Merrill Institute

About Merrill Institute

Who We Are

The Merrill Institute is a world class manufacturing centric training and education organization in Alma, Michigan, established in 2011. We have the experience and agility to design and develop curriculums which support current and future industry needs.

We provide students the foundation for a successful career, with real world, experiential, project focused training utilizing state-of-the-art machines and equipment to develop the competencies and proficiency required of employers.

The Merrill Institute prepares students who wish to enter the manufacturing industry with the skills and knowledge necessary to meet current industry demands. Our instructors are some of the most talented professionals in the industry who provide real world application, expertise and promote a safe work environment.

How We Were Established

The Merrill Institute was established in October of 2011 within the Merrill Fabricators facility. The demand for skilled welders has become increasingly difficult to obtain. Merrill Fabricators experienced this shortage of skilled tradesmen as business is growing and the need to hire competent workers to keep up with demand is prominent.

Why Choose Us?

The Merrill Institute is a superior choice to students as it provides:

  • Small class sizes
  • Programs that meet individual/business needs
  • Aid to students for realization, achievement and goal follow through
  • Opportunities
  • Established connections
  • Certifications that are widely known
  • Assistance with job placement

The Merrill Institute is dedicated to each student’s academic success. From day one, students are exposed to our "failing is not an option" philosophy. Beyond providing the student with tools, resources and knowledge, instructors at the Institute will personally take time outside of the classroom to assist students who require additional hands-on coaching.

Our "failing is not an option" philosophy is not only implemented in the classroom, but through graduation and into your future. The Merrill Institute not only is devoted to each student successfully completing and graduating our program, we want to see you in a career. Our instructors will work with you to assist in the employment process beyond graduation.

Mission & Values

  • Provide individuals and organizations within the manufacturing industry experiential, project focused training where graduates will be capable of demonstrating the skills, knowledge, and attributes necessary for certification and employment.

  • To be the customer’s first choice for experiential, project focused, skill based training for all phases of manufacturing.

    • Integrity:  Perform in a trustworthy, ethical manner consistent in thought and action, always considering the impact and consequences of decisions and actions.
    • Quality:  Operate with an accurate level of information to implement best practices in line with business standards, requirements and demands. Deliver on our promise of a superior experience.
    • Safety:  Operate safely utilizing PPE, assessing and mitigating risks and hazards, while providing a learning environment focused on preventing incidents and injuries.
    • Respect:  Treat every person and interaction with dignity and consideration; embrace the worth and diversity of others; respect thoughts and opinions of others.
    • Teamwork:  Continually build and maintain strong relationships by partnering with coworkers, students, and clients.  Maintain positive communication while offering experiences, ideas, and solutions.
    • Continuous Improvement:  Function daily as a learning organization committed to providing high impact, innovative, and creative solutions to our business partners, students, and our each other.  Seek out innovative ways to improve processes, tools and technology.



“This has been a most gratifying experience. As you had indicated ‘this will probably be the hardest thing you will do.’ Thanks for my education and I hope to turn this learned skill into my next career choice.” -Ray

“I am extremely thankful of being able to participate in the Merrill Institute of welding! Especially being in the first class! I'm proud to say I've been here for 3 years, still excelling in welding and fabrication, it feels great to finally find a good paying career that I like, without going to college and being in debt thousands of dollars! Jason is a very talented welder and he did an awesome job teaching us welding. Fabing, oxyfuel cutting and brazzing and overall shop safety and craftsmanship! By the 10th week I was laying down vertical ups almost as good as Jason!” -Tyler Brodin

“I consider it an honor to have the privilege to be granted the opportunity to attend Merrill Institute. I am blessed to be taught by the best! Merrill Institute is one of the top ten fabricators in the nation. They have taken what they do best and extended a helping hand in reaching back within our community, providing opportunities for my classmates and I. Merrill Technologies are the true leaders and motivators in my book.” -Melvin Price


“As a business owner, our company, K&W Tool and Machine, invested a lot of time and research into finding a welding program that would best fit our specific needs. Right from the start, Merrill Institute stood out as a leader in their industry, not only in Merrill’s exceptional communication and personal recruitment but also in the state of the art technology they had to offer their students.

I was able to meet with the manager of operations, Jason North, and training assistant, Teri Webster, their professionalism and dedication to the program was evident as they set aside individual time to give us a tour of the facility. They were also able to answer all of my questions and provide me with further information about the level of experience my employees would acquire while attending the Merrill Institute for welding.

The decision was easy after our first visit. They are very selective about who they accept in their program as they are dedicated to the success of their students. The interview process to be accepted lends itself to the prestigious status that the program portrays. It teaches applicants the processes needed to have personal professionalism that they will eventually need as they graduate and enter the workforce, or continue as a leader in their current workplace.

We were lucky enough to have two of our employees selected as Merrill welding students. The training and skill they learned in 12 weeks was astounding. Their own personal confidence was just as important as the talents they took away from the class. Not only did Merrill give them the foundation to become great welders it also taught them valuable personal skills to increase their employability. Our two employees benefited from a small class size as the individualized instruction made it a more intimate and friendly experience and developed a sense of comradery.

Enrolling our employees at the Merrill Institute was a worthy investment for our company and allows K&W Tool and Machine to offer superior services to our customers. As additional testimony, I can add that our company has current plans to enroll another employee in the coming year.”

Joe Kohn
K&W Tool and Machine Inc.
Greenville, Michigan

Granco Clark, Inc. is a worldwide designer and manufacturer of aluminum extrusion equipment. Recently, we have had an increased need to not only produce quality equipment, but also provide our customers with certified welds thus increasing reliability and lowering liability.

With the assistance of the Merrill Institute, Granco Clark is achieving these goals. Merrill Institute through their excellent welding courses, have helped us gain AWS welding certification for our continued success.

Recently, Granco Clark enrolled one of our younger, less experienced employees to Merrill Institute to attend a 12-week welding course. Upon completion of this course Merrill was able to test and certify this employee. This individual not only has been able to make himself more valuable, but with his 6G Certification made possible by Merrill Institute, has helped Granco Clark meet the needs of our customers.

We look forward to a continued, business relationship with Merrill Institute. Many “Thanks” to the staff at Merrill Institute.

Mr. Eric Shaw
Assistant Plant Manager
Granco Clark, Inc.

“We had a guy come to our shop fresh out of the Merrill Institute and he got hired....Morale of the story is this place breeds good welders. End of Story.”

Andy Howe - Legends

“The job fair went great! We hired one of your students and he has done a great job, you can tell he is very knowledgeable in all the different types of welding. Your institute did a great job getting him prepared for the real world work environment.”

Thank you

Lucas Hirshamn - C&S Steel


“Thank you so much for everything. What a fantastic program you offer! I'm not sure if you know this but Andy accepted a position with Burch Tanks yesterday. Thanks to your program he received the right training and exposure to prospective employers. Well done!” -Diane Southwell


I would like to thank you again for all of your positive, professional and warm interaction with myself and my son. You made me feel like I was dealing with a professional business with some class and fortitude.

Josh was so excited, that he called his Dad in Arizona to tell him all about it. He even wanted me to drive around Alma to see what there was in the town “he was going to be staying at for four months!”

For many reasons and avenues YOUR institute can take him and spring board him to something great than he has ever seen for himself. I think that it is a great fit for him. Not that it will be easy, but that he sees something for himself at Merrill Institute. You have been a part of that and I thank you. -Lea Brandon