Gearing up

Manufacturing and Engineering Center set to open fall semester


Matthew Fular, Editor-in-Chief

In October 2019, construction began on the warehouse that would become Schoolcraft’s new Manufacturing and Engineering Center (MEC) located at 13001 Merriman Road, at the corner of Merriman and Glendale in Livonia. As the end of summer 2020 approaches, the MEC building is getting ready to make its debut as a space for hands-on learning for occupational programs.

“The new MEC is strategically located in Livonia’s industrial corridor,” stated Amy Jones, Associate Dean of Occupational Programs at Schoolcraft. “The building is adjacent to the Public Safety Training Complex and is less than a 10-minute drive from the main campus.”

The new building is set to house computer-aided design, biomedical engineering technology (CAD), electronics, manufacturing technology, mechatronics, plastics technology, welding, metallurgy and materials science programs.

The MEC’s 48,000 square-foot space more than doubles that of the previous facility for these programs. It is important to note that the hands-on nature of these courses requires a great deal of space, and the new facility gives them that.

“The new building also houses a 3D printing lab and robotic lab, while greatly increasing hands-on space for welding, manufacturing, plastics technology and material science,” Jones explained. “Courses in Engineering, Quality Management, and Occupational Safety and Health will also be offered at the MEC.”

This new location moves programs closer to businesses that may employ students going through Schoolcraft’s occupational programs, adding to a laundry list of advantages to moving these programs to the MEC. The increased space and learning opportunities are paired nicely alongside the growing employment opportunities.

“The new location should further strengthen partnerships with business and industry. It should also expand Schoolcraft College’s ability to accommodate apprenticeships, dual enrollment and workforce development courses,” Jones stated.

While the building saw some minor delays in progress caused by the pandemic forcing construction to cease in spring, Schoolcraft worked to ensure the facility would be ready to open by Fall once the go-ahead was given to resume renovations. The building is currently on track to finish as originally planned, and the first classes in the new building are to be held in the fall.

“We have several traditional classes scheduled for MEC for fall 2020. These are typically hands-on lab classes, including: welding, manufacturing and CAD,” stated Jones. “Several classes will be offered in a hybrid format, meaning the class meets remotely for a large portion of the class, but does come into the labs for hands-on learning activities. We have reduced seat counts to allow for proper social distancing in all on-campus meetings.”

While the programs like welding and manufacturing will be moving out of the Applied Science building, the space that once housed them is planned to be renovated to house Schoolcraft’s health sciences Pharmacy Tech and EMT programs, among others.

More updates are to come on the expansions in progress at Schoolcraft.

If you would like to know more about the construction projects currently planned at the college, visit