Above: Samuel N. Levine (far left) with his mother and siblings in 1906 just before he left Russia to emigrate to Michigan.
Right: Samuel N. Levine and his wife, Anna, at Detroit's Belle Isle in 1959.
We are excited to announce the establishment of the Samuel N. Levine Semester in Detroit Support Fund. This remarkable gift honors Samuel N. Levine’s lifelong commitment to both educational opportunity and the City of Detroit (more below about the namesake for this gift). Thanks to the generous support of a donor who wishes to remain anonymous, this Fund will make SID more accessible to a greater number and broader range of students. For many of our students, contrary to popular belief, the costs of participating in Semester in Detroit and living in Detroit can actually be more expensive than staying in Ann Arbor. The availability of part-time student employment is much lower in Detroit, and there are also higher costs for transportation within the huge City. Thanks to the generous support from this new fund, Semester in Detroit is now a much more viable option for students who would normally need to work in order to benefit from our program.
Given with the same spirit of reciprocity that lies at the heart of the SID mission, the Samuel N. Levine Semester in Detroit Support Fund will also benefit our Detroit community partners by enabling our spring students to intern for an additional month in July after their classes have ended. Previously, SID’s Spring Program lasted for 7 weeks and students would intern for 100 hours for our community partners. Now, directly due to this gift, our students will be able to intern for an additional 5 weeks, which means each student will contribute 150 more hours to our partner organizations.
SID is truly grateful and thrilled to welcome this generous donor and new friend into our learning community. We are humbled by the opportunity to honor the life and legacy of Samuel N. Levine by enabling more UM students to learn from Detroit and to develop long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with its rich array of community-based organizations and everyday leaders.
About Samuel N. Levine:
Mr. Levine emigrated by himself from Russia to Michigan in 1906 when he was 18 years old. He settled in the City of Detroit, where he lived most of his life, passing away shortly before his 99th birthday. He was able to marry, earn a modest living as a hide inspector, raise a family and own a home. He worked full time until after his 75th birthday, only retiring because he became blind. Mr. Levine's formal education ended when he was eight years old. At that time his father was conscripted into the tsar's army, and as the eldest child, Mr. Levine had to begin working and
helping out full time at home. Because his own formal education was so limited, Mr. Levine cherished the opportunity for education above all, and constantly emphasized this with his family. As a result, all six of his grandchildren graduated from college, two from the University of Michigan. This gift will honor the legacy of Samuel N. Levine by offering scholarships and stipends to increase the diversity and volume of students who participate in the Semester in Detroit program. It is hoped that in this manner his desire to foster educational opportunity can live on, while paying homage to Detroit - the city that he chose to establish roots and create a better life for his descendants.