STEP thrift store on track to open in Dearborn Heights

College for Creative Studies students competing for scholarships will have their winning ideas used for the interior layout of a new Services to Enhance Potential Thrift Store and Donation Center planned for Dearborn Heights.

STEP officials are looking to hire 20 to 30 employees at the new store at 23830 Ford Road. It is scheduled to open in June.

Dearborn Heights was chosen for the location because of its central location and fixed bus routes, officials said.

STEP officials said in a press release that differences in the new location from STEP’s other locations are, expansion, more storage capacity for donations, and a wider variety of offerings, such as trainings in healthy lifestyles, basic computer skills, daily living and more for people with barriers.

With the opening of STEP’s third Thrift Store and Donation Center and its recent rebranding (formerly Tried and True Thrift Store and Donation Center) STEP officials are looking forward to having a blank canvas to work with and to further the value of the education system through design. The students will be providing ideation of the following criteria: creativity, innovation, thoughtful placement and purposefulness.

The students will be responsible for providing the concepts and the renderings of interiors that would be exciting not only from a retail perspective but for the students’ engagement and the exterior that can draw in prospective buyers, donors and consumers.

“This is a very exciting time for STEP! With the new store, the goal is not only to bring in potential customers, but also to raise awareness about the many programs STEP provides to individuals with barriers,” STEP Marketing and Communications Manager Sinziana Luchian said. “The collaboration with CCS allows us to continue our brand promise while creating awareness of for programs – which benefit the people we serve and our community.

“When customers make donations and or shop at any of our Thrift Store locations, they’re helping our cause. We hire the individuals we serve; allowing them to earn an income, integrate in community life and learn useful real-world skills.”

The students presented their ideas and designs to a panel of judges April 7 at the CCS Detroit Campus. The winning student — junior Ian Evans also will receive a $500 scholarship from STEP and a spring-summer internship. Runner-up team of Nadine Dupont and Laural Soloway will receive a $250 scholarship.

For additional information about STEP or to make a donation go to www.stepcentral.org.