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OU's Environmental Health and Safety degree program ranked among top in nation

Oakland University’s Environmental Health and Safety online degree program has been ranked as one of the top 25 Best Value Occupational Safety and Health degree programs in the nation for 2019 by Value Colleges (VC), an online ranking system that compares the most affordable colleges with the best return on investment.

“Oakland University’s place in the VC Best Value ranking tells students that they can trust OU’s program to provide not only an education, but an entry to a rewarding career,” Rhonda Corey, media manager for Value Colleges, said in an email.??

Oakland University ranked No. 13 on the list, between the University of Central Missouri and Purdue University at West Lafayette. The top 10 included: University of Houston-Clear Lake, University of North Alabama, Grand Valley State University, Utah State University, John Hopkins, the University of Texas at Tyler, Ohio University, Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania, Eastern Kentucky University, and the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater.??The ranking is based on several factors, including reputation (based on U.S. News & World Report), return on investment (based on Payscale data), and cost (based on online tuition as reported to the National Center for Education Statistics).

“I appreciate this recognition,” said Kevin Ball, Ph.D., dean of the School of Health Sciences. “The universities and programs described ahead of us are of good quality, and the EHS field serves an increasingly important role in public and environmental wellness, so we are complimented by appearing in this good company.”

Environmental Safety and Health (EHS) is a relatively new, and still emerging, career field compared to other professional studies at universities across America. None of today’s safety-related baccalaureate degree programs existed before the U.S. Congress passed the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970. This act represents the first national legislation directed at ensuring the safety and health of America’s working men and women.

The Oakland University Occupational Safety and Health baccalaureate degree, established in 1978, was one of the first such programs to respond to this national demand for increased safety and health in the workplace.??“Formal occupational safety and health codes have been one of the most important developments in the modern workplace,” Corey said. “Quality of life for the day-to-day desk jockey or food-service worker is important, but in fields like mining, construction, or laboratory science, occupational health and safety may literally be a matter of life or death.”

Oakland University’s Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health and Safety degree program produces graduates who can function effectively as safety professionals on multidisciplinary teams that include occupational health physicians, occupational nurses, industrial engineers, environmental engineers, union representatives, hourly workers and corporate managers.

This degree provides a strong health sciences core curriculum and general education component coupled with technical and professional knowledge required by individuals pursuing professional careers in accident prevention, loss-control management and supervision, inspection and control of industrial hazards, and industrial hygiene.

“Oakland University has an environmental health and safety degree online program that meets the needs of busy professionals and adult learners who require flexibility,” according to the VC report. “The online format does not require students ever to step foot on campus, and most of the learning is delivered asynchronously, except for some classes that will be scheduled far in advance and therefore, will be easy to put on the schedule ahead of time.”

To learn more about the EHS program at Oakland University, visit www.oakland.edu/ehs.

FCA Foundation awards $50,000 grant to Winning Futures student workforce prep mentoring program

Winning Futures announced a one-year $50,000 grant from the FCA Foundation, the charitable arm of North American automaker FCA US LLC. Funding from the FCA Foundation will support core expenses for local tenth graders who are participating in Workforce Prep – an in-school mentoring and leadership skills development program for challenged high school students. This program addresses the critical need to better prepare students for life and careers after high school.
 
Workforce Prep is a four-year program that starts with students in the tenth grade and continues through the student’s first year of continuing education. Through in-class mentoring and leadership skills development, job shadowing, and internships, students gain critical workplace skills and hands-on experience, empowering them with the tools, knowledge, and motivation they will need to realize a meaningful career and upward mobility.
 
“The FCA Foundation’s support of youth development and education is truly outstanding,” said Winning Futures President and CEO, Kristina Marshall. “Their support enables us to carry out our mission, preparing students to be self-reliant, successful adults.”
 
“We are very pleased to partner with organizations like Winning Futures, who are highly effective at giving young people the skills and support needed to succeed in school, at work and in life,” said Emeel Ajluni, Vice President – FCA Foundation. “We also believe that empowering and educating our youth is key to building strong, resilient communities.”
 
Winning Futures’ Workforce Prep program supports 500 students at 7 metro-Detroit high schools; and engages 150 mentors from the community including nine FCA US employees. Programs are currently held at Warren Mott High School (Warren, MI), Community High School (Sterling Heights, MI), Pontiac Academy for Excellence (Pontiac, MI), Mumford High School (Detroit, MI), Cass Technical High School (Detroit, MI), Harper Woods High School (Harper Woods, MI), and Madison High School (Madison Heights, MI).
 
