that speaks to the impact of drugs in her community. In addition, her visual project showed that young people had to walk past drug activity coming out of church or just going to the store. Khalayja’s goal was to get the attention of local students, parents and lawmakers, and ultimately have limits put on the volume and invasive nature of marijuana advertisements. While she tends to be shy and quiet, Khalayja is a shining example that a voice doesn’t have to be mighty and loud to have an impact. Congratulations to Khalayja, our youngest Detroit Youth Empowerment Award winner ever. Together, we celebrate your heart, voice, and vision as this year’s group Community Fellowship award winner.
India is a driven, hard-working student who has overcome many challenges. Last summer, in the midst of COVID-19, she received the devastating news that her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. A single mother of five, India’s mom needed her to take on some additional roles at home during her treatment and recovery. India drew strength from prayer and her grandmother as well as her good friends Nia and Jordan. Despite unthinkable circumstances, India powered through her senior year at Detroit Renaissance High School finishing with a 3.9 GPA. India also was accepted (and is now attending her freshman year) at Michigan State University where she is studying Veterinary Medicine. Before heading off to Lansing, India completed an internship at Fiat Chrysler’s Communications department where she worked on employee communication and morale through their internal online communication tool called The Hub. We celebrate India, as this year’s Perseverance Award Winner, based on her strength, character and exceptional accomplishments during an extremely difficult time in her family’s life. Congratulations, India Stubbs, on your Detroit Youth Empowerment Award for Perseverance!