November 28, 2014
12:46 pm

Michigan: A Global Engineering Village

What if Michigan were to become a Global Engineering Village?  That's a key driving force behind the Business Leaders for Michigan's (BLM) "Michigan Turnaround Plan."  By attracting engineers from out of state and diligently retaining the talent base that already exists here, the CEO group hopes to grow the state's economy.  The strategy for building a New Michigan now includes a formal business plan for Growing a Global Engineering Village, introduced this week by the group.  

BLM's New Michigan strategy has identified the state's engineering talent as a key asset that could be leveraged to grow our economy into a global engineering village.  The goal is to increase the engineering sector's contributions to the Michigan economy over the next ten years and help the state achieve recognition as a global engineering village with exceptional and plentiful engineering talent.

According to the BLM team, Michigan has more engineers per capita than any other state in the nation.  Complex global problems will continue to require the services of engineers and the state could be uniquely poised to help solve them.

The group is offering up three key recommendations:

  1. Develop a branding and marketing campaign showing that there are many and diverse engineering job opportunities in Michigan.
  2. Develop an engineering-specific component for the Michigan Economic Development Corporation's (MEDC) out-of-state talent attraction program.
  3. Encourage businesses and universities to offer more co-op and internship opportunities as a way to retain engineering talent.

Among the ideas being generated by the BLM business plan are such things as development of an engineering job center listing all engineering vacancies by sector...development and expansion of training programs so our engineers can easily obtain skills to transfer from one sector to another...provision of an incubator facility such as "Robot Garage" in Birmingham, geared to engineers...creation of a social media campaign showing engineers in Michigan working hard and playing hard with brief videos...creation of new events to attract engineering talent and help change the state's image...and an innovation contest "Invented in Michigan" focused on engineers to showcase inventions across the state (modeled after Grand Rapids' ArtPrize for the arts). 

The business group also targets strengthening of Michigan's education system and encouraging students to engage in science, technology, engineering and math careers...specifically engineering.

Michigan ranks in the top five states for the number of engineering firms, engineering patents awarded and engineers per capita.  
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Topics : Business_Finance