July 1, 2020

Campus employees earn Purdue Global degrees

Forty-five Purdue University and Purdue Research Foundation employees were among the more than 1,000 Purdue University Global graduates who took part in the virtual commencement ceremony on June 6.

Over the last year, nearly 200 Purdue and PRF employees have earned a Purdue Global degree – certificates, associate degrees, bachelor’s degrees and master’s degrees.

Purdue benefit-eligible employees who have been continuously employed in a full-time or part-time capacity for a minimum of 30 calendar days are eligible to take advantage of an education benefit. They are permitted to use the Purdue Global education benefit toward the following (one per degree):

  • Associate.
  • Bachelor’s.
  • Master’s.
  • Undergraduate certificate.
  • Graduate certificate.

Tuition discounts are 100% of tuition for employees and 50% of tuition for immediate family members of employees.

Three recent graduates shared their Purdue Global experience:

Gavin Brown Gavin Brown
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Gavin works as a software developer on the Teaching and Learning Technologies team within Purdue Online. He earned his Master of Business Administration.

Why did you pursue your MBA?

I decided to pursue this degree to obtain greater career flexibility and to improve in my current position. The affordability was also a large influence in me pursuing this opportunity.

What was the curriculum like?

There are two versions of the MBA program – a more traditional online program and a competency-based ExcelTrack program. Being in the ExcelTrack program allowed me to set my own pace. Some terms I sped up and earned more credits. Other terms I slowed down, whether due to vacations or other events, and earned less credits. This flexibility was very useful to me.

Describe online learning in your own words.

I enjoyed my online learning experience, especially due to the ability to work anytime, anywhere. Online learning and the ExcelTrack program gave me a lot of flexibility to work on my degree at my own pace and around my own schedule.

Will your degree help you with your job at Purdue or later in your career?

This degree will help me now and into the future. With our software development projects, we seek to create and demonstrate value to the university. Through this degree, I’ve learned skills in strategic thinking, business analysis and project management that can help make our projects more efficient, cost-effective and impactful.

Would you recommend Purdue Global to fellow employees?

Purdue Global has a variety of degrees and certificates that have been designed for adult learners. Though there is a recurring tech fee and expenses for books, free tuition for employees means Purdue Global degrees and certificates are extremely affordable and a great opportunity for growth and professional development.


Osra DeLong Osra DeLong
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Osra is a manager of development operations and donor stewardship for Purdue Research Foundation. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in communication, graduating summa cum laude.

Why did you pursue a degree in communication?

I was always interested in communication and I wanted to take my career to the next level. I had taken a few semesters at the Brian Lamb School of Communication here at Purdue University, but the schedule didn’t work well for me as a full-time worker and a busy mother of three boys. When Purdue Global was offering a communication degree, I was curious to see how it would fit into my schedule. I chatted with an advisor, they gave me credit for past coursework and showed me a plan of action to achieve my goal.

What was the curriculum like?
The curriculum was set up in 10-week modules. Everything was very clearly laid out: one seminar weekly per class, weekly reading materials, discussion boards relating to the readings and assignments, journals and tests. I took two classes per term and enjoyed the weekly seminar with the professors that were always very interactive. Materials were all online and we had access to an online library, which was fantastic. Professors were very helpful, available all the time and very responsive to any questions or help that may have been needed. There was great interaction with fellow students, and by the time we reached the capstone class, we all had a genuine familiarity with each other and really lifted each other through the final rigorous term. It was a great experience.

Describe online learning in your own words.

Purdue Global has online learning down to a science. In my time there, any technical difficulties that I may have encountered, were dealt with quickly and did not hinder my ability to learn. I think online learning is something that will be embraced by people who are really motivated to learn something and would like to do it on their own time. It is very convenient and enjoyable, and you interact with others from all different walks of life. I found it very fulfilling.

Any good story to share?

I had some wonderful professors. Jason Waldow was my organizational communication professor, and I learned so much from him. Another professor who taught me a lot about conflict and communication was Jamie Camp. They were both phenomenal. I would be interested in taking more classes with them because everything I learned in their classes I have applied to my life, both personally and professionally.

Will your degree help you with your job at PRF or later in your career?

Yes, I have no doubt that it has helped me along the way as I studied and applied concepts to my everyday work and used different lenses to figure out better solutions to problems.

Would you recommend Purdue Global to fellow employees?

Absolutely. I would encourage fellow employees to go online and fill out the form. The process of signing up was very well laid out and not complicated at all.

Anything else you would like to add?

I am grateful that President Daniels had the foresight to acquire Purdue University Global. Having a well-established online platform like this is essential for learning in the age of technology. Nontraditional learners, like me, really benefit from having this method of instruction. I am also grateful that, due to the benefit offered by the university, I graduated debt-free and now have the credentials that make me a more valuable employee. I’m a first-generation degree graduate. My dad, in Ireland, is so delighted that I have completed this and was sad not to be able to be here for my graduation due to COVID, but I was excited to share the virtual graduation with him and my siblings.


Misty Newport Misty Newport
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Misty is a payroll administrator who earned her Bachelor of Science degree in business administration.

Why did you pursue your degree?

This degree fell in line with my work experience, so it only made sense build upon the knowledge I had already obtained.

What was the curriculum like?

Some of it was tough. There is a lot of content packed into a 10-week term (instead of a typical 15-week term), but it helped me develop my critical-thinking and communication skills to become more effective in my field of work.

Describe online learning in your own words.

Online learning provides you with the opportunity to obtain the education you want, at your own pace, no matter where your location.

Will your degree help you with your job at Purdue or later in your career?

Yes. I would not have even been considered a candidate for my current position without my degree.

Would you recommend Purdue Global to fellow employees?

Absolutely. If you’ve been on the fence about going back to finish – or start – your education, do it. You have nothing to lose, except maybe some sleep.

Anything else you would like to add?

Don’t overdo it. Most terms I tried to take three courses, which is the equivalent of 18 credit hours. There were some terms that I had to drop a course and pick it up later because it was more work than I could handle. Also, make sure to surround yourself with people who will support you and encourage you to reach your goals.

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