Holiday Greetings,

As many of us gather with family and friends during the holidays, it is a reminder that we are not meant to go through life alone. I was blessed this early December with my first grandchild, and I’m further reminded that each of us is born watching, listening, and observing others using all of our senses. A good amount of curiosity, watching, and listening can help us learn more quickly, be more innovative, and avoid the missteps that others have experienced.

This approach to shared learning is also true of our community of learners here in northern Michigan. In December 2007, a group of organizations got together to begin the Northern Michigan Lean Learning Consortium of which many of you are members. Now starting its tenth year, there are over 54 companies and 125+ active participants who come together to learn through curiosity, listening, observing, asking questions, sharing best practices, and generally having thought provoking conversations. For the past year, our expanding group has had two events per month in different locations in order to accommodate travel distances and provide more topic options. In early December, we had a consortium-wide event at Shanty Creek Resorts, which despite the weather, was well attended and a lot of networking took place. In 2017 we are looking forward to adding a third event option for our growing family of learners.

I’m particularly proud of our consortium because it builds bonds and relationships between individuals and organizations which is at the heart of building strong communities. Membership is easily affordable, and members are very accessible, interested in sharing, and curious which makes the Consortium an ideal place for people who love to learn.

Our staff at NMC Training Services and the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center has nurtured this approach to learning beyond our immediate region. We do this through affiliations and partnerships with the five Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center offices (LINK TO VIDEO) as well as through our reciprocal agreement with the Michigan Lean Consortium.

You and the organizations you work for make our communities stronger, and the staff at NMC Training Services and the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center are here to contribute to your individual and collective growth. May you have a healthy, safe, and prosperous new year.


Richard Wolin, Director of Training, Northwestern Michigan College

Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center-Northern Lower.
1701 East Front Street, Traverse City, MI 49686
231-995-2003, Office

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