The Gilbert Family Foundation, a Detroit-based nonprofit, will award a multi-million dollar grant (the exact amount of which is currently unknown) and provide mentoring support to Apple's new Developer Academy in Detroit.
The grant is awarded in collaboration with the Rock family of companies, which includes Quicken Loans and Rocket Homes. Entrepreneur Dan Gilbert owns Rock Ventures, and he also founded the Gilbert Family Foundation with his wife Jennifer. In addition, Rocket Ventures said it will draw on its network of companies to propose "tutoring and student pathways."
Apple first announced that it would open a developer academy in Detroit in collaboration with Michigan State University in early 2021. Applications opened in May, and the academy is scheduled to officially open in October.
Dan Gilbert, states that:
Apple's arrival in Detroit has the potential to impact generations of Detroiters by offering unique new avenues to join the technological renaissance. As Detroit's tech sector strengthens, we need to invest in intentional programs like the Academy to advance equity and remove barriers to entry for members of our community. Jennifer and I are proud to partner with our alma mater, MSU, and Apple to bring this vision to life.
The Apple Developer Academy will offer coding and technology training to the community. The apprenticeship will be free for all students, regardless of their academic background, and priority will be given to admission to Detroit residents.
According to Lisa Jackson, Apple's vice president of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives:
At Apple, we've seen how technology can be a powerful force for good, creating new opportunities and providing tools for creativity and entrepreneurship. It's critical that all communities have access to those opportunities, which is why we're thrilled to open America's first Apple Developer Academy in downtown Detroit, a city filled with resilience, creativity, and an entrepreneurial spirit.