Businesses need severe weather plans too, are you prepared?

mcswaThe state of Michigan has designated April 8-14 as Severe Weather Awareness Week. Preparing for severe weather is extremely important. Macomb County businesses should be prepared and educated on what to do in case of a thunderstorm, tornado, power outage, flooding and more.

As a business are you prepared in case of an emergency? What is your business emergency plan if tornados warnings are issued at closing time? Or if severe weather hits and half of your warehouse is flooded?

The Macomb County Office of Emergency Management & Communications urges businesses to be prepared for these events and have plans in place. Some items to consider having in your plan are:

  • What is the communication plan between management and employees
  • What happens if severe weather hits when your employees are in the office or on the road
  • Does your business have emergency supplies, fire extinguishers, flashlights/batteries, first aid kit, drinking water, NOAA weather alert radio/batteries and necessary tools
  • Are tornado shelters clearly label and able to accommodate employees
  • What happens if the production facility is shut down for several days due to a power outage or flooding

There is no better time than now to develop or update a plan. Macomb County Emergency Management & Communications has developed a Community Emergency Preparedness Guide that can help businesses prepare for severe weather and other hazards they may encounter.

Lauri Cowhy is a senior communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

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I want to go back to college and finish my bachelor’s degree . . . as a working adult with family obligations, can I find the time?

PrintYes! Designed for busy adults, Oakland University – Macomb is offering four accelerated bachelor’s degree completion programs at the OU Anton/Frankel Center in Mount Clemens:

  • Bachelor of Science in General Management
  • Bachelor of Science in Human Resources Management
  • Bachelor of Science in Information Technology
  • Bachelor of Science in Marketing

Classes are offered in the evenings in an accelerated, eight-week sessions that combines classroom work with online assignments.  That means a full-time student would only need to attend class two evenings per week and could complete their degree in two years or less.Finish Line 480x320

“As a single mother working full-time, any free time is a bonus,” says Nakisha Scruggs, a recent graduate. “I wanted to be an example to my daughter and show her that if you want something bad enough and apply yourself, you can do anything.”

If you have some college or are interested transferring, OU-Macomb will offer a Fast-Track Open House on Thursday, April 19 from 5:30-7pm. To learn more, visit www.oakland.edu/macomb.

Macomb County has been an integral part of Oakland University’s growth since the institution’s founding 60 years ago. OU is committed to making an impact in Macomb County by enriching lives through expanded access to higher education, nurturing college-bound youth, supporting economic development and engaging with alumni and the local communities.

It’s a wrap; Food and agricultural businesses gather to learn about the benefits of a “Farm to Fork” ecosystem

The Macomb Food Collaborative hosted the All about Food: Farm to Fork Conference here in Macomb County last week.  The conference attracted participants from across southeastern Michigan.

The morning started with a five person panel talking about their experiences in the industry.  They talked about services for business startups, growth, economic development and resources available to people looking to expand a business. The panel consisted of:

  • Jack Johns – project coordinator for Macomb County Planning and Economic Development. Jack pecializes in servicing the food and agricultural industry. He helps attract, retain, and grow businesses in Macomb County
  • Terri Barker – Economic/Community Development Analyst, Agriculture Development Division for the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. Terri works with businesses to help them expand utilizing state programs and services.
  • Jess Youngblood – Owner of Youngblood Vineyard. Although the vineyard (first-ever in Macomb County) and winery is not open for business just yet, Jess discussed how her longtime dream is coming together. She discussed the struggles and joys of starting their own business. Youngblood Vineyard plans to open to the public next year.
  • Andy More – owner of Cap n’ Corks discussed how he has grown his business from a local beverage supply store and will soon be opening Caps N’ Corks brewing which will produce their own beer and wine.
  • Patricia Moore – Brown Iron Brewhouse discussed how the business has grown so much over the last three years and how they have been able to give back to the community.

The day was filled with a wealth of information during the breakout sessions.  The topics ranged from food safety; starting a business; vegetable gardening; soil health and testing. Several sessions were demonstrations about cooking, healthy eating and local gardening.

macomb food colaborativeSeveral students from L’Anse Creuse’s Pankow Center presented how to make a bubble bucket, best management practices, growing your own herb, harvesting and preserving. Students presented a powerpoint, while showing participants how to build their bucket, and test for nutrient requirements. Students brought their lavender, lettuce and basil plants for participants to see how well anyone can grow herbs in their own home.

Lunch included homemade specialties from Henry Ford Health SystemsDorsey Culinary SchoolWestview Orchards and the Clean Plate.  The products served were amazing and Westview Orchards and the Clean Plate would love to see new customers stop in and visit their family-owned businesses.

