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Michigan Energy Workforce Development Consortium Selected by USCCF to pilot talent pipeline management practices

DETROIT, May 11, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The Michigan Energy Workforce Development Consortium has been selected as one of seven regional partners to participate in the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation's Talent Pipeline Management initiative to close the skills gap in America.

The MEWDC is an industry-led partnership of more than 30 representatives of industry, workforce, education, labor and veterans focused on the communication of competency and credentialing requirements for critical, in-demand jobs in the energy industry. DTE Energy and Consumers Energy were instrumental in forming MEWDC in 2008 and are actively supporting the consortium's Talent Management Pipeline Initiative.

"We are thrilled to be one of the few grant recipients from across the country to improve the energy industry talent pipeline in the area of skilled trades," said Tracy DiSanto, co-chair, MEWDC, and manager of workforce planning and analytics at DTE Energy. "This grant will allow us to build a core curriculum to address a fundamental issue – having a highly skilled and diverse workforce that will meet current and future talent needs.

Added Stacy Mowrer, co-chair, MEWDC, and director of learning and development for Consumers Energy: "Consumers Energy is pleased to receive this grant, which will help strengthen our future talent pipeline through expanded school to work partnerships. Bringing in new talent is critical as almost half of our current workforce will retire by 2020. This innovative partnership between Consumers Energy and DTE Energy coupled with funding from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation will help us continue to provide safe and reliable electric and natural gas service to Michigan residents."

Other members of the MEWDC involved in the initiative include: the Center for Energy Workforce Development (CEWD), Detroit Regional Chamber, Lansing Community College, Michigan Department of Education Office of Career and Technical Education, Michigan Energy office, Michigan Workforce Development Agency and Wayne County Community College District.

Through the Talent Pipeline Management initiative, the MEWDC will be part of a learning network that will operate like a new product test team. The MEWDC will support the network by piloting one or more of the following talent pipeline practices: organizing new collaboratives that manage employer engagement; identifying the type and amount of talent needed; determining the competency and credentialing requirements for those positions; identifying where businesses get their best talent today; designating preferred providers and measuring their performance; and incentivizing continuous improvement.

With the USCCF financial and technical assistance investment, the work of the MEWDC and its peer organizations in the learning network will build on the knowledge base outlined in a recently released white paper by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, "Managing the Talent Pipeline: A New Approach to Closing the Skills Gap". Providing support to employers in playing the role of an "end-customer" in a talent supply chain will impart critical insight into what works and what's potentially scalable.

The research and input collected from the learning network will help complete the development of a talent pipeline management toolkit that will be released nationwide in the fall and available to employers to adopt.  To learn more, visit www.thetalentsupplychain.org or the MEWDC website at http://consortia.getintoenergy.com/michigan.

DTE Energy (NYSE: DTE) is a Detroit-based diversified energy company involved in the development and management of energy-related businesses and services nationwide. Its operating units include an electric utility serving 2.1 million customers in Southeastern Michigan and a natural gas utility serving 1.2 million customers in Michigan. The DTE Energy portfolio also includes non-utility energy businesses focused on power and industrial projects, midstream services and energy trading. As one of Michigan's leading corporate citizens, DTE Energy is a force for growth and prosperity in the 450 Michigan communities it serves in a variety of ways, including philanthropy, volunteerism and economic progress. Information about DTE Energy is available at dteenergy.com, twitter.com/dte_energy and facebook.com/dteenergy.

Consumers Energy, Michigan's largest utility, is the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy (NYSE: CMS), providing natural gas and electricity to 6.6 million of the state's 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.

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SOURCE DTE Energy

For further information: Scott Simons, DTE Energy, 313.235.5555; Debra Dodd, Consumers Energy, 517.545.8711