ESCANABA, Mich. (WZMQ) – Tuesday afternoon, Bay College hosted an event for those pursuing a career in healthcare.
The Health Career and College Fair featured 32 organizations from around the Upper Peninsula and Northeastern Wisconsin. The fair was designed for students working toward a degree or certificate in allied healthcare, as well as community members looking for a career change.
“The employers here are also looking for non-clinical roles,” explained Jennifer Farnsworth, Bay College Allied Health faculty member. “Maintenance, dietary, and secretarial positions are also available.”
According to Upper Peninsula Michigan Works!, there are currently more than 800 healthcare jobs unfilled in the U.P.
“We have a lot of healthcare providers, and all of those places are really crying out for workers,” said Upper Peninsula Michigan Works! talent services manager Megan Boddy. “It’s not only those hospital and clinic situations either. There’s also long-term care facilities that are in need of everything from environmental workers all the way up to nurses.”
Boddy cites several reasons for the shortage of healthcare workers.
“People are getting older; they’re retiring from work,” she said. “There are still some COVID concerns, and then also there’s just not enough people getting back into the healthcare industry.”
The goal of Bay College’s Health Career and College Fair is to equip students to fill as many of those vacancies as possible.
“It brings all of our healthcare organizations to one location so those that are seeking employment can come to that one location and see what kind of jobs are available,” said Farnsworth.
The fair was the first event of its kind Bay College has hosted since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Farnsworth says the college plans to continue the Health Career and College Fair annually. She also hopes to start a similar event at Bay College’s west campus in Iron Mountain.