New Production Technician Academy will Train Students for Manufacturing Careers

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Area manufacturers have contributed more than $56,000 to fund scholarships for students who enroll in a new Production Technician Academy at Kalamazoo Valley Community College in Kalamazoo, MI.

A total of $56,000 has been donated by Kalamazoo area manufacturers to fund scholarships for students enrolled in the new Production Technician Academy at Kalamazoo Valley Community College.

The first session is scheduled to begin on May 29 and will accommodate 16 students. Each Academy is four-and-a-half weeks long. Manufacturers will interview graduates of these programs for local jobs.

The Academy was designed by local employers who are looking for a way to meet the growing demand for qualified production workers and fill local manufacturing jobs. Cutting edge advanced technologies have fostered a new manufacturing environment with automated machines, computer-driven processes and integrated electronic systems. The Production Technician Academy is a competency-based, fast-track, industry designed training program to prepare production workers for an advanced manufacturing environment.

The Production Technician Academy will be housed at Kalamazoo Valley’s Groves Campus and will include competency-based training designed to prepare graduates for entry level positions and successful, long-term careers in manufacturing. Graduates will receive a transcript of demonstrated skills and competencies that manufacturers recognize and value.

Training will include an introduction to the manufacturing industry; safety and OSHA regulation training; Lean Manufacturing training; team work group participation; Applied Math Fundamentals; Industrial Blueprint Reading; Precision Measurement; Quality Management training; basic electrical and mechanical training; an introduction to Programmable Logic Control; Basic Industrial Fluid Power training; computer usage; and job search and interviewing preparation.

“U.S. manufacturers have invested in cutting-edge, advanced technologies to produce high quality goods at costs that can compete with foreign made products. This new environment of automated machines, computer driven processes and integrated electronic systems offers an exciting career path for those with an interest and aptitude,” said Trish Schroeder, Director of Corporate Training at Kalamazoo Valley’s Groves Campus.

Local donors to the scholarship fund include American Axle, Landscape Forms, Schupan and Sons, Southwest Michigan Tooling Collaborative, Parker Hannifin, Stryker, LKF Marketing, Richard and Thelma Hall Foundation, Flowserve, Accroseal, Humphrey Products, The Monroe Brown Foundation, and Southwest Michigan First.

Since 1968, Kalamazoo Valley Community College has positively impacted the economic health and vitality of the region by serving students, their families, and their communities.

With three locations -- a main campus in Texas Township, the nearby M-TEC at The Groves Campus, and Arcadia Commons Campus in downtown Kalamazoo – Kalamazoo Valley offers certificate programs in more than 20 areas of study and associate degrees in 25 others. These include business, health care, human and public service, and technical occupation, the latest of which is a pioneering effort in training wind-energy technology.

Kalamazoo Valley also provides student placement services and works closely with other institutions to ensure the transfer of students’ credits. A fully accredited institution, Kalamazoo Valley offers day and evening, online and weekend classes for its 12,000 students.

For more information go to, call 269-353-1286 or email careeracademies(at)kvcc(dot)edu.

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Dawn Kemp
Kalamazoo Valley Community College
(269) 373-7899
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