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Labor Management Education Committee – Lee Graham, Winter 2021

With fall coming to an end and winter quickly approaching, the New Year is just around the corner.  This year has been challenging to say the least, but that didn’t limit our engagement.  We stayed busy by taking part in a number of events to continue our ongoing relationships and increase our outreach.

National Apprenticeship Week (NAW) is a nationwide celebration that offers leaders in business, labor, education and other critical partners a chance to demonstrate their support for apprenticeship.  NAW also gives apprenticeship sponsors the opportunity to showcase their programs, facilities and apprentices in their community.  The week-long event highlights the benefits of apprenticeship in preparing a highly-skilled workforce to meet the talent needs of employers across diverse industries.

The 7th Annual NAW took place between November 15-21, 2021.  This year, the Michigan Building Trades/MUST Apprenticeship Roadshow hosted an Educator Open House on November 18th at the Operating Engineers 324 Construction Career Center.  The event featured opening remarks and updates from USDOL-OA State Director Russ Davis, Michigan Building & Construction Trades Council Secretary-Treasurer Patrick Devlin, Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity Director Susan Corbin, Operating Engineers 324 Career & Outreach Coordinator John Hartwell, Iron Workers 25 Training Center Assistant Training Coordinator Todd Forman, Bricklayers & Allied Craftworkers Apprentice & Training Coordinator Howard Hipes, Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights State Director of Training Tod Sandy, Michigan Laborers Training & Apprenticeship Institute instructor Daryl Gallant, Sheet Metal Workers Local 80 Training Director Matt O’Rourke, and lastly UA Local 98 Lead Welding Instructor Chris Opalka. The event was a great success, with 100 educators in attendance. Apprenticeship is extremely important to our future, and we would like to thank the journeymen who mentor the apprentices throughout their apprenticeship and shape them for the future. Operating Engineers 324 is proud to be able to participate in the NAW events.

Operating Engineers 324 once again participated in Life Remodeled’s Six Day Project to help revitalization efforts within the city of Detroit.  As part of over 3,800 volunteers from 173 different organizations, we were able to remove blight on 150 different blocks within four square miles of neighborhoods surrounding Durfee Innovation Society.

We are looking forward to our Contractor Roundtables, starting with our Upper Peninsula Roundtable in January. The Roundtables allow us to speak to our contractors directly and get a great feel for what opportunities and challenges the next year will hold.  We will have a lot of progress from the last year to report, so we are excited as ever to get the Roundtables started.

With the New Year, please remember to check your MUST status, and see that you have all safety modules completed. These modules expire every four years, and you should have a “current” status with your drug test.  Check your status by logging on to  MUST is also pleased to announce the new MUST Safety App.  When you get to the “Member Login” screen use your MUST identification number or your Social Security number as your ID and the first four digits of your Social Security number as your password.  You can then check your report card for your status. If you run into any problems, need access to your MUST modules or need a MUST drug screening, please contact the Union office at (248) 451-0324. Please remember that the MUST program does NOT use the Concentra locations for collections.

Wishing you all a happy, healthy New Year.

Lee Graham


Executive Director

Labor-Management Education Committee