MANHATTAN — Nathan Legleiter always wanted a Kansas State University degree, but he needed a way to complete it while living and working in the Great Bend area. He used a special partnership between Barton Community College and the university to complete his bachelor’s degree in general business.
“I was involved in manual labor in construction and roofing for a number of years, and I really wanted to get in a business-related field,” Legleiter said.
Originally from Liebenthal, Legleiter started taking classes through nearby Barton Community College. After his first semester, he heard about a program between Kansas State University and Barton called a 2+2, which would streamline his pathway to a bachelor’s degree.
“After finishing my degree at Barton Community College, I knew I wanted to go on and get my bachelor’s,” Legleiter said. “Plus, this was my chance to finish my dream and call myself an alumnus of K-State.”
Legleiter’s 2+2 pathway is possible through Kansas State University’s partnerships with community colleges in Kansas and several other states. These partnerships allow students to complete the first two years of their education at a local community college and the second two years toward a Kansas State University bachelor’s degree through distance education. A 2+2 degree plan identified which courses Legleiter needed to take from each institution, but his distance advisor played a large role in his success at the university.
“Trusting in my advisor, Rachel Schafer, I knew that I was in the right classes and each semester was getting me one step closer to that end goal,” he said. “She was really on top of things and always pointed me in the right direction.”
While in Great Bend, Legleiter began taking online courses toward his Kansas State University degree. After moving his family to Manhattan for a career opportunity, he continued in the online program, completing coursework around his full-time position at ABC Supply Inc. and time with his family.
“Having that freedom allowed me to work a full-time job and also go to school full time,” Legleiter said.
Since moving to Manhattan, Legleiter and his family have been able to attend on-campus events in addition to activities for distance students.
“We have attended K-State fundraising events this spring including the College of Human Ecology Travel & Dining Auction and the K-State Libraries Gala event,” Legleiter said. “We are proud to give back to K-State.”
Completing his degree in spring 2015, Legleiter’s dream of a Kansas State University degree has become a reality.
“K-State is a great school. I am so proud to be a part of it,” he said.
View a list of all K-State distance education graduates or post them a congratulatory message through the K-State Global Campus Virtual Commencement website at http://www.global.k-state.edu/commencement.