Stephen Hatfield is a FCA US employee and has mentored through Winning Futures since 2012. Stephen has dedicated more than 375 volunteer service hours helping more than 35 students become self-reliant, employable, and productive adults. He was honored by Winning Futures earlier this year as Mentor of the Year at Pontiac Academy for Excellence and recently recognized by FCA for his outstanding community service.
 
“I love making a connection with the kids and being an adult they can rely on and learn from,” said Stephen. “We never have enough people we can learn from.”
 
  • Click here to watch a FCA US video recognizing Stephen’s community service.
     
About the FCA Foundation
The ?FCA Foundation? is the charitable arm of North American automaker FCA US LLC, a member of the ?Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.?(FCA) family of companies. The FCA Foundation invests in U.S. charitable organizations and initiatives that help empower people, build strong, resilient communities and generate meaningful and measurable societal impacts. In support of these objectives, the FCA Foundation focuses on the following foundational pillars: youth development, education, support for military, veterans and their families, and community service.

About Winning Futures
Winning Futures (www.WinningFutures.org) is an award-winning nonprofit organization that empowers youth to succeed through mentoring, strategic planning, and workforce preparation. The organization partners with metro-Detroit high schools to deliver weekly in-class life skill and workforce preparation sessions that are facilitated by local business professionals. A recent recipient of the National Quality Member designation from MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership, Winning Futures has positively impacted more than 47,000 students and awarded $1.9 million in scholarships.

Advanced manufacturing lab coming to Milford High School

Excerpt: 

The Huron Valley Schools District wants to help fill the region's critical skilled trades talent gap. 

In partnership with SME Partnership Response in Manufacturing Education, an initiative focused on closing the skills gap, and regional business partners, the district is seeking to build a $315,000 advanced manufacturing lab in Milford High School. 

Read more

Walsh named gold-level status veteran-friendly school

Walsh has been recognized by the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency for its commitment to helping student veterans succeed in college. 

This is the eighth consecutive year that Walsh has been named a Veteran-Friendly School and the third consecutive year that the college has received Gold-level status -- the agency’s highest distinction. 

“Veterans represent an important talent pool for our state,” said Dr. Michael Rinkus, Executive Vice President and Chief Academic Officer at Walsh and U.S. Army veteran. “About 7.5 percent of Michigan adults are military veterans, according to the last U.S. Census. Our goal at Walsh is to provide personal, dedicated support to veterans so they have a clear pathway from education to successful careers.”

Walsh is committed to helping veterans transition from military service to a college degree to successful career. The college waives the application fee for veterans and offers personalized assistance to help with education benefits. Walsh also has licensed professional counselors on staff to assist during the transition process. 

“The hard work and sacrifice you put in for this country make you incredibly deserving of an education,” said Kyle Richardson, a 2017 Walsh accounting alumnus who served in the military. “Many veterans believe there is not enough time, they have to go back to work full-time after starting a life based on full-time military pay, or they do not know how to utilize their benefits. Walsh helps you with all these areas to ensure you are set up for success.”
 
While at Walsh, veterans have access to veteran-specific scholarships, extended payment due dates for GI Bill® users and personalized help with education benefits. Walsh’s Troy location also has a dedicated space for veterans. 

“Walsh made me feel like I was more than just ‘another student,’ Richardson said. “Since I served four years in the military, I was older than most college students. I knew I wanted a college program that I could finish efficiently, and Walsh's four-semester school year made this a reality.” 

The Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency recognizes academic institutions of higher learning committed to supporting the needs of student veterans and dependents. The program awards Gold-level, Silver-level or Bronze-level status to institutions that offer veteran-centric services and programs.  

To learn more about Walsh’s veteran services, visit www.walshcollege.edu/veterans

About Walsh 

Walsh is an all-business, private, independent, not-for-profit, fully accredited college offering undergraduate and graduate business and technology degrees, as well as certificate programs. Founded in 1922, Walsh is one of the region’s largest business schools, offering classes in several locations as well as online. Our nationally ranked programs integrate theory and application to prepare graduates for successful careers. Walsh degree programs include accounting, finance, information technology, management, marketing, taxation and other fields. For more information, please visit www.walshcollege.edu.

