Kirtland Community College recently received recognition as a 2014 Michigan Works! Association Prosperity Award winner in two separate categories for providing valuable training programs designed to strengthen our local workforces. Kirtland’s Just-in-Time Welding and Lumber Manufacturing Cluster training programs were both selected as award recipients, nominated by The Northwest Michigan Council of Governments and Northwest Michigan Works! Inc. and the Northeast Michigan Consortium, respectively. President Thomas Quinn, Workforce Development Director Erine Adams and Instructor Clay Horton accepted these awards on behalf of the institution during an award ceremony held at the Anderson House Office Building in Lansing, Mich.
“We have employees forming valuable educational partnerships with local businesses to fill skills gaps and help businesses to thrive,” said Quinn. “I am proud Kirtland provides important workforce development programs to strengthen our local economies, and especially proud of our employees who are dedicated to making it happen.”
The Just-in-Time Welding Training was created to meet the needs of local employers by preparing job seekers with skills that are in high demand by local manufacturers. Using Kirtland’s mobile welding lab, instructors Mark McCully, Daron Schimel and Dave Muladore delivered 96 hours of customized welding training which included materials handling, blueprint reading, “shop” math and MIG welding. Upon completion, the program participants were certified for employment in the high demand field of welding.
A Skilled Trade Training Funds grant made it possible to form a Lumber Manufacturing Cluster in Crawford County. Kirtland’s Adams and Horton collaborated with several partners in the Cluster to create a Lumber Inspector School, in which participants were trained to become certified lumber inspectors. Kirtland’s math instructor, Jane Lange, delivered a refresher math course to prepare participants to be successful in the completion of the training.
“Our Workforce Development efforts are designed to help employers fill existing skills gaps and invest in their employees while becoming more competitive in their markets,” said Adams. “We offer fully accredited, professional, and complete training opportunities. If these don’t fit your company’s immediate skills training needs, we are able to custom tailor training to fit each employer’s unique situation.”
In a letter issued by Michigan Works! Association Chief Executive Officer Luann Dunsford, the Prosperity Awards are intended to “recognize significant accomplishments within our communities and showcase economic impact resulting from newly created jobs, transformational training and effective talent pipeline development.”
Annually, more than 3,000 students attend a variety of occupational, skilled trades, two-year and transfer degree programs at Kirtland’s locations near Roscommon, Kirtland-Gaylord, Kirtland-West Branch and in Tawas. Kirtland also offers a wide range of online courses and degrees, all of which can be completed from home.
To learn more about Kirtland’s veteran-friendly services, programs, advising, testing, financial aid and other services available to students, contact Michelle Devine, Admissions Coordinator, at 989-275-5000 extension 284 or visit http://www.kirtland.edu.