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Jan 15
Mid-Plains Community College releases Dean’s List


The following students qualified for the Dean's List during the 2019 fall term at Mid-Plains Community College. To be eligible, they had to complete 12 or more applicable credit hours of college-level courses and maintain an overall grade point average (GPA) of 3.5 – 3.89 on a 4.0 scale. 

Nebraska 

Bartley - Simon Moore 

Big Springs - Alicia Brown 

Brady - Emery Swan 

Broken Bow - Gabriel Coon 

Cambridge - Eddie Jaeger, Teagan Kennel

Champion - Madison Brown 

Cody - Grace Ford 

Cozad - Kolton Heins, Kaitlyn Kleinknecht 

Culbertson - Alexandria Erickson, Lydia Hagan, Derrek Mintling, Adelina Wilcox 

Curtis - Alexandria Ellermeier 

Danbury - Brett Soderlund 

Gothenburg - Mark Boson, Jordan Lewis, Haley Olsen-Cline, Jeremiah Peterson, Rusty Viter

Grant - Aryn Seiler 

Hayes Center - Ethan Broker 

Imperial – Adelaide Maxwell 

Kearney - Makenzie Kollars 

Lexington - Cesar Venegas-Villezcas, Abbygayle Zerr 

Litchfield - Megan Slocum 

Maxwell - Emily Breinig 

McCook - Brayden Cribbs, Jeffrey Holthus, Beth Hoyt, Emily Ann Jacobs, Kyle Kinne, Adrienne LaBay, Emily Laurie, Dylan Lepper, Julia Lytle, Nicholas Macfee, Trevor Oberg, Rebecca O'Connor, Laurel Schmidt, Bria Noel Simmonds, Danielle Slaby, Elise Stevens, Sydney Stewart, Kaleb Taylor, Sydney Thompson, Kyle Van Pelt 

Mullen - Kaitlyn Crowe, Alysen Daniels, Courtney Rice 

North Platte - Haley Ablard, Emily Anderson, Maria Bergner, Nathan Dowhower, Emilee Gibson, Travis Halligan, Amanda Hanson, Leah Hengen, Caleb Horne, James Keller, McKynzie Kelsey, Madison Kleewein, Keegan Knott, Haiden Kreber, Tatum Lange, Nicholas Lemke, J'Naea Matlock, Maxwell McIntosh, Krystal Meyers, Autumn Miller, Ashleigh Olson, Derek Patterson, Jonathan Perkins, Sarah Phares, Elliott Purdy, Michael Richey, Sabrina Rivera, Kassandra Stahl, Curtis Tagwerker, Chesney Tatman, Gabriel Torrez, Tayler Trotta, Leannah Vasquez, Elizabeth Watson, Riley Wiese, Kade Wroot

