Webinar series aims to close region’s skills gap

TRAVERSE CITY — Seeking to close the skills gap in northern Michigan, three webinars aimed at entrepreneurs, employers and employees in a range of business sectors are planned for early fall.

Blue economy jobs, heavy highway construction training and funding for workforce training will each be explored in a free monthly webinar series hosted by Northwestern Michigan College and Traverse Connect. Registration for each hour-long session is now open.

In 2021, a Traverse Connect study revealed a skills gap is hindering the region’s economic growth. The webinar series is part of a comprehensive community approach to fill that gap.

“Since the release of the 2021 Skills Gap Study report, NMC has enthusiastically responded to the needs of our business community,” said Warren Call, president and CEO of Traverse Connect. “This fall webinar series will offer a wide range of individuals — from entrepreneurs to workers in the construction industry — actionable and timely information to make a difference in our regional economy.”

“As a community college, NMC always tries to stay attuned to community needs,” said Jason Slade, vice president for strategic initiatives. “Working with Traverse Connect insures that our response is aimed where it’s most needed.”

The upcoming programs also align with goals in NMC’s strategic plan, including future-focused education and institutional distinction.

Thursday, September 8, noon: Blue Economy: Registration Link
Northern Michigan, capitalizing on its geographic location and entrepreneurial ecosystem, is poised to become a global leader for freshwater business development and research. Learn more about the opportunities and industries in place and potential development.

  • Who should attend: Civil, environmental, mechanical, and geotechnical engineering businesses. construction businesses; startups and entrepreneurs; educators
  • More: Attend the Lakebed 2030 Mapping the Great Lakes conference, to be held Sept. 28-30 at NMC’s Hagerty Center.

Thursday, October 13, noon: Heavy Highway Construction training: Registration Link
The Traverse Connect study identified creation of microcredentials— or short-term, job-specific training — as one way to close the skills gap. NMC’s new 12-week training program to meet the demand for heavy highway construction workers is one example. Launching in January, the intensive Heavy Highway Construction Training Program will help develop the workforce needed to help modernize, upgrade, and build new structures, bridges, and roads.

  • Who should attend: Construction businesses, transportation businesses, job seekers

Thursday, November 10, noon: Funding workforce development: Registration Link
Since 2008, more than 1,000 new jobs have been created in the region through workforce training NMC has provided to dozens of regional companies. That’s thanks to the New Jobs Training Act, legislation that allows companies to divert payroll taxes into a fund to train new hires. NMC administers the program and is also a training provider. In this webinar, find out more about the Act and other state and local funding available to help businesses pay for workforce development and training.

  • Who should attend: Business owners, human resources professionals, job seekers

 

Release Date: August 15, 2022

For More Information:

Ed Bailey
The Marine Center at NMC
(231) 995-1215
ebailey@nmc.edu

Non-Discrimination Policy Notice

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

Summer Book Rentals Due

Summer book rentals are due back to the NMC Bookstore by Thursday, August 11. The bookstore’s summer hours are Monday–Thursday from 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.

*Please note that the bookstore will be closed on Tuesday, August 2, for the election. The store will reopen on Wednesday, August 3.

Volunteers needed for Hawk Owl move-in day!

Welcome Week Graphic

Calling all members of the NMC community — our dorms are full and we need help welcoming our new and returning Hawk Owls for the Fall 2022 semester! We are looking for volunteers to help students move into North Hall on Thursday, August 25 and East Hall on Friday, August 26. Students will be moving in from 9 a.m.–3 p.m. on both days; each volunteer shift lasts an hour and we are looking for assistance with moving, parking and wayfinding. 

Volunteer sign up form

Sign up for a shift and be a friendly face — many hands make light work, so let’s give our students a warm welcome! 

NMC students receive scholarships from Foundation for Surgical Technology

At just seven years old, NMC’s Surgical Technology program students are already distinguishing themselves in the field and helping provide care for the region’s patients. NMC is the only school to have two recipients of $1,500 scholarships from the Foundation for Surgical Technology.

NMC Surgical Technology scholarship recipient Jamie Mosier Surgical Technology scholarship recipient 

Natalie Balogh (pictured left), 19, of Traverse City, works at Alliance Surgery Center. Jamie Mosier (pictured right), 25, of Munising, works at Munson Medical Center. Both will graduate this December.

