Kate Tykocki of the Capital Area Michigan Works said better technology may negatively affect manufacturing employment and the trend is going towards less workers building more cars.
But greater technology in the health care industry leads to more jobs and Tykocki said the demand in Mid-Michigan is huge. "It's estimated by the year 2012 we're going to need about 4,000 new and replacement workers in the health care industry," she said.
And because of this health care can become a driver of the economy. It already surpasses manufacturing employment in the area and some former manufacturing employees are taking advantage of the shift in opportunity by enrolling in local health-related education programs.
But switching careers is not for everyone, nor is it completely necessary. However, fulfilling Michigan's initiative to become a health care center of excellence will determine the growth of the local economy.