Ogallala - Allison Houser, Annaliese Huffman, Madison Mendoza

Omaha - Connor McGonigal 

Ord - Chance Williams, Danielle Wray 

Orleans - Parker Ehrke 

Oxford - Jacinda Vollmer 

Paxton - Amanda Schure 

Sutherland - Makenzie Derr, Bonita Naughtin 

Trenton - Marian Carpenter, Jayda Dwyer 

Tryon - Caleb Goosey

Valentine - Sheyenne Hammond, Emmy Nadeau 

Venango - Bryce Grothman 

Wallace - Bryon Henry 

Whitman - Hannah Phipps 

California 

Long Beach - Paul Murchie 

Colorado 

Delta - KC Carlson 

Denver - Emily Sanborn 

Granby - Kiera Barr 

Holyoke - Rebecca Owens 

Littleton - Joshua Haskins 

Longmont - Grace Morrow 

Milliken - Morganne Brown 

Thornton - Megan Blood-Smyth 

Weldona - Ruby Machado 

Wray - Jeron Lippert, Kedric Tufton 

Yuma - Tania Lerma 

Florida 

St. Petersburg - Emily Joseph 

Indiana 

Gary - Treasure McCrimon 

Maryland 

District Heights - Annalise Radford-Tutt 

Oklahoma 

Norman - Holden Hopkins 

Oregon 

Springfield - Clarke Willis 

Texas 

The Colony - Courtney Murrell 

The Woodlands - Zayne Watson 

Wyoming 

Dayton - Angel Richards 

Turkey 

Naci Akalin 

Spain

Nerea Jarandilla 

Montenegro 

Boris Mugosa 

England 

Niamh Kelshaw 

Canada

Kassandra Orr, Raheim Sullivan 

Australia 

Jayden Bastow, Jaiden Holly 

Puerto Rico 

Melwin Perez, Efrain Ruiz 

Jan 15
Mid-Plains Community College announces President’s List


The following students qualified for the President's List at Mid-Plains Community College during the 2019 fall term. To make the list, each student had to complete 12 or more applicable credit hours in college-level courses and maintain a grade point average (GPA) of 3.9 or greater on a 4.0 scale. 

Nebraska 

Anselmo - Luke Christen 

Brady - Colton Lovitt, Jessica Most 

Broken Bow - Audrey Larson, Mahala Sanchez 

Brule - Justin Candy, Emma Schrotberger 

Cambridge - Alexis Burke, Audrey Paisley, Aubri Ross 

Cozad - Tatiana Orozco 

Elwood - Jaycee Wooters 

Gering - Kelly Snelling 

Hershey - Caje Naranjo 

Imperial - Joel DaMoude, Wayne Musick

Indianola - Dylan Hofman

Kimball - Jacob Walker 

Lexington - Hana Brock, Weston Kunkee 

McCook - Wade Burkert, Kirstin Collicott, Madison Cooper, Deanne Crocker, Stephen Guthrie, Steven Keenportz, Tyler Lytle, Brittanie Nolan, Mary Osborne, Timothy Renner, Chantel Sawyer, Ethan Wilcox, Alexander Wolvin 

Mullen - Jade Lovitt 

North Platte - David Banning, Alyssa Bergeron, Landon Blank, Noel Burrell, Tanner Collins, Micah Daily, Hannah Fitzpatrick, Molly Fitzpatrick, Haeley Folk, Danny Fourtner, Paula Fritz, Blayden Gilbert, Elizabeth Goentzel, Kali Renee Griesfeller, Colleen Griffin, Alessandra Haddan, Rachel Hatch, Matthew Haynes, Dawson Heinzen, Rainah Holm, Sungmoon Kim, Jenny Marie Lim, Elijah Malsbury, Aubyrne McClintock, Cooper McIntosh, Gabrielle Menghini, Duane Miller, Megan Morash, Angel Murphy, Peyton Neff, Peyton Negley, Jade Osborn, Lauren Pell, Dalton Prokop, Shane Roebuck, Bailey Roeder, Tanner Ruda, Amanda Smith, Aurora Storrer, Gary White, Ashtyn Winder, Kyle Zimbelman 