Find out more about the field at nmc.edu/surgtech.

Board of Trustees approves 3-year faculty contract

TRAVERSE CITY — Northwestern Michigan College anticipates three years of focus on student success and advancement of its strategic initiatives, following Monday’s unanimous approval of a 36-month collective bargaining agreement with the NMC Faculty Association by the Board of Trustees.

Last week, an overwhelming majority of the college’s 80 faculty members and two librarians voted to accept the agreement. The NMC Faculty Association is affiliated with the Michigan Education Association.

“I am so proud of the collaboration and respect both parties demonstrated during this negotiating process. We are truly living our NMC values,” said NMC President Nick Nissley.

“The world we operate in has changed considerably since the last contract we negotiated,” said Rachel Johnson, Board of Trustees chair. “This contract, combined with our generous benefits package, will enable us to attract and retain top-tier talent and to deliver on our promise to our students.”

“With the additional investment of the college into the strategic plan, along with its understanding of the critical role that faculty will play in our success, faculty ratified the contract late last week,” said social sciences instructor and NMC Faculty Association President Brandon Everest.

Key provisions of the contract include:

  • Year 1, 2022–23: Base salary increases ranging from 5.00% to 8.71% depending on the faculty member’s tenure and position on NMC’s 15-step salary schedule. Upon hire, faculty are placed on the schedule at a step appropriate for their teaching and professional experience. Each year, provided that goals are met, faculty members progress one step until they reach step 15 of the salary schedule. Each step increases pay 3.71%. Presently 39% of NMC’s faculty are at step 15 and thus eligible only for the 5.00%.
  • Years 2 and 3, 2023–24 and 2024–25: Base salary increases ranging from 2.00% to 5.71%, again depending on position on the 15-step salary schedule.

The agreement also contains a revised faculty load provision that incentivizes faculty to increase the number of courses offered in formats such as online, hybrid and livestream, aligned with and tied to the duration of the College’s Strategic Plan. This provision means faculty who prep courses in multiple formats could earn overload pay increases between 1.00–3.60%. Everest anticipates 90% of faculty will qualify for this incentive.

Including the incentive provision, the contract in its entirety means faculty are eligible for increases ranging from 5.00% to 12.31% in 2022–23. Faculty base salaries for this year will range from $58,998 to $98,320.

In years two and three, faculty are eligible for raises ranging from 2.00% to 5.71%.

Other provisions of the contract include:

  • A clearer faculty evaluation process
  • Provisions that cover two librarians who joined the union this year through an accretion process.
  • This three-year agreement expires July 31, 2025

The NMC Faculty Association was formed and entered into its first contract with NMC in 2016.

Release date: JULY 27, 2022

For more information:

Cari Noga
NMC Communications Director
cnoga@nmc.edu
(231) 392-1800

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

Health & Science Building atrium will be a city polling place August 2

The Health & Science Building atrium on NMC’s main campus will be used as a city polling place for Precinct 9 voters again this year, including for the Tuesday, August 2 primary election from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Some parking in the Cedar lot will be set aside for voters at those times.

(The NMC Bookstore will be closed that day as well, and will reopen with normal hours Wednesday, August 3.)

Nursing education expansion plan will help address regional nursing shortage

TRAVERSE CITY — Nursing education opportunities will expand regionally and across Michigan thanks to an innovative plan championed by local legislative leaders and funded with a $56 million appropriation in the Fiscal Year 2023 state budget, according to Northwestern Michigan College and Munson Healthcare.

The collaborative plan, approved by the Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer earlier this month, will support the development of programs for nurses with associate degrees to complete their bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) on community college campuses. Under the legislation, community colleges can partner with a four-year college or university and design a BSN completion program with input from local employers and workforce development agencies. Each community college will be eligible for a $2 million grant for administering the program.

“NMC has long sought to provide students with a seamless transition from ADN to BSN and with this new funding, we’re excited to work with both Munson and our four-year partners to design a BSN program our graduates can complete in Traverse City,” said NMC President Nick Nissley. “We know our community, like many, faces a nursing shortage. This legislation is an important step towards solving that challenge.”

