LIFT Reports Michigan Lightweighting-Related Employment Level Grows for Eighth Consecutive Year


Detroit-based LIFT, Lightweight Innovations for Tomorrow, today released a report announcing that 2017 marks the eighth consecutive year of advanced manufacturing employment growth in Michigan.

In the new report, LIFT says in 2017 advanced manufacturing in Michigan saw the highest employment levels since 2006, with nearly 700,000 Michigan workers employed. This comes in conjunction with employer demand for lightweighting-related skills in Michigan increasing since Q1 2013 by 37 percent, with more than 27,000 online job postings.

“As employment in the state and across the region surpasses pre-recession levels and continues to reach new heights, we remain committed to working with manufacturers here and across our network to provide opportunities for students and incumbent workers to learn the skills necessary to drive our country’s advanced manufacturing success and long-term sustainability,” says Emily DeRocco, education and workforce director of LIFT.

Quarterly and annual reports, which focus on employment trends, top jobs, and required skills in advanced manufacturing, are produced using research and analysis from the Workforce Intelligence Network of Southeast Michigan (WIN) and also from Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee, as more than 50 percent of metalworking jobs in the country are based in this region.

The top in-demand lightweighting-related occupations in Michigan in 2017 were maintenance and repair workers, with 15,701 postings; laborers and freight, stock, and material movers, with 11,519 postings; mechanical engineers with 8,107 postings; electrical engineers with 7,311 postings; and production workers with 6,404 postings.

LIFT is a public-private partnership located in Detroit’s Corktown district that develops and deploys advanced lightweight metal manufacturing technologies and implements education and training programs to better prepare the workforce today and in the future.

It is operated by the American Lightweight Materials Manufacturing Innovation Institute (ALMMII) and is one of the founding Manufacturing USA institutes. LIFT is funded in part by the Department of Defense with management through the Office of Naval Research.

The Workforce Intelligence Network of Southeast Michigan (WIN) is a collaborative effort between nine community colleges, six Michigan Works Agencies, and other organizations to create a comprehensive and cohesive workforce development system in southeast Michigan.

WIN covers a 16-county area that includes Genesee, Hillsdale, Huron, Jackson, Lapeer, Lenawee, Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, Sanilac, Shiawassee, St. Clair, Tuscola, Washtenaw, and Wayne counties. WIN was founded with the support of the New Economy Initiative for Southeast Michigan and publicly launched in November 2011.

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