Featured Learner - Eugene Searles
Ten years ago, Eugene Searles, a CISSPS® (Certified Information Systems Security Professional), embarked on a "great adventure." He boldly decided to make a career change from the medical/nursing field to the increasingly important field of Information Security. To help solidify this career change, he has enrolled in Peirce's College's bachelor's degree program in Information Technology with a concentration in Information Security.
"Realizing that IT Security is truly a separate field and that a bachelor's degree would provide greater opportunity for advancement and future employment, I started looking for courses that would fit in with my life," Gene says. "Since I travel frequently as part of my job, I was particularly interested in online programs." After researching several programs, Gene chose Peirce's IT Security program because it coordinates closely with the (ISC)2 CISSP program, and his online classes offer him flexibility in accessing his coursework.
Peirce is a great fit for Gene in that he has been able to leverage prior college credit and his CISSP certification towards his bachelor's degree. "That is very important to me," he says. Gene is also pleased with a number of the program's elements, "I have found the online format perfect for my needs and am impressed with the level of instructor interaction as well as the challenging course content," he adds. Gene expects to complete coursework for his bachelor's degree by June 2008.
Gene's nominating professor, Dr. Justine Baker, has this to say about him, "Eugene Searles is the brightest star I have ever had in MAT 230, Symbolic Logic, which is a difficult course, especially online. And he is always one week ahead of schedule."
For new and prospective Peirce students, Gene offers three points to consider, which he says have worked well for him:
- Allow plenty of time for coursework - online does not mean watered down. A few extra hours with the library databases are very useful and rewarding.
- Fully engage the instructors and other students with the discussion tools. There is a wealth of knowledge to be shared and the online format allows for thoughtful interaction.
- Degree programs and career change are great adventures but the length of time can seem daunting. Keep at it, even if it is one class at a time - the time is going to pass in any case and the result is worth the effort.