Contact: Lisa Sollie
MERIDIAN, Miss.— Kemper Baker hasn’t had a lot of opportunities to see the world, but that’s about to change.
Recognized as the Outstanding Undergraduate Student in the Division of Business at MSU-Meridian’s May 5 spring commencement ceremony, the Bailey native soon will head to Nicaragua for a 10-day mission trip.
During her trip abroad, Baker will hike to a volcano and zip line through the forest. She also will be busy doing evangelistic outreach, construction and painting, as well as children’s ministry activities.
“I feel like this has been a real growing year for me,” she said. “I’m trying to branch out and push myself. I’ve also learned to cut myself some slack and try not to get so anxious and stressed about everything, especially my grades.”
Home-schooled with her two younger sisters, Baker attended Meridian Community College and graduated in 2015. She said going to college locally at MSU-Meridian allowed her to stay close to home, learn in a smaller classroom environment and graduate debt-free.
While a work-study student at MSU-Meridian, Baker split her time between the Division of Business and the Career Center. She enjoyed working in a business office setting and assisting with special events.
Active in all facets of music ministry at her church, Abundant Life Tabernacle in Meridian, Baker plans to continue her involvement and perhaps start an online business. But for the immediate future, she plans to travel.
“I’m a real homebody, so going out of the country to Nicaragua is a real stretch for me,” she said. “I’m nervous, but I’m super excited, too.”
After her trip to Nicaragua, Baker will spend the rest of her summer working at a camp in Jackson.
Although her plans include continuing to work in music ministry, she admitted “it doesn’t really pay that much,” so she will use her business degree to help supplement her income.
“I may not have known exactly what I wanted to do when I went to college,” Baker said, “but I knew I needed to earn a degree.”
“I want to know I can support myself if I need to,” she continued. “Having my bachelor’s degree in business is an asset I will be able to use for the rest of my life.”
Primarily serving the eastern Mississippi and western Alabama regions, MSU-Meridian provides credit and non-credit course work, helping fulfill educational aspirations of both traditional and non-traditional students. For more, visit www.meridian.msstate.edu.
MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at www.msstate.edu.