By Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development at Kansas State University.
“Let’s go one lap around.” That sounds easy. But what if that one lap didn’t refer to the local walking track? What if it referred to one lap – around the entire globe? This week, we’ll meet a young Kansas couple who took on the amazing goal of circumnavigating the globe by themselves.
Heidi Plumb and Kale Dankenbring are the remarkable young couple who made this amazing journey. Heidi grew up near Dallas. Kale grew up at St. Francis, Kansas. He studied information technology at Northwest Kansas Technical College in Goodland, a rural community of 4,489 people. Now, that’s rural.
After graduation, Kale’s IT career took him to Phoenix where he met Heidi. The two shared lots of interests, including nutrition, coffee and travel. They had an incredible idea: What if they could travel around the world on a shoestring budget?
“There oughta be an app for that.” This statement is frequently heard as there is increasing demand for applications on our portable electronic devices. Today we’ll learn about an innovative technical college which is helping students do the coding necessary to develop more software applications.
Ben Schears is president of Northwest Kansas Technical College – called Northwest Tech for short – in Goodland.
Ben grew up in rural Lyon County between the towns of Olpe, population 548, and Hartford, population 371 people. Now, that’s rural.
“I admit, I was not the best student in high school and probably didn’t show much promise,” Ben said. “I was more interested in sports and girls.” At the urging of his school counselor, he went to Flint Hills Technical College in Emporia during his last two years of high school where he learned heating and cooling technical skills.
Ron Wilson, director of the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development at Kansas State University writes Kansas Profile. The weekly posts highlight individuals or companies in rural Kansas who are making a difference to their community and state.
The Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development is a public / private partnership between Kansas State University and the Huck Boyd Foundation. The mission of the institute is to help rural people help themselves. Learn more at www.huckboydinstitute.org.