Check out more event photos at  facebook.com/MacombFoodCollaborative/ 

The event was hosted by the Macomb Food Collaborative, a non-profit organization that works to ensure access to safe, fresh, fair and healthy food for all. It promotes a vibrant, local food economy, sustainability and good nutrition through education, outreach and support.

For more information on starting or growing your food and agriculture business in Macomb County – contact Jack Johns.  He can connect you to the resources you need.  He specializes in Food and Agriculture, as well as automation, connected vehicles, robotics, energy and retail businesses.

Lauri Cowhy is a senior communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

Discover Leadership Macomb

Discover how graduates are transformed both personally and professionally by enrolling in the Leadership Macomb XXII 2018-2019 program which runs Sept. 19, 2018 through June 5, 2019. The application deadline is July 1. Junior Leadership Macomb applications are also now being accepted. This program is offered for high school juniors in Macomb County. Visit leadershipmacomb.org for more information.

For 20 years, the organization has been instrumental in helping both emerging and accomplished leaders expand their network and enhance their knowledge of local systems, assets and issues as well as their individual commitment to work toward the common goal of strengthening Macomb County. Leadership Macomb graduates are invaluable resources and key contributors to the entire region.

Leadership Macomb is the ultimate platform for bringing private, public and nonprofit sectors together to experience the county, connect and collaborate with each other, and become engaged locally and beyond.

Prospective candidates for the program are welcome to join LM Alumni on June 6, 2018 to learn more about the program at our graduation for class LM XXI! Learn more or register at www.leadershipmacomb.org/events.LM

Diane Banks is the program director for Leadership Macomb.

Are you a foodie? Learn, connect and eat at the All About Food Conference on March 20th

basic-loga_origThis year’s event highlights the Macomb County food system and will be held at the Macomb Community Action’s Family Resource Center located at 196 North Rose Street, Mount Clemens, MI.  (Formerly Washington Elementary School.)

Registration begins at 8 a.m. The event kicks off at 8:30 a.m. with a panel of Macomb County food and beverage business owners. Each will offer insight about their businesses and the role they play in supporting locally sourced for their food and beverage products. The panel will include voices from a vineyard, brewing supply store and a brew house/restaurant.

As any local food conference attendee would hope, a locally sourced and prepared lunch will be provided as part of the cost of attendance. Guests can expect a delicious spread from meal contributors including Henry Ford Health Systems, Dorsey Culinary School, Westview Orchards and the Clean Plate.

The conference attracts participants from across southeastern Michigan region. Breakout sessions offer a range of choices. Gardeners and farmers may take interest in the basic vegetable gardening, soil health and testing, and a garden in a bucket sessions. Schools and other institutions will be represented with farm to school, feeding the whole child, and food safety sessions. Those that take interest in local food from an environmental standpoint may find themselves attending sessions on disappearing farms and farmland and closed loop systems. Other sessions will address a myriad of food related topics including: legislative advocacy, starting businesses, vegetarianism, and local produce in USDA designated food deserts.

For a complete schedule visit this link.

Time is running out to register! Early bird registration is open through March 16th, with a fee of $25. To register online: http://www.macombfood.org/all-about-food-conference.html. A very limited number of walk-ins will be accepted on the day of the conference, with a fee of $35.

The event is hosted by the Macomb Food Collaborative, a non-profit organization

That works to ensure access to safe, fresh, fair and healthy food for all. It promotes a vibrant, local food economy, sustainability and good nutrition through education, outreach and support.

Baker College: Choosing the Path to Employment in Macomb County

bakerct-entrance-2.jpgSince 1990, Baker College of Clinton Township has maintained its role in the community by offering one of the most affordable 4-year  public or private college experiences in Michigan, including certificates, associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral level degrees. We graduate diligent, dedicated students that are ready to work, and whose academic experiences have been molded by Michigan employers. Our curriculum is influenced by employer advisory boards consisting of professionals in the field, which ensures the support of real-world programming that matches the ever-evolving demands of the workforce. Students can also meet the challenges of busy schedules by taking advantage of course offerings though our Online campus to supplement their on-ground studies.

Baker College students live in the community, have a desire to work locally, and therefore have a vested interest in seeing their environment thrive. They are taught to think on their feet, identify problems and formulate efficient solutions by completing Career Experience as part of their degree requirements regardless of major. Our Career Experience partners in all degree areas, especially Health Care, Management, IT and, Business Services, offer cutting edge experiences in areas that are focused on industry trends and areas of growth. Additionally, over 36% of our students accept offers of full-time employment at their Career Experience site.

