brent childress

1. What is your motivation for obtaining your degree?
It was simple for me. In 2010 I was laid off from a dream job two days after Christmas. After taking some time off to reflect on my next move, I realized that not having a degree was going to put me at a disadvantage. Even though my work resume was substantial, other job candidates in my field had an upper hand because of their educational background. It was the first time in my life I had experienced this, and I decided then that it was time to get my degree. 

2. Why did you choose Averett’s GPS Program?
I did quite a bit of research on this because it was a big step for me to commit to this with all my other obligations. I looked at Phoenix, Liberty,  ODU, and a handful of other distance learning programs and Averett just felt right for me. I worked for about 5 years in the nuclear field and that company worked with Averett quite a bit. All of the feedback I received was very positive. That combined with my research led me here, and I am glad I took the leap. 

3. Please share one tip for your fellow classmates and future AU students.
For the future students considering Averett I offer this advice. Do not wait. Jump in feet first, dedicate yourself, and make the most of your opportunities. In my 20’s and 30’s I was lucky enough to land two great jobs, and took my education for granted. It is never too late. I started last year at the age of 40 but many times I thought to myself “why didn’t I do this years ago?”. For my classmates, blocking off time for school work has been vital to my academic success. I set a schedule, and I do not change it unless I absolutely have to. It is not ideal for everyone, but it has worked great for me.

4. What helps to keep you motivated while you are in the program?
Opportunity. At my age I will have to work 25+ years before I can retire so I plan to make the most of it. Advancement with my current employer is limited, and it will likely be years before I can move into upper management. Right now in my work career I feel like I am existing, and it is time to start living.  

5. What is your anticipated Date of Graduation?
Right now I am planning to finish in 2018 at some point. My plan is a bit ambitious, but I am going to take advantage of the CLEP program to test out of some of my electives.