Oconto - Marshall Still 

Ogallala - Joshua Gill, Keegan Parker, Conner Stevens 

Ogallala - Jaedy Commins 

Paxton - Dalton Perlinger 

Sidney - Janay Brauer, Anna Trombetta 

Stapleton - Aspen Sullivan 

Sutherland - Norval Books, Dewey Davis, Erica Hopping, Mikaela Medina 

Thedford - Danya Mintle 

Trenton - Kyleigh Scott 

Venango - Valerie Perez 

Wallace - Austin Hanson 

Colorado 

Ault - Melanie Fye

Broomfield - Megan Hernandez-Belew 

Colorado Springs - Makenna Bodette

Denver - Dehje Belmore

Fleming - Bailey Chintala 

Granada - Austin Jensen 

Holly - Kallie Cathcart, Mercedes Rodriguez 

Nunn - Quinci Johnson 

Snyder - Amber Wolever 

Westminster - Caleb Eiguren 

Yuma - Taylor Hansen 

Florida 

New Port Richey - Katie Cox 

Illinois 

Quincy - Nicholas Wellman 

Kansas 

Bird City - Walker Janicke 

Glade - Trenton Solida 

Oberlin - Tristen Davis 

Minnesota 

Ulen - Brooklyn Spencer 

Oregon 

West Linn - Kaitlin Niswanger 

Texas 

Argyle - Calvashawn Darthard 

Mesquite - Jalyn Reagans 

Utah 

Spanish Fork - Genevieve Hopkinson 

Washington 

Monroe - Aiden Ferry 

Montesano - Cody Lakner 

Wyoming 

Wheatland - Rudolph Zinsser 

Australia 

Mark Zhang 

Germany 

Deniz Sari 

Italy 

Alice Midiri, Tommaso Mostarda 

Poland 

Przemyslaw Zygmunciak 

Serbia 

Danilo Matovic 

Spain

Paula Rosello Mateu, Carla Torrubia Cano 

Ukraine 

Slavomyr Marchenko

Jan 14
Classes begin at MCC; key dates for spring semester


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Spring classes began this week at McCook Community College including classes for these 11 first-time MCC students enrolled in the 12-week Accelerated Paramedic Program. Instructor Joy Molcyk (right) took the students on a tour around campus today. This class is held three times each year with students coming from all over the world to take this accelerated version of the paramedic training which consolidates the didactic training as students attend class 40 hours per week for 12 weeks. This first class of 2020 includes students from California, Nevada, Oregon and Colorado as well as locally.


Spring classes begin this week at McCook Community College and college officials have announced some of the key dates for key events this semester.

The Peter and Dolores Graff Events Center will host four home MCC basketball games this week (Friday 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. and Saturday 2 and 4 p.m.) and one more home game later this month (a women's game Jan 29 at 6 p.m.) In addition to the MCC games, the Events Center will host several other events in the coming weeks including:

Jan. 14: Chase County vs. Southern Valley Basketball.

Jan. 25 – The Mac Attack Youth Basketball Tournament

Jan. 30 – McCook High School Wrestling Invitational

On Feb. 1, The Republican Plains Activities Conference Basketball Finals take place at the Events Center to kick off a busy month with 13 home MCC women and men's basketball games.

Phi Theta Kappa and Phi Beta Lambda will team up for the annual "Blue-Out Night" Feb. 8 during women's and men's basketball games against Central Community College to help raise awareness for children. Last year, more than $600 was raised to help bring awareness for children with disabilities and their families.

The Dick Driml Chili Cookoff – an annual fund-raiser for the MCC Music Department -- is set for Feb. 15 when MCC plays Otero Junior College in a women's doubleheader starting at 2 p.m.

MCC's annual Inter-high Day Scholastic Competition is set for March 11 with area high school students competing for nearly $30,000 in scholarship money in numerous academic categories.

Spring Break is set for March 23-37.

The McCook Art Department's annual high school paint-in art exhibit will be showcased in the Wrightstone Fine Arts Gallery from March 23-April 9. This exhibition includes more than 200 works of art from area high school students and concludes with the annual paint-in competition Thursday, April 9 from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. in the Peter and Dolores Graff Events Center.

Three awards ceremonies are set for April 27 in the Events Center including the Phi Theta Kappa Initiation Ceremony, Honor's Convocation and Athletic Banquet.

Final exams are set for May 3-7 and MCC Commencement will be May 8 at 10 p.m.

Jan 08
North Platte Community College offers CNC Router training

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Ian Smith watches over the work of a CNC router at North Platte Community College. He will teach a class on the use of the machine beginning Jan. 14.

Now anyone interested in machine etching and engraving can learn the process. North Platte Community College is offering CNC Router Construction Training from 6-9 p.m. Tuesdays, Jan. 14-March 3. 

The course will cover the basics of operating a computer numerical control machine, otherwise known as a CNC. The computer-controlled machine can be used to cut designs in everything from wood, plastics and glass to composites, foam, aluminum and steel.

"Whatever you can design on the computer, you can cut out with the CNC," said Ian Smith, class instructor. "Signs, 3-D sculptures, tools, airplane propellers – even desks, the things that can be created with the router are almost limitless." 

Students in his class will learn how to use the designing and control software on the computer and cut out their projects with the CNC. They are required to take a board that is one-inch thick by six-inches wide and four-inches long. Aspen or Poplar wood is preferred. A second one-inch thick board of any type of wood is also required. 

"CNC routers are the future of modern production for woodworking," Smith said. "Cabinets, cutting boards – they are all created with these machines. If you want to make it anywhere doing woodwork, you have to be fast and efficient. This machine allows users to compete with anyone on the market. Knowing how to use a CNC can be a real advantage when it comes to employment." 

