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Career Focus Event

2024 Keynote Speaker Reveal Coming Soon

Career Focus

Join business leaders Tuesday, May 7th & Wednesday, May 8th for our 30th annual Career Focus Event at The Palazzo Grande banquet hall. This is the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of nearly 2,000 Utica Community Schools sixth graders.

The Career Focus Event is sponsored by the UCS Foundation in partnership with Sterling Heights Regional Chamber of Commerce and Utica Community Schools. Its purpose is to introduce students entering young adulthood to a variety of career options and provide a memorable experience.



Nicole Black

KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Dr. Nicole Black, PhD

Dr. Nicole Black is the Vice President of Biomaterials and Innovation for Desktop Health. Nicole graduated with her PhD from Harvard University in 2020. Nicole grew up in suburban Detroit before moving to Boston at age 17, where she obtained a BS in Biomedical Engineering with a minor in Mechanical Engineering and a concentration in Nanotechnology from Boston University. During graduate school, Nicole worked on interdisciplinary projects between the WYSS Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering and Mass Eye and Ear hospital in Boston. Specifically, she focused on developing biomimetic tympanic membrane (eardrum) grafts using novel materials and 3D printing technologies.

Following graduate school, Nicole co-founded Beacon Bio, a startup company working on regenerative tissue grafts that benefit from 3D printed architectures, starting with PhonoGraft, a device for tympanic membrane repair. Beacon Bio was acquired by Desktop Metal in the summer of 2021.

Nicole currently leads a team at Desktop Health, a healthcare division of Desktop Metal, to bring the PhonoGraft device and other innovative medical devices to patients. Nicole's accolades include the prestigious Forbes 30 Under 30 in Manufacturing and Industry and Baxter Young Investigator and Collegiate Inventors Competition Winner, among others.

How to get involved:

Be a sponsor and share your expertise with students. The event allows business and community mentors to share both post-secondary and career experiences with UCS sixth-grade students. The student will also be waiting to share their own dreams and aspirations with you, their professional role model for the session.

What does it take?

Complete the registration form below to hold your reservation.



Thank you to the 29th Annual Career Focus Event Sponsors

Presenting Sponsor Lynn & Paul Alandt Foundation

Event Sponsor DTE Energy Foundation

Corporate SponsorAEW, Inc.
Barton Malow
Charter Township of Shelby
Emagine Macomb
GLP & Associates
Integrated Design Solutions
Messina Trucking, Inc.
Utica Education Association
Wm. Sullivan & Son Funeral Home
Double Major Sponsor
Stifel Nicolaus
Jason & Kendall Truman

Media Center Scholarship SponsorLaGrasso, Abdo & Silveri Law Offices

Major SponsorA-1 Handyman, Inc.
City of Sterling Heights
City of Utica
Community Choice Credit Union
Crest Automotive Group
Henry Ford Macomb Hospitals
Kirk, Huth, Lange & Badalamenti
Mathnasium of Shelby Lakeside
Michigan Works! Macomb/St.Clair
Miller, Canfield, Paddock & Stone, P.L.C.
MNP Corporation
O'Reilly Rancilio
Oakland Community College
Preferred Dental Practice - Pediatric Dentistry
and Orthodontic Specialists of Michigan
REALTEAM Real Estate
SME, Inc.
Sterling Heights Regional Chamber of Commerce
Jason & Kendall Truman
Tull & Laubach, Attorneys at Law
United Shores Professional Baseball League
Urban Land Consultants
Utica Community Education
Sterling Heights Area Community Foundation
Lusk Albertson PLC
Student Painters

Table Sponsor - BusinessAutoliv
Christian Financial Credit Union
Crawl, Walk, Jump, Run Therapy Clinic
Duncan Elementary
Gompers, Cornish & Barr Insurance Agency
Christina Haemmerle PHD PC
Honeywell Building Solutions
J.P. Morgan Chase Bank
Macomb Township
Morgan Elementary PTA
Plante Moran
RAL Technologies
R. Shafer Builder
Testing Engineers & Consultants, Inc.
Steve & Pam Truman
Warner Norcross & Judd LLP
Weingartz Supply Company
United Shore Professional Baseball League
JP Morgan Chase & Co
Miller Canfield, Paddock, & Stone
AGS Automotive
Christina Haemmerle, PhD
Testing Egineers & Consultants, Inc.

Table Sponsor - Individual/Non-ProfitBeacon Tree Elementary
Beck Elementary Family Volunteers
Bruce Collins PTO
DeKeyser PTCG
Dresden PTO
E. Gilbert & Sons
Ebeling Elementary
Gallo Companies
Kiwanis Club of Sterling Heights
Macomb Community College
Macomb Intermediate School District
MEA Financial Services
Messmore Elementary
Dr. Donna McMinn & Robert Van Camp
Monfort Elementary School Volunteers, Inc.
Oakbrook Family Tree
Plumbrook Elementary Parents
RE/MAX First
Roberts Elementary
Schuchard Volunteer Organization
Shelby Travel Agency
UCS Board of Education
Wiley Elementary
Roberts Elementary PTO
Browning PTA

Donation Crissman PTA

Special Thank you to Palazzo Grande Banquet Center

Your Donations Make a Difference

There are many ways to contribute to the education of the students in the Utica Community School District. Please consider giving
generously to the UCS Foundation for Educational
Excellence to insure the continued legacy of excellence in our schools.