Kalamazoo Valley Community College Skilled Trades Expo Offers Path to High Paying Jobs

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West Michigan students, parents, teachers and employers are invited to attend a Skilled Trades Expo on Thursday, Oct. 3 at Kalamazoo Valley Community College’s Texas Township Campus. The event is free and open to the public between 4-7 p.m.

“High-tech manufacturing and skilled trades employers all across the state are nearly desperate for students looking to embark on a high-paying job with benefits, close to home,” said Department Chair for Industrial/Technical Division Erick Martin.

Career. It’s a pretty daunting word, especially when students are being asked to decide something that could be a part of their lives forever. For many, skilled trades often provide a faster and more affordable path to employment than a four-year degree.

A sizable professional trades shortage exists in Michigan and is expected to continue through 2024. Professional trades will account for more than 500,000 jobs in the Michigan economy, and approximately 15,000 new job openings are expected annually in the state between now and then, according to the Going Pro In Michigan website.

Wages for professional trades occupations is 45 percent higher than other occupations – $51,000 is the median annual salary for these jobs. Opportunities exist in a variety of emerging industries. Kalamazoo Valley is preparing students for high paying jobs in fields that include:

  • Automotive Technology
  • Electrical Technology
  • HVAC Technology
  • Engineering/Design/Manufacturing Technology
  • Welding Technology
  • Chemical Technology

When it comes to careers, one path does not fit all. That’s why West Michigan students, parents, teachers and employers are invited to attend a Skilled Trades Expo on Thursday, Oct. 3 at Kalamazoo Valley Community College’s Texas Township Campus. The event is free and open to the public between 4-7 p.m.

“We celebrate National Advanced Manufacturing Week every day at the college,” said Provost and Vice President for Academic and Student Services Dr. Peter Linden. “Our graduates are receiving multiple offers before graduation. Our biggest challenge is providing enough trained workers for the regional labor market demand.

While many students will continue their education pursing a four-year degree, most are happy to get the training they need and to move quickly into a career, without a lot of college debt.”
Today’s skilled trades offer an array of opportunities that challenge both mind and body. “High-tech manufacturing and skilled trades employers all across the state are nearly desperate for students looking to embark on a high-paying job with benefits, close to home,” said Department Chair for Industrial/Technical Division Erick Martin.

This event includes free parking, refreshments, door prizes and a chance to meet with YouTube sensation Joel Goss, host of the Nobody Epic channel with more than 1.4 million followers. Goss will be available for conversations and photos and share his thoughts about how programs like those being offered at Kalamazoo Valley are addressing skilled-gap shortages in the state. “Michigan is a great place to live, work and raise a family, especially if you have achieved a respected certification or degree for life-long employment from Kalamazoo Valley Community College,” Martin said. “The Skilled Trades Expo provides a unique opportunity to learn more about potential careers.”

For more information visit http://www.kvcc.edu/skilledtradesexpo.

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