Despite the switch to virtual learning this spring & summer semesters, Semester in Detroit is determined to offer topical, community-focused classes to all U of M undergraduate students. We'd like to thank our faculty for working hard to change their course syllabi to reflect the current Coronavirus crisis in Detroit, and we hope these classes can offer both insight and healing to students in attendance.

These classes are a great opportunity for SiD alumni, prospective students, and all other students with an interest in Detroit to learn how communities are responding to the COVID-19 crisis. They are also a great introduction to (or continuation with) the Semester in Detroit program pedagogy. Why not enroll in an online class this spring, and then consider applying to the full program for this fall or next year? This is a great way to get to know Semester in Detroit faculty and Detroit more generally! 

Check out these dynamic courses and click for more information on the LSA Course Guide.

RCIDIV 350.101 - Detroiters Speak Remote Covid-19 Edition w/ the General Baker Institute (Craig Regester, 1 credit) - 4-6 two-hour sessions, dates/times TBD

Semester in Detroit is partnering with the Detroit-based General Baker Institute (GBI) to offer this online version of our popular "community classroom". The overarching theme for this mini-course will focus on current organizing and analysis of crisis response efforts in the city of Detroit and other national "hot-spots" regarding the Covid-19 pandemic. Due to the dynamic and fast-changing nature of this unprecedented crisis, the specific session titles, dates and speakers will not be confirmed until late April, 2020. All sessions will be open to the general public, and will be recorded for future viewing opportunities. 

RCHUMS 334.102 - Detroit Art in Times of Crisis (Darcy Brandel, 3 credits) - Tuesdays/Thursdays, 10a-1p

This online course will examine the critical role the arts—particularly the arts in Detroit—have played in historical times of crisis as well as consider how the arts might help us now in the midst of the COVID-19 global pandemic. How can art help us heal, decrease anxiety, generate interconnection, and build stronger, more resilient communities? And how can we, as a virtual community, strive to meet these goals throughout our 7 weeks separate yet together? Join us as we learn from the resilience of Detroit artists and celebrate the power of the arts to mend, heal, and revitalize in life’s darkest moments.

RCCORE 334.101 - Grassroots Community Organizing in Detroit for Changing Times (Diana Seales, 3 credits) - Mondays/Wednesdays, 10a-1p

This online course will focus on emerging work during the COVID-19 epidemic specifically as it relates to Detroit.  Metro Detroit hospitals are quickly hitting capacity for COVID-19 patients as the city becomes one of the nations “hot spots” for the virus. What does this mean for a major city that was already battling the impacts of poverty, racism, and a lack of healthcare access?  In this course we will learn about how different community organizations are responding: some are shutting down operations while others are transforming their organizations completely to meet the needs of the community in innovative and creative ways.  Students will have opportunities to join efforts happening in Detroit now and remotely connect with organizations working on the ground.  Projects range from helping the efforts to turn the water back on for the 10s of thousands of residents without water to orgs running town halls for mental health and grief and getting families and kids into remote sports activities to keep little league teams (and families) together.  Students in this course will have access to a number of online organizer tool kits and class conversations will also cover self-care for yourself as an organizer and providing care for others in the community.  Everyone will come out of this class making a meaningful contribution to the current crisis in Detroit, build their own “organizers tool-kit” full of activities to take with them into any community organization scenario, and a number of self care sessions. 


Contact Craig Regester (SID Associate Director) for more information at:, or call him at 313-505-5185.