"SNHU is teaching me so many new facets of my own job - and I'm getting an amazing return on my investment."
Jessica Gilley didn't have to wait to finish her degree before seeing the benefit in her position as the director of a Boys and Girls Club.
Gilley worried that enrolling in Southern New Hampshire University's bachelor's in business administration with a concentration in organizational leadership would mean spending a lot of time learning skills and concepts she already knew and simply earning a piece of paper to validate that knowledge.
"But that's not the case," she said. "SNHU is teaching me so many new facets of my own job - and I'm getting an amazing return on my investment. Just the fact that I can already utilize what I'm learning, that it's already being applied to my everyday work, and in the organization I'm in that is a huge indicator that I'm getting my money's worth."
Gilley focused on business administration with a concentration organizational leadership in anticipation of her club's expansion. With the skills she learning, she said she feels fully prepared to embrace that growth when the time comes. "When my board of directors comes to me, and they say, Jessye, we found the perfect building; we can build it for you this year; are you ready?' - I'm going to be like, absolutely. I have all the tools necessary," she said.
Gilley said she also found plenty of support, from the first call with an admission counselor to her instructors being just an email away. She said she receives regular outreach from her academic advisor, who helped with course registration and any questions she has. "I didn't expect the human element," she said. "It's great. I guess I didn't expect as much individualized attention as I've been getting."
Another important element in Gilley's decision to pursue her degree was being a role model to her three children. She said it's rewarding to share her good grades with them. "Making my kids and my husband proud; that's success for me," she said.