Walsh is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (www.hlcommission.org) and the Accreditation Council for Business Schools & Programs (www.acbsp.org).

FCA Foundation awards $50,000 grant to Winning Futures student Workforce Prep mentoring program

Winning Futures today announced a one-year $50,000 grant from the FCA Foundation, the charitable arm of North American automaker FCA US LLC. Funding from the FCA Foundation will support core expenses for local tenth graders who are participating in Workforce Prep – an in-school mentoring and leadership skills development program for challenged high school students. This program addresses the critical need to better prepare students for life and careers after high school.
 
Workforce Prep is a four-year program that starts with students in the tenth grade and continues through the student’s first year of continuing education. Through in-class mentoring and leadership skills development, job shadowing, and internships, students gain critical workplace skills and hands-on experience, empowering them with the tools, knowledge, and motivation they will need to realize a meaningful career and upward mobility.
 
“The FCA Foundation’s support of youth development and education is truly outstanding,” said Winning Futures President and CEO, Kristina Marshall. “Their support enables us to carry out our mission, preparing students to be self-reliant, successful adults.”
 
"We are very pleased to partner with organizations like Winning Futures, who are highly effective at giving young people the skills and support needed to succeed in school, at work and in life,” said Emeel Ajluni, Vice President – FCA Foundation. “We also believe that empowering and educating our youth is key to building strong, resilient communities.”
 
Winning Futures’ Workforce Prep program supports 500 students at 7 metro-Detroit high schools; and engages 150 mentors from the community including nine FCA US employees. Programs are currently held at Warren Mott High School (Warren, MI), Community High School (Sterling Heights, MI), Pontiac Academy for Excellence (Pontiac, MI), Mumford High School (Detroit, MI), Cass Technical High School (Detroit, MI), Harper Woods High School (Harper Woods, MI), and Madison High School (Madison Heights, MI).
 
Stephen Hatfield is a FCA US employee and has mentored through Winning Futures since 2012. Stephen has dedicated more than 375 volunteer service hours helping more than 35 students become self-reliant, employable, and productive adults. He was honored by Winning Futures earlier this year as Mentor of the Year at Pontiac Academy for Excellence and recently recognized by FCA for his outstanding community service.
 
“I love making a connection with the kids and being an adult they can rely on and learn from,” said Stephen. “We never have enough people we can learn from.”
  • Click here to watch a FCA US video recognizing Stephen’s community service.
About the FCA Foundation
The FCA Foundation is the charitable arm of North American automaker FCA US LLC, a member of the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (FCA) family of companies. The FCA Foundation invests in U.S. charitable organizations and initiatives that help empower people, build strong, resilient communities and generate meaningful and measurable societal impacts. In support of these objectives, the FCA Foundation focuses on the following foundational pillars: youth development, education, support for military, veterans and their families, and community service.

About Winning Futures
Winning Futures (www.WinningFutures.org) is an award-winning nonprofit organization that empowers youth to succeed through mentoring, strategic planning, and workforce preparation. The organization partners with metro-Detroit high schools to deliver weekly in-class life skill and workforce preparation sessions that are facilitated by local business professionals. A recent recipient of the National Quality Member designation from MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership, Winning Futures has positively impacted more than 47,000 students and awarded $1.9 million in scholarships.

LTU sophomores improve the lives of persons with disabilities through innovative products

Lawrence Technological University sophomore engineering students once again spent the fall semester designing products to help developmentally disabled people improve their lives.

Students worked with the Dearborn-based Services to Enhance Potential (STEP), which finds and manages job placements for the disabled, and ConnectUs, a Livonia-based nonprofit that provides quality programming for individuals with severe multiple disabilities.

The students are part of a course, EGE 2123, Entrepreneurial Engineering Design Studio, that is required in most LTU engineering programs. Students meet with the nonprofit agencies and their clients, witness, first-hand, the clients’ challenges, and design and build physical products to help solve those challenges.

"Creating a product for a real person - and in particular, a person with a disability - and seeing directly the impact that they can have on that person's life, really resonates with the students,” said Heidi Morano, director of LTU’s Studio for Entrepreneurial Engineering Design (SEED), who teaches the course with Susan Henson, SEED project engineer. “We often have former students return to the studio to ask if their STEP client is still using their product. The empathy that the students develop for their customer really shows."

