Michigan Colleges Launch New EV Battery Programs to Help Students Earn the Big Bucks

Hundreds of students prepare to graduate with a degree from Henry Ford College. (Henry Ford College via Facebook)

By Kyle Kaminski

July 6, 2023

A new battery job training program from Henry Ford College is enticing students with the prospects of making $30 an hour after graduation.

DETROIT—A new certification program announced this week from Henry Ford College will offer thousands of Michigan students an opportunity to get a leg up in advanced manufacturing.

And if all goes well, graduates of the new short-term training certification program will go on to land good-paying jobs in electric vehicle manufacturing and other mobility-related jobs that pay an average wage of about $30 an hour, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said in a statement this week.

“The new battery job training program at Henry Ford College will offer Michiganders seeking an in-demand, high-skill career the training and education they need to succeed,” Whitmer added. 

The new statewide program—which was made possible through the state’s Electric Vehicle Jobs Academy—will help about 3,000 Michiganders earn a certification from community colleges across Michigan through 2027, officials said. The training will reportedly touch on a wide range of skills related to electric vehicle manufacturing and related battery technologies.

In addition to an EV Jobs Academy Grant awarded last year, the Southeast Michigan Community Alliance received a $10 million federal workforce grant for a project that supports curriculum development and training for jobs in transportation and advanced manufacturing.

Officials said Henry Ford College acquired the battery technology curriculum through those grant funds, and will make the training available at 16 participating community colleges starting this fall. 

Those include: Bay College; Gogebic Community College; Grand Rapids Community College; Kellogg Community College; Lake Michigan College; Lansing Community College; Macomb Community College; Mid-Michigan College; Monroe County Community College; Montcalm Community College; Mott Community College; Muskegon Community College; Oakland Community College; Southwestern Michigan College; and West Shore Community College.

Henry Ford President Russ Kavalhuna labeled the new initiative “a great example of partnerships between public and private organizations and the state” that’s designed to make Michigan a leader in electrical technology—and fill thousands of new jobs over the next decade.

“Henry Ford College has a history of innovation in workforce development, and this new curriculum will prepare our graduates for the careers of the future in transportation and other fields,” Kavalhuna said in a statement. “We are proud to be among the first to invest in this.”

Possible career paths for graduates can include automotive, maintenance and repair technicians, as well as electrical and electronics technicians, and mechatronic engineers.

READ MORE: Why More Michigan Women Landing Good-Paying Construction Jobs

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  • Kyle Kaminski

    Kyle Kaminski is an award-winning investigative journalist with more than a decade of experience covering news across Michigan. Prior to joining The ‘Gander, Kyle worked as the managing editor at City Pulse in Lansing and as a reporter for the Traverse City Record-Eagle.

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