The class will also include use of a shaper router, basically a handheld CNC, and a Handibot. Instruction will be completely hands-on and is limited to the first 10 who sign up. 

The fee is $149. Registration can be done online at bceregister.mpcc.edu, by calling 535-3678 or by emailing smeltzerj@mpcc.edu.

Jan 08
Prospective students invited to Visit Day

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Mid-Plains Community College is giving prospective students and their families another opportunity to experience its programs first-hand. 

The college is offering a Visit Day on Jan. 22 to showcase its campuses, offerings and services. Among other things, participants will be able to tour their programs of interest, sit in on a class, meet instructors, join in hands-on projects, learn about the various services MPCC offers and meet new friends through fun activities led by current Mid-Plains students. 

Specialists from a variety of departments will be available to answer questions and provide information about financial aid, housing and credit transfer among many other topics. 

"Visit days are a great opportunity as they offer a different take on the typical campus visit and include several activities students might otherwise have to plan individually," said Mindy Hope, area director of recruiting and admissions. "They provide a more complete perspective on what it's like to be a college student. Visit Days let prospective students experience a lot of what the college has to offer, from academic programs, instructors and potential classmates to student organizations, residence halls and life outside of the classroom. Visitors get a complete view of the college's resources in a single day." 

Anyone thinking about taking college classes is encouraged to attend. Lunch will be provided, and all prospective students will receive a free hoodie. 

Visit Day will be from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in North Platte and McCook. Check in will begin at 9 a.m. 

Another Visit Day is scheduled for Feb. 26. RSVPs for both events are required at https://campus.mpcc.edu/ICS/RSVP/.

Jan 07
From athlete to nurse - Miller finds true calling in health care

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Philip Miller helps a patient celebrate her last chemo treatment at Gothenburg Health. Miller works as a charge nurse at the hospital. 

The sky's the limit when it comes to options in nursing. 

Philip Miller can attest to that. From emergency care to oncology, he has seen and experienced nearly every aspect of the nursing profession. That's one of the reasons he chose it. 

"I like the variety," Miller said. "I never see the same thing twice when I go to work. When you're based along the interstate, you never know what's going to come in." 

Nursing wasn't initially the field he planned to go into. After graduating from Maxwell High School in 1996, Miller headed north to Black Hills State University in Spearfish, S.D. to play football and study athletic training. 

"I had to do an internship in cardiac rehab to finish my degree, and about that time my grandpa had open heart surgery," Miller said. "The internship, along with the nurses who worked on my grandpa, really made an impression on me." 

He didn't continue his pursuit of athletic training after receiving a degree in wellness management in 2001. Instead, Miller moved back home and spent a couple years working on his family's ranch and at an appliance store in North Platte. 

Still, he couldn't get the idea of being a nurse out of his head. 

"I ended up going through the EMT program at Mid-Plains Community College while waiting to get into the nursing program there," Miller said. "EMT training got me that much closer to the medical field and taking classes through Mid-Plains allowed me to keep working and continue my education at the same time." 

He appreciates MPCC for providing him with a well-rounded experience. 

"I was as prepared coming out of MPCC's nursing program as I would have been going to a larger school in Lincoln or somewhere else," Miller said. "I spent a lot less money and still got a good, quality education. The clinicals were conducted at a bigger hospital, and the instructors were great. I felt like Mid-Plains provided a smooth transition into the workforce." 

Philip Miller.jpg

Philip Miller looks over his daughter, three-months-old in 2009, during her hospital stay for open heart surgery.

Miller became a registered nurse in 2006 and was subsequently hired at Gothenburg Health. He worked his way up to trauma care coordinator, and about seven years ago, began filling in as an oncology nurse at the Callahan Cancer Center in North Platte. 

"I wanted to try something out of the box for me," Miller said. "At first, I was just going to do it for a couple of years for the experience. Seven years later, here I am. I enjoy providing that one-on-one care to patients. I really get to know them because I see them at their highs and their lows. It's rewarding to watch them get better." 

That bond with patients is also what he loves about his job at Gothenburg Health. Now serving in a charge nurse capacity, Miller delegates tasks, prepares schedules and monitors admissions and discharges among other responsibilities. 

