DETROIT – The “great voice of the Great Lakes” kicked off its weeklong WJR College Tour 2023 with an early morning visit to Wayne State University on Monday, Oct. 23.
Hosts Guy Gordon, Lloyd Jackson and Jamie Edmonds brought the ‘JR Morning radio program to the newly renovated M. Roy Wilson State Hall, where they were on air from 6 to 9 a.m.
The three-hour program featured guests from across the Midtown campus, including President Kimberly Andrews Espy, Ph.D.; Director of Athletics Erika Wallace; and Vice President for Economic Development and President and CEO of TechTown Ned Staebler. Other guests included student Gabrielle Rush and recent alumni Nalani Fromm and Simon Mourani.
“Wayne State was honored to host WJR’s first college road show visit today,” said Carolyn Berry, Wayne State’s associate vice president of marketing and communications. “The partnership with WJR provides a platform to promote Wayne State’s deep connections to Detroit’s business community through career-readiness initiatives, research collaborations, and building the future workforce to help Detroit and our region thrive. “
The first hour’s guest was Wallace, who provided an overview of the Warriors’ football season, the partnership with the Detroit Pistons and their development league team, and the community involvement of Wayne State’s 400-plus student-athletes.
“We average about 9,000 hours a year in community service,” she said. “So, we're out there, we're out in the community and it's important that we are because we want the youth of Detroit to know that we're here and that this is an opportunity for them as well. So, we're going into the schools and we're reading, we're doing camping clinics, we're working with Detroit PAL. There's a lot of different opportunities, and our student-athletes absolutely love it, whether they're from the city or not, and they're coming in; they really absolutely love getting into the community and helping.”
In the show’s second hour, President Espy welcomed the WJR team to State Hall and began her appearance by discussing the importance of the downtown vibe and how Wayne State is leveraging that excitement in Detroit.
“We are in, for and with Detroit,” she said. “We’ve been here from the beginning. It’s an asset and we make a difference every day, whether it’s health care or training students in the community to benefit health, whether it’s bringing industry partnerships to serve our students who are driven and ready to go and focused on career, or whether it’s about spawning small business and supporting their success. That’s all that Wayne State is about – our community.”
In the third hour, Staebler and the show’s hosts talk about the unique partnership between Wayne State and TechTown, which was founded in 2000 to support tech-based spinoffs from the university.
“We want to have something that is out in the community of the city for the people, but also really well connected to the world-class research teaching and students that are here at Wayne State,” Staebler said. “We've got interns that come and work on the companies that are there. We help commercialize technology out of the labs and out of the classrooms, professors and grad students that are coming up to start businesses. There really are a whole host of ways that we connect, and you're going to see even more of that in the coming year or two as we start bringing TechTown and its student entrepreneurship programs back on campus.”
Heard every weekday from the WJR studio in the Fisher Building, ‘JR Morning brings the latest in local, regional and global news live. The trio is joined by newsmakers in government and politics, business, sports and entertainment, and more.
Monday’s guest interviews can be heard here:
President Kimberly Andrews Espy, Ph.D.
Erika Wallace, director of athletics
Ned Staebler, vice president for economic development, and president and CEO of TechTown
Student Roundtable, featuring Nalani Fromm, Simon Mourani and Gabrielle Rush