“This workforce development investment is a big win for northern Michigan,” said state Rep. John Roth, of Traverse City. “Meeting patient demand has been an issue even before COVID-19 came to our state and this is an effective solution to get more nurses into our hospitals. This will be a huge positive locally. Aspiring nurses who go off to a four-year university may not return to live, work and raise a family. Providing the resources to expand degree options locally will allow for more people to specialize right in their community and care for their communities. This is an issue I prioritized when I was seeking to represent Grand Traverse County, and I’m pleased that Michigan is taking steps to meet demand and provide needed flexibility for aspiring professionals.”

The program will significantly increase the number of nurses with bachelor’s degrees that are in-demand at Michigan’s hospitals. In the last two years, NMC has graduated 91 ADN students; 64 of whom are employed at Munson.

“Munson Healthcare has long supported all strategies that promote the availability of highly trained nurses in our region. This includes partnering with Northwestern Michigan College to provide clinical instruction support to promote nursing graduates in our region. We appreciate the legislature for making this investment that will help to remove barriers for degree and career advancement and provides us with a new tool to support replenishing our healthcare talent pipeline,” said Ed Ness, president and CEO of Munson Healthcare.

The program will increase access and affordability of bachelor of science in nursing programs for students who completed their associate degree in nursing at a Michigan community college. Under the plan, grants will be administered by the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) and be awarded to Michigan community colleges.

The plan was developed by the Michigan Community College Association, the Michigan Association of State Universities, Michigan Independent Colleges and Universities, and the Michigan Health & Hospital Association. It is also backed by the Michigan Works! Association and the Michigan Association of Colleges of Nursing.

ABOUT NORTHWESTERN MICHIGAN COLLEGE:
A publicly-funded community college founded in 1951, NMC offers associate degrees and professional certificates, and bachelor’s degrees from its four campuses in Traverse City, Mich. NMC was the first community college in Michigan to offer a bachelor’s degree following passage of enabling legislation in 2012.

ABOUT MUNSON HEALTHCARE:
Munson Healthcare is northern Michigan’s largest and leading healthcare system with eight award-winning hospitals including Munson Medical Center which is ranked among Fortune/Merative’s Top 100 Hospitals in America. Serving 540,000 residents across 30 counties, our dedicated healthcare team provides advanced cancer, heart and stroke intervention care, lab, rehabilitation and other services and uses the latest robotic technology, stereotactic radiosurgery, 3D tomography and non-invasive surgical procedures that keeps patients close to home. Visit munsonhealthcare.org for more information.

Release date: July 21, 2022

For more information:

Cari Noga
NMC Communications Director
cnoga@nmc.edu
(231) 392-1800

Dale Killingbeck
Munson Healthcare
DKILLINGBECK@mhc.net

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

UPDATED: NMC astronomer hosts first look at Webb telescope images

NOTE: The 6 p.m. expert panel program link has been updated below.

TRAVERSE CITY — Northwestern Michigan College astronomy instructor Jerry Dobek will host two in-person and livestreamed events on July 12 for the region to see the first images from NASA’s James Webb telescope. Both will be at Milliken Auditorium.

  • 10 a.m.: First Images release event including Webb’s first full-color images and spectroscopic data. Join via Zoom
  • 6 p.m.: Expert panel program to discuss the first image findings and answer audience questions. Watch on YouTube

The Traverse Area District Library and Sleeping Bear Dunes will also host livestream simulcasts of both events.

Webb is the largest and most complex space science telescope ever built — the premier observatory of the next decade. This international mission, led by NASA in partnership with the European Space Agency and the Canadian Space Agency, launched Dec. 25, 2021. After unfolding in space into its final form, Webb successfully arrived at its destination nearly 1 million miles from Earth and began preparing for science operations.

Designed to see the universe in the infrared, Webb will push the field of astronomy into a new era. Webb will be able to study light from distant parts of the universe for the very first time – the first galaxies that formed over 13.5 billion years ago — and give insight into how our universe formed. It will also peer into dusty stellar nurseries to explore distant worlds orbiting other stars, as well as observe objects in our own solar system. Webb will extend the scientific discoveries of other NASA missions like the Hubble Space Telescope, Chandra X-ray Observatory, and Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite.

Dobek, NMC Science Department Chairman, has been looking forward to these images for years. “Galileo’s first use of the telescope in 1610 is analogous to taking a step at a time with Earth-based observation. Hubble was our first hop up into space-based observation. Now the JWST will be a leap toward advancing our knowledge of the universe,” he said.

