ANN ARBOR, MI (August 7, 2017) – A recent study stated that the year-round training programs operated by The United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipefitting Industry (UA), including the annual Instructor Training Program (ITP), generated $7.6 million in economic impact for Washtenaw County in 2016.

The Washtenaw County Convention and Visitors Bureau (WCCVB) commissioned Anderson Economic Group, LLC (AEG) to complete the report, The Economic Impact of the United Association in the Ann Arbor Area. The study analyzed the economic impact of UA activities in the Ann Arbor area, including the annual ITP and year-round courses, both of which are conducted at the Great Lakes Regional Training Center (GLRTC) on the Washtenaw Community College campus.

The 64th UA Annual Instructor Training Program returns to Ann Arbor August 12-18, marking the 28th Instructor Training Program in Washtenaw County in partnership with WCC. “Every year, around 2,400 instructors, master instructors, industry partners and vendors attend and participate in our week-long program at Washtenaw Community College,” said the UA’s General President Mark McManus. “It is great to see the magnitude of the UA’s presence in Ann Arbor through this impact study. We take immense pride knowing that while we are investing in the future of our industry through training instructors who will teach new generations of highly skilled piping professionals, we are also giving back to the community that hosts us not only during the ITP event but throughout the year as well.”

Since 1990, Washtenaw Community College has hosted the ITP and in 2003, the GLRTC became the premier UA training facility, offering amenities tailored to industrial training including hands-on labs and workshops in everything from welding to rigging to heating and air conditioning. “As a result of our long-standing partnership with the UA, thousands of instructors have taught their peers the required knowledge needed to acquire jobs in a skilled trades profession,” said Washtenaw Community College President Dr. Rose B. Bellanca. “Our shared investment will help bridge the skilled trades gap currently affecting the country and assure a workforce that is job ready and one that meets the needs of business and industry.”

Washtenaw County resident and Local 190 Business Manager Kevin Groeb stresses the value of training, “The commitment from UA leadership to provide training plays a vital role in developing a career in the plumbing and mechanical construction industry. No other organization in the country commits so many resources ensuring its members are highly skilled, which allows us to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to worker safety, methods of installation, and becoming familiar with new products and materials.”

To welcome the group, the WCCVB will coordinate the “Rock Around the Block” community block party on Monday, August 14 from 6-10 p.m. on S. Main Street in downtown Ann Arbor, with a street closure between William and Huron. The block party will feature live music by The Milwaukee Tool Shed Band and outdoor dining at Main Street restaurants.

“Summers in Washtenaw County are packed with events — and welcoming the return of the UA to the area is truly a highlight,” said Mary Kerr, Washtenaw County Convention and Visitors Bureau President and CEO. “The relationship that’s developed between the UA, WCC, and the community over the past 28 years speaks volumes — it represents a value that extends beyond the significant economic impact of hosting the Instructor Training Program and has become a partnership built on camaraderie and a commitment to education.”

This year also marks the sixth annual UA 5K Run and Pub Crawl, benefiting the Semper Fi Fund, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, and its program America's Fund. The proceeds will help provide immediate financial assistance and lifetime support for wounded, critically-ill and injured members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families. Since the inaugural event in 2012, the UA has raised more than $250,000 for the Semper Fi Fund.

Members of the community are invited to join the 5K and/or the pub crawl by registering online at www.uapprun5K.com.

The United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the United States and Canada (UA) is a professional association for plumbing, pipe fitting, sprinkler fitting and heating, cooling and refrigeration professionals.

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The Washtenaw County Convention and Visitors Bureau is a 501 (c)6 not-for-profit organization whose purpose is to enhance the economy of Washtenaw County through promotion of the area as a destination for overnight and day visitors. VisitAnnArbor.org and ypsireal.com are complementary resources for visitors as they discover the greater Ann Arbor area.

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