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Muskegon Community College approves $200,000 partnership with ADAC

Published: Wednesday, July 18, 2012, 6:26 PM Updated: Wednesday, July 18, 2012, 6:28 PM

Megan Hart | 
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2007_09_0378.JPGDarren Breen | MLive.com                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           An ADAC automotive assembly inspector/operator inspects car door
handles at the ADAC factory in Muskegon in this 2007 file photo.

MUSKEGON, MI – About $200,000 ADAC would have paid in taxes is staying in
Muskegon County.
 

Muskegon Community College approved a partnership Wednesday with the
automotive supplier to provide training in statistics, process control, safety
in handling materials, basic paint chemistry, advanced equipment maintenance and
basic robotic programming.

“This is going to bring high technology of automotive paint to Muskegon,” MCC
Vice President for Academic Affairs Teresa Sturrus said.
In 2009, the Michigan Department of Treasury created a program that allowed
Michigan businesses that were hiring workers in-state to use income taxes they
would have withheld from their workers’ salaries to pay for worker training from
local community colleges.
 

The program was popular and quickly hit the $50 million cap set for it, so
the Department of Treasury set up a system in which it would forgo $200,000 in
taxes at a time with all of that money directed toward one community college and
a company it chose to partner with.

The community colleges were put in a random order
to decide who would get the funds first, MCC Director of Business and Industrial
Training Dan Rinsema-Sybenga said. MCC was sixth on the list.
 
2006_01_1202.JPGKendra Stanley-Mills | MLive.comADAC
A company that manufactures automotive parts, is located at 2050 Port City Boulevard in Muskegon.

Of the $200,000, $169,413 is designated for training and materials while
$26,087 is earmarked for administrative costs. The remaining $4,500 is
designated for contingency funds. It will be used over the next seven years.

The money has to go toward training workers who will make at least 175 percent of the state minimum wage, or about $12.95 per hour, Rinsema-Sybenga said. It can’t be used for recalled employees, new hires who will replace existing employees or part-time workers, he said.

First, the college will buy bonds on the municipal market to raise the
$200,000 in training funds, he said. ADAC’s contract with the college will
require it to buy those bonds.
 

Only after the workers have been trained and begin earning wages, which are
subject to state income tax, will the state begin forgoing the tax to pay ADAC
for the bonds it bought to finance the worker training.

Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
   

Muskegon Community College opens new office in Grand Haven

Published: Tuesday, July 17, 2012, 7:50 AM

Megan Hart | 
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GRAND HAVEN, MI – Muskegon Community College will open a more permanent
location in Grand Haven this fall.

The college’s Ottawa County classes will be held on the bottom floor of the
Grand Haven Community Center. The mailing address will be 422 Fulton, because
the entrance to the bottom floor is in the back of the building.

MCC has offered classes at Grand Haven High School for 20 years, spokeswoman
Tina Dee said, with some evening classes in Spring Lake and at the Grand Haven
Community Center. Having a designated location will allow MCC to offer day
classes and let Ottawa County students meet with advisers there instead of
having to drive to Muskegon, she said.

The North Ottawa County Council on Aging, which rented part of the bottom
floor, is moving out, Dee said, so extra space became available. Loutit District
Library also agreed to let MCC use its classrooms and computers when space is
available, she said.

“We may end up with some of our day classes there,” she said. “Before, we
just had a place where we could offer night classes.”

MCC Vice President for Academic Affairs Teresa Sturrus said enrollment in
Ottawa County has increased from 28 students during one semester in 2009 to 175
in winter 2011. She said prospective students wanted more flexibility in
scheduling their classes.

“We know that Ottawa County has a base for us,” Sturrus said. “What we were
hearing from the community is that they wanted to have day classes.”

The Ottawa County Intermediate School District is
looking to set up an early college program in the Tri-Cities area, where
students would combine their high school and college educations, so they would
have a high school diploma and associate degree by grade “13.” MCC participates
in a similar
arrangement with the Muskegon Area Intermediate School District
, and is
preparing a proposal to participate in an Ottawa County program, Sturrus
said.

“It’s important for us to have a presence there so we’ll be their college of
choice,” she said.

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Follow Megan Hart on Twitter @meganhartMC

   

Grand Valley, MSU Researchers To Study Muskegon Area Water

CBS Detroit

The Grand Valley State University Annis Water Research Institute in Muskegon

 

MUSKEGON — Two researchers at Grand Valley State University’s Annis Water Resources Institute in Muskegon will collaborate with scientists at Michigan State University on a pair of separate projects after receiving a grant.

Bopi Biddanda, associate professor, and Ryan Thum, assistant professor, received a nearly $56,000 Water Initiative Research Grant Award to use in collaboration with their counterparts from MSU.

