Academic Affairs Office


The implementation of a biofuels applied research laboratory is unique to a community college. Supported by funding from MCC, resources and manpower from Erdman Holdings and a grant from the State of Michigan, the Silver Creek Energy Lab is a unique opportunity for community college students to experience applied research outside of the classroom. Supporting these efforts are the following instructors and industry partners.


Greg Marczak – Biofuels coordinator and Chemistry Instructor, MCC
Greg Marczak has had primary responsibility for setting up the biofuels laboratory. He has experience in industry in developing analytical methods, process control and improvement, applied research. For the past 10 years, Greg has been teaching at MCC and has been involved in significant development of online chemistry courses and has been the recipient of several grants and awards to promote science and engineering by the National Science Foundation, the Kellogg Foundation and the State of Michigan. He is currently responsible for coordinating the academic interests of MCC and other academic institution out at the SCEL. Greg is the currently the lead chemistry researcher at the lab.

Debra Howell – Life Science Faculty, MCC
Debra Howell is the SCEL’s lead researcher for biology. Her experience is in the fields of medical technology and microbiology. Since 1992 Debra has been teaching biology courses at MCC both in the classroom and online. She is actively involved in promoting Service Learning at MCC through a GLISTEN grant and serves as the co-chairperson of Sustainability for the campus.

Scott Erdman- CEO of Erdman Holdings
Scott Erdman is the Manager of Erdman Holdings, LLC. Scott’s primary business, Erdman Machine Co. performs advanced machining for aerospace parts. From a young age, Scott has been very interested in electrical systems. Erdman Holdings, LLC purchased the former Whitehall Wastewater Treatment Facility in 2010 with the goal of building a self-sustained industry complex that can run independent of the electrical grid. Erdman Holdings, LLC supplies the laboratory building and manpower needed to build and design the biofuels systems. Scott has been recognized as Entrepreneur of the year through the Muskegon Chamber of Commerce.

Scott Hladki – Erdman Machine
Scott Hladki’s title as Maintenance supervisor does not reflect the tremendous breadth and depth of his contribution to this project. From fixing and building anaerobic digesters, to harvesting alfalfa, Scott is a man of many talents and a very can do attitude. Scott is the primary technician for building the SCEL lab and is in charge of any biofuel processes designed to produce fuel. Scott’s former experience as a township supervisor helps drive the cooperative spirit between academic, industry, and government.

Tim Korthase – Owner Tim Korthase and Sons
Tim Korthase is a master electrician whose work has taken him around the country. As an example, Tim’s firm has been responsible for changing the lights on the Mackinac bridge. Bringing him a little closer to earth, Scott and Tim’s interest in electrical processes have resulted in a close partnership where Tim provides the knowledge and manpower out at the SCEL for all electrical work. Tim is also involved in promoting the use of solar and wind energy through his company, thus complimenting his work at the SCEL.