This week, the students presented their products in open houses to LTU faculty, staff, and students, as well as working professionals in engineering and related fields. Those who attended cast votes to name first- and second-place teams in both sections of the EGE 2123 course.

Winners in the afternoon class that worked with STEP were:

  • First place, Ramp It Up, who produced a 3-D printed magnetized bracket to aid the production of roller assemblies used to transport cafeteria trays. Team members were Joe Daszcz of Allen Park, Chris Langston of Farmington Hills, Devin Morrison of Madison Heights, Maurice Rivers of Chicago, and Matthew Wenzel of Howell.
  • Second place, tie, Gasket Smashkit, who produced a board with cones affixed to it to help workers punch holes out of gaskets without damaging the gasket. Team members were Lauth Aljida of Novi, Dillon Tierney of Highland Township, and Meshal Alharbi of Kuwait.
  • Second place, tie, InspectTech, who designed a device to incorporate inspection into the manufacturing process of a component in automotive bumpers. Team members were Samantha Khon of Dearborn, Alyssa Downs of Southgate, and Miguel Sanchez Munoz of Spain.
     

Winners in the evening class that worked with ConnectUs were

  • First place, AMTF, a team that designed a table with jacks and actuators that raised and lowered to accommodate the height of a client’s wheelchair. Team members were Garrick Beaster of Romulus, Ethan Harrington of Shelby Township, Aidan Nolan of Clarkston, and Joel Trend of South Lyon.
  • Second place, Ticket Masters, which designed and built a new ticket dispenser for ConnectUS. Team members were Emily Gandolfi of Falmouth, Tyler Gregory of Livonia, Matthew Luckow of Dearborn, and Matt Quigley of Rochester.


Lawrence Technological University, www.ltu.edu, is a private university founded in 1932 that offers more than 100 programs through the doctoral level in its Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Business and Information Technology, and Engineering. PayScale lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 15 percent of universities for the salaries of its graduates, and U.S. News and World Report lists it in the top tier of best Midwestern universities. Students benefit from small class sizes and a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 107-acre campus include more than 60 student organizations and NAIA varsity sports.


Thousands of Michigan students attend region's largest career exploration fair

Excerpt

Over 9,000 high school students packed the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi on Wednesday, November 28. 

MICareerQuest Southeast, the largest career exploration fair in the region's history, featured over 90 companies showcasing the opportunities available to the area's youth in the healthcare sciences, construction, information technology and manufacturing sectors. 

Read more

Oakland County Michigan Works! and OCC hosting special panel on value of apprenticeship programs

Oakland County companies interested in building their talent pipeline are invited to attend a special luncheon and panel discussion on how to successfully implement registered apprenticeship programs.

Sponsored by Oakland County Michigan Works! and Oakland Community College, the event is Nov. 13 from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. at OCC. Companies interested in attending the “Apprenticeship Works” luncheon should contact Therese Geer at OCC, 248-232-4141, or email apprenticeship@oaklandcc.edu.

County Executive L. Brooks Patterson issued a special proclamation to designate the week of Nov. 12-18 as “National Apprenticeship Week in Oakland County.”

“While skilled trades and manufacturing may use the greatest number of apprentices, we’re also seeing significant interest and the launch of apprenticeship programs across other industries, including health care and information technology,” Patterson said. “This panel will discuss what resources are available to businesses through the county’s Michigan Works! offices and OCC, the latest trends in apprenticeships and workforce development.”

The joint Oakland County Michigan Works! and OCC event is part of National Apprenticeship Week. This nationwide celebration highlights the benefits of apprenticeships in preparing a highly skilled workforce to meet the talent needs of employers across a broad range of industries. More than 200,000 people are expected to attend nearly 2,000 events in all 50 states during the week.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Registered Apprenticeships, Michigan has more than 18,500 active apprentices working in nearly 1,300 apprenticeship programs. Nationwide, there are more than 500,000 apprentices. Over the past four years, U.S. companies have added 125,000 new registered apprenticeship programs.

The “Apprenticeships Works” panel will include representatives from OCC, Oakland County Michigan Works!, the Workforce Intelligence Network and Henry Ford Health System, which launched a successful medical assistant apprenticeship program earlier this year in partnership with OCC and Henry Ford College. The apprenticeship program is addressing the significant shortage of medical assistants in Oakland County and across the region.

