Student Profile: Sgt. Damian Baker
Damian Baker, a Sergeant in the U.S. Marine Corps, is currently deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. At age 22, Damian is one of those brave young Americans who work hard and earn the gratitude of all Americans every day. The same thanks go to all the members of Damian’s family too – his wife Shandez, his parents and sisters who live in Fort Meyers, Florida, and even to his dog Inca.
We are proud that Damian chose StraighterLine to further his education while he is in the Marine Corps. We recently asked him about his experience as a student at StraighterLine, and here is what he told us.
StraighterLine: What motivated you to start taking courses at StraighterLine?
Damian Baker: I am currently a student at Thomas Edison State College, a partner school to StraighterLine, and I was interested in finding alternative ways to earn credits while deployed. I asked my TESC course advisor what I could do while deployed and she gave me your website. I saw that all courses were at my own pace and that I could pay monthly for a course, versus a lump sum for a course I may not be able to complete.
SL: Were there circumstances in your life that made online study a good choice for you?
DB: Yes, I am currently deployed and regular classes would be very difficult for me to attempt at this time.
SL: When did you start taking courses at StraighterLine?
DB: I first started taking SL courses about 15 days into my current deployment, so that was the beginning of October 2011.
SL: What online college courses have you taken so far?
DB: I have completed Macroeconomics, Medical Terminology, Biology without Lab, Western Civilization I, Accounting I & II, Intro to Sociology, and A&P I. I am currently enrolled in College Algebra and Microeconomics.
SL: What would you say about the quality of the courses?
DB: I think the courses are great. Some of the questions in the quizzes and tests can be repetitive, however I feel this is needed. The repetition helps you to take more away from the courses. A lot of time has been put into the assignments and other course material, which also helps very much with the retention of information received from the courses.
SL: How does the experience compare to taking college courses in regular classrooms?
DB: I believe SL courses are more thorough than most alternatives to earning college credits, such as CLEPs. However if you do not have someone around to help explain a subject or help you work out a difficult problem, courses may get stressful. SL helps with these frustrations by providing online tutors with their courses.
SL: Was it easy to get any questions answered?
DB: Yes, my course advisors always provided quick responses to all questions that I had and helped out whenever I needed. I have not used the tutoring provided, if I got stumped while doing the course usually someone around me could help walk me through the problem.
SL: What advice would you offer to students who might be looking for ways to further their education, or who might be considering taking courses at StraighterLine?
DB: At times courses may get difficult and frustrating. If this happens, just simply take a break and resume at a later time. If needed, ask someone for help. It never hurts, and you may learn an easier way to do something.