The longtime educator is retiring, effective June 29.
"This is my baby," Buck said about Southeast-Sikeston. "Someone said to me: 'You took it from the incubator stage and on up.' And I have."
When Buck began as director of the Sikeston campus in 1998, she worked out of a temporary facility in Sikeston and had a secretary, she said.
"I started out advising students, working with the students and setting up courses," Buck said.
Over time, an adviser and part-time custodian were added to the staff. Later the facility employed a full-time custodian, student workers and staff.
"I'm proud of Sikeston, and their effort to bring higher education to the people in this region, and I am excited still," Buck said. "I think it's going to continue to grow."
Southeast had 20 course sections scheduled during Buck's first fall semester in 1998, and in fall 2012, approximately 170 sections are scheduled at the Sikeston campus. There are eight degrees that can be completed at the Sikeston campus and one associate degree in dental hygiene through a partnership with Missouri Southern State University in Joplin.
"The goal of a regional campus is to provide all the services a student needs so they wouldn't have to travel to the primary campus, which would be the Cape Girardeau campus," Buck said.
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