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Alpena Community College apartments open to area first responders

News Photo by Julie Riddle Apartments that usually house college students at Alpena Community College are available for use by hospital staff and paramedics.

ALPENA — Students aren’t using them, so Alpena Community College has offered 16 apartments to people on the front line in the fight against the coronavirus.

Since residential students had to be sent home when colleges statewide began closing in mid-March as a precaution against the spread of the coronavirus, the apartments were available when first responders were looking for alternatives to going to their own homes, ACC President Don MacMaster said.

Keys for 16 bi-level, furnished apartments — with room for four people each — have been given to MidMichigan Medical Center-Alpena and the Alpena Fire Department.

If a hospital worker or paramedic needs the coxnvenience of staying close to their work, or if they are worried about taking possible exposure home to their families, they can stay at the apartments for free, easing a little of their burden, MacMaster said.

The apartments, with four bedrooms upstairs and a living room and kitchen below, are furnished with kitchen supplies and most of the needed items for everyday living.

As of Thursday, nobody was using the apartments, but hospital and fire department workers are welcome to make themselves at home at any time, said Cindy DeRocher, director of campus housing at ACC.

“We want them, of all people, to be safe,” DeRocher said. “They’re out there doing the brave work.”

Julie Riddle can be reached at 989-358-5693, jriddle@thealpenanews.com or on Twitter @jriddleX.

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