By Edward Cardenas

DETROIT (CBS Detroit) – Representatives from business, education, government and the community will gather Friday at the University of Michigan to discuss creating business strategies for urban communities.

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The inaugural Urban Entrepreneurship Symposium will be held at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and is intended encourage and empower entrepreneurs and businesses to solve problems urban communities.

“When you bring the university and corporate community, the small business community alongside the people who focus entirely on entrepreneurship support, and you throw in some students into the mix, you will find community folks who are ready to do what needs to be done to transform these urban areas,” said Dr. Jeffrey Robinson, director of the Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Economic Development at Rutgers.

This is the first time this event has been held in Michigan, although the center started holding events to galvanize the community around Rutgers – including college students, businesses and the community – to transform an area around campus.

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The effort was so successful, that the White House tapped Rutgers to host the first Urban Entrepreneurship Summit at Rutgers and then throughout the country.

“Our mission at U-M Innovate Blue is to support both individual creativity and multi-disciplinary teams in tackling the world’s most pressing challenges and opportunities,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, Senior Counselor for Entrepreneurial Education at the University of Michigan, in a release. “The Urban Entrepreneurship Initiative falls solidly within that mission, and that is why we are glad to support and host the Symposium.”

Robinson said entrepreneurs – and not just those who start technology companies, but also restaurants, corner stores and those who employ youth and those recently released from jail – take ownership and invest in the community.

“I felt frustration because on the one hand, we have all this entrepreneurial brainpower, and yet not enough of it is focused on the needs of urban communities. That’s a problem worth solving,” said David Tarver, UEI founder and Symposium organizer, in a release. “Entrepreneurs are problem-solvers. I believe that when we engage urban communities to determine their needs, entrepreneurs will innovate sustainable ways to address them. That’s what entrepreneurs do, and UEI is here to help make it happen.”

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Tickets for the event are no longer available, but a live stream will be made available for the public on the Urban Entrepreneurship Initiative website.