2024 Graduating Class

(L-R) Thomas Zemanek (Bay City Electric Light & Power);Alex McElroy (City of South Haven); Kyle Lockman (Great Lakes Energy); TJ Wodek (Great Lakes Energy); Drew Lovaasen (City of Petoskey); Ben Jones (Great Lakes Energy); Ben Hewitt (Gladstone Dept. of Light & Power); Garett Oetman (Holland Board of Public Works); Blake Melvin (Cloverland Electric Cooperative); Eric Turland (Bay City Electric Light & Power); Cameron Bremer (HomeWorks Tri-County Electric); Devin Whitney (Hart Hydro-Electric); Jared Cece (Cloverland Electric Cooperative); Nicholas Bowman (NLC Instructor); Andrew Kolich (Escanaba Electric Dept.); Brandon Johns (Hillsdale Board of Public Utilities)

As tenured Journeyman Linemen retire, the focus of the Joint Michigan Apprentice Program (JMAP) is to ensure a fresh workforce is highly trained and qualified to fill those steel-toed boots and this past May the most recent cohort joined over 120 other lineworkers as graduates of the program.

“Our team has put together a world class curriculum and program with instructors from Northwest Lineman College (NLC),” said Kacy Wickenhauser, Chief HR Officer at Wolverine. “It was great to hear from guest speakers at graduation come with a cohesive message – safety is paramount.”

The speakers emphasized that no job, project, or deadline is worth cutting corners and that the work apprentices and lineman do may be hazardous at times, but it does not have to be dangerous.

This year’s graduating class included newly certified Journeyman Lineman, Alex McElroy from City of South Haven who just happens to be the son of MECA Safety Director Joe McElroy.

“Every year I look forward to the JMAP graduation. For many graduates, I have known them since they were hired,” said Joe McElroy. “Obviously, it was a special graduation this time around. Proud that Alex has entered the brotherhood.”

Wolverine Director of Safety and Training, as well as JMAP coordinator, Matt Monroe is excited to see the growth and is committed to ensuring the quality of the program doesn’t falter.

“I have a great sense of pride seeing the apprentices graduate and enter the next stage of their careers,” said Monroe. “Not only will they be journeymen, but they are also the future leaders and educators in their field.”