Graduation Journey: Laura Miller

Laura Miller graduated this past December 2017, with a Master of Arts in Human Resources Management (MA).

“I began this journey in the summer of 2015. I had always wanted a master’s degree and felt this was a good time to pursue it. I felt a little stagnant in my career and knew if I didn’t pursue a secondary degree I would eventually hit a glass ceiling, even with my two professional certifications. The issue I did face was that my job is fairly demanding travel-wise, and I knew a traditional setting would not work, which is why I’m so glad I was able to pursue the degree online. Little did I know I was in for a major life change and I would appreciate it even more. 

Shortly after finishing my first class, I found out I was expecting my first child. Some people told me I was crazy to try and keep working on my degree. But despite their negativity I knew that not I only I could, but that I would finish. I worked as hard as possible to get what I could get done before my son was born, and luckily, he waited until the end of the spring semester in 2016 (an aside, I want to thank my professor for being very accommodating knowing I might go into labor before the end of the term). I took the summer off, and knew I needed to get right back on the horse. The next year was, candidly, hard. I had a baby, worked full-time (and 2 part-time jobs), was in the church choir, and was working hard to finish a master’s degree. I could not have done it without the online program. I spent many late (mostly Friday, Saturday, and Sunday) nights working on my homework once the baby went to bed. I even got A’s in every class I took after I had my son. 

I am not an emotional person, but I will admit I shed a tear of joy when I submitted my last assignment in December. It was such a surreal feeling to know I had met my goal. I was, and still am, proud of myself. While life put obstacles in my way I still was able to get my degree. And now I am trying to leverage it. I just applied for a promotion at work that I would not have been qualified for without my degree. Cross your fingers for me!”