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Workers, Students, and Employers Recognized by Northwest Michigan Works!

Northwest Michigan Works! has given special recognition to some of the workers, students, and businesses it serves. The awards were presented at the June 10 meeting of the Northwest Michigan Workforce Development Board in Traverse City.

Two of the awards went to women who work in Benzie County. April Birch, an employee at Victoria’s Floral Design in Benzonia and Frankfort, is the PATH Program Customer of the Year. Roberta Allen, who works for MSU Extension in Benzie and Manistee counties, is the Dislocated Worker Program Customer of the Year.

Birch came to Michigan Works! through a referral from the Michigan Department of Human Services in the Partnership, Accountability, Training, Hope (PATH) Program. Michigan Works! helped Birch enroll at Baker College where she earned her Associate’s Degree in graphic design. Michigan Works! also provided Birch with assistance with transportation, résumé writing, and interviewing, and helped her land the job at Victoria’s Floral Design.

Allen came to Michigan Works! after the manufacturing plant where she worked for 13 years closed.

She earned National Career Readiness and Study Skills certificates through Michigan Works! and went on to earn her Associate’s Degree in office information systems. Michigan Works! referred Allen to a part time position at the Manistee County MSU Extension office and she soon obtained a second job at the same position in Benzie County.

Another worker award went to Michael Springer of Manton who was recognized for Excellence in Career Transition. Springer was laid off three times from AAR Mobility Systems in Cadillac, the final time in 2012. He decided to switch careers and found a training opportunity to become a Dental Lab Technician. Through the Michigan Works! on-the-job training program Springer went to work for Dr. Lueder at Professional Dental Lab in Cadillac.

Two Grand Traverse County students also received awards. Fay Dwyer of Traverse City is the Adult Education Student of the Year, and Northwestern Michigan College student Lisa Clark is the Youth Program Customer of the Year.

Dwyer is working on earning her high school diploma at the Northwest Michigan Works! Adult Education Learning Lab in Traverse City. She came to the adult education program without any high school credits. But since September 2012 she has logged over 300 hours in class and has taken a study skills program. Dwyer studies at night after everyone else has gone to bed and she has earned the first four credits toward her high school diploma.

Clark is a 2012 graduate of the Beaver Island Lighthouse School where she was the valedictorian and recipient of the 10-10-10 Scholarship. She is now a student in NMC’s Culinary Arts Program at and is working full time at a Phil’s on Front in Traverse City.

Recognition for success as employers and Michigan Works! partners went to Antrim Machine Products of Mancelona and Demmer Corporation of Petoskey.

Michigan Works! has helped Antrim Machine Products hire at least seven new employees including machinists, quality control, and their office manager. The company also participated in a machining employer forum to help develop training to meet employer needs, and was involved with the job shadowing portion of a recent just-it-time training program.

Demmer Corporation was very active in the Michigan Works! welding and machining just-in-time trainings. They offered job shadow opportunities to all the machining students. Demmer demonstrated their high level of commitment to employing local talent by hiring two students from the welding program and one from the machining class. 

Scott Kulanda received an award from Northwest Michigan Works!. He put in serious effort to turn his life around after being paroled from Pugsley Correctional Facility. Scott took advantage of Michigan Works’ employment services to boost his résumé and references. He also received housing assistance and was counseled through the Prisoner Reentry Program. He took these offers seriously which led to his employment working as a machinist at Matern. He is now a hard-working, productive, tax-paying citizen.

Wayne Wire Cloth of Kalkaska is also being recognized for business success. The company will receive its award at the Northwest Michigan Workforce Development Board’s August meeting.

 

 

April Birch is the PATH Program Customer of the Year. April came to Michigan Works! through a referral from the Michigan Department of Human Services in the Partnership, Accountability, Training, Hope (PATH) Program. Michigan Works! helped Birch enroll at Baker College where she earned her Associate’s Degree in graphic design. Michigan Works! also provided Birch with assistance with transportation, résumé writing, interviewing, and helped her land the job at Victoria’s Floral Design.  
     
     
Roberta Allen is the Dislocated Worker Program Customer of the Year. Roberta came to Michigan Works! after the manufacturing plant where she worked for 13 years closed. She earned National Career Readiness and Study Skills certificates through Michigan Works! and went on to earn her Associate’s Degree in office information systems. Michigan Works! referred Allen to a part time position at the Manistee County MSU Extension office and she soon obtained a second job at the same position in Benzie County.  
     
     
Michael Springer of Manton was recognized for Excellence in Career Transition. Springer was laid off three times from AAR Mobility Systems in Cadillac, the final time in 2012. He decided to switch careers and found a training opportunity to become a Dental Lab Technician. Through the Michigan Works! on-the-job training program Springer went to work for Dr. Lueder at Professional Dental Lab in Cadillac.  
     
     
Fay Dwyer of Traverse City is the Adult Education Student of the Year. Fay is working on earning her high school diploma at the Northwest Michigan Works! Adult Education Learning Lab in Traverse City. She came to the adult education program without any high school credits. Since September 2012 she has logged over 300 hours in class and has taken a study skills program. Dwyer studies at night after everyone else has gone to bed and she has earned the first four credits toward her high school diploma.  
     
     

Lisa Clark is the Youth Program Customer of the Year. She is a 2012 graduate of the Beaver Island Lighthouse School where she was the valedictorian and recipient of the 10-10-10 Scholarship. She is now a student in NMC’s Culinary Arts Program at and is working full time at a Phil’s on Front in Traverse City.

 
     
     
Antrim Machine Products in Mancelona received a Business Success Award. Michigan Works! has helped Antrim Machine Products hire at least seven new employees including machinists, quality control, and their office manager. The company participated in a machining employer forum to help develop training to meet employer needs and was involved with the job shadowing portion of a recent just-it-time training program.  
     
     
Demmer Corporation in Petoskey received a Business Success Award from Northwest Michigan Works! Demmer Corporation was very active in the Michigan Works! welding and machining just-in-time trainings. They offered job shadow opportunities to all the machining students. Demmer demonstrated their high level of commitment to employing local talent by hiring two students from the welding program and one from the machining class.  
     
     
Northwest Michigan Works! and the Prisoner Reentry program helped parolee Scott Kulanda with temporary work experience, his résumé and references, and referred him to a full time job as a machinist. Kulanda received the Northwest Michigan Works! Parolee Success, Customer of the Year Award. Watch the video to find out more.  

 

Testimonial

Elise, Sarah and Elizabeth of Networks Northwest really made the Speak-Up Kalkaska Event successful, and we look forward to our continued partnership in completing the cooperative Master Plan Process.

Cash Cook, Kalkaska DDA Director