Meet the Employment Training Specialists

 



Robin Loughrin - Region 1


Hello! My name is Robin Loughrin.  I am a certified Employment Training Specialist and Global Career Development Facilitator. I cover Region 1, which includes those schools located in the northern areas of Kent County.  I have been employed in the Internship program at KTC since its inception 27 years ago. I acquired a Business Management degree at Cornerstone University, and a master's degree in Secondary Special Education and Transition Services at
George Washington University. I enjoy working with young adults and helping them achieve success at their internship training sites. 

I am married, have two adult sons, and a dog named Jaz.  During my spare time, I enjoy walking and reading.  For several years now, my husband, Jim, and I have hosted foreign exchange students in our home. This positive experience and my passion for helping students has encouraged me to become even more involved.  I now act as a coordinator for a non-profit exchange student placement organization, which helps students connect with host families.



Kristie Babbitt - Region 2
 

Hello! My name is Kristie Babbitt. I have worked in education for  27 years, the last 22 of those years at Kent Transition Center.  Prior to working in education, I served in the United States Air Force for 3 years. I am certified as an Employment Training Specialist and Global Career Development Facilitator, and currently cover the Region 2 area, which encompasses all the school districts within the eastern and southeastern portions of Kent County.  Prior to joining our Internship team, I worked in the Discovery Center as an Assessment Technician, and in the Hospitality Program as a Career & Technical Education Specialist. 

I love assisting students at their training sites and have made connections with a multitude of people in the community throughout my years with KTC.  I feel pride in working at KTC because of the staff’s support and overall commitment to meeting the needs of each student. My previous military service, coupled with my experience in working one-on-one with many students has enabled me to easily transfer those skills into my present position and help students achieve success.



Holly Nichols - Region 3


Hello! My name is Holly Nichols and I have worked on the Kent ISD campus as an Employment Training Specialist and Career and Technical Education Specialist for 29 years. I have held my current position in the Internship program for the last 12 years. I spend my days providing on-going support to the intern students and developing training sites in the Region 3 area of Kent County, which encompasses Wyoming, Grandville and Byron Center. I spent my prior years working in the former KTC Manufacturing program and the Electro-Mechanical & HVAC programs at Kent Career Technical Center.

I have an Associate of Arts degree from Grand Rapids Community College, an Associate of Applied Science degree from Ferris State University, and am certified as a Global Career Development Facilitator.  Through the YWCA Jobs Network, I received training in the areas of electrical, carpentry, plumbing, sheet metal fabrication, and mechanical drafting.

In my free time I enjoy camping, fishing, canoeing and spending time with family and friends.



Brenda Brower - Region 4


Hello! My name is Brenda Brower. I joined the Internship team 8 years ago. I am certified as an Employment Training Specialist, and came with four years of similar experience from the Region 1 Transition Program where I ran the Resale store, helped teach life skills and placed students in businesses in the community for work experience. Prior to working in education, I spent 20 years at D & W as a customer service manager and human resources manager and gained experience in store operations, customer service, training, scheduling, evaluating, disciplining employees and staffing the stores.

My favorite thing about the Transition Center is seeing the students growth throughout the school year. The Internship Program is the last stop in high school for these students and it helps them understand what businesses expect from them in the workforce.  We strive to help the students achieve success at their training sites.  

My husband, Scott, and I have three children and six grandsons. I am a dog lover, a University of Michigan football fan, and enjoy exploring Michigan's northern area.