Michigan Mobility Institute and Wayne State University announce development of advanced mobility curriculum
Technology leadership, historic Detroit presence, connection to community, and shared vision to create the mobility workforce of the future key factors in decision
The Michigan Mobility Institute announced Wayne State University’s College of Engineering as its inaugural education partner to develop the world’s first advanced mobility educational curriculum. Over the coming months, the organizations will begin development of programming that will power new mobility careers in Detroit and around the globe.
“We’ve always envisioned that partnerships would be the best way to deliver on the Institute’s mission,” said Jessica Robinson, executive director of the Michigan Mobility Institute. “In bringing industry and academia together, we can accelerate workforce development, upskilling programs, and post-secondary degrees. From our first meeting, it was immediately clear that Dean Fotouhi thought differently about how to meet students’ needs for technology-based careers. We’ve been thrilled to get to know some of his professors and students and see strong alignment with our vision of a multi-disciplinary approach.”
In January, the Boston Consulting Group and the Detroit Mobility Lab, the Institute’s sister organization, found that the national demand for engineering graduates with required skills for mobility careers could be up to six times greater than expected supply. Autonomous driving, connectivity, and electrification will help create more than 100,000 industry jobs in the next decade, including up to 30,000 jobs for engineers with degrees based in computer-related subjects.
“I could not be more excited to partner with the Michigan Mobility Institute,” said Farshad Fotouhi, dean of the Wayne State College of Engineering and professor of computer science. “Together we are poised to create something very special as we embark on a shared mission to create the premiere institution focused on educating the mobility engineer of the future.” The College of Engineering today offers a graduate certificate in cyber-physical systems, a program in electric-drive vehicle engineering, and a newly developed M.S. in data science and business analytics.
“The College of Engineering is one of Wayne State University’s many outstanding schools and colleges. The Michigan Mobility Institute represents an ideal partner for the outstanding faculty and students in the college to contribute to the future of mobility for the city, the state, and the nation,” added Keith Whitfield, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs.
Collaboration with Wayne State represents the chance to bring mobility education to a diverse learning and business community and build a world-leading institute in the city of Detroit. Wayne State’s Midtown campus is directly accessible by transit from Detroit neighborhoods and has quick access to numerous employer sites throughout southeast Michigan. It is one of only six public universities in the U.S. to have received the highest Carnegie Foundation ratings for both research intensiveness and community engagement.
“For the past 100 years, Detroit has been a home for mobility innovation. This partnership holds tremendous promise to extend our region’s dominance on this front into the 21st century and beyond,” said Kim Trent, chair of the Wayne State Board of Governors. “I couldn’t be more thrilled that the futurists behind the Detroit Mobility Lab and the Michigan Mobility Institute have chosen Wayne State as their partner. This Institute will make our university a world leading center for cutting-edge thinking and leadership for this critically important emerging sector.”
Commenting on the development of the Michigan Mobility Institute, Chris Thomas, president and co-founder of the Detroit Mobility Lab, added, “We’ve come so far in less than a year since the initial announcement of our effort to understand mobility talent needs in Detroit and around the globe. The interest and engagement we’re seeing from employers and educators domestically and internationally strongly validates there is a shared understanding of the urgency of coming together. Now is the time for leadership, and we feel privileged to be at the forefront of equipping the mobility engineer of the future with the tools to build and win.”