Biddanda will work with MSU researchers and a Grand Valley undergraduate student to study the inner workings of the Muskegon Lake ecosystem. They will also use data from Grand Valley’s Muskegon Lake Observation buoy to determine in near-real time what effect storms have on the lake.

They also plan to study how the lake releases gases, including the highly potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide, during the warm summer months.

“It’s very exciting to get to collaborate with our colleagues from Michigan State,” Biddanda said. “We’re looking forward to learning more about the lake and exploring joint educational programs between Grand Valley and MSU.”

Thum’s research will focus on Eurasian watermilfoil, an introduced invasive aquatic plant that can exhibit resistance to herbicides that are currently used to get rid of the plant. Thum and his MSU colleagues will test whether unique mutations in a gene they have identified causes the plant to be resistant.

“We’ll be able to learn more about this problem with the combined resources of the two universities,” Thum said. “I’m excited to see this partnership take off.”

Researchers from both universities will also use the grant period to explore joint educational programs, which could lead to new academic offerings for students.

The Robert B. Annis Water Resources Institute is a multidisciplinary research organization within Grand Valley’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. By integrating research, education, and outreach, AWRI strives to enhance and preserve freshwater resources. AWRI consists of three programmatic areas and offers exciting research and education opportunities to undergraduate and graduate students.

For more information, visit gvsu.edu/wri or contact Bopi Biddanda, (616) 331-3978 or Ryan Thum, (616) 331-3989.

   

Muskegon Community College sets up 'reverse transfer' agreement with Grand Valley State University

MCC and GVSU 2.jpg

 

MUSKEGON COUNTY, MI – The road from community college to university is now a two-way street.

Muskegon Community College President Dale Nesbary, left, and Grand Valley State University President Tom Haas shake hands after signing a 'reverse transfer' agreement that will let GVSU students apply credits earned their toward an associate's degree at MCC.

Grand Valley State University President Thomas Haas and Muskegon Community College President Dale Nesbary signed an agreement Monday afternoon that would allow students to transfer credits earned at GVSU back to MCC to count toward an associate's degree.

Students who have completed 30 or more credits at MCC can transfer back up to 32 GVSU credits to complete an associate degree, Nesbary said. Before, they would have had to physically come back to Muskegon to complete their associate's degree requirements even if they had taken equivalent classes at GVSU, he said.

“Completing a degree would have been much more difficult in the past,” he said.

MCC has 81 programs and GVSU has more than 200 programs, Nesbary said, so students should be able to complete any of the associate's degree programs at MCC with GVSU courses.

GVSU doesn’t offer associate's degrees, Haas said, so the partnership gives students a way to earn a degree if finances or other circumstances won’t let them complete their bachelor’s. It’s also an option for students who want both degrees, he said.

“This reduces redundancy for students,” he said. “At the end of the day, it’s about students being successful.”

Haas said “reverse transfers” are becoming more popular and GVSU has a similar partnership with Grand Rapids Community College. It will likely set up three or four other partnerships this year, he said.

Haas said giving students a “seamless pathway” to an associate's degree increases the odds they’ll further their education, which will attract businesses looking for talented workers.

“They can see the talent is here, and maybe we can keep it here,” he said.

   

Greater Muskegon Jaycees named best chapter in nation

Published: Monday, July 02, 2012, 5:40 PM

Tara.jpgTara Mack, president of the Greater Muskegon Jaycees

MUSKEGON, MI -- The Greater Muskegon Jaycees have been named the most outstanding of the more than 700 Jaycees chapters in the United States.

The Muskegon chapter was presented the 2011 Harold A. Marks Memorial Award, given to the nation's top chapter, at this week's 2011 United State Junior Chamber (Jaycees) year-end awards ceremony in Des Moines, Iowa.

The United States Jaycees also announced the Greater Muskegon Jaycees raised the second most money -- more than $10,000 -- to support the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life program. The chapter also had the best International Area and Individual and Individual Development Area programming in the nation, the U.S. Jaycees announced.

Receiving individual honors were two Muskegon Jaycees 2011 vice presidents, Dani LaFleur and Kari Kidrowski, both named among the top 25 local chapter vice presidents.

"I am so proud to call myself a Greater Muskegon Jaycee," chapter President Tara Mack said. "We set out to make an impact in our community and make a difference and we did just that."

"I am very proud of what President Tara Mack and her team accomplished in 2011," said David Worthams of Kalamazoo, Michigan Jaycees President.

The Jaycees is an organization for young professionals ages 21 through 40. It emphasizes personal and professional training, community service and leadership skills. For more information about the Greater Muskegon Jaycees, visit their website at www.muskegonjaycees.org or call (231) 412-0705.

   

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