25 Under 25 recognition program

Anyone who has spent time around them knows that the students in WSU's Mike Ilitch School of Business are some of the brightest and hardest working around. According to Dean Bob Forsythe, it's time for those students to the get some public recognition for all they do – in and out of the classroom.

To accomplish this, Forsythe created the Mike Ilitch School of Business 25 Under 25 program. All new for the 2016-17 academic year, 25 Under 25 recognizes students who have demonstrated success in at least two of the following four categories: academics, leadership, professional development, and campus/community service.

2017 winners

Honorees will be presented with a special award on March 30, 2017, at the Detroit Historical Museum. A select group of potential hiring managers from local employers will also attend this special, invitation-only event.

Application process

The online application is closed; applications for the 2017-18 program will be accepted beginning in December 2017.

To be selected for this program, students complete an online application and submit a résumé and, in some cases, reference letters to demonstrate their accomplishments to a panel of judges comprised of executives from the business community.

Qualifications, required documentation and recognition are outlined below. Students are encouraged to have their resumes reviewed by the Mike Ilitch School of Business Career Planning & Placement Office before submitting them.

If you would like to nominate a student, please send their name and contact information to businesswebmaster@wayne.edu. Friends and alumni of the Mike Ilitch School of Business who are interested in serving as a judge or event sponsor should contact Steve Townsend at smtownsend@wayne.edu.

25 Under 25 program requirements


All applicants must:

  • Be fully admitted to and currently enrolled in the Wayne State University Mike Ilitch School of Business as an undergraduate, graduate or doctoral student
  • Undergraduates must have completed at least 30 credit hours of coursework toward a BS/BA degree including a minimum of 15 credits at Wayne State University
  • Have a minimum 3.0 overall GPA
  • Be able to demonstrate excellence in at least two of the following areas at the college level:
    • Academics
    • Leadership
    • Professional development
    • Community/campus service
  • Applicants must be no older than 25 on March 30 of the award year.


Students chosen for the 25 Under 25 recognition program:

  • Will be selected by a panel of judges comprised of industry executives.
  • Will have professional headshots taken by a WSU photographer. These headshots will be used for a recognition booklet, website and social media campaign. Headshots will be shared with students for personal use.
  • Will receive an award at a special networking reception.
  • Will be profiled on the Mike Ilitch School of Business website and highlighted in news releases, social media and other channels.

Required documentation

When completing the application, students should be prepared to:

  1. Describe (using no more than 750 words) your accomplishments in at least two of the following areas: scholarship, leadership, professional development, and community/campus service activities.
  2. Submit an updated résumé in PDF format.
  3. Although not required, students may also submit PDF files of up to two reference letters that provide proof of significant community service, leadership, or professional development.

While students must fill out the application themselves, others are welcome to suggest students for participation by sending their name and contact information to businesswebmaster@wayne.edu.

We will create and advance knowledge, prepare a diverse student body to thrive, and positively impact local and global communities.