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Ron Harris
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Howard ASB Students Honored by Detroit City Council

DETROIT (March 17) – Howard University First Lady Paula Whetsel-Ribeau, Ph.D., and 45 Howard students working in Detroit for the university’s Alternative Spring Break program were presented Spirit of Detroit awards Tuesday by the Detroit City Council.

Detroit native Jordan Rivers, a junior majoring in civil engineering, was singled out by Council President Charles Pugh for his efforts to improve his hometown.

The certificates expressed the city’s gratitude for the students’ “exceptional achievement, outstanding leadership and dedication to improving the quality of life.”

Whetsel-Ribeau thanked the members of the city council for their gratitude.

“We do not do this sort of thing for the recognition,” she said, “but it’s nice to be noticed.”

For the third consecutive year, Howard students are spending a week mentoring and working on literacy with high school students in the Detroit area.

Detroit currently has a 47 percent functional illiteracy rate, one of the worst in the country. The students are working at Cody High School, Finney High School, Highland Park Community School and the Henry Ford Academy.

They also are working on college preparation with the older high school students.

Howard University First Lady Paula Whetsel-Ribeau, volunteer director of the Alternative Spring Break program, accepts the Spirit Award from the Detroit City Council on behalf of the Howard students working in Detroit.
Detroit City Council President Charles Pugh accepts a Howard University T-shirt as a token from the grateful Howard University students.

For more on Howard students in Detroit for Alternative Spring Break, visit:

Photos by Christina Downs, Howard University
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