“With the employment forecast, this apprenticeship program enables Henry Ford Medical Group to train new medical assistants and instill the Henry Ford Health System culture that focuses on each patient first,” said Dawn Robiadek, manager of clinical care services.

Current medical apprentice Rita DeVault said the program benefits her career growth.

“The apprenticeship gives me hands-on training and the opportunity to put my skills into practice while building confidence in a working environment, while earning compensation,” she said. “All this with no student loans or tuition fees.”

Deputy County Executive Timothy Meyer said state data indicates nearly 90 percent of apprentices in various industries are employed after completion of their program with an average annual starting wage of $60,000.

From an employer’s perspective, there are other advantages to launching a registered apprenticeship program, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Among them:
  • Recruitment and development of a highly skilled workforce
  • Improvement in productivity, profitability and a company’s bottom line
  • Creation of flexible, customized training options
  • Standardized training so all workers receive the same national, industry-endorsed training
  • Reduced turnover and liability costs
  • Receipt of tax credits and employee tuition benefits in participating states
“Apprenticeships pay off,” Meyer said. “On average, apprentices earn $300,000 more over the course of their career than other workers. On the flip side, for every dollar spent on an apprenticeship program, employers get back an average of $1.47 in increased productivity.”

Lake Orion students take part in county Manufacturing Day

Excerpt

For Teddy Anderson, a junior at Lake Orion High School, seeing what the professionals at Atlas Copco Tools and Assembly Systems do could be a glimpse into his future.

Teddy and 17 of his classmates toured Atlas Copco in Auburn Hills as part of Oakland County’s fourth annual Manufacturing Day on Oct. 5.

Read more

LTU professor puts community mapping into the hands of the people with mobile mapping cart

A Lawrence Technological University professor is leading a community mapping project in Detroit. And though he may be Principal Investigator of Mapping + Humanities, Dr. Joongsub Kim, Ph.D., has designed it in a way that makes the community members themselves the true leaders of the project.

Dr. Kim, Professor, and Director of LTU’s Master of Urban Design program, and his team have designed a mobile mapping cart to allow community members of Detroit’s West End neighborhood to map and document their neighborhood and tell their own stories.

The mapping cart is attached to a bicycle, and local high school students ride it around the neighborhood. Drawings, pictures, and infographics are then created to be incorporated into maps. Captured are things that affect people’s daily lives, vacant buildings but also historically significant buildings and other community assets.

The spectacle of a bike-pulled mapping cart is also meant to draw crowds, facilitating conversations and the sharing of stories between neighbors.

"We’d like to make sure that the community is able to design and build their own maps so that they have ownership and want to use them rather than have outside planners coming in and saying, Here’s a plan for you, here’s a map for you, now use it," says Dr. Kim.

"This is to give people a sense of voice and empowerment."

Mapping + Humanities is a multi-tier program. Following a November exhibition, the first mapping cart will be given to the community in December. In the meantime, planning sessions are being held with local high school students. A manual will then be put together, and the high school students will be helped in making their own mapping cart.

Mapping + Humanities is a collaboration between Urban Design and Humanities programs at LTU and West Grand Boulevard Collaborative in Detroit’s West End neighborhood. A Michigan Humanities Council Grant funds it.

Got a development news story to share? Email MJ Galbraith here or send him a tweet @mikegalbraith.


Speaker series examines both how to get better jobs and how to provide them

A speaking event for employees and the companies that employ them is taking place at Lawrence Technological University this month.

It’s a result of radio station WWJ Newsradio 950 and Lawrence Technological University partnering for another year of their Leaders and Innovators business speaker series.

This year’s programming, which runs through mid-April, kicks off with the Your Next Job event on Thursday, Sept. 20. Your Next Job will examine both how employees can improve their chances of landing better jobs but also how employers can better retain employees, thus dissuading them from leaving for competitors.

According to a release, a recent study shows that six out of 10 employees would leave their current company for better pay and/or benefits.

Murray Feldman, business editor for WWJ Newsradio 950, will moderate the event. The panel will include Pete Davis, president of Impact Management Services, an employee recruitment and personnel consulting firm with offices in Southfield, Chesterfield Township, Chicago, and Appleton, Wisconsin.

