BMCC partners with KCC to expand student opportunities in health sciences field

BAY MILLS —  Bay Mills Community College and Kirtland Community College have partnered to provide students with additional opportunities in the health sciences field. Effective Spring 2024, BMCC students that have completed their health science certificate can enter KCC’s Associate of Applied Science degree in surgical technology under a new articulation agreement.

BMCC students will be required to have earned a C or above in their health science coursework to enter the KCC program. In two years, one at BMCC, one at KCC,  students can graduate from KCC’s surgical technology program. Once students graduate from KCC, they will qualify to sit for the National Certification Examination to become a certified surgical technologist.

“We are excited to collaborate with Kirtland Community College on helping our students to earn a degree in surgical technology. It is also beneficial to the local community, as surgical technologists are in high demand in our area,” said Science Department Chair and Faculty member Natalia V. Chugunov, MD.

Surgical technologists work in hospitals, outpatient centers, and doctor offices. Their day is often spent in the operating room, preparing for and assisting with all types of surgeries.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, surgical technologists in Michigan can expect a median annual salary of $52k and their position can expand with additional training and education. Some surgical technologists become first surgical assistants or registered nurses, while others advance by specializing in a particular area of surgery.

The BLS expects the employment of surgical technologists will continue to grow due to advances in medical technology and more operations are being done to treat many types of illnesses and injuries.

“Kirtland Community College is excited about our new surgical technology partnership with Bay Mills Community College.  We welcome future transfer students into our surgical technology program and look forward to training them to be quality members of the operating room team,” said Program Director of Surgical Technology Nicole Claussen, MS, CST, FAST. “Our surgical technology program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and includes hands on clinical training available at many northern Michigan health systems. Students can be assured that they will receive an excellent education for their chosen career.”

The articulation agreement went into effect on Dec. 6. The two schools will review the agreement every two years to either renew or amend the document.

Information regarding the application process for Surgical Technology at KCC can be online at<>. Students interested in starting their studies at BMCC can reach out to Dr. Chugunov by emailing her at<>.

Bay Mills Community College is committed to providing affordable, culturally relevant, accessible, and high quality educational opportunities to all. BMCC is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is committed to providing leadership in the areas of economic and community development for the Bay Mills Indian Community and the Eastern Upper Peninsula. BMCC is located on the southeastern shore of Lake Superior within the Bay Mills Indian Community approximately 17 miles west of Sault Ste. Marie in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. To learn more visit<>.

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