alumni stories

2017 Alumni of the Year

Northcentral University recognizes its alumni contributions by honoring graduates who have imparted lasting change in their community or organization with their NCU degree.

Jennie De Gagne, PhD in Education with a specialization in education technology management, 2009

NCU Graduate Found His True Calling Marriage and Family Therapy

A rabbi and a therapist walk into a classroom ... No, this isn't the start of a joke. It was, in fact, the start of Rabbi Daniel Schonbuch's journey to find his true calling.

Schonbuch was always interested in psychology, but with a large family and professional obligations demanding his attention, he didn't have the luxury of pursuing his passion as a traditional student. He researched online programs and found NCU.

 

 

Graduate Chose NCU for the 100% Online Flexibility

As a young man just out of high school and entering the Air Force, Dr. Bobby Martin didn't see the value of continued education.  He spent his free time at parties instead of libraries.  When he left the military after four years, he was faced with the reality that no one would hire him.  He was married, with a child and doing odd jobs.  He decided to return to the military, but with a different mindset.

"I had experienced what it was like to be under-educated, so I figured let's see what it's like to be educated," Martin said.

NCU MEd Graduate, Alana Jackson, Makes a Habit of Stepping Outside Her Comfort Zone

If attitude determines altitude, then the sky is the limit for Alana Jackson of San Antonio, Texas.

NCU Graduate, Gary Sytsma, Fulfills Lifelong Dream as a Family Therapist

Usually the caregiver helps the patient, but in the case of Gary Sytsma, a 34-year veteran respiratory therapist, it was the mother of one of his pediatric patients who helped him chart a whole new career. 

NCU Alum Returns to Homeland to Run Local School and Launch Mayoral Campaign

For some students, an NCU degree can change their life. For others, the educational experience can change a country. This is the case for Dr. Desmond Bikoko, a 2007 NCU graduate with a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) specializing in international business.

This year, Dr. Bikoko plans to run for the mayor of Lilongwe, the capital of Malawi. As the current Councilor for the city, he is launching a second campaign for mayor after losing in a tight election in 2014.

NCU Enrollment Advisor Pursues Her Own PhD in Education

For the past six years, Gloria Turner has been an NCU Enrollment Advisor, but soon the PhD in Education candidate hopes to be an NCU professor.

Turner, who has her MBA and will graduate in July 2016 with her doctorate degree, was encouraged by the students she advises and other NCU professors to pursue her own PhD.

“NCU professors told me that once I had my PhD, I would be surprised at the opportunities that would open up,” said Turner.

NCU’s Sports Management Specialization is a Winning Game Plan

Many children dream of growing up and playing professional sports. Most of us will never realize that dream, but there are other avenues to a career in sports. This is exactly what one former high school athlete and NCU graduate did.

6 Tips for Making A Mid-Life Career Shift

There are no shortage of people who dream about having a different career or job, but few people act on their desire to do something different for a variety of reasons that often boil down to one word: fear.

Fear of going back to school, fear of making a wrong move, fear of uncertainty, fear of starting over. The list goes on and on. But sometimes circumstances conspire to make the decision for you as happened to Tim Holt, a 2014 Ph.D. graduate in Educational Leadership.

NCU Alumnus Dr. Michael Salvatore Making Headlines

Long Branch School District Superintendent and NCU Alumnus, Dr. Michael Salvatore, Recognized for Contributions to the Education Community by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.

NCU Alumnus Dr. Michael Salvatore, PhD in Education – Instructional and Curriculum Leadership, received accolades last week from New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and other local and state officials for his outstanding leadership abilities and for being an asset to New Jersey’s education community during a ribbon cutting ceremony for a new school that opened in the Long Branch School District.

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