Bay College gets ready for start of fall semester

Jordan Beck | Daily Press Bay College student worker Jacinta Gesperich cleans windows in the college’s cafeteria Thursday. Efforts to prepare for Bay’s fall 2019 semester, which will start Monday, are underway.

ESCANABA — Efforts to prepare for Bay College’s fall 2019 semester, which will start Monday, are underway. Bay College President Laura Coleman spoke about some of the changes Bay students can expect to see in the upcoming semester.

As of this week, Coleman said all of the college’s employees are present at Bay and getting ready for the fall 2019 semester.

“It’s always wonderful to have everybody back on campus,” she said.

Student athletes have also been preparing for the college’s next semester.

“Our athletes are moved into their apartments and are on campus going through all of the training … and things they need to go through,” Coleman said.

New and returning Bay students will start classes next week.

“We’ll welcome all of our students back in the classroom on Monday, and we’re very excited about that,” Coleman said.

She noted that, for the first few days of school, members of Bay’s administration will be stationed in hallways to help guide students to their classes.

According to Coleman, one of the most significant changes coming to Bay for the fall 2019 semester is the official introduction of co-advisors.

“We have all of our co-advisors in place … giving students a specific person to check in with periodically,” she said.

A “pilot” of the co-advisor program took place during the winter 2019 semester. Coleman said the pilot was a success.

“We had more persistence and fewer withdrawals in (classes) and better grades,” she said.

She also said that, in focus groups, participating students said they felt having a co-advisor was “extremely helpful.”

Bay is working with Michigan State University to introduce a new program in the fall 2019 semester.

“We have an agricultural technology program that’s starting in a partnership that we have with MSU,” Coleman said.

Aside from this, Coleman said work on Bay’s athletic addition to the Northern Lights YMCA building — where the college’s gymnasium facility is located — is continuing.

“The athletic department will be moving into the new locker room space that was funded by the Hannahville tribe,” she said.

According to Coleman, no timeframe is in place for the move. However, she said it is likely to take place in mid-September.

Coleman went on to say the work was impacted by the large number of construction projects taking place in the Upper Peninsula this summer.

“The construction workers have been very busy, and it took a little longer than anticipated,” she said.

Some services provided by Bay have moved to a new space on campus, as well.

“The food pantry and the career closet are moved over … between the cafeteria and the bookstore,” Coleman said.

The move took place last week.

Additionally, a large checkmark-shaped sculpture will be installed in Bay’s courtyard soon.

“That’s coming in in the next few weeks,” Coleman said.

Coleman said she and others at Bay are eagerly anticipating the fall 2019 semester.

“We’re just excited to get the semester started and (looking) forward to a great year,” she said.