 

Release date: June 30, 2022

For more information:

Jerry Dobek
NMC Science Department
jdobek@nmc.edu
(231) 995-1271

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

Board approves budget, tuition rates for FY ’23

TRAVERSE CITY — A balanced budget and tuition rates and fees for the 2022–23 academic year were approved unanimously by the Northwestern Michigan College Board of Trustees Monday.

Tuition rates will increase by 5 percent. That amounts to $6 per contact hour for in-district students (Grand Traverse County residents.) Fees will rise $1.50 per contact hour. For the average in-district student taking 24 contact hours in a two-semester academic year, that means an increase of $180 ($144 in tuition, $36 in fees.) A table of tuition rates for all residencies and programs is available here.

The college held tuition flat in 2020. In 2021, a tuition increase was mostly offset by a fee decrease. This year, as state support again declined as a percent of the budget and growth in property tax revenue is capped, tuition remains one of the few levers the college controls.

Inflation, currently at 8 percent nationally, and NMC’s ambitious strategic plan also informed this year’s budget. The plan, NMC Next, includes two dozen objectives in five areas including student engagement and success and future focused education.

“It’s time to bring our strategic plan to life,” said NMC President Nick Nissley. “Each of the initiatives seek to add value for our students and should lead to growth opportunities for the college.”

Not all Michigan community colleges have set fiscal 2023 tuition rates. In FY 2022, NMC’s tuition was the sixth lowest in the state. Thanks to community donors the college also awards more than $1 million in institutional scholarships annually. Adults over 25 who don’t already have a degree are eligible for a state scholarship, Michigan Reconnect, which pays 100 percent of in-district tuition.

“With Michigan Reconnect and more scholarship money available through the NMC Foundation, I hope more people take the opportunity to get ahead with NMC,” Nissley said.

For 2022–23, NMC’s revenue will be 23 percent from state aid, 27 percent from local property tax, 47 percent from tuition and fees and 3 percent from other sources.

 

Release date: June 27, 2022

For more information:

Diana Fairbanks
Associate Vice President of Public Relations, Marketing and Communications
dfairbanks@nmc.edu
(231) 995-1019

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

Research buoys deployed to GT Bays for first full season

TRAVERSE CITY — Three research buoys have been placed in Lake Michigan for their first full season of data collection, plus a video feed of the lake’s surface.

In an NMC-Michigan Technological University collaboration, the buoys were first placed last fall near North Manitou Island in Lake Michigan, near Greilickville in West Bay, and near East Bay Park in East Bay, the first ever on the east arm. Data collected will include water temperature at multiple depths, wind speed and direction and wave height and direction.

“We have never had any measurements in East Grand Traverse Bay previously, and having three strategically placed allows comparative understanding of the three separate but connected water bodies.” said Hans Van Sumeren, director of NMC’s Great Lakes Water Studies Institute.

Purchased in 2021 with a $48,804 grant NMC received from the Great Lakes Observing System, the buoys were outfitted with webcams over the winter. The video feed of the lake surface is updated every 30 minutes.

“These buoys and data will support a broader understanding of Great Lakes processes and will provide users with near real-time information,” Van Sumeren said.

NMC offers students the opportunity to gain skills, knowledge and understanding of the world’s dynamic water resources by earning a bachelor’s degree in Marine Technology. Graduates of the bachelor’s program have 100-percent employment in the marine industry. Associate degrees in Engineering Technology-Marine and Freshwater Studies are also available.

 

Release date: JUNE 24, 2022

For more information:

Hans Van Sumeren
Director, Great Lakes Water Studies Institute
(231) 995-1793
hvansumeren@nmc.edu

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

Best new books June 2022

“Oh yeah, I heard about that book!”

NMC Library has many “Top 10” books and other award-winning titles to kick off your summer reading. C’mon up to the 2nd Floor of the Innovation Center Monday through Thursday and see what all the fuss is about.

To find these selections and many other new titles, see the NMC library catalog.

