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HFCC Gets $100,000 Grant To Expand Biotech, Nanotech Programs

DEARBORN (WWJ) -- Henry Ford Community College's biotechnology program announced a grant of $100,000 from the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan to help HFCC develop a collaborative nanotechnology and microsystems technician training program.

Additionally, this grant represents a partnership between HFCC's biotechnology program, the University of Michigan Lurie Nanofabrication Facility, the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network and the Southwest Center for Microsystem Education. This partnership will help make nanotechnology and microsystems training available for community college students.

HFCC established its biotechnology program in 2009. The program prepares students for jobs in the growing industries of the biotechnology field. This grant will allow HFCC's biotechnology program to implement nanotechnology and microsystems training, thereby providing students with additional career opportunities and additional pathways into high-skills careers.

"Many HFCC students are also considered 'non-traditional' because they are attending college for re-training after having lost their jobs due to the current economic climate in Michigan," said Jolie Stepaniak, director of HFCC's biotechnology program. "This grant provides these students with additional skills that would allow them to return to the workforce and support the growth of nanotechnology-based industries in the region."

Additionally, this grant makes the substantial resources of UM's LNF available to students. It also enlists the expertise of the NNIN and SCME in developing curriculum in nanotechnology and microsystems courses and training HFCC's Biotechnology faculty.

"We are excited about this tremendous opportunity to partner with a highly successful program to create new pathways for HFCC students," said Brandon Lucas, NNIN education coordinator at UM. "Our facility has a rich history of supporting cutting-edge research and development of innovative technologies, which has led to the launch of successful startup companies. By training students to work in an environment focused on innovation, we are confident that they will gain the core knowledge and skills required to secure employment in a variety of industries. Additionally, this partnership will help create the necessary talent pool of technicians that will better position our new startups to thrive and create new jobs in Michigan."

To learn more about HFCC, please visit, or call (800) 585-4322. For more about the Lurie Nanofabrication Facility, please visit

HFCC serves about 18,000 students each fall and winter semester in southeast Michigan. HFCC is dedicated to preparing students for a rapidly changing world and workplace by offering more than 100 associate degree career and university transfer programs. HFCC also specializes in customized workforce development training for business and industry. Since its founding in 1938, HFCC has been the gateway to higher education for thousands of students who seek affordable, high-quality post-secondary education.

The Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan is a permanent community endowment built by gifts from thousands of individuals and organizations committed to the future of southeast Michigan. The foundation supports a wide variety of activities benefiting education, arts and culture, health, human services, community development and civic affairs. Since its inception, the Foundation has distributed more than $600 million through more than 45,000 grants to nonprofit organizations throughout Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Monroe, Washtenaw, St. Clair and Livingston counties. For more information, visit

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