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March 6, 2018

Joe Verkennes, Director of Marketing and Communications
Monroe County Community College
1555 S. Raisinville Rd., Monroe, MI  48161
(734) 384-4207 (O), (419) 343-3063 (M) 

Training May be Free for those who Qualify via Federal Grant

MONROE, Mich. – Monroe County Community College is offering a new Pre-apprenticeship and Skilled Trades Readiness Program this summer that may be free to those who qualify through the Advance Michigan Catalyst, a $6 million, four-year grant provided by the U.S. Department of Labor to train Michigan workers in robotics and automation. 

Over four years, this grant will train 900 southeast Michigan workers.  The Workforce Intelligence Network for Southeast Michigan is managing the grant in an effort to align talent with employer and economic development needs in the region.  Monroe County Community College is one of the 10 Michigan-based community colleges that will provide the training.

The Southeast Michigan Community Alliance is the grant fiduciary.  This grant aligns with southeast Michigan’s White House designation as an Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership area.  This initiative prioritizes a 16-county region encompassing greater Detroit for federal investment from 17 federal departments and agencies.

The focus of the Advance Michigan Catalyst is a large variety of occupations including robotics technicians and engineers, CNC/CCMTO technicians; mechatronics, photonics, industrial maintenance, electro-mechanical, industrial and mechanical engineering technicians; commercial/industrial designers, and robotic welders/solderers. 

The program offered by MCCC will provide individuals with the foundational skills for a career in the manufacturing skilled trades or to begin an apprenticeship.  Successful completion demonstrates that a student has the aptitude for specialized training and success in a professional career in the skilled trades.

Two tracks will be offered:  the Pre-Apprenticeship Manufacturing Trades Track (noncredit) and the Welder Training Certification Track (credit). Each of these programs will begin in June 2018.

The noncredit Pre-Apprenticeship Manufacturing Trades Track will include shop arithmetic, machine tool blueprint reading, trade-related preparation and the OSHA 10-Hour Training Course-General Industry Version.  Those who successfully complete it will receive a certificate of completion from MCCC, OSHA 10-General Industry Certification and interviewing opportunities with the Michigan Works! Association.  The course fee is $1,599, but students may be eligible for free tuition through the Advance Michigan Catalyst Grant.  To find out, they should contact Michigan Works! at (734) 240-7950.  For additional information, contact Barry Kinsey, director of workforce development and chair of the expo, at or (734) 384-4124. 

The Level 1-Entry Welder Certification Track (Credit) will be a 10-week, for-credit American Welding Society welding training certification offered by MCCC – a member of AWS’s Schools Excelling through National Skills Standards Education – and designed to prepare an individual to begin career in welding.  The AWS SENSE program is a comprehensive set of minimum standards and guidelines for welding education programs. Areas covered in this program will be oxy-fuel cutting, shielded metal arc welding, gas metal arc welding and gas tungsten arc welding.  Machine functions and filler metal chemistry will be emphasized, as well as code and procedure requirements for a variety of industrial needs. Welding/cutting processes covered – including laboratory applications – covered will be oxy-fuel cutting, plasma arc cutting, CNC plasma/ace cutting, shield metal arc welding, gas tungsten arc welding and gas metal arc welding.  Glass tungtsen arc welding will be completed on a variety of ferrous and non-ferrous metals.

Those who successfully complete the Entry-Level Welder Certification Track will receive 12 academic credits, AWS Entry Level Welding Certification (conforms to AWS QC-10 standard), and interviewing opportunities with the Michigan Works! Association and individual companies.  The course fee is $2,575, but students may be eligible for free tuition through the Advance Michigan Catalyst Grant.  To find out, they should contact Michigan Works! at (734) 240-7950.  For additional information, contact Cameron Albring, administrative assistant to the dean of applied science and engineering technology, at (734) 384-4112 or

About Monroe County Community College

Founded in 1964, Monroe County Community College is a public, two-year institution supported by tax monies from Monroe County, educational funds from the State of Michigan and student tuition.  

The college’s mission is to enrich and transform lives by providing opportunities and excellence in higher education.  The Main Campus is located at 1555 South Raisinville Road, Monroe, Mich., 48161, with easy access to Toledo and Detroit.  The Whitman Center is located at 7777 Lewis Ave.,Temperance, Mich., 48182, near the Ohio-Michigan Border.  Detailed information about MCCC is available at