Friday, July 18, 2008

NY Times Article on GM's 100 Year Anniversary

FLINT, Mich. — A 100th birthday party, one would think, is cause for special celebration.

But here in Flint, the honoree is the company that both built the city and left much of it collapsed. And so, like generations of a family recognizing a controversial patriarch, people here are taking note of the centennial of the founding of General Motors with a complicated mixture of respect and anger, pride and hurt.

Now the city, home to the University of Michigan-Flint, Kettering University, Baker College of Flint and Mott Community College, is trying to reinvent itself as a hub of higher education. The area has already switched to a service-based economy from one based on manufacturing, said Mark J. Perry, a professor of economics at the University of Michigan-Flint, with a higher percentage of service jobs and a lower percentage of manufacturing jobs than the country as a whole (see chart above).

“Automotive jobs are gone, G.M. jobs are gone, and now we have to move towards a new identity, hopefully for the next 100 years,” Professor Perry said.


At 7/18/2008 1:08 PM, Blogger Paul Banbury said...

Good luck with Flint, I admire you who continue to stick it out. I left with most of my family during the early 80's. No one I know who wasn't there can relate to how bad it was, unless they lived through the depression. I ran three fast food restaurants in Flint. It was impossible to succeed, I was steeled by simply surviving. On leaving Michigan I found an environment for business that was like a wonderland- willing workers, happy people, people who worked together, optimism. I have never looked back.

At 1/09/2009 9:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What kind of service sector jobs are u talking about in Flint area. Can u elaborate. I knew nothing of that sort in Flint area


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