Lakeshore Technical College Among Top 10 Finalists for Bellwether Award





Lakeshore Technical College has been selected from more than 1,000 entries as a top 10 Bellwether Award finalist. This annual award recognizes cutting-edge, trendsetting programs that other colleges around the nation could find worthy of replicating. It is considered one of the most elite awards given to community colleges.

Bellwether Awards are given annually in three categories to colleges with outstanding and innovative programs or practices. LTC is a finalist in the Workforce Development category. Its MicroMatch Upskilling program was nominated by Bay Area Workforce Development Board Executive Director Jim Golembeski.

“Recognition like this shows how we at LTC work to not only identify the needs of employers in our community, but the extensive efforts we put forth to explore new, innovative ways to meet those needs when traditional paths cannot work quickly enough,” says LTC President Dr. Paul Carlsen. “This national recognition is an honor, and well deserved by our team who met a very difficult challenge with their forward-thinking approach.”

The MicroMatch Upskilling program entry will continue going through an extensive review process that will culminate at the Community College Futures Assembly being held in February in San Antonio, Texas. At the assembly, the 10 finalists from each of the three categories will complete the review process by presenting their entries to a panel of judges from around the country. The judges will also give final reviews of all supporting documentation. Winners will be announced at the assembly.

Presenting “Just enough. Just In Time. Just Right: MircroMatch Upskilling” for LTC with Carlsen will be: Vice President of Instruction James Lemerond; Vice President of Outreach Julie Mirecki; Dean of Advanced Manufacturing, Agriculture, Automotive and Energy Sheila Schetter; and LTC District Board of Trustees Chair John Lukas.

The MicroMatch Upskilling program was developed to help fill the increasing need for electro-mechanical technicians. These technicians set up, operate and program robots that are being used at an increasing level by lakeshore area manufacturers who are expanding their use of robotics, automation and artificial intelligence in all aspects of their operations today. LTC partnered with local manufacturers to define the ideal electro-mechanical skill sets for a variety of positions. Aptitude tests were then deployed to existing employees to identify skills gaps. Based on the data and test results, LTC developed short-term training seminars designed to be used independently or stacked to fill the gaps of each individual employee.

Being a Bellwether finalist is just one of the many national recognitions LTC has received in the last 18 months: the Aspen Institute named LTC a top-150 two-year college (for the fourth consecutive time), Forbes ranked LTC the #17 trade school in the nation, ranked LTC #9 in the nation for two-year college educational outcomes, Washington Monthly ranked LTC the #3 two-year college in the nation for adult learners, and the American Association of Community Colleges recognized Dave Saunders as a 2018 Dale P. Parnell Distinguished Faculty.

About Lakeshore Technical College

Each year more than 10,000 people enroll in courses at Lakeshore Technical College. They rely on LTC for job preparation, to earn a degree, upgrade a specialized skill, train as an apprentice, or seek a high school equivalency. LTC faculty and staff meet students where they are in life and help them get one step closer to achieving their goals.<.p>

LTC, a nationally recognized technical college, was recently named a top 10 Bellwether Award finalist. The college was also ranked the #17 trade school in the nation by Forbes, the #3 two-year college in the nation for adult learners by Washington Monthly, #9 in the nation for two-year college educational outcomes by, and a top-150 two-year college for the fourth consecutive time by the Aspen Institute.

Close to 1,000 students graduate from LTC each year, and LTC’s associate degree graduates earn a median salary of $46,800 per year. In addition to the Cleveland campus, LTC serves students in Manitowoc and Sheboygan, and offers classes at four additional sites throughout the district. Visit LTC at

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