• Professional Development Opportunities

    The CAAT supports and funds academic, general public, and industry outreach education and professional development. This page will list the CAAT’s recent and upcoming professional development efforts for industry. These may include conferences, workshops, and more. If you are interested in professional development for educators, please visit our Professional Development Opportunities for Educators page for educators.

    2019 CAAT Conference Is Electrification the Future

    2019 CAAT Conference
    Is Electrification the Future?

    May 10, 2019

    The 2019 CAAT Conference: Is Electrification the Future?  held the morning of Friday, May 10, at Macomb Community College's south campus in Warren, Michigan reached over 125 attendees who gave it a collective thumbs up.

    Industry and state leaders spoke about the:

    • Automotive industry’s continued focus on and growth of electric vehicles (EVs).
    • Current status of market acceptance of EVs.
    • EV charging network, fast charging, charge rate and range anxiety.
    • MiSTEM Network, the Michigan STEM Advisory Council and the state’s STEM programming that is helping to make the state a world leader in STEM education.
    • Many STEM activities in Michigan that focus on developing skills that will help students gain proficiency in collaboration, questioning, problem-solving, and critical thinking that will better prepare them for the many STEM jobs that are currently and will continue to be available to meet the needs of industry.
    • Michigan Workforce Development Agency’s efforts to work directly with federal, state, and local partners to implement workforce and education programs and develop policies that align with, and support, the state’s key workforce strategies.

    For detailed information about the conference and to download the presentations, please visit our  2019 CAAT Conference web page today!

    The event featured keynote speaker, Jeff Lowinger, President, eMobility, Vehicle Group, Eaton.

    And included presentations by:

    • Megan Schrauben, Executive Director, MiSTEM Network for the State of Michigan
    • Stephanie Beckhorn, Director, Workforce Development Agency, State of Michigan

      Conference Information


    Michigan Society of Professional Engineers, March Chapter
    The Road to Autonomous Vehicles

    March 6, 2019

    March's presentation allowed the attendees to learn about the numerous automated systems currently in cars and what new technology will be added to Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) that improve driver and passenger safety. Connected and autonomous vehicles have 5 levels of ADAS. Some of the benefits form autonomous vehicles are increased safety and road capacity, driver relief to do other tasks, and the removal of constraints for those who are unable to drive. Autonomous vehicles are connected to other vehicles, road infrastructure, mapping systems, traffic, weather, and entertainment. The data generated from all these connections pose cybersecurity issues as well as the potential for vehicle errors from software and weather conditions.

    Robert Feldmaier
    Bob Feldmaier
    Director CAAT

    Mr. Feldmaier is the director of the Center for Advanced Automotive Technology (CAAT) at Macomb Community College. Prior to joining the CAAT in August 2012, Mr. Feldmaier was an independent automotive consultant advising companies such as ABB, ECOtality, and Ducker Worldwide. He also served as a chief engineer at Tesla Motors from October 2008 to July 2009, where he was responsible for Model S.

    Bob retired from Chrysler Corporation in 2008, where he was a chief engineer for 22 years. His responsibilities included total product and program management for his product lines, managing $1.5 billion in program spending. He led the electric vehicle program for three years, creating the EPIC minivan. Later as minivan chief engineer, he led the Stow ’n Go seat program. In his last assignment, he put the first Chrysler hybrid electric vehicles into production. Mr. Feldmaier also worked at Volkswagen for seven years.

    Bob holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University and an MBA from Wayne State University. He is on the Purdue Alumni Association Board of Directors. He is a registered Professional Engineer and a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers.


    2018 CAAT Conference Testing Tomorrow's Autonomous Vehicles Today

    2018 CAAT Conference
    Testing Tomorrow's Autonomous Vehicles Today

    April 20, 2018

    The 2018 CAAT Conference on Testing Tomorrow's Autonomous Vehicles Today! The conference was held the morning of Friday, April 20, at Macomb Community College's south campus in Warren, Michigan. 

    The conference was targeted to automotive industry representatives and secondary and post-secondary automotive educators and administrators. Representatives from automotive-related government and professional organizations were also encouraged to attend.

    For detailed information about the conference and to download the presentations, please visit our  2018 CAAT Conference web page today!

    The event featured keynote speaker, Carla Bailo, President and CEO, Center for Automotive Research, speaking on the Future of Mobility.

    And included presentations on:

    • Testing Autonomous Vehicles
    • Autonomous Vehicle Simulation Testing
    • Impact on the Workforce
    • STEM Activities in Southeast Michigan

      Conference Information


    2017 CAAT Conference
    Driverless Cars, but What is Driving the Workforce?

    April 28, 2017

    2017 CAAT Conference audience and speaker The event featured keynote speaker, Kay Stepper, Vice President, Head of Regional Business Unit Driver Assistance & Automated Driving at Robert Bosch LLC.

    The conference included:

    • Technology updates on connected and automated vehicles, fuel cells, and lightweighting. (Macomb Community College)
    • Workplace Reports from Oakland Workforce Development/Oakland County Michigan Works! and Workforce Intelligence Network (WIN)
    • A panel discussion on workforce needs with representatives from industry and academia
    • Curriculum development updates by Macomb Community College

      Conference Information


    2016 CAAT Conference
    The Road to Autonomous Vehicles

    May 6, 2016

    This FREE event, offered by the Center for Advanced Automotive Technology (CAAT), was held at Macomb Community College's South Campus in Warren, MI, on Friday, May 6, 2016.

