Largest renovation in college’s 68-year history supports programs in high-demand manufacturing, technology and skilled trades sectors
Macomb Community College is poised to begin a $40 million renovation of its Skilled Trades and Technology Center, which features programs that prepare students for high-demand careers in advanced manufacturing, technology and the skilled trades. The transformation of the facility originally built in 1968 reimagines classroom, lab, faculty and student spaces, adapting to current and future technological needs and leveraging the interconnectedness of disciplines in modern industry. The building will reopen for the fall 2023 semester.
Located on Macomb’s South Campus in Warren, the 110,000 square foot building will gain 20,000 square feet of educational and lab space from a 12,000 square foot addition and a repurposing of currently underutilized space. Nearly $15 million of the total project cost is being funded through a capital outlay appropriation from the State of Michigan, with the remaining $25 million coming from the college’s capital projects fund.
“With today’s growing workforce talent gap, preparing residents for highly skilled jobs in the region has never been more important,” said James O. Sawyer IV, president, Macomb Community College. “Macomb Community College is committed to connecting residents to jobs with futures that can sustain families, and to expanding the talent pipeline to local business and industry. Renovation of Macomb’s Skilled Trades and Technology Center is not only an important step in expanding our capacity for apprenticeships and meeting fast-evolving industry needs, but also demonstrates the college’s dedication to employing the most cost-effective solutions, including repurposing buildings when possible versus pursuing new construction.”
Programs that are taught in the Skilled Trades and Technology Center include:
- CNC machining
- Drafting/ Computer-aided design
- Fluid power technology
- Land surveying
- Media and communication arts
- Product development (including digital sculptor/clay modeling)
“Macomb’s renovated Skilled Trades and Technology Center will provide an unparalleled teaching and learning environment to prepare our students for a successful and smooth transition to roles in high-demand manufacturing, technology and skilled trades jobs,” said Don Hutchison, dean, Engineering and Advanced Technology, Macomb Community College. “The environment is designed to foster educational and training experiences that replicate the synergies of the modern world of work so that our students are immediately ready to contribute when they join the workforce.”
The building’s new design recognizes the seismic shifts that have occurred since 1968 in how work is accomplished, encompassing best practices from industry as well as Macomb faculty input. Classroom and lab spaces of intersecting fields are situated near each other emulating the interconnectedness of modern industry, such as the relationship of robotics to mechatronics, and clay modeling/ digital sculpting to product design. In the same way, faculty from all program areas will be located in one area to facilitate a close working relationship among disciplines. New student spaces have also been incorporated in the renovation to encourage them to gather and engage, supporting development of soft skills such as communication, collaboration and problem-solving, which are so important in the today’s workplace.
The building’s infrastructure is not only designed for current equipment and IT networking needs to connect classrooms and labs, but it also provides flexibility to accommodate future advances in cyber-physical systems that bridge the digital and physical worlds. Upgrades in the building’s environment also replicate modern industrial settings, replacing poorly lit, closed-in areas with bright, inviting spaces featuring windows and natural light, and correcting the imbalance in restrooms that were primarily designated for men.
During the renovation, the programs normally located in the Skilled Trades and Technology Center are being held in other Macomb Community College buildings and in leased space in Clinton Township.
The project’s architects are Hobbs + Black Architects, and Barton Marlow is the construction manager.
About Macomb Community College
Macomb Community College (www.macomb.edu) is one of the nation’s leading community colleges. Macomb nationally ranks in the top two percent in the number of associate degrees awarded by community colleges and is one of the largest grantors of associate degrees in Michigan. The college’s comprehensive educational programming includes pre-collegiate experiences, university transfer and career preparation programs, bachelor-degree completion and graduate degree programs, workforce training, professional education and certification, and continuing education and enrichment opportunities.
Contact: Sean M. Patrick, 586.445.7271, firstname.lastname@example.org