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GVSU embarks on growing Laker Accelerated Talent Link

Grand Valley State University

Grand Valley State University partnered with area employers on a work-and-learning cohort earlier this year focused on workforce development.

Some Grand Valley State University students in their senior year are customizing their learning experience.

“We’re looking at every way we can get our students positioned well in our local employers job market.”

GVSU President Philomena V. Mantella says the goal of the Laker Accelerated Talent Link is increasing West Michigan’s talent base.

The university has secured partnerships with five area employers: Acrisure, Amway, Cascade Engineering, Corewell Health and Michigan Software Labs.

“So, together the employers invest with us in that year upfront. The student goes through this very integrated work and learning program and then makes a one-year commitment and the end of it to continue on with that employer.”

In February, the program began with 25 students, the university seeks to expand to more than 100.

“And we’re now going to open it up for other employers to participate and we’re going to add some more certificates that we believe our employers would like to see. But one of the things we’ll also do is test, is this what’s most helpful to you and your businesses?”

LATL participating students can earn a certificate in an area related to business or technology. The partnering employer offers scholarship support. When the student completes the program and graduates, the employer makes a job offer.

Patrick joined WGVU Public Media in December, 2008 after eight years of investigative reporting at Grand Rapids' WOOD-TV8 and three years at WYTV News Channel 33 in Youngstown, Ohio. As News and Public Affairs Director, Patrick manages our daily radio news operation and public interest television programming. An award-winning reporter, Patrick has won multiple Michigan Associated Press Best Reporter/Anchor awards and is a three-time Academy of Television Arts & Sciences EMMY Award winner with 14 nominations.