A stronger workforce: Mid Michigan's focus on industrial certifications reaps returns

In the late summer of 2018, Mid Michigan College detailed plans to further its goal of increasing the amount of practical certifications offered for skilled trade students.

Now the college, with campuses in Mt. Pleasant and Harrison, is announcing that the first semester in providing such programming has been met with success.

Almost 120 certifications were awarded to students over the course of the 2018 fall semester.

Industry-recognized certifications developed by the National Coalition of Certification Centers, or NC3, were awarded as part of Mid’s Automotive Technology, HRA (Heating, Refrigeration, Air Conditioning), and Advanced Integrated Manufacturing (AIM) programs.

"These third-party, industry-recognized certifications differentiate Mid students as they apply for new jobs or look to advance in their current roles," said Shawn Troy, Dean of Career & Workforce Development at Mid.

"This effort reflects Mid’s commitment to increase competency-based learning in our Skilled Trades programs."

The certifications include Snap-on Shop Key & Scanner Diagnostics for Automotive Technology students, Snap-on Multi-Meter certifications for HRA students, and Starrett Precision Measurement (PMI) certifications for Advanced Integrated Manufacturing students.

Prior to the fall semester, three Mid faculty members traveled to Wisconsin to complete train-the-trainer certifications for Snap-On tools. Mid then purchased three Snap-On tool carts with all of the equipment necessary for each industry certification.

Certifications appear on Mid Michigan College transcripts.

In August 2018, Richard Hollister, Mid’s lead automotive faculty member said that the certifications would build a stronger workforce and better prepare students to succeed in it.

"The college has always been dedicated to responding to community needs, and this venture ensures that our students are best prepared to serve local industry," he said at the time.

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