Community colleges, manufacturers team up to fill middle-skill jobs

By YANJIE WANG
Capital News Service
LANSING– With the state’s manufacturing industry facing a talent crisis, the Michigan Manufacturers Association and the Michigan Community College Association are collaborating to meet the demand for middle-skill workers. As technology advances, a lot of jobs require people with the right skills, said Delaney McKinley, director of human resource policy for the Manufacturers Association. And the shortage could get worse as the workforce ages and skilled workers retire, according to the association. About 20 percent of Michigan’s manufacturing workforce is older than age 55, according to the Workforce Intelligence Network for Southeast Michigan in Detroit. Middle skill jobs, as defined by McKinley, require a level of skills somewhere between those that “need people who are engineers or highly educated” and those that “don’t require training necessarily.”
Industry is looking for people to fill jobs such as production technicians, computer numerical control machinists and welders, McKinley said.