On Nov. 5, we have an opportunity to vote for the Capital Improvement Millage Renewal for Bay de Noc Community College, Escanaba Campus. I attended "Bay" back in 1967 when it was located in the old St. Francis Hospital building and it has grown exponentially since then. Since it's founding 50 years ago, almost 150,000 students have been in attendance and have gone on to successful careers in early childhood care and education, nursing, teaching, welding, auto mechanics, accounting and law enforcement, just to name a very few.
As a Red Cross Disaster Action Team member, I was able to attend a meeting of the Delta County Local Emergency Preparedness Committee last year. This committee consists of representatives from the Michigan State Police, St. Francis Hospital, Escanaba and Gladstone Public Safety, Rampart Ambulance, the Salvation Army and other agencies called into action when an emergency presents itself. Tim Kobasic of Rampart EMS informed us our community was nearing a critical shortage of emergency medical personnel for their ambulance service. Well, Bay has stepped up to the plate and is planning to add a Paramedic Program, which will be a huge benefit for this invaluable service to our communities. With over 8,000 of Bay's graduates living and working in Escanaba, Gladstone, Marquette, Munising, Iron Mountain, Manistique, Menominee and all points in between, we all gain from their knowledge and expertise on a daily basis.
Last month, the Washington Monthly Magazine in Washington, DC, released their 2013 Community College Rankings. It ranked Bay College as the 30th in the country. Moreover, it is the only community college listed in Michigan. Congratulations to all of them and to all of us as well, who have supported Bay College for the past 50 years. Will you join me in voting yes for the millage renewal? As you can see, it's a win-win for everyone.