Tag Archives: education

Constructi​on Begins on Wolf Sanctuary at Detroit Zoo


Detroit Zoo Logo

ROYAL OAK, Mich. – Construction has begun on the new Cotton Family wolf habitat at the Detroit Zoo. Located at the southwest corner of the park, the 2-acre sanctuary will feature grassy meadows, trees, a flowing stream and pond, dens and elevated rock outcroppings from which the wolves can survey their surroundings and Zoo visitors.

“Like many others in Michigan, our family is so excited to help save wolves – cousins of man’s best friend – in a protected sanctuary at the Detroit Zoo,” said David Cotton, whose family donated $500,000 toward the development of the wolf habitat. Continue reading


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Detroit Institute of Music Education, a New Music College, Launches in Downtown Detroit


DETROIT – Detroit Institute of Music Education (DIME), a music education college dedicated to teaching the next generation of modern musicians, has announced its launch in downtown Detroit.

DIME’s temporary location at 1520 Woodward Avenue, between John R and Witherell, will serve as its admissions office and performance space. Prospective students are encouraged to visit the space and meet the DIME team and sign up anytime Monday through Saturday between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.

The space will also be equipped with a live stage and sound system, and will feature regular entertainment events. Bands and artists interested in performing in this space can contact the admissions office at 313-223-1600 or www.dime-detroit.com.

Founded by music industry veterans Kevin Nixon, Sarah Clayman and Bruce Dickinson, DIME offers advanced music students a college-style experience in contemporary music, with expert musicians and industry professionals teaching courses in guitar, bass, vocals, drums, songwriting and music entrepreneurship. Prospective students can pursue a bachelor’s degree or diploma in Creative Music Performance, or sign up for part-time and summer music education programs. DIME expects to enroll 150 students for its 2014-2015 school year.

“The music industry is a complicated business and learning by experience can be a long route. DIME brings the information, encouragement and expertise to demonstrate how to build a successful career,” says Kevin Nixon, president of DIME. “Musicianswill be playing in bands, meeting industry professionals, mastering technique, promoting their own shows, developing their brand, arranging songs, and many other exciting career development activities. Most of all, DIME students will be part of a musical community of like-minded musicians and budding entrepreneurs.”

DIME is the third music education venture for serial entrepreneurs Nixon, Clayman and Dickinson. The trio’s most recent model grew to a multi-campus college with locations in the United Kingdom and Ireland. DIME’s educational programs are built on the successful model pioneered by the founders. Michigan-based private equity firm Beringea has made a $3 million investment in DIME to fund the opening in Detroit.

“We’re excited to bring this innovative high profile, high impact business to Detroit and provide growth capital for its launch. DIME’s education model will attract creative, young people from all over the country to Michigan, while creating more jobs in the education sector,” said Charlie Rothstein, senior managing director and co-founder of Beringea.

DIME will formally open in September, when renovations are complete on the historicBamlet Building, located at 1265 Griswold Street and owned by Bedrock Real Estate Services.  The school will occupy more than 20,000 square feet of space on four floors of the seven-story, building in Capitol Park at the corner of Griswold Street and Grand River Avenue built in 1896.

“Detroit has always been known for its music and innovative culture,” said Dan Gilbert, Chairman and Founder of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans. “It is fitting for the Detroit Institute of Music Education to open in the heart of downtown Detroit where the opportunities to create are endless. I can think of nothing more important than locating institutions that attract young talented people to the city. DIME is a unique entrepreneurial organization that has a proven strategy to develop top-notch musicians. The combination of Detroit’s DNA and DIME’s exciting educational model is going to be a huge success for the entire community.”


About Detroit Institute of Music Education

Detroit Institute of Music Education (“DIME”) is a music education college dedicated to teaching the next generation of modern musicians. Founded by music industry veterans Kevin Nixon, Sarah Clayman and Bruce Dickinson, DIME will offer advanced music students a college-style experience in contemporary music, with expert musicians and music industry professionals teaching courses in guitar, bass, vocals, drums, songwriting and music entrepreneurship. Prospective students can choose to pursue a bachelor’s degree or diploma in Creative Music Performance, or sign up for part-time and summer music education programs. Serious musicians can expect practical and real-world preparation for a career in the music industry upon graduation.

