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Grand Valley joins statewide partnership to support automated vehicle technology

  • A photo of leaders from universities in Michigan.
  • A photo of Haas with Gov. Rick Snyder.

Posted on October 16, 2017

Grand Valley State University has joined a statewide partnership that focuses on training the next generation of high-tech talent who will work to advance automated vehicle technology. The partnership is led by the American Center for Mobility (ACM), a nonprofit testing and product development facility focused on new mobility technologies. 

Grand Valley President Thomas J. Haas joined leaders from 14 universities across the state October 16 in Ypsilanti to sign a Memorandum of Understanding. The first-of-its-kind collaboration will include research and training opportunities for students to work at ACM's new facility in southeast Michigan. 

"Developing and retaining talent in Michigan is crucial for the viability of our state,” Haas said. “This new partnership provides educational and research opportunities for student success and faculty collaborations, while serving as a pathway to support the expanding automotive industry." 

Members of the Academic Consortium at ACM will work together to identify courses and training programs, as well as internship and co-op opportunities. Grand Valley students majoring in engineering and computer science will have the opportunity to work with ACM through research and co-op experiences. 

Wael Mokhtar, associate professor and director of the School of Engineering, will lead Grand Valley's academic involvement in the consortium. 

"Participating in the consortium is a natural fit for Grand Valley," Mokhtar said. "The university has a strong tradition of collaboration with industry and other universities, and we look forward to working with ACM to provide additional industry experience for our students."

Gov. Rick Snyder joined ACM and academic leaders to celebrate the formation of the consortium. 

“As the automotive industry continues to evolve, it’s critical for Michigan’s economy and our future that we have the best workforce possible to continue leading this reinvention,” Snyder said. “The Academic Consortium at the American Center for Mobility represents the exact convergence of talent and education necessary to keep Michigan at the forefront of the automated vehicle movement.”

ACM is one of 10 U.S. Department of Transportation designated Automated Vehicle Proving Grounds in the U.S. ACM is also part of PlanetM, a collaborative that represents Michigan’s unique and vast ecosystem, connecting resources and opportunities for its consortium of members.

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