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Emergency Responders Complete Tuition-Free Training in Missaukee County

November 9, 2022

Some new Emergency Medical Responders from Missaukee and Wexford counties have completed their training without having to pay thanks to a first-of-its-kind partnership between Missaukee EMS and Northwest Michigan Works! The 10 new Medical Responders completed their training on November 3 as part of an effort to help rural Michigan fire departments meet their needs for trained EMS staff. The $900 per student course tuition and the cost of supplies were paid for out of a $1.1 million Michigan Learning and Education Advancement Program (MiLEAP) grant that Northwest Michigan Works! received from the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO). The grant is part of a $17.8 million competitive grant awarded to LEO by the U.S. Department of Education to respond to the economic impact of COVID-19 in the state.

“Through our partnership with Northwest Michigan Works!, we were able to get students into the classroom and alleviated some of the stress that comes with any class by having students focus on the classwork and not have to worry about the financial aspect,” said Alec Harness, Emergency Medical Responder Course Lead Instructor. “We look forward to our continued partnership with Northwest Michigan Works! and are excited to get started on our next project so we can continue to produce quality EMS providers for the region."

A new class of 15 students has already started their tuition-free EMT training in Missaukee County. That training is scheduled to be completed in early February of 2023. Information about tuition funding eligibility and other MiLEAP training opportunities is available by contacting your local Northwest Michigan Works! Center.  

MiLEAP provides funds to assist job seekers in transitioning from short- and mid-term education and training programs to high-skill, high-wage career pathways, resulting in industry-recognized credential attainment and reduced educational debt. MiLEAP targets services to individuals who are dislocated, underemployed, serving as essential workers, living in distressed rural and urban communities, and economically disadvantaged. The program also includes MiLEAP Navigators who provide job seekers with direct assistance in assessing and overcoming barriers, identifying resources and providing guidance and support. MiLEAP participants receive individualized competency-based assessments and learning plans that include skills assessments, remote learning opportunities, industry credential attainment, and contextual learning opportunities.

Northwest Michigan Works!, a program of Networks Northwest, is the region’s local workforce development partner serving thousands of job seekers and businesses every year. More information about the services offered by Northwest Michigan Works! is available at: or by calling 800-442-1074.

Networks Northwest always proves to be a valued resource for our local government planning efforts. No organization does a better job of convening partners, promoting collaboration, and reporting on the data than does Networks Northwest
- Ty Wessell, Leelanau County Commissioner