Penske Automotive Group, Michigan community leaders, tries to conjure up summer jobs

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School is out! Unfortunately, across the U.S. summer job hunting isn’t easy. For example Michigan teens are suffering a 24.2% unemployment rate nationally, according to George Erickcek, Senior Regional Analyst at the W.E. Upjohn Institute. It is estimated that 274,100 teens will be active in the workforce (employed/actively looking). Not only will job openings be limited but as Michigan has experienced, Federal funding of summer jobs has also decrease by almost seventy five percent from 2009 to present.

In response some metro Detroit business leaders, like Penske Automotive are making extra efforts to correct this for local teens. Business leaders and others across Michigan are making it a priority to create at new ways to give students work experience in this poor economy. It’s a new idea, however one that is gaining momentum quickly.

Penske Automotive has been a front runner to join Detroit Workforce Development Department inspirational program. Active participant in this program, Calvin Sharp, executive vice president for human resources for the Penske Group has championed Penske Automotive Group in Bloomfield Hills to front a cash donation of $15,000.  This donation will benefit a fund for 15 teens enrolled in this summer work program.

“Businesses obviously had to scale back their expense levels to survive the ’08 meltdown,” Sharp said. This summer program is a progressive concept, understandably businesses are nervous to add additional expenses, however it’s one Penske Automotive Group feels strongly about. Sharp feels that the union between public-private to raise money for summer employment in Detroit will be a life-changing opportunity for teens but ask help jump start economic recovery.

To learn more or donate to this summer youth programs in Detroit visit This is one of the many community outreach programs Penske Automotive Group is actively involved in. For more details on the dealership visit

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