©2018 Michigan Economic Development Corporation

Job Training Grants to Create, Retain 290 Ottawa County Manufacturing Jobs

Monday, April 30, 2007

Michael Shore, MEDC
(517) 335-4590

Total Awards of $145,000 Will Benefit Employees of Two Companies

Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced that $145,000 in Economic Development Job Training grants is being made available to upgrade the skills of 290 employees of two Ottawa County businesses. The grants are being made available by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

“A highly skilled and adaptable workforce is one of Michigan’s strongest assets in attracting new business investment,” Granholm said. “Supporting employers and helping employees upgrade their skills will help them remain competitive in today’s global marketplace.”

Employees will receive cutting-edge training in advanced manufacturing applications as defined by each company’s products and needs.

Grants and training will be provided by Grand Rapids Community College as follows:

  • BBi Enterprises Group Inc., Holland, $100,000 for 180 current employees and 20 new hires; and
  • Sara Lee Food & Beverage, Zeeland, $45,000 for 70 current employees and 20 new hires.

“The economic well-being of our communities depends on the ability of local businesses to provide jobs for local residents,” MEDC President and CEO James Epolito said. “Support for employee training and skills upgrading helps assure their ability to continue fulfilling that role.”

Since 1994, nearly $340 million in EDJT grants has helped more than 610,000 Michigan workers improve their skills and enhance the competitiveness of their employers.

"Sara Lee and BBi are representative of the growing number of companies in our region that are investing in their people to help position their company for new growth," Lakeshore Advantage President Randy Thelen said.

In her 2007 State of the State address, Governor Granholm emphasized the need to make Michigan a global economic powerhouse in the 21st century. Strengthening Michigan’s workforce is part of that plan, with job training one of the tools used to enhance Michigan’s business-friendly climate.

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, a partnership between the state and local communities, promotes smart economic growth by developing strategies and providing services to create and retain good jobs and a high quality of life. For more information about the MEDC, please visit the Web site at www.MichiganBusiness.org.


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