Additional events include:

  • Thursday, Oct. 18: Weed in the Workplace
  • Thursday, Nov. 15: Crash Course: Financial Fitness in the Workplace
  • Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019: Business and Taxation
  • Thursday, March 21, 2019: Women Entrepreneurs
  • Thursday, April 18, 2019: Topic to be determined


The first event in the Leaders and Innovators business speaker series, Your Next Job, is on Thursday, Sept. 20 at the University Technology and Learning Center Gallery at Lawrence Technological University in Southfield. A continental breakfast and networking sessions begin at 7:30 a.m. The program runs from 8 to 9 a.m.

Visit the event online for ticket information.

Got a development news story to share? Email MJ Galbraith here or send him a tweet @mikegalbraith.


MiCareerQuest Southeast nearly sold out as more than 9,000 students registered for inaugural event

More than 9,000 high school students from nearly 100 southeast Michigan schools have registered for MiCareerQuest Southeast, the region’s largest-ever career exploration event, which takes place November 28.

The huge response has shattered event organizer expectations, who anticipate the 10,000-student limit will be reached much sooner than planned. Once the limit is reached, schools will be placed on a waiting list, as each school’s registration numbers and arrival schedule are confirmed in early October.

“The strong response to MiCareerQuest Southeast is very exciting,” said Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson. “I think everyone recognizes this is not your typical job fair, and they want their students to be part of it. We’re connecting working professionals eager to demonstrate what they do on the job with young people who want to learn as much as they can about the career opportunities before them. We have room for less than 1,000 more students. If your school has not registered yet, do it now. I would hate for an interested student to miss out on this singular event.”

High schools interested in registering should visit OakGov.com/MiCareerQuestSE. The school registration period will close on October 1, or when all the available student slots are filled.

Event organizers started communicating with public and private schools in February. Notices were sent to all public high schools by the Intermediate School Districts in Oakland, Macomb, Wayne, Washtenaw, Livingston and Monroe counties.

More than 90 companies, trade associations, labor organizations, universities, community colleges and vocational schools are participating in the event, with new ones committing each day. They are preparing hands-on, interactive demonstrations to showcase the skills and education needed to compete for today’s most in-demand jobs in advanced manufacturing, construction, health sciences and information technology. The event will feature a minimum of 20 occupations in each of the four career quadrants. The current list of participating exhibitors can be found at OakGov.com/MiCareerQuestSE.

“Our exhibitors are putting a lot of thought and energy into this event so they can grab the attention and imaginations of students, many of whom are considering their career options for the first time,” said Jennifer Llewellyn, Oakland County manager of workforce development and one of the lead planners of MiCareerQuest Southeast. “Our ultimate goal is to feed the long-term talent pipeline in southeast Michigan, a challenge shared by virtually all of our employers.”

MiCareerQuest Southeast is being organized by the Oakland County Department of Economic Development & Community Affairs and Michigan Works! The Michigan Talent Investment Agency is presenting sponsor. Platinum sponsors include Beaumont Health (health sciences quadrant) and the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (advanced manufacturing quadrant). In addition, DTE Energy, Consumers Energy, Michigan Building and Construction Trades Council and MUST (Management and Unions Serving Together) have joined together for the platinum sponsorship in the construction quadrant.

Event organizers are still seeking a platinum sponsor for the information technology quadrant. Additional major sponsors include Oakland Community College and Automation Alley. There also are more than 20 smaller sponsors, representing their respective career quadrants. The full list of sponsors is available at the event website. Organizations interested in a sponsorship should contact Beth Tomaszewski at tomaszewskie@oakgov.com.

Lawrence Tech President's Symposium to cover future of transportation, self-driving cars

Excerpt: 

Communities and society are profoundly affected by how efficiently, effectively, and safely people and goods move. But what are the proper roles of society and industry in designing future transportation systems?

In the 2018 installment of the President’s Symposium Series at Lawrence Technological University on Thursday, Oct. 11, a panel of experts will discuss those roles, and explore the full-scale implementation of autonomous and advanced driver-assist technologies.

Read more.

Lawrence Tech President's Symposium to cover future of transportation, self-driving cars

Communities and society are profoundly affected by how efficiently, effectively, and safely people and goods move. But what are the proper roles of society and industry in designing future transportation systems?

In the 2018 installment of the President’s Symposium Series at Lawrence Technological University on Thursday, Oct. 11, a panel of experts will discuss those roles, and explore the full-scale implementation of autonomous and advanced driver-assist technologies.

