DETROIT, Mich. February 22, 2024 — Through the work of the Southeast Michigan Community Alliance Workforce Intelligence Network (WIN) Health Careers Alliance (HCA) employer led-collaborative and the Advance Michigan Center for Apprenticeship Innovation (AMCAI) team, a registered apprenticeship program for Surgical Technologists has received official approval from the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL).

The Surgical Technologist program is comprehensive as it culminates in an associate degree certification by the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting (NBSTSA), with optional certification in Sterile Processing. Due to changes in the occupation effective January 2023, an associate degree is now required for eligibility of the national certification exam earning the credential of Certified Surgical Technologist (CST).  Southeast Michigan employers are preparing to enroll apprentices who will begin the registered apprenticeship program’s related technical instruction in May-August 2024. Registered apprenticeship programs allow individuals to acquire hands-on experience and related technical instruction while receiving compensation.

“At Henry Ford Health, we are committed to partnering and collaborating to provide innovative ways for the growth and development of the brilliant talent in each of the communities we serve,” expressed Catherine Susko, Director of Talent Strategy and Solutions at Henry Ford Health. “Our partnership with WIN, HCA, and AMCAI on the development of a U.S. Department of Labor Surgical Technologist Registered Apprenticeship provides us the opportunity to support the career growth of new and existing team members as we continue to provide world class patient care.”

The WIN Data and Research team revealed compelling statistics regarding the Surgical Technologist profession. The median advertised salary within the State of Michigan stands impressively at $89,984. Throughout 2023, a total of 3,464 job postings were recorded, averaging 645 postings per month. Moreover, an average of 92 hires were made monthly, reflecting the robust demand for skilled professionals in this field.1 While O*NET Online data concluded, in Michigan, the average Surgical Technologist earns an annual salary of $50,790.2

“The U.S. Department of Labor Apprenticeship Building America grant has empowered WIN and our employer-led collaborative employers to expand registered apprenticeship programs into vital sectors such as healthcare,” stated Michele Economou Ureste, Executive Director of WIN. “Recognizing the pivotal role healthcare professions play for women and people of color, we’re excited to introduce the new Surgical Technology registered apprenticeships. This innovative initiative addresses industry needs but also opens doors for historically underserved communities through the earn-while-you-learn model. We’re proud to be part of this partnership!”

Additional healthcare registered apprenticeship programs in development with HCA employers include Pre-Licensure Registered Nurse (RN), Practical Nurse (LPN), Optician, and Optometric Technician/Assistant. These programs are on schedule to go to the USDOL for approval by July 2024.

“As the healthcare industry embraces registered apprenticeship as a dynamic workforce development strategy, employers are increasingly eager to adopt it,” explained Dr. Jan Karazim, Workforce Program Manager at WIN. “This surge in interest has propelled the growth of our Health Careers Alliance employer membership, with a diverse array of employers now actively involved. Notably, in the latest quarter, ProMedica Health System has joined esteemed institutions like Michigan Medicine, Trinity Health System, Henry Ford Health, McLaren Health System, Corewell Health System, County Medical Care Facilities, and Federally Funded Primary Care Providers in collaborative discussions to explore innovative registered apprenticeship programs.”

For additional information please contact WIN at

1 Data analyzed by WIN Data and Research team from Lightcast
2 O*Net Data:



The SEMCA Workforce Intelligence Network for Southeast Michigan (WIN) is a collaborative effort between ten community colleges and seven Michigan Works! Agencies, in partnership with numerous other organizations, to create a comprehensive and cohesive workforce development organization in southeast Michigan providing employers with the talent they need for success. WIN covers a 19-county area, including Eaton, Genesee, Hillsdale, Huron, Ingham, Jackson, Lapeer, Lenawee, Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, Sanilac, Shiawassee, St. Clair, Tuscola, Washtenaw, and Wayne. WIN convenes the Health Careers (HCA), EV Jobs Academy, One Workforce Industry Infinity, Michigan Alliance for Greater Mobility Advancement (MAGMA), and Advance Michigan Center for Apprenticeship Innovation (AMCAI) For additional information about WIN visit


The Health Careers Alliance for Southeast Michigan (HCA) is an employer-led healthcare collaborative with over 23 employers including regional and multi-state healthcare systems, as well as many urban and rural healthcare employers providing various types and levels of care. HCA employers focus on innovative collaborative strategies to address common workforce demands. One strategy is the establishment of Registered Apprenticeship Programs for several high-demand occupations as a means for employers to advance and retain incumbent workers as well as attract new hires. The HCA is also engaging with K12 Career and Technical Education (CTE) Pre-Apprenticeship Programs to ensure a sustainable workforce pipeline.  HCA is co-facilitated with the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) and the Workforce Intelligence Network (WIN).




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