Name: Kody Miller
Hometown: West Plains, MO
Currently Resides: West Plains, MO
Occupation: Owner/Barber, Misfits Barber Co.
All Degrees and Certificates Received: AS-Business, Missouri State University-West Plains (MSU-WP), 2017; AAS-Entrepreneurship, MSU-WP, 2017.
The affordability of MSU-West Plains allowed Kody to stay close to home so he could find his passion
The opportunity to stay close to home and attend an affordable university were huge selling points for Kody Miller when determining his next steps in life.
Thanks to the A+ program, Kody continued to live with his parents in his hometown, West Plains, and was able to keep his job at a local church while he started his post-secondary educational journey.
The small class sizes at MSU-WP allowed Kody to develop a more personal relationship with his instructors. He was able to ask questions at will and have them answered in an efficient manner, which may not have been the case at a large university.
Kody also worked in the admissions office, which allowed him to develop helpful relationships with staff and gave him a sense of the small-town feel of the university.
“Everyone was so helpful in my time at MSU-West Plains. They truly care about student success,” Kody said.
All along, Kody knew he wanted to pursue a degree in business and eventually open his own business. In what he thought was one of his final meetings with his adviser, Kody discovered that he was just a few classes away from obtaining a second degree in Entrepreneurship to add to his Associate of Science in Business degree, so he stuck around for one more semester.
“That extra semester really allowed for more personal growth and gave me time to really decide what I wanted to do,” Kody said. He decided to obtain his barber license and work toward opening his own barbershop.
A Sense of Community
A passion for cutting hair led Kody to working at a few different shops to gain experience, but he always knew the end goal was to open his own shop. He has since returned to West Plains and opened Misfits Barber Co. in the downtown area.
The decision to start a business in his hometown has proven to be an incredible one for Kody. He has been able to give back to the community through free haircuts during back-to-school events and provide insight on his own educational journey to his clients
“Talking with clients near the age of when they’re choosing a degree or career has been great. I could’ve started my business career without a degree, but the experience at MSU-West Plains prepared me to do so much more, confidently, so giving advice to college aged kids has been a great chance to sort of give back to the community in providing a different perspective,” Kody said.
“Get involved and have fun.”
Kody believes the more he got involved on campus led to more success in the classroom. He built a connection to MSU-West Plains through his work in the admissions office and making a concerted effort to reach out to his professors, and it directly contributed to more academic success.
“If you’re having trouble in a class, they make it so easy to reach out and get any extra help you might need,” Kody said, “At MSU-West Plains I made some lifelong friendships and professional relationships that have helped me be successful in my career.”