    2016 Conference speaker

    Over 140 participants learned about the many complexities involved in the development of automated and connected vehicles, including the infrastructure needed to support these high tech vehicles. There are also many legal, insurance and cybersecurity concerns that must be addressed by the industry and government before full implementation of autonomous (self-driving) vehicles can occur.  The conference included a keynote presentation on the future of the automotive industry by Jeff Klei, President of Continental North America, and three Tech Talk sessions on the Challenges, Infrastructure and Cyber Security of automated and connected vehicles.  Our impressive lineup of Tech Talk speakers and panelists provided insights on these complex issues from industry, government and educator perspectives providing attendees with the information necessary to assess the technical training needs of future workers in advanced automotive technology.

    More information


    Free Technical Briefing presented by Alcoa and the asbe Foundation
    Lightweighting with Aluminum

    Thursday, October 15, 2015, 5:30-8:00 pm
    Oakland Community College
    Auburn Hills Campus (Building G)
    2900 Featherstone Rd.
    Auburn Hills, MI 48326-2845

    Sponsored by the American Society of Body Engineers Foundation (asbe Foundation) with support from the Alcoa Foundation.

    American Society of Body Engineers Foundation

    This event was attended by nearly 50 people, and featured the following presentations:

    Aluminum Sheet - The Lighter Weigh to Meet CAFÉ
      by Shawn J. Murtha, Alcoa Foundation
    Joining the Aluminum Revolution
      by Gregory Fata, Alcoa Foundation

    The presentations highlighted a new Micromill product which is a high strength aluminum with greatly improved manufacturing processes, information on joining technologies, and Alcoa 951, a pre-treatment to improve adhesive bonding.


    2015 CAAT Conference
    Future Cars, Future Workforce

    2015 CAAT Conference a Great Success!

    The CAAT hosted its annual conference this year on May 1, 2015.  We were pleased to have approximately 130 attendees representing 11 States and 2 Countries, 11 universities, 18 community colleges, 9 School Districts, and 25 industry employers.

    2015 CAAT Conference Presentation

    We hope you found this year's CAAT Conference to be both enjoyable and informative! We invite everyone to check out the conference presentations, we have posted all of them on the CAAT website so you can explore the information or share it with a colleague or friend who may find it useful. To view or download the presentations from the 2015 CAAT Conference, please visit our Conference Resources page on the CAAT website.

    Thank you to our conference sponsors for their participation and ongoing support of this annual event.

    Last but certainly not least, we would like to send a very special "thank you" to our conference speakers, who shared a wealth of information with our conference attendees on the current direction of the automotive industry, and the workforce needed to support the many new and emerging advances in automotive technology.

    • Jeff Gilbert, Reporter for WWJ Newsradio 950 and CBS Radio News
    • Robert Healey, Head of EV Infrastructure, BMW NA
    • Matt Smith, Program Manager, Michigan Department of Transportation
    • Kristin Dziczek, Director, Industry and Labor Group, Center for Automotive Research
    More information


    CAAT to Sponsor/Host Michigan Robotics Industry Executive Forum

    Michigan Robotics IndustryThe 2015 Michigan Robotics Industry Executive Forum: Michigan Strengths and Weaknesses for Global Competition in Robotics, will be held on April 7, from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., at Macomb Community College's John Lewis Community Center at it's South Campus in Warren, MI. The event is made possible through a partnership between the National Center for Manufacturing Sciences (NCMS), the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development, and the Center for Advanced Automotive Technology at Macomb Community College. Approximately 100 people are expected to attend.

    Join us to learn about opportunities for Michigan to become a global leader in advanced robotics. The event will feature panel discussions, special guest speakers, and demonstrations of robotics and autonomous vehicle technology. The cost to attend is $25. Breakfast and lunch will be provided.

    View the agenda.


    Free Evening Seminar by the asbe Foundation and the CAAT
    Lightweighting: The Implications for Automotive Design Development

    American Society of Body Engineers FoundationWednesday, October 15, 2014, 5:30-8:00 p.m.
    Macomb Community College
    Center Campus Cultural Center (Building K)
    44575 Garfield Rd.
    Clinton Township, MI 48038-1130

    This event provided networking and technical briefings on two of the automotive industry’s hottest topics: advanced materials and joining technologies.

    * Complimentary hors d’ oeuvres and refreshments were provided by the CAAT * 

    Sponsored by the American Society of Body Engineers Foundation (asbe Foundation) with support from the CAAT.

    This event was attended by nearly 60 people and featured a technical presentation on “Overview of Advanced Materials and Joining Technology” by Mark Stevens of the Center for Automotive Research (CAR) and another by Matt Zaluzec from Ford Motor Company and Jeff Conklin from Vehma International on the “25% Weight Saving Ford Fusion Project.” The technical presentations were followed by a lively question and answer session. A survey completed at the conclusion of the seminar showed that of the seminar attendees who completed the survey:

    • 86% rated the overall seminar as either extremely valuable or very valuable
    • 85% indicated that their knowledge and awareness of lightweighting technologies had increased to a large extent or a very large extent.

    View the presentation materials.


    2014 CAAT Conference
    You Can't See the Future in the Rearview Mirror

    2014 CAAT Conference

    This free conference by the Center for Advanced Automotive Technology (CAAT) was held at Macomb Community College's South Campus on May 2, 2014. The event was targeted towards automotive industry workforce development representatives as well as secondary and postsecondary automotive educators, counselors, and school administrators.

    The conference theme You Can’t See the Future in the Rearview Mirror was inspired by how the rapid pace of change in the automotive industry will continue and, in many ways will accelerate in part due to increasing fuel economy standards and the new technology needed to meet them. This conference examined the coming era for vehicle manufacturers and suppliers and what these changes in technology mean for educating and training the talent needed to support the industry now and in the future. Presentations were provided by representatives from government, industry, and education in a keynote session and technical session.

    To learn more about this conference, visit its page on our website or download the presentations from it in our Resource Library.