Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Success Story: Tymeka McCaskill

This week on the blog, we’re getting to know some of the faces featured in Peirce College’s current advertising campaign.   Today, meet Tymeka!

For Peirce College student and soon to be graduate Tymeka McCaskill, choosing to pursue her education was both a personal and professional choice.  “I had spent a year working in the custodial field,” Tymeka explains.  “I didn’t want to be stuck in a menial job with little hope for retirement or benefits.  And, I knew that furthering my education would improve my quality of life.”

Wanting to find a college that had experience working with adult learners, Tymeka started googling Philadelphia area colleges and doing some research.  It didn’t take her long to come across Peirce College.  “I read about Peirce after a Google search, and was excited to learn that not only were they a smaller institution with a history of catering to adult learners, but they offered more flexibility and lots of options for adults compared to other schools with similar missions.”

Shortly after, Tymeka enrolled in Peirce to earn her bachelor’s degree in Human Resources Management.  She describes her student experience as “phenomenal.”  The flexibility offered at Peirce allowed her to continue working while earning her degree, and enabled her to participate in extracurricular college events.  Tymeka also formed close relationships with many faculty members who she describes as “unofficial mentors”.  However, it was her course work at Peirce that she feels built the foundation for her success working in her dream field of Human Resources.

“I could directly apply my coursework at Peirce to entry level HR assignments,” Tymeka explains.  “I remember learning what an LMS (Learning Management System) was in class one week, and just a few days later being asked by my manager to update my company’s LMS.  The real world case studies, scenarios, and projects that I practiced in my Peirce course work allowed me to feel confident taking on assignments at work that I otherwise wouldn’t have been able to complete independently.  I owe my career in HR to my education.”

Now, Tymeka looks forward to graduating from Peirce in December of this year.  She hopes to continue to grow in her career, and has made it her goal to earn her SHRM certification within the next two years.   “If I hadn’t decided to pursue my education, I would probably still be working in the custodial field.  Enrolling at Peirce was life changing.”

Tymeka’s advice for fellow adult learners thinking about furthering their education? Don’t wait.  “I always tell people that time is going to pass whether you are working towards your degree or not.  Why not make the most of your time?”

To experience the Peirce Difference, click here.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Peirce College adds local industry leaders to Board of Trustees

At Peirce College, we’re committed to ensuring our programs continue to align with the skills demanded by local employers, and we’re always looking to engage experienced industry professionals about what our students should know and how we can help the College grow.

To do just that, we recently welcomed four executives from the region onto our Board of Trustees. Please join us in extending a warm welcome to the four newest Trustees: Thomas M. McLaughlin ‘84, Toni Pergolin, Lawrence (Larry) Scanlan, and Dr. Brian G. Swift!

Thomas M. McLaughlin ‘84 is the Senior Vice President and Director of Technology Management Services at Wells Fargo & Company, where he’s responsible for the strategy, technology support, execution and delivery of multiple technology-based services.  He’s held leadership positions throughout his impressive 30 year career. He’s also a Peirce College alumnus, having earned his associate degree in computer science in 1984, and has served as a mentor to Peirce’s IT students. He went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in management from Eastern University and a master’s degree in engineering from the University of Pennsylvania. McLaughlin’s insight into the regional IT industry has already been utilized in the development of the College’s new competency-based education program, launching in September.  
Toni Pergolin serves as the President, Chief Executive Officer at Bancroft, a regional human services provider. Her focus is the continued growth and diversification of the organization, as well as the services and programs provided for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, autism and acquired brain injuries. She received her undergraduate degree in accounting from Pennsylvania State University and her master’s in health administration from Saint Joseph’s University. Her decades of experience in healthcare will provide guidance as the College expands its healthcare portfolio to meet the evolving demands of area employers, including its newest program, a Master of Science in Healthcare Administration.
Lawrence (Larry) Scanlan, CPA, FHFMA serves as the President of Scanlan & Associates, LLC, a
consulting and executive coaching firm. He previously held executive and financial leadership positions for more than 40 years. A nationally recognized expert on healthcare, he served as president of one of the country’s premier healthcare consulting firms, The Hunter Group, and most recently was a founder and president of Insight Health Partners, LLC. Scanlan has previously  served on Peirce’s Board of Trustees, including a term as chairman. He attended Peirce prior to receiving his Bachelor of Science degree from Philadelphia University. With his years of healthcare and business acumen, Scanlan will provide key thought leadership in the continued development of new programs that respond directly to regional employer needs.
Dr. Brian G. Swift is the Vice President, Chief Pharmacy Officer at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, and Associate Dean for Professional Affairs at Jefferson School of Pharmacy.  Dr. Swift is responsible for acute care pharmacy operations servicing approximately 1,000 patient beds, four outpatient retail pharmacy operations, a health system based home infusion program and a specialty pharmacy program. He received his bachelor of science in pharmacy and his doctor of pharmacy from Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science and an MBA in healthcare administration from Saint Joseph’s University. As a longtime industry practitioner and academic, he brings a unique perspective to the College’s continual development of employer-valued healthcare curriculum.

For more information about our four newest board members, and how they’ll be assisting the College as we continue to provide innovative, life friendly options for adult learners, click here.  

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Success Story: Jonathan Turner

Heroes come in all different shapes; this Peirce hero happens to wear a Marine uniform. 

