The DBG team, parents, supporters, and friends gathered in our outdoor space recently to celebrate and honor the achievements of our Class of 2024 graduates. Our team members emphasized each student’s hard work, determination, and potential for success, sharing personal messages about each students’ growth and encouraging them to stay connected with the community.

“I want to thank everybody for coming out to help celebrate these incredibly strong, kind, creative humans we have right here,” said Laura Amtower, DBG’s Director of Academics. “It feels like just yesterday, you all came to us as babies. But now look, you guys are all grown up, and you’re ready to take on the world. DBG is and has been our playground, our classroom, and our home away from home. It’s been a true blessing to develop such meaningful relationships together, and to share this short chapter in life. As we all know, DBG trains kids for life. And now is your time to put that training into practice.”

Neely and Alumni Scholarships

Each student received an alumni certificate, a tailored suit or dress, and a gift-wrapped “college starter kit” complete with a laptop and all the dorm essentials any student would need. They also each decorated a pair of boxing gloves – one to keep and one to leave behind at DBG. The ceremony was followed by a festive meal. Five DBG students received $1,000 scholarships; three were provided by the Neely Family and two were DBG Alumni Scholarships.

Kimberly and Kevin Neely shared the heart-wrenching story of losing their nephew, Antonio, to gun violence. They created the Antonio C. Neely Scholarship in his memory in partnership with For Kids’ Sake Montessori school in Southfield. Family members were honored to present $3,000 to three hardworking and deserving DBG students – Kenneth Cain, Artis Watson and Eric Crossland.

“We’re turning pain into passion,” Kimberly said. “Antonio was a boxer, he loved athletics, and he loved go laugh and joke around. But he also had challenges.”

“The scholarship is based on character and merit,” added Kevin. “What I hope for these inaugural scholars is that they live up to their potential and their purpose, that everything that [DBG] has instilled in them, they take it out in the world and that they give back.”

Two additional students received the DBG Alumni scholarship made possible by a grant from Cornell University called “The Contribution Project.”  

DBG alumni including: Ken Cain, Damon Hogan, Reynard Robinson, Michael Perry, Deshawn Beal, Jayden Reese and Akayla Watkins made their decision based on the largest need amongst the seniors. The recipients were Armon Threatt and Maurice Adams.

“The students who were selected had not yet received any funding for their post-secondary choices,” explained Asiyah Williamson, DBG’s associate director of enrichment. “Our alumni wanted the money to help pave the way for them.”

Additional scholarships including the HT Ewald scholarship and the Shamrock 555 scholarship will be awarded later this year.

DBG is focused on breaking down barriers and helping our students succeed. Scholarships help offset ballooning higher education costs. Thank you to all who help make these incredible opportunities possible for our students. You are making a life changing difference. Interested in supporting a future scholarship or investing in DBG’s mission? Visit this page