"Living and working in a small community, I get to know everybody," Miller said. "I get to see them through all chapters of their lives – from birth to death and everything in between." 

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Philip Miller celebrates gymnastic wins with his daughter, Rachel. 

And if he ever gets bored, there are options. 

"There are so many avenues with nursing – from working as a floor nurse or in the emergency room to pursuing a career in pediatrics, obstetrics or a specialty clinic," said Miller. "Wherever you are, one thing stays the same. Patients really do appreciate the care they get, and that's what fills your bucket at the end of the day. I don't think there's another job that's more rewarding."

Jan 07
NPCC to host legendary hypnotist

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Jim Wand

Legendary hypnotist Jim Wand will return to the stage at North Platte Community College Jan. 29. His performance will begin at 7 p.m. in the McDonald-Belton Theater on the NPCC South Campus, 601 W. State Farm Rd.

While the show is free and open to the public, it does consist of mature-rated content, and therefore, is restricted to those 17 and older. IDs will be checked at the door. 

About Wand 

Wand is known as a living legend in the world of hypnosis - thanks in part to his background in psychology, sociology, counseling and neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) coupled with his many years of experience. He's spent the past three decades as a clinician, stage performer, trainer and mentor. 

Wand performs more than 200 shows throughout the U.S. every year. He has worked with eight NFL teams and numerous celebrities including Jay Leno, George Strait, Conan O'Brien, Chris Rock, Jeff Probst, Sylvester Stallone and Michael Jordan. 

Wand was featured on the FOX special, "WOW," on "Judge Joe Brown," and has made numerous appearances on the Discovery Channel, Comedy Central, ABC, NBC and CBS. 

He is a regular at casinos, clubs, colleges and corporate events. More than 95 percent of his bookings are either repeats or referrals. He has performed every year at NPCC for the past several years. 

Jan 06
Leitner retires from NPCC

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Shawn Aten, director of Physical Resources at North Platte Community College, presents Laney Leitner, building maintenance technician, with a plaque in honor of his service to NPCC. Leitner retired Monday after 13 years of service to the college. 

Jan 06
Cub Scouts learn about nature at NPCC STEM Day

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Cub Scouts learn about nature during a STEM Day organized by the North Platte Community College STEM Club on Saturday. Among other things, the Cub Scouts researched animals native to Nebraska then created and presented a poster about the animals to others in their group. 

Ecologist Dan Hitch was one of the experts who spoke to the children. The Cub Scouts were also given a set of binoculars to take home. They used the binoculars to observe animals, including a herd of deer, at the West Central Research and Extension Center in North Platte.

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Dec 20
MCC students take in historic Monet exhibit in Denver



One of the highlights this semester for a dozen McCook Community College students was a field trip to Denver to take in a once in a life-time opportunity to see a select exhibit of Claude Monet works at the Denver Art Museum.

Students were able to see first-hand the familiar ponds, poplars, bridges, boats and water lilies that Monet is known for, but also included many pieces rarely seen, which is why this exhibition has brought thousands of viewers from all over the world in this collection called "Monet: The Truth of Nature."

MCC Art Instructor Rick Johnson said while the students were excited to see Monet's work with their own eyes, he was excited with the scope of the exhibition.

In addition to displaying the handful of Monet works the museum owns, the Denver Art Museum spent the past decade securing more than 100 Monet works including offerings from 80 lenders located in 15 different countries. Top museums contributing include: Paris' Musée d'Orsay, New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and others.

Students attending this trip included: Jayda Dwyer, Lydia Hagen, Megan Blood-Smyth, Hallie Kasten, Skyla Henning, Reecca O'Connor, Kenzie Kollars Hana Brock, Marshall Still, Britney Nolan, Whitney Loos, MCC alum Tatiana Young and Rick Johnson.


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Heather Johnson
Area Communications Specialist

Heather produces and distributes press releases for the college. She began work at MPCC in 2014. Prior to that, she spent five years as the news director/web manager for Eagle Radio in North Platte. From 2009-2014 she worked as a reporter/photographer for The North Platte Telegraph. Heather has a bachelor's degree in journalism from Chadron State College.

Brent L. Cobb
McCook Community College News Bureau Coordinator​