DIME will formally open in September, when renovations will be completed on the historic Bamlet Building in downtown Detroit. A pop-up space, located at 1520 Woodward Avenue between John R and Witherell will open Thursday, March 20 and will serve as a temporary admissions office and performance space for the college. For more information on DIME, visit www.dime-detroit.com or call 313.223.1600.

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Warthog Piglets Daphne and Violet Blossom at Detroit Zoo

The Detroit Zoo | Warthogs

The Detroit Zoo | Warthogs

ROYAL OAK, Mich. – Flowers aren’t the only things blooming at the Detroit Zoo. Daphne and Violet – female warthogs born April 7, 2013 – are now firmly planted in their African Grasslands habitat near the Africa Train Station.

The birth is the result of a breeding recommendation from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Species Survival Plan, a cooperative management program to ensure genetically healthy, diverse and self-sustaining populations of threatened and endangered species. There are currently just over a hundred warthogs in North American zoos.

“We’re excited to have these baby warthogs and to help this small population in zoos grow,” said Robert Lessnau, Detroit Zoological Society Curator of Mammals. “The piglets are very cute and we’re happy to introduce them to zoo visitors.”

Female warthogs give birth to litters of two to six after a gestation period of five to six months. The babies’ mother, 8-year-old Lilith, and her twin sister, Rebecca, are named for characters from the television series “Cheers”. Daphne is named for a character from the sitcom’s spin-off “Frasier”. The father is 3-year-old Linus, whose namesake is a character from the “Peanuts” comic strip, as is Violet’s.

The warthog (Phacochoerus aethiopicus) has a large head with a flat face, high-set eyes and elongated snout. A mature warthog stands about 30 inches tall at the shoulder and can weigh between 125 and 300 pounds. Its stocky, muscular, almost-hairless body features wrinkly, gray skin; a long, coarse mane along its neck and back; and a long, tasseled tail.

Among the warthog’s most noticeable characteristics are the four large tusks protruding from the sides of its snout. The two upper canine teeth curve up and over the snout while the sharp lower canines are short and straight. The warthog also sports protruding facial warts which give the species its name.

Found primarily in the savannah woodland and grasslands of sub-Saharan Africa, the warthog is threatened by drought and hunting, which could result in localized extinctions in the future.

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It’s Easy Being Green at Detroit Zoo’s GreenFest, April 20-21

Green Fest - Detroit Zoo

ROYAL OAK, Mich. – The Detroit Zoo will host its inaugural GreenFest on Saturday, April 20, and Sunday, April 21, 2013, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Zoo-wide event is dedicated to celebrating Earth Day and educating Zoo visitors about environmental conservation.

Each GreenFest guest who turns in a Green Zoo survey – which can be downloaded at detroitzoo.org beginning April1 – will receive a reduced admission price of $8, parking not included. Admission for Detroit Zoological Society members is free, but members are encouraged to participate in the survey. Green Zoo surveys will also be available at the admission gates during GreenFest.

GreenFest will feature earth-friendly craft projects, an endangered species and green scavenger hunt, a 30-foot rock climbing wall (weather permitting), family yoga classes and animal enrichment. Off Broadway Productions will present a mini-musical about recycling at the Events Pavilion at 11 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m.

A Green Games Gallery will be hosted by the Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) Green Team conservation group, including games using recycled materials, storytelling and educational displays. The event will also include hands-on science experiments by the University of Detroit Chemistry Club, composting demonstrations by SOCWA (Southeastern Oakland County Water Authority) and exhibits by local conservation groups. All GreenFest activities are free with Zoo admission.

