discussion “Finding Workforce Solutions—Together,” on Tuesday, April 16 from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the
college’s Dresser Business Development Center.
The event, which is targeted at manufacturers in the region, will include representatives from the
Upjohn Institute and Southwest Michigan First.
“Workforce development is a challenge to manufacturers that involves relying on the right workers with
the right skills at the right time to drive innovation, increase productivity and consistently remain
competitive,” said Dr. Gary Wheeler, president, Glen Oaks Community College. “Workforce
development solutions are best achieved through mutual beneficial relationships between the K-12
school districts, post-secondary institutions, manufacturers, government agencies and local business
The event will include a presentation by George Erickcek, senior regional analyst, Upjohn Institute, that
will provide participants with background information on the regional economic issues across the state
and the nation.
Von Washington, associate vice president, Southwest Michigan First, will lead an interactive session
where participants can communicate the needs of the county’s manufacturers and share their “best
practices” and successes.
Participants will discuss their ideas in breakout sessions. Joining Washington and Wheeler in facilitating
the breakout sessions will be Cathy Knapp, director, Southwest Michigan First, and Ned Haylett, vice
president of sales and marketing, Burr Oak Tool Inc.
Participants will come away with a vision and direction as to how to move forward to make a difference
in improving manufacturing efficiency through industry, government and education collaboration.
The event is targeted at all manufactures in the region.
To RSVP for the event, please contact, Diane Zinsmaster at (269) 294-4233.