■ Editor’s note: This is one of a series of stories concerning students utilizing the Imperial campus of Mid-Plains Community College to obtain a degree and further their education.
By Carolyn Lee
The Imperial Republican
Janiel Kimble is less than a year away from obtaining a four-year degree in Business Administration. It has taken a lot of time, and in some ways more than four years, to reach that goal.
Kimble, 24, is attending Bellevue College through Mid-Plains Community College’s Imperial campus. She plans to receive her Bachelor’s degree next November.
A 2006 graduate of Yuma (Colo.) High School, she first spent a year at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, followed by a year at Hannibal LaGrange in Missouri.
She began taking classes through Mid-Plains in the fall of 2006, completing her Associate’s degree in Business Administration. Then, she began intensive studies through Bellevue College.
All classes are taken through distance learning. That’s an interactive class over a television screen. The instructor appears to students in different towns, and they are able to talk with her/him and other students.
Kimble spends four hours every Wednesday night at the Imperial campus, along with three students in North Platte and four in McCook.
The hard part about distance learning, she said, is that the students have group projects, and the other students are in different towns.
Kimble takes one class every four weeks. It’s concentrated and intense, but she likes it that way.
“I like the four-week class because about the time the class is over, I’m ready for the next one.” Her current class is in marketing.
Kimble said she’s the first person from Imperial to take advantage of the Bellevue College Bachelor’s program through Mid-Plains. The program was initiated last summer.
She originally was going to have to travel to McCook every Wednesday night. However, Imperial MPCC Campus Coordinator Brenda Ledall arranged for her to take the course through distance learning.
Kimble said her classes have helped her in her position as Deputy City Clerk.
“I know why I’m doing things rather than just how to do them,” she commented.
Kimble handles bank statements, billing, the Southwest Nebraska Solid Waste Management and city airport business, and assists customers.
She has held that position for one year.
Kimble’s goal is to obtain her Master’s degree. However, she’s working towards her Bachelor’s degree “for me, not for anything else. I just want to further my education.”
Husband Lance is very supportive of her effort, she noted.
Kimble said taking classes through Mid-Plains and Bellevue College is perfect for her because she can work full-time and live at home.
She would encourage everyone to take advantage of the college opportunity. “It’s here to help us. You couldn’t ask for anything more in a small town,” she said.