Monday, February 02, 1998
Plan Funds 10,000 Scholarships and 5 Training Centers StatewideIn remarks to the Economic Club of Detroit, Governor Engler outlined his strategy to train workers to fill high-paying jobs -- today and in the future. Building on Michigan's impressive record of job training success, he announced a $50 million two-step initiative to respond to Michigan's growing worker shortage."Michigan's record level of investment in construction brings a challenge -- a projected shortage of 6,000 carpenters, electricians, masons and other skilled workers," Engler said. "Add to that shortage the squeeze industry is already facing in finding enough engineering technicians, computer programmers and other high-tech workers."10,000 Scholarships for 10,000 JobsThe first step in Governor Engler's plan addresses immediate needs by providing community college scholarships for up to 10,000 students who enroll in high-demand technical training associate degree or certificate programs. These scholarships would be for up to $2000 per student for each certificate or training program. This would effectively reduce by half the cost of community college in high demand occupations, such as construction trades, engineering technicians, computer programmers and health care technicians."These scholarships will help 10,000 students fill 10,000 jobs!" Engler saidFive New Technical Training CentersSecond, to address more long term needs, Michigan will devote $30 million to establish at least 5 new Technical Training Centers for adults at community colleges. These centers could be new buildings or retooled existing facilities. This initiative complements the scholarship program by providing the infrastructure and equipment where needed to permanently expand these programs. Both of these landmark initiatives require partnerships between industry and education. There must be a direct correlation between training and jobs"We have worked too hard to restart Michigan's economic engine. We cannot let it stall because we can't fill the jobs," Engler said. "Keeping our jobs engine turbocharged means training our workers. My friends, Michigan is meeting the challenge!"Governor Engler also noted that because of the state's outstanding efforts to create the nation's best worker training system, Michigan was named by the National Alliance of Business as its 1997 State of the Year.