Apr 24 2017

A Students Journey: Overcoming Obstacles

by blogemu

There are many benefits that having a college degree offers. These benefits can include higher salaries, flexible hours, and more opportunity to move up within a company. College degrees allow for movement in a given career field, and they allow for more choices as to what type of career one can attain.


College students face many obstacles before, after, and during their college years. The road to graduation can be a long one, but for those that finish, it is an enormous accomplishment. Despite setbacks students face throughout college, the benefits of receiving a college education can ultimately change a student’s life forever. One E.M.U. student, in particular, has a unique story about his journey through higher education that will leave you inspired.


Patrick O’Connor, a soon to be Master of Science in Human Resource and Organizational Development (M.S.H.R.O.D.) graduate with a 3.9 GPA, says that his life and career path have been forever changed for the better because of his education.O’Connor didn’t take his education seriously until 10 years ago at the age of 25. After high school, he attended college briefly, but dropped out soon after and began working as a steelworker at the Dearborn where his father worked as well.


In 2006, O’Connor decided to go back to school and enrolled at Henry Ford Community College (H.F.C.C.). He told himself that if he did well after one semester he would continue with school. O’Connor ended up doing very well. He continued working full time at the steel plant but also enrolled in the articulation agreement between HFCC and EMU.


After successfully completing three years of college and marrying his wife, Cathy, O’Connor graduated from H.F.C.C. Magna Cum Laude with a 3.8 GPA. He then transferred to E.M.U in 2010 and transitioned from his job at the steel mill and began working as a part-time HR clerk at a life insurance company. In 2011 O’Connor graduated Cum Laude from E.M.U. with his bachelor’s degree.


O’Connor went on to pursue graduate school at EMU and has been promoted three times with the healthcare company he currently works for, including a call to move to the corporate office as an HR consultant. His education has allowed him to no longer work weekends, holidays, or nights which has left him time to be home to enjoy his family.


“My education has provided for me a fundamental change in my perspective on life,” O’Connor said. “And most importantly changed the trajectory of my family legacy.”


O’Connor plans to graduate April 2017 with his Master of Science in Human Resource and Organizational Development.


“The steps I took over 10 years ago began the deviation from the 70-year family tradition of labor intensive work. In 2010 I was the only family member remaining in the steel industry,” O’Connor said.


The educational choices O’Connor made early in his life have created lasting change in his career and for the future of his family. Because of his college education here at EMU, he has been given many opportunities and has ultimately been given a successful career path that he would not have been able to obtain otherwise.


Apr 11 2017

From Undergraduate to Graduate at EMU!

by blogemu

We spend at least four years working towards earning an undergraduate degree. That is four years of going to class, homework, endless studying, and constantly contemplating on dropping out and living with our parents forever. So what do you do after you earn an undergraduate degree? After graduation, some students take the time to travel, find their dream jobs, just take a break from school and work – and then there are the students you just cannot get enough and decide to attend graduate school.


I am currently enrolled in my first semester of graduate school at Eastern Michigan University studying Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC). IMC at Eastern is very unique compared to other graduate programs – this program is strictly online. I do not have to physically attend class, and all of my communication is done online.


Unlike others, I began graduate school immediately after my undergraduate program – the students in my courses tend to have a career and are able to use their personal experiences and accomplishments. I do not have that luxury – sure I have experience and fresh knowledge from my undergrad, but I lack the real life experience that humanizes the lessons.


I choose to attend grad school at EMU because I found a tremendous program that fit into my schedule, and the endless amounts of networking available. My experience so far has been amazing, and I am very eager to see what the rest of the program has in store for me and my future!


Written by: Stevie Newton

Apr 04 2017

Graduating From Eastern: What Did I Really Learn?

by blogemu

That is a question I never bothered to ask myself until now. What did I really learn in all my time (and I have spent a lot of time here) at Eastern Michigan University? Was my time here truly beneficial? I mean you would hope so after five long, stressful, chaotic, frantic emotional years. There are three things EMU gave me without a doubt and I wouldn’t be graduating without them!

  1. On-Campus Resources: EMU’s on-campus resources literally saved my life. And don’t just limit yourself to DPS or The Writing Center. CAPS is a great resource if you need to talk to someone outside of friends and family about the stresses of life. The Women’s Resource Center is perfect for acquiring information on uniting, helping, or allying with women. Engage @EMU helps to link businesses and community with EMU. There are tons of resources here that have been so helpful on my road to graduating.
  2. Professors: I really wouldn’t have made it as far as I have at EMU without the much needed guidance of my professors. I am so fortunate to be apart of a university that is so nurturing and accepting of its students. The Public Relations professors, though very tough and a bit intense at times, only want to see me succeed and flourish beyond my time at EMU. Lolita as the push and guidance, Gina, as the reassurance and encouragement and Jamie, as the compassion and understanding I needed to be in this position, writing this post (no seriously; Fundamentals of Social Media via Gina). The people really do make the place. These outstanding women are proof of that.
  3. Independence and Liberation: Can we talk about the independence and liberation EMU gave me? It’s here where I learned how to ride a city bus, got my first manager position, learned effective time management skills, learned financial skills needed for everyday life and so much more. I’m from little old Cassopolis, first-generation college student, nearly three hours away from mommy’s warm hugs and daddy’s cash advances. Maturing and growing up away from my parents was like a little life test to see what I was made of. Going away to college isn’t for everyone, but it shaped me into this determined, driven, destined young woman. Eastern provided me worldly experience that I will take with me everywhere I go and cherish for the rest of my life.

My only hope after all these years here is that someone can take comfort in the fact that they are not alone in the way they feel. Anything worth having is going to take time and dedication. There were times I was so close to giving up (just ask my mom, she remembers). I had to remember the reason why I came here is the reason why I’m graduating: For the little girl inside me who believed she could.


Written by: Leena Johnson