Father, daughter graduate together

  Friday, May 8, 2015 2:00 AM

Pittsburg, KS

Father, daughter graduate together

More than 20 years ago, Joseph Skye was well on his way to graduating with an education degree from Pittsburg State. He just had to finish his student teaching semester, and it was in the bag.

Then life intervened.

“My wife and I welcomed our daughter Morgan into the world, and between being a new dad and working and trying to go to school, it was too much,” he said. “So I took a break from school.”

This weekend, after two years in the general studies program, Joseph will finally receive his diploma. Moments before he does, however, Morgan will receive hers.

“She did it the right way and got it done, so I’m definitely going to let her go ahead of me,” he said.

When he made the decision to return to school, Joseph said he did not intentionally time it to coincide with his daughter’s graduation. Once he realized it was possible, however, he stepped on the gas.

“I took 12 hours this semester so I could finish with Morgan,” he said. “I did that while also working and serving on multiple boards. There was probably one night each week that I didn’t sleep, but it was worth it to do this with her.”

Morgan, who will graduate with an accounting degree, said she’s proud of her father’s determination.

“I know this was stressful for him, and I’m very proud that he took the time and effort to finish school,” she said. “It means a lot to me that we’ll be there together.”

Despite enjoying considerable professional success over the past 20 years – he is the CEO and founder of BlueSkye Independent Rx Brokerage – Joseph said earning his degree remained on his to-do list.

“I’m on the school board in Baxter Springs and on the board of the SEK Interlocal 637, and I’m a huge advocate for education,” he said. “But I found myself feeling bad about being an advocate while not having a degree myself. I knew I needed to finish my degree at Pitt.”

Morgan said she and her father have both enjoyed their time at Pitt State.

“I love Pitt State,” she said. “The class sizes are perfect. The faculty really know their stuff, and you can tell they really love their jobs. The community supports the university, which makes it just a great place to be. We’re proud to be Gorillas.” 



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