Our small class sizes contribute to student success.  Passage rates for graduates of Baker College programs which require licensure are higher than state and national averages. In reporting from June 2017 graduates earned 100% pass rates in nursing, dental hygiene, radiation technology, and surgical technology. Tests are not the only measure of success. Baker College has been defending their Cyber Defense Championship title since 2008, with six State, two Regional and two National Championships. We were voted to have the #1 Nursing Program in Michigan for 2016, by registerednursing.org, with a 100% percent pass rate of state boards and a 100% employment rate. We also take great pride in serving our community as hosts of the premier Dental Hygiene clinic in the Baker College system that is open to the public, providing low cost dental services including cleanings, x-rays, fluoride treatment and exams to children and adults in Macomb County. Call (586) 790-5238 to make an appointment.

In addition to our robust academic programs, Baker College offers 100 degree programs including those through our Auto Diesel Institute and the Baker College Culinary Institute of Michigan (CIM). A CIM student has won the Michigan Chefs De Cuisine Association Student Chef of the Year for three consecutive years. Furthermore, the CIM boasts a talented and accomplished group of alumni, including the latest winner of Hell’s Kitchen. Chef Kimberly Ann Ryan recently demolished the competition on the popular reality TV competition, scoring an esteemed position with The Venetian’s Yardbird Southern Table & Bar in Las Vegas — worth approximately $250,000.

Even with the growth in populous and business in Macomb County, savvy investors in their own education should be motivated to choose an institution with affordably priced tuition, career-focused curriculum and an easy campus commute. By selecting the premier four year college in your backyard, Baker College makes it easy to take the path to employment in Macomb County. After all, Baker College does not graduate students–we graduate BakerProud© students.

 

Assistance for job seekers and employers available through Michigan Works!

Michigan Works! offers services and programs to those who need help finding a job or training, and we also help employers who need to find qualified workers. We see our “customers” as both job seekers and businesses.

While unique, each Michigan Works! office is locally responsive, demand-driven and governed by a workforce development board. In the Macomb and St. Clair County area, the Macomb-St. Clair Workforce Development Board, Inc. oversees the operation of five Michigan Works! Service Centers. Most of our services and programs are free!

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For job seekers:

For job seekers, we provide many services and programs at no cost that are funded by state and federal programs like the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. If you lack the necessary skills or are thinking of a career change, Michigan Works! can provide assessments and career counseling. If training is needed and you are eligible, we can provide financial aid and support services.

We partner with local community colleges and other proprietary schools that offer training for in-demand careers like accounting, machining/machine tool, engineering, IT, construction, electrical, transportation and health care. At our Michigan Works! Service Centers, we provide free workshops on job search, resume writing, interviewing and the use of social media including Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Contact us today and set up an appointment with a career planner, or visit a Michigan Works! Service Center to post your resume on the Pure Michigan Talent Connect, access our free job search workshops and see our list of local companies who have immediate openings!

If you are 16 to 24 and just starting out in your career, our Young Professionals program offers help for those without a high school diploma or GED and are currently not attending school and who may have other barriers to finding employment.

We also have specialized services for veterans including our veteran’s boot camp, career planning, job training and veteran’s staff on location to assist you!

For businesses:

Our business customers will find an equal number of programs and services to help them find talent and save money! In Macomb and St. Clair counties, our certified business solutions professionals have assisted more than 2,000 employers with their employment and business needs, collectively saving them more than $1 million. We offer a wide range of services that include pre-hire, talent recruitment, job development, training and more.

Our customized approach allows us to align our services with the needs of the business. Some of our specific services/programs are listed below:

On-the-job training (OJT) – OJT is an essential tool that can help employers offset the cost of training new talent. OJT provides reimbursement to the employer up to 50 percent of the new employee’s wages for a designated period. This reimbursement assists in covering some of the extraordinary costs of providing the training.

Young Professionals – Partnering with Michigan Works! Young Professionals provides additional tools to assist your business in recruiting and retaining new talent. The employer provides work experience for a young adult and Michigan Works! provides wage/worker compensation for up to 480 hours.

Apprenticeships – An apprenticeship is a systematic approach to training that ensures your current and/or new employees are trained and certified to produce at the highest skill levels. This proven training model allows employers to set the benchmark and the structure that can determine the return on investment in training dollars.

Work Opportunity Tax Credit – A federal tax credit available to employers for hiring individuals from certain target groups who have consistently faced significant barriers to employment.

Fidelity bonding – Insurance when hiring high-risk but qualified job seekers who have bona fide offers of employment.

Skilled Trades Training Fund – Employer grants designed to assist in training, developing and retaining new and current employees.

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Call us!

Job seekers and businesses may connect with us locally in Macomb or St. Clair counties by calling (586) 469-5220. If you are from any other county in Michigan and want to find your local Michigan Works! Office, please call 1-800-285-WORKS (9675) to be automatically routed to the nearest Michigan Works! Service Center.

Colin Miller is a manufacturing talent specialist for the Macomb-St. Clair Workforce Development Board, Inc.