The event is titled “Accessibility, Mobility, and Connectivity: The Edge of Future Transportation Systems.” Moderating the panel discussion will be Michigan Department of Transportation Director Kirk T. Steudle, PE, a 1987 Lawrence Tech engineering alumnus, who recently announced his retirement after 31 years with the state agency. Panelists for the event are to include:

  • Carla Bailo, president and CEO, Center for Automotive Research, a non-profit organization in Ann Arbor that conducts research and analysis to educate and advise stakeholders, policy makers, and the general public on critical issues facing the auto industry, and the industry's impact on the U.S. economy and society.
  • Soraya Kim, chief innovation officer, American Center for Mobility, a non-profit testing and product development center for connected and automated vehicle technology, located on the former Willow Run site in Ypsilanti Township.
  • Alisyn Malek, chief operating officer and co-founder, May Mobility Inc., an Ann Arbor-based  developer of autonomous vehicles, funded by BMW and Toyota, among others.
  • Douglas Patton, senior technical advisor, DENSO International America Inc., the Southfield-based U.S. headquarters of the Japanese auto supplier.
  • Jeremy Tuggle, engineering manager, systems engineering and testing, Continental Corp., Auburn Hills, the U.S. headquarters of the German auto supplier Continental AG.

The event begins with a reception at 6:30 p.m. and the program starts at 7 p.m. The venue is the Mary E. Marburger Auditorium, Room S100, Science Building, LTU, 21000 W. 10 Mile Road, Southfield, MI, 48075 (see www.ltu.edu/map). The event is sponsored by LTU’s College of Engineering.

“This event will feature people who are at the top of their field, discussing state-of-the-art technology in mobility,” said Nabil Grace, dean of the College of Engineering at Lawrence Tech. “These technologies, in transportation and infrastructure, represent the future of Michigan. Students and young people in particular should be interested in this program, because these are the technologies they will be working on in their future careers.”

LTU’s President’s Symposium is an annual presentation series created by Virinder Moudgil, the university’s president since 2012, focusing on technology and its applications to improve the quality of life.

The President’s Symposium is free and open to the public. For further information, contact Tamara Botzen, administrative assistant, Office of the Dean, College of Engineering, at tbotzen@ltu.edu or (248) 204-2500.

Lawrence Technological University, www.ltu.edu, is a private university founded in 1932 that offers more than 100 programs through the doctoral level in its Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Business and Information Technology, and Engineering. PayScale lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 100 universities for the salaries of its graduates, and U.S. News and World Report lists it in the top tier of best Midwestern universities. Students benefit from small class sizes and a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 107-acre campus include more than 60 student organizations and NAIA varsity sports.


LTU Self-driving champs

Lawrence Technological University has once again established itself as a leader in the field of autonomous vehicles.

The Southfield-based university won the Self-Drive Challenge contest at the 26th Annual Intelligent Ground Vehicle Competition (IGVC), which was held June 1 through 4 at Oakland University in Rochester. It’s the second year in a row that LTU has won the contest.

The team of LTU students created ACTor, or Autonomous Campus Transport/Taxi, a self-driving campus shuttle bus. The vehicle was judged on a range of tasks, including lane-following and -changing, obstacle avoidance, reading traffic signs, detecting potholes and avoiding them, and more.

C.J. Chung, professor of computer science at LTU and the winning team leader, says that contests like the IGVC both prepares students for the workforce while simultaneously advancing the fields of technology. Students are solving real-world problems while applying lessons learned.

“Driving at night, or in the fog--there are so many unknown environments that self-driving cars can be driving in,” Chung says.

“To be a real product, reliability needs to be 100 percent.”

The contest allowed companies the ability to get a sneak peek of what’s coming down the talent pipeline. It’s a talented future workforce, says Chung, and one upon which the industry relies.

Since winning the competition, students are now reprogramming ACTor to serve as an actual autonomous taxi on the LTU campus.

LTU’s competitors in the contest included University, the University of Detroit Mercy, the Indian Institute of Technology – Madras, and New York University. The winning team received $3,000 and a plaque.

“Detroit is the automotive hub. We should work hard to be the leader in this industry of self-driving vehicles, as well,” says Chung.

“Universities need to provide a talented workforce in order to do that.”

Visit Driven and learn how the Detroit region is leading the world in next-generation mobility.
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