Janet Ravell was the first nursing student to transfer her credits to Montcalm Community College from another institution.
In 1956, she married George Ravell and they started their family. Five years later, she attended Jacksonville Duval County Nursing Hospital in Jacksonville, Fla. When her husband got a new job, they returned to their family farm in Howard City and she transferred her college credits to MCC in January 1967.
“MCC’s instructors were patient and exceptional, which was proven in our high state board test results. We were all on a learning curve because we were the first ones to go through the new nursing program,” she says.
Ravell earned her Certificate in Practical Nursing in 1967.
“MCC gave me confidence, which I was a little short on. I could not have accomplished what I did without my husband and children. We were accountable to one another; they had to show me their grades and I had to show them mine,” she says.
After graduating from MCC, she was the first student from MCC to work at Edmore Community Hospital, which is now Edmore Care, a local physician’s office. She used her one year at Edmore Community Hospital to gain first-hand knowledge and work experience.
“Dr. Becker and Mrs. Sinclair were very helpful, and they were kind to allow me to come on board,” she says.
Her next work assignment was at Kelsey Memorial Hospital in Lakeview.
“Kelsey Memorial Hospital is an ideal hospital. The patients were kind and they treated me well. The housekeeping did such a great job that you could eat off the floor. The food was good and the doctors were exceptional. It was a wonderful learning experience,” she says.
In 1970, Ravell was trained by Dr. James Draper in Lakeview to be a dental assistant. She became a registered and certified dental assistant in 1975.
“Dr. Draper really was a teacher; he taught me every day. He told me what he was doing and why he was doing it, and we taught each other,” she says.
Ravell continued her dental assistant career as a faculty instructor at Ferris State University. She taught for 19 years and took classes of her own, earning her bachelor’s degree in education in 1984. She even traveled to the University of Madrid to survey dental auxiliaries.
“Success means that you’re happy to go to work every day. A job is a blessing that helps you meet your financial demands, no matter what that is,” she says.
Now Ravell is retired, but she continues to travel with her husband.
“We have so many lovely connections with MCC. My husband, George, graduated from the industrial technology program. Our daughter-in-law, Carol Deuling-Ravell, is a current member of the MCC Board of Trustees. MCC has done so much for us, let alone our kids,” she says. “I recommend it for students who aren’t ready to jump into a four-year college to get their feet wet and find out what they really do want and to gain some experience.”
Ravell resides in Howard City with her husband, George. They have five children, seven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.