When the announcement was made recently that Mott Community College in Flint, Mich., was going to shut down its auto body repair and painting program due to dwindling enrollment, protesters turned out in full force at a meeting of the school’s Board of Trustees.
"Our community college is closing the gate, and some students are going to forfeit their opportunities," a 43-year automotive industry veteran told Inside Higher Ed, an online source for news, opinion and jobs for all of higher education.
According to the article, the program only had four graduates over a recent five-year period. Plus, college officials only found six to eight job opportunities at local body shops per year. Finally, the college said most of the students were senior citizens or auto enthusiasts who did not intend to work in the industry.
Inside Higher Ed did point out that not all auto body programs in Michigan are struggling. Washtenaw Community College’s program, for instance, recently received a $17 million facility upgrade.