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AT NORTHWESTERN MICHIGAN COLLEGE By Hans W. Van Sumeren, Director of Great Lakes Water Studies Institute, Northwestern Michigan College

Located on the shores of Grand Traverse Bay in Northern Lake Michigan, the Great Lakes Water Studies Institute at Northwestern Michigan College (NMC) is strategically positioned to deliver programmes in areas of marine technology and ROV operations. Traverse City, MI – a long-time Mecca for tourism and water recreation – has now become a leader for comprehensive training and degree programmes across a wide range of water and marine related areas.

Founded in 1951, NMC was the first community college in the State of Michigan. Since then it has built several programmes of national and international recognition, and has been recognised as one of the ”Best for Vets” colleges in the country. Through a series of strategic initiatives and forward thinking approaches, NMC continues to bridge the gap between traditional academic programme offerings and the needs of the marine industries. It does this by offering several signature programmes that have been built around direct industry need and feedback. NMC programmes – accredited by the Higher Learning Commission – align with trends seen in workforce training today, including proactive approaches, competency based training, shorter time cycles, and the application/synthesis of training to real world applications. Before the launch of this latest prospectus of programmes, the college already had a long history of water-related training and academic offerings. This included the founding of the Great Lakes Water Studies Institute (2003) and Great Lakes Maritime Academy (1967). The Great Lakes Maritime Academy (GLMA) is one of seven federally authorised maritime training academies in the United States, and the only one in fresh water. The Great Lakes Water Studies Institute developed the first Freshwater Studies degree in the United States (2009).

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ROV Control Van Mobilized at NMC’s Harbor January 2015. (Courtesy of NMC)


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