(more…)

2022 Outstanding Alumni named

TRAVERSE CITY —  Northwestern Michigan College is proud to announce the 2022 recipients of the college’s Outstanding Alumni award:

Richard Gray Download a high-resolution photo of
Richard Gray here
Richard Gray, GLMA 2013 (awarded posthumously): Following his graduation, Gray continued his relationship with the Great Lakes Maritime Academy as a mentor and adjunct faculty member, in addition to his rising career. Devoted to his growing family of three young children with a fourth expected this fall, Gray’s life was cut tragically short in a shipboard accident in early 2022. The many nominations he received represent the positive influence he demonstrated to so many. One nominator wrote, “He always had a positive attitude and was willing to teach anyone anything if they asked….Richard was the best of the best.”

Dr. Annie Kritcher Download a high-resolution photo of
Dr. Annie Kritcher here
Andrea (Annie) Kritcher, 2001–2003:
A Traverse City native, Kritcher studied engineering at NMC, going on to complete her B.S. in nuclear engineering at the University of Michigan and an M.S. and Ph.D. at the University of California-Berkeley. She has been with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory since 2012. Currently, she is a physicist and the design lead within the Inertial Confinement Fusion team, as part of the National Ignition Facility. She has served as lead researcher on several projects and has published over 35 reviewed scientific papers in journals such as Nature and Science.

Bob Sutherland Download a high-resolution photo of
Bob Sutherland here
Bob Sutherland,
1982–1983: As the visionary owner of Cherry Republic, Sutherland launched the business in 1989 selling t-shirts sporting the motto “Life, Liberty, Beaches and Pie” out of the trunk of his car. Cherry Republic has flagship destinations in Glen Arbor and Traverse City, satellite stores, and a nationwide website and catalog business. With a commitment to clean energy, farmland preservation, outdoor recreation, and youth development, Sutherland designates a portion of sales to charity each year. One nominator wrote, “one of the best examples I know of a company with multiple bottom lines that gives back to the community on many levels. It’s a model for many to follow, but few can match.”

Since 1988, Northwestern Michigan College’s Outstanding Alumni award has recognized graduates and past students for significant professional achievements and/or exemplary leadership in the local or global community. Recognition is based on the achievements of the nominee and positive perspective as to the role that NMC played in their lives. Visit nmc.edu/alumni for more information and a nomination form. Nominations received by March 1, 2023 will be considered for 2023 recognition.

Release date: June 22, 2022

For more information:

NMC Alumni Relations
alumni@nmc.edu
(231) 995-2825

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

Emergency Management: Weather watch and warning notifications

A severe thunderstorm watch means that the potential exists for the development of thunderstorms which may produce large hail or damaging winds. When a watch is issued, you should go about your normal activities, but keep an eye to the sky and an ear to the National Weather Service’s weather radio or local radio and television stations for further updates and possible warnings. (more…)

Kids Free Fishing Day returns

TRAVERSE CITY — More than 250 young anglers and their families are expected at this year’s return of the annual Kids Free Fishing Day, set from 9 a.m.–1 p.m. Saturday, June 18 at Northwestern Michigan College’s Great Lakes Campus.

Kids accompanied by an adult are invited to join in the free fishing fun. Under the supervision of the Department of Natural Resources, 750 rainbow trout 10 inches or longer will be stocked in the campus harbor for the event. Fishing rods, reels and bait are all provided. Children may also bring their own fishing gear. Experienced volunteers will help with baiting hooks and fishing instruction, and clean the fish.

The Great Lakes Children’s Museum will host a free fish painting activity for kids waiting to fish. There will also be a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter rescue demonstration. Parking is available at NMC’s Great Lakes Campus, located just east of the Delamar Hotel on U.S. 31.

Free Fishing Day is sponsored by Traverse City Rotary Clubs, Rotary Camps & Services, NMC’s Great Lakes Water Studies Institute, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, Great Lakes Children’s Museum, and the Northwest Michigan Fishing Club.

Release date: June 10, 2022

For more information:

Chris DeGood
cdegood@bria2.com
(231) 420-5601 (mobile)
(231) 933-8400 (office)

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

Café Lobdell’s summer 2022 hours

Cafe Lobdells baristaCafe Lobdell’s, located on the second level of the Great Lakes Campus, will reopen this summer from June 21–July 28 for dine-in and carryout service. Culinary students will be making and serving handcrafted coffee and tea drinks, breakfast pastries and cafe-styled to-go lunch items on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 7:30–11:30 a.m. Stop by to experience the tasty treats our culinary students are whipping up! Reservations are not needed.