Jonathan Turner first joined the military in 1989, and was on active duty in the US Marine Core until 1993.  He fought in the Gulf War and was one of the first in combat.  After being honorably discharged in 1993, he applied to work for SEPTA where he went on to be employed for 23 years.  Despite having a busy career in transit, he still felt the need to serve and joined the PA Army National Guard in 1999.  Things were good at first, but Jonathan was about to experience a significant change.

“At first it was fun, like a club, but everything changed September 2001 with 9/11,” Jonathan explained. “Our focus changed.  We were preparing for real combat, and were deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan in 2008-2009.”

During his time in the National Guard Jonathan didn’t just see combat, he was also deployed during Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Sandy.  He achieved the rank of Sergeant First Class, but despite his impressive service record he still felt like his life was missing something.  Jonathan had served his country, gotten married, and had a wonderful family, but there was one thing he lacked: a college degree.

“I raised children, married, and served.  I wanted to evolve, and better myself for all of those I love.  I wanted to go back to school before, but life got in the way,” Jonathan explained. “I wanted to be a role model for my sons and family.  By going to school and graduating from college, I can be an example for my grown sons to go back to school.”

Jonathan had to make sure that he went to college that would understand his unique education and scheduling needs, luckily he had heard about a certain school that sounded perfect for him from a friend.

“A former first sergeant of mine, William Blackman, graduated from Peirce and is now in the MSOLM program,” Jonathan explained. “[He] told me that Peirce will steer me in the right direction and push me to my potential.”

William’s glowing recommendation certainly helped Jonathan’s decision to go to Peirce, but what really impressed him about the college was its perks for military members.  Peirce College is a Yellow Ribbon School, Service members Opportunity Colleges (SOC) approved, and has been included on the Military Friendly Colleges List for several years. The school has a variety of military scholarships available to help make earning a degree more affordable. 

At Peirce, military benefits also cover students’ spouses, so Jonathan’s wife Robin made the decision to go back to school with him.  He liked that Peirce had excellent tutoring services and support, small class sizes, and a positive community.  He was even given a student advisor that knew how to cater to his specific military background and needs.

“I was nervous about being an older student and not being able to cope with the fast pace that these younger students are used to.  But once I felt the support of Peirce, I thought ‘you can do this’.  Peirce works with enough military members so they know our schedules.  At Peirce you’re not just a number, their family approach reminded me of my military experience.”

Jonathan started to study at Peirce in 2014, and is expected to graduate in 2017.   His experience so far has been phenomenal, and he recommends it to other soldiers.

“I’ve already recommended Peirce to my junior soldiers in my platoon and two of them have enrolled!” Jonathan exclaimed.

He encourages other people, whether they’re military or not, to enroll in Peirce. 

“You can do it.  If you need the extra support, Peirce can help you finish.  If you work hard, no matter how long you’ve been out of school, you will succeed.” 

Ready to start your Peirce journey? Click here. 

To experience the Peirce difference, click here.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

The Top 5 Reasons Why Now is the Time for You to Earn Your Degree at Peirce College

We've just added a second date for Peirce Night; a night that's all about you and achieving your goals. We understand it’s the middle of summer. It's your time to relax, and thinking about adding college to your already full plate is tough. At Peirce College, we believe that it might not be as tough as you think. Here are our top five reasons why there’s no better time to start earning your degree. 

1.       Transfer-friendly degree programs.  When you’re an adult student returning to college, every credit you’ve already earned counts. Choose from our three bachelor’s degree completion programs in business, legal studies, and information technology.  They’re programs that are especially designed to maximize the credits you already have and put you on an accelerated path to degree completion. Peirce also has transfer agreements with over twenty community colleges in the region to ensure their students a smooth transition and transfer of credits.
2.       One on one wrap around support.  At Peirce, you’re not just a number.  That’s why we assign you a personal enrollment representative to walk you, start to finish, through the process of going back to school. They’ll coach you through registering for classes, buying textbooks, and be your cheerleader as you manage any back to school jitters.  It’s their job to get you ready for class and keep you focused on your main goal; graduation.
3.       Unmatched flexibility.  Everyone knows that working adult learners need flexibility, but at Peirce, we know they also need something extra; innovation.  That’s why we’re the first college in the nation to offer our entire curriculum in Peirce Fit™, a revolutionary learning format that lets you choose each week either to attend class in person or online.  We’re also the only Philadelphia-based school to offer a competency-based bachelor's degree in Information Technology, putting IT professionals on the most direct path to earning their degree.  
4.       You can save money*. $150 to be exact! Don’t let a fear of finances keep you from investing in your future.  When you attend Peirce Night and register for Session 1 classes, we'll waive your $50 application fee and give you a $100 book voucher to put towards your textbooks. Plus, if you’re employed by one of our corporate partners, (or if your spouse or parent is an employee) you’ll also have access to a 25% tuition discount!
5.       You can earn money.  The facts are that people with a bachelor’s degree earn on average $500 more per week more than those that didn’t graduate from college.  That’s $2,000 more a month, and $24,000 more a year.  What’s more, the unemployment rate among workers with a bachelor’s degree is less than half the rate compared to workers that didn’t complete their college education.**  Don’t let procrastination get in the way of achieving your goals and living the lifestyle you want for you and your family.

For more information on how Peirce can help you earn the degree you need for the career you deserve, click here.  

*$100 book voucher will be awarded to students who register for classes by the week of 9/6/16 for textbook purchases only.
** Source: http://www.bls.gov/emp/ep_chart_001.htm