A “Save Vanishing Species” semipostal stamp-cancellation ceremony will take place on Saturday, and the stamp will be available for sale throughout the weekend. Proceeds will benefit the Wildlife Without Borders Multinational Species Conservation Funds administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Anyone who turns in a used cell phone for recycling between April 7 and April 21 at Noodles & Company restaurants in Livonia, Northville, Rochester, Royal Oak or Troy (two locations) to benefit the Detroit Zoo will receive a free appetizer and a voucher for one complimentary admission to the Zoo’s 4-D Theater or Simulator Ride in the Wild Adventure Zone during GreenFest. Cell phones will also be collected at the event.

GreenFest is supported by DTE Energy, Ford, The Home Depot, IKEA, Noodles & Company, United Healthcare Community Plan and Whole Foods Market.

GreenFest is an initiative of the DZS Greenprint, a comprehensive strategic plan to refine and improve facilities and daily practices, develop new policies and programs and improve green literacy in the community.

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Ask Yourself: Do I Want to be a Detroit Zoo Volunteer?

ROYAL OAK, Mich. – The Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) is asking people to “Ask Yourself” in a new volunteer recruitment video. The question: Do you want to be a Detroit Zoo volunteer? The answer may be just a click away for those who are considering a volunteer position at the Detroit Zoo or Belle Isle Nature Zoo.

The short film, produced by DZS volunteer Giff Rogers, highlights the various volunteer opportunities at the Detroit Zoo. Positions include Zoo Ambassador, Gallery Guide at the Wildlife Interpretive Gallery, Guest Assistant at the Arctic Ring of Life, and member of the “Mob Squad” at the Australian Outback Adventure, among others. “Fast Facts” for each position help lead viewers to the position that may be the right fit for them.

“Volunteering with the DZS is great fun for people who would enjoy continuing their education, sharing their love of animals, meeting lifelong friends, developing new skills and even getting exercise walking the Zoo’s 125 acres,” said DZS Volunteer Services Manager Linda Denomme. “Our hope is that people will watch the video and ask themselves, ‘Who wouldn’t want to be a Detroit Zoo volunteer?’”

Recruitment and training of volunteers 18 years of age and older begin in the spring to prepare for the peak summer season, starting this year with the Detroit Zoo’s annual Bunnyville event on March 30, 2013. Training will be offered for both seasonal and year-round opportunities. The 2013 volunteer orientation dates are:

• Saturday, March 16, 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
• Wednesday, April 3, 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
• Saturday, May 4, 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
• Wednesday, May 29, 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Volunteer orientation sessions are held in the Detroit Zoo’s Ford Education Center; advance registration is required. Visit http://detroitzoo.org/volunteers/volunteering-detroit-zoo to download an application. For further information call (248) 541-5717 ext. 3802 or email volunteer@dzs.org.

No experience is necessary to become a Detroit Zoological Society volunteer, and volunteers do not handle or feed the animals. DZS volunteers enjoy a number of benefits in exchange for their time, including discounts and an annual volunteer appreciation party. Last year, 1,167 volunteers contributed 103,335 hours of service to the DZS, representing $2,251,670 in support.


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Detroit Zoo to host humane education workshop today

By Mike Fossano

Our friends at the Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) are hosting their annual “Sowing Seeds” humane education workshop today from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Ford Education Center.

Presented by the DZS’s Berman Academy for Humane Education, the goal of the workshop is to train educators to teach critical thinking about social justice, environmental ethics and animal protection to help demonstrate to students how decisions that they make can impact themselves, other people, other species and the Earth.

While the “Sowing Seeds” workshop is geared toward classroom teachers and community leaders, it is also open to students, animal management professionals, animal advocates and anyone else with an interest in humane education. Continue reading

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YOU balance the state budget

By Mike Fossano

So you think you can come up with a better plan to balance the state’s budget than the politicians?

The Center for Michigan, a “think-and-do” tank founded in 2006 by former newspaper publisher Phil Power, recently came out with an online game that puts you in the shoes of Michigan Legislators who must address looming budget issues over the coming months. Continue reading

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