Since the coronavirus pandemic which has extended into 2021, WIN experienced staff and board member turnover. WIN extends a heartfelt appreciation to former WIN employees Sarah Gregory, Melissa Sheldon, and Michelle Wein, Imad Mourad and board members Amy Jones from Schoolcraft College, Bill Sleight from Michigan Works! Southeast, Michelle Rafferty from Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation (DESC), Don Hutchison from Macomb Community College, and John Bierbusse from Macomb/St. Clair Michigan Works! in recognition of the years of service that they provided to WIN and the workforce system.

WIN is for the grateful for the contributions of current WIN Board of Directors:

WIN Celebrates ten-year anniversary

This year was the milestone ten-year anniversary of the Workforce Intelligence Network for southeast Michigan. A virtual anniversary event was held on August 18, 2021, with numerous speakers which included founding members, community college presidents, former employees, and WIN board members. A Ten-Year Anniversary Proclamation recognizing the achievements of the WIN member organizations’ workforce professionals and a comprehensive ten-year timeline of data and research studies and regional training initiatives was developed and presented at the event.


The celebration continued with exciting news in Q1 2021. SEMCA WIN was awarded the U.S. Department of Labor H1-B One Workforce on Building an Industry Infinity Supply Chain which will provide four years of support services and region-wide delivery of cybersecurity, transportation, and advanced manufacturing robotics and automation certification training through all WIN Board member organizations.


As a partner with the State of Michigan, the Michigan Rural Enhanced Access to Careers in Healthcare (MiREACH) Grant was awarded in Q1 2021. MiREACH, and the Health Careers Alliance of Southeast Michigan, are designed to convene healthcare systems and identify strategies to address common talent needs and deliver postsecondary training programs through 2025.

The Michigan Learning and Education Advancement Program (MiLEAP) was awarded to SEMCA WIN by the state of Michigan for the period of July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2023 to support short-term training which leads to an Industry recognized credential and employment. 


The U.S. Department of Labor America’s Promise and American Apprenticeship Initiative (AAI) grants ended this year by exceeding all performance outcome targets and earning recognition as one of the strongest workforce collaboratives in the nation for both grants. Since January 2017, the America’s Promise Catalyst partners served 932 participants against a target goal of 905. Of the 932 served, 853 are un-and-underemployed individuals and 79 are incumbent workers. Of the 853 un-and-underemployed participants served, 717 have completed training and received a credential and 414 have entered unsubsidized employment, again these outcomes exceed 100% or our grant goals.

The Advance Michigan Center for Apprenticeship Innovation (AMCAI) completed activities for the American Apprenticeship Initiative (AAI) grant through a six-month extension ending on March 31, 2021. The AAI grant partners served 997 registered apprentices, 308 pre-apprentices in seven pre-apprenticeship programs and served more than 2,255 participants candidates over the course of the grant period in some capacity, including support to the United Auto Workers by scheduling Related Technical Instruction (RTI) for UAW apprentices, career counseling and preparation for apprenticeship, and educating high school career and technical education students and job seekers on all aspects of registered apprenticeship as a career.

The AAI grant engaged 124 program sponsors and the development of the SEMCA WIN Intermediary Standards Holding program which has now served 26 employers and 61 total apprentices, with 17 employers hiring 33 apprentices in the AAI grant and creating a sustained intermediary support to include additional employers and 28 new apprentices since AAI ended in March 2021. The 124 program sponsors also included two additional intermediaries, the Jackson Area Manufacturing Association (JAMA) which is an association of 63 employers and participated in the AAI grant with 13 registered apprentices, and the Northwest Network which had eight employers supporting eight registered apprentices.

The AMCAI website was updated and includes a link to the Rapidskills Generator, Return on Investment (ROI) Calculator, and Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action Planning policies, powerpoint, video, and other such tools for apprenticeship employers to use to achieve their diversity, equity, and inclusion goals. An apprenticeship resource tracking software (ART) was developed as an apprenticeship app tracker which can track Related Technical Instruction (RTI), On-the-Job Training (OJT) and auto generate a report on apprenticeship activity which supports the Intermediary Standards Holding program that WIN offers to employers by managing all of the paperwork and reporting for apprentices.

The AAI grant and has created long-term sustainability by compiling several apprenticeship resources for the Southeast Michigan region as well as working to expand apprenticeship awareness across Michigan. More detail related to the apprenticeship resources on website includes information and the link to site which is an online repository holding 540 occupational frameworks for developing Appendix A Work Process Schedules, the Return-on-Investment Calculator (ROI) which shows wage data and helps show employers the financial benefits of hiring apprentices, a video developed for sharing information about apprenticeship today, Apprenticeship Resource Tracking (ART) software and marketing materials. The ART software was developed to enable intermediary standards support for apprenticeship employers. The AMCAI Toolkit also includes sample Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO)/Affirmative Action Plan (AAP) guidelines and sample templates for Intermediaries and sponsors that do not have the necessary resources for hiring and complying with DOL Registered Apprenticeship. 


The Michigan Alliance for Greater Mobility Advancement (MAGMA) Governing Board, an employer-led collaborative that WIN has been convening since 2013, unanimously supported serving as the lead collaborative for the Michigan Revolution for the Electrification of Vehicles (MiREV) grant application which is pending. Including MAGMA’s membership of over a dozen industry and stakeholder partners, the MiREV employer-led collaborative grant application includes the largest number of partners with almost 75 business, education, non-profit, government, economic development, and workforce development board partners to scale existing electric vehicle and mobility-related curriculum statewide.

MAGMA held an Advisory Council meeting this month on the United States-Mexico-Canada (USMCA) Agreement with speakers from the Center for Automotive Research (CAR) Group, Detroit Consulate General Offices of Canada and Mexico, which can be viewed on the WIN website, by clicking here. 

The WIN partners unanimously supported partnership with the State of Michigan on the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Assistance Good Jobs Challenge which would include more funding support for the MiREV training outcomes and deliverables.

With Oakland Community College serving as the grantee for the U.S. Department of Labor Closing the Skills Gap Apprenticeship grant, WIN community college and Michigan Works! partners have served approximately 800 participants against a goal of 3,200 by 2024.


The WIN data and research team worked on large data studies including a first draft of an Apprenticeship Training Guide and final draft of a Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) High-Tech Workforce Preparation for Emerging Transportation Technologies. The Michigan Department of Transportation and Center for Automotive Research (MDOT/CAR) project concluded in September 2021. Deliverables include training strategies for the current and future workforce and recruitment strategies to meet current demand and emerging skills of high demand occupations and key transformative technologies that were analyzed. WIN also provided a recruitment interactive infographic highlighting attractions to work for MDOT. Currently this report has not been publicly released.

Michele Economou Ureste, WIN Executive Director
Deborah Bayer, Director of Regional Initiatives and Grant Compliance
Janene Erne, Regional Apprenticeship Administrator
Jim Babin, Regional Apprenticeship Administrator
Deja Torrence, Economic Research Manager
Kristi Ayers, Project Manager
Amanda Bauerschmidt, Project Manager
Alysha Albrecht, Communications Specialist
Lleana Blossom, Economic Research Analyst


Left to right top row- Michele, Lleana & Alysha. Bottom row- Deborah, Amanda & Deja. Missing- Janene, Jim & Kristi.


Prepared by Michele Economou Ureste, WIN Executive Director. 

To view WIN Staff bios and headshots click here. 

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