Finding a Military-Friendly Path to a Bachelor's Degree: A StraighterLine Success Story

Beth Dumbauld

Student_Success_081715Miles Green is in the Navy. He’s focused, determined, and has some specific goals for his military career. He wants to become a naval counselor, but he’s also realistic. He knows that in order to become a counselor and rise through the ranks, he needs his college degree.

Miles embodies many of the characteristics that add up to an ideal candidate for college success, including persistence, focus and determination. And yet even for this active military member, there was a potential speed bump that he needed to overcome: Miles lives and works on a ship.

Even when the ship – a navy vessel that launches and recovers jet air planes – is docked at pier, Miles can’t just take off. He knew that earning his degree online was a must. The flexibility that comes with taking courses online would allow him to make steady progress towards his bachelor’s.

In his words, “Once I made the decision to go back to school, I called a lot of different online colleges. I chose Western International University (West) because it is a military friendly college, the school’s advisors quickly followed up to any questions I had – and they were caring.”

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Miles also liked West because they could “work with my schedule.” The school, which offers students an opportunity to try an introductory course for free with no money up front, was particularly appealing because he wanted to gain confidence in his ability to earn his degree online. Plus, he wanted to make sure that West would be a good fit. “I took an 8 week course in Culture & Heritage,” Miles explained. “I liked it, and I got a good grade. So I enrolled in the school in order to pursue a bachelor’s degree in behavioral science.”

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Why Earn a Bachelor’s Degree?

In Miles’ words, “I’ve always been really good at talking with people and understanding what they have to say. I took AP psychology class in high school and it really took my interest. Also, I began a counselor club my senior year so students could have an easy place to come and chat. My career goal is to become a naval counselor.” To become a naval counselor, Miles knows he’ll need a bachelor’s degree.

Quickly Completing Required Math Courses at StraighterLine

As Miles researched online colleges, he began to realize that a lot of colleges only offer 8-week, or semester-based, course options. For Miles, 8 weeks was going to be way too long to endure taking a math class, his weakest subject. “If I had to take math over 8 weeks, it would drive me nuts,” said Miles. “I wanted to get them over as quickly as possible. StraighterLine allowed me to get my math courses done as fast as I wanted.”

Miles also added that that were a lot of benefits to taking courses online at StraighterLine, including “going at your own pace.” One of the benefits that he liked most about StraighterLine was the support that he got. “I liked StraighterLine’s student advisors and customer service. They are very helpful and follow up all the time. I really liked that!”

Advice for Other Students Looking to Complete Their Degree Online

His advice to other students looking to successfully complete college classes online? “If there is a course you want to do,” Miles advises. “Make sure you have the determination to go all the way through.” He also adds, “A few people try get a degree just to get a degree. If you want to actually get a degree, you have to want it.”

Miles plans on earning his bachelor’s degree in behavioral science from West. After he graduates, he plans on starting his goal of becoming a naval counselor. Congratulations Miles!

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