Sidney Wagner.jpgMay 21, 2020

While the focus of late has been on Mayville State students, as well as college students across the country, who have had to move from on-campus course delivery to online delivery because of the COVID-19 pandemic, those students who choose to engage in higher education online as their norm have continued to pursue their goals. Sidney Wagner, a Mayville State student who is pursuing a bachelor’s degree online, is grateful for this opportunity. Learning online has given her the time needed to pursue other important avenues in her life, including working full time.

Originally from Indiana, Wagner moved to North Dakota with her family while she was in high school. In the short time she was with her family in North Dakota, Wagner found that she loved the kindhearted, genuine people around her. After the family had moved away and she had graduated from high school in Florida, Sidney decided to move back to North Dakota to pursue her higher education goals.

Prior to becoming a Mayville State student this year, Wagner earned an associate’s degree in early childhood education from Northland Community and Technical College. After completing this degree, she decided to pursue a bachelor’s degree in elementary education with a minor in early childhood education.

Living and working full time in Grand Forks, Sidney made the decision to enroll at Mayville State and take classes online. This would allow her the time she needed to be employed. She quickly learned that she enjoys being able to complete her schoolwork at her own pace and have the flexibility to work at a job without having to take time from her day for travel.

Wagner stated that the online education program has been beyond helpful to her.

“All of the educators are so dedicated and kind, and you can tell they pour their hearts into their work and truly care about their students,” she said.

The kindness of her professors has made her experience as an online student positive and worthwhile. She has been able to build relationships without ever meeting them face-to-face.

Sidney explained that being an online student has allowed her freedom to devote herself to multiple avenues. “I am able to work full time and devote time to my job while also giving my attention to school on my own time.”

Wagner works as a preschool coordinator at the Grand Forks (N.D.) YMCA, and she says that this experience dove tails with her education courses. With the YMCA, she is in charge of scheduling, record keeping, budgeting, creating education programs, and making sure her staff follow all of the guidelines set before them.

Because of the flexibility that comes with taking online classes, Wagner said she is able to excel at both her job and her classes while “getting endless opportunities to grow.” She is grateful for Mayville State for the opportunity to have the best of both worlds.

Her favorite thing about being an online student is having the extra time to spend with friends and family.

In the future, Wagner hopes to work as a first-grade teacher in a small school setting. After she obtains and is comfortable in such a position, she plans to return to college to pursue a master’s degree in special education.

Mayville State’s motto, “The School of Personal Service,” is prevalent not only on campus, but also in online instruction. Instructors, whether on campus or online, take special care to be sure that all students have the attention they deserve.

For more information on Mayville State’s online programs, go to or contact the Office of Extended Learning at 1-800-437-4104, ext. 34667 or