Muskegon Community College will continue the momentum from its recent Second Annual STEM/Talent Pipeline event by hosting 250 sixth graders from Muskegon Public Schools on May 10 at its Sturrus Technology Center in downtown Muskegon.
“It is critical that K-12 education, the community colleges, and companies partner for events like this,” explained Associate Dean of Workforce and Talent Development Cyndi Langlois in MCC’s Lakeshore Business and Industrial Service Center (LBISC). “By partnering, we can create a seamless approach to get students from the classroom to college to careers.”
Nearly 500 middle school-aged students from across Muskegon Country participated in the STEM/Talent Pipeline event, a partnership between MCC and the Muskegon Area Intermediate School District, on March 1. The participating districts included North Muskegon, Spring Lake, Mona Shores, NBC/Montague, Whitehall, Fruitport, Reeths-Puffer, and Muskegon.
Over a three-hour span, students engaged in conversations about local manufacturing and agriculture careers, toured the Sturrus Technology Center, met with 15 local employers, and spent time engaging in STEM-related activities in the Lakeshore Fab Lab. Each student received a t-shirt and sling bag filled with information about Early College, MACTC, degree programs at MCC, and other information.
The local companies on hand were DTE Energy, GE Aviation, Scherdel Sales and Technologies, ADAC Automotive, Arconic, Chassix, Metal Technologies, Nowak Machining, Lakeside Surfaces, Rolar Products, Trans-Matic Manufacturing, DeWys, Port City/Pace, EPI Breads/RW Bakers, and Hutchinson.
The STEM/Talent Pipeline event addresses a goal in MCC’s 2017-2022 Strategic Plan to cultivate strategic partnerships with business, industry, and other key organizations to meet needs and support student success. In this instance, young students learned about the workforce and talent development services available through the LBISC and the Lakeshore Fab Lab.
“This is exactly the kind of event that every student in the region needs to attend to become aware of what is available for them,” added Eric Wahlburg, a middle school educator in the Mona Shores School District.
The program was funded by a Perkins Grant and donations from Metal Technologies, Versatile Fabrication, Chassix, DeWys, MI Spring and Stamping, Port City Group/Pace, Arconic, DTE Energy, Sun Chemical, and Robert and May Anderson.
In another recent event, MCC welcomed more than 100 high school students on March 12 to the American Foundry Society’s annual dinner at the Sturrus Technology Center.
Rolar Products President and Owner Jack Russell, the guest speaker, shared the need for having vision and drive. Earlier in the day, the students toured local companies to learn more about the foundry process and career opportunities. Afterwards, they toured the Sturrus Technology Center. Participating schools included Fruitport, Grant, Kent City, Spring Lake, Montague, Hesperia, and Coopersville.
For more information on the LBISC, contact Cyndi Langlois at (231) 777-0456.