Eva Garza Duelche has chosen Hispanic Heritage Month
Detroit – After 10 years working for the National Bank of Detroit, Eva Garza Dewaelsche felt it was time for a career change.
When considering her next career opportunity, DeWilch said she was inspired by her desire to help others.
“I have always enjoyed direct service and work within the community,” said DeWilch. “I had a similar background to this kind of work in college. Moreso, I knew I wanted to work with people who had barriers to their education and who were underrepresented.”
Dewaelsche is currently President and CEO of SER Metro-Detroit, a nonprofit organization that provides Detroit residents with educational opportunities, job training, employment programs, and youth development initiatives.
Now as part of Hispanic Heritage Month, Duelish is celebrated by the Detroit Red Wings, Detroit Tigers and Comerica Banks. For her relentless efforts to provide people with the skills and opportunities they need to become self-sufficient.
“We are excited to celebrate Eva as a game-changing honoree for her commitment to improving the quality of life for Detroit residents,” said Kevin Brown, Director of Community Impact at Ilitch Sports + Entertainment. “Eva and her team at SER Metro-Detroit support a vital resource for the community, one that enhances the lives of thousands across the city each year.”
A native of Detroit and a graduate of Wayne State University, DeWilch previously worked in Latin America for Social and Economic Development and also served the community as a police officer in Detroit.
Dewaelsche said her personal and professional background has shaped her into the person she is today.
“I come from a predominantly Hispanic community,” DeWilch said. “This is where I first got interested in helping others, specifically these individuals.”
According to Dewaelsche, the impact of SER Metro-Detroit is far-reaching.
“We work with older youth by giving them a second chance to complete high school, get a job and find jobs,” DeWilsch said. “But it’s very difficult and requires a lot of support services, so it’s an ongoing challenge to find enough resources because we’re affecting so many people.”
One very important initiative, according to Dewaelsche, is the SER Youth2Build Learning Academy (SYLA) East & Southwest. In partnership with the Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD), SYLA serves as an alternative high school for youth ages 16-21 that assists students with classroom instruction while learning a specific profession.
For Dewaelsche, watching SYLA students participate in the DPSCD’s annual graduation ceremony is fun.
“These kids get into our alternative high school after being told they won’t graduate or get a diploma,” DeWilsch said. “Then it’s been eight months and they have a diploma from us that is recognized by the DPSCD. It’s very rewarding to see because these kids were told they wouldn’t make it, but they did.”
SER Metro-Detroit also holds events throughout the year, such as commercial readiness seminars and finance fairs.
“We also coordinate with other nonprofit agencies in our community so that we can provide more resources,” DeWilch said. “We try to put people into job and training programs because we want to improve their careers.”
Dewaelsche believes that when you “give people support, they will be successful.”
“When people realize this is their last chance, they work really hard,” DeWilsch said. “If they have the opportunity, have the support and see the SER Metro-Detroit staff as family, they can succeed.”
To learn more about SER Metro-Detroit, visit SERMetro.org.
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