Kati Morgan

Focused on Success

Kati Morgan enrolled in NEMCC’s Adult Education program in 2019 after dropping out of high school a few years earlier due to unforeseen circumstances.

In October 2019, she earned her high-school-equivalency diploma. College and Career Navigator Charlie Smart worked to help her enroll in college for the following semester, but it didn’t work out.

“She was working both a full-time and a part-time job, in addition to being a single mother, and she just didn’t have the time,” Smart said. “I always stress to students the importance of training as a way to a better life, but Kati had two jobs and two kids. She wanted to get started with college, she understood the importance and was excited about it, but in the end, she just had to wait.”

A couple of months later, a phone call gave Smart the opening he needed.

“I called her about a completely different matter, and she mentioned that she thought she was ready to enroll for the fall semester. Her part-time job had become her full-time job, and she had left the other job, so it seemed like the perfect time to enroll and work toward her goal of creating a better life for her and her family by going to college. She felt that maybe the time was right.”

After meeting with Smart to complete the enrollment steps, Morgan was introduced to Taylor Johnson, MIBEST program coordinator.

“Kati is such a great student,” said Johnson. “She wanted to go to college, but still had a few doubts as she had never been enrolled in college. We discussed the MIBEST program and the student support that was offered through the program.” “Although she had the extra time to enroll in classes,” Johnson continues, “she was worried that she would overwhelm herself by taking on too much. She said that the MIBEST program seemed perfect for her as she took the next step in achieving her dream. When I asked her what she wanted to be doing in 5 years, she mentioned going back and furthering her education even more. She is very driven. We are lucky to have her as a student.”

The week before classes started, Kati began to second guess herself again. She felt that the classes might be too much, and would interfere with her work.

“I asked her to meet with me and scheduled a Zoom meeting with her advisor at NEMCC,” Johnson said. “She was considering taking seated and online courses, but she was unsure of how to do this. She was almost in tears before we met with her advisor. She was discouraged, but I explained to her that we are all in this together. We discussed the team-teaching aspect of MIBEST and that she would have full access to the MIBEST study hall. We met with her advisor, discussed the schedule changes, and the opportunity to take most of her classes through hybrid courses.”

Morgan felt like a weight was lifted from her shoulders. She was excited to begin the fall semester and knew that with the help from the MIBEST program, she would succeed.

“Taylor and Charlie have given me a lot of guidance, and the MIBEST program gives me the support I need,” Morgan said. “They are the only reason I am in college today. Without them, I would have given up and never pursued it. Getting my diploma helped give me the courage to go to college. I am determined to succeed.”

Kati is now in her fourth week of classes at NEMCC and is doing very well. By enrolling in the MIBEST program, she has received team-teaching in her classes and is receiving weekly transportation assistance that makes the drive to campus a little easier. She is on track to graduate in May 2022 with an Associate of Applied Science in Information Systems Technology-Cyber Defense.

Having overcome so many obstacles to accomplish so much, Kati now feels that enrolling in the adult education program and MIBEST has helped her beyond just earning her high-school-equivalency diploma. She had this to say:

“Not only has NEMCC Adult Education helped me to earn my diploma and gain confidence in my educational journey,” she says, “but they have also helped me give my children the life they deserve!”

3825 RIDGEWOOD RD, JACKSON, MS 39211 | (601) 432-6518 | SKILLUP@MCCB.EDU |