The transformative power of a degree combined with the potential for personal growth and professional advancement are clear outcomes of doctoral-level work at Thomas Edison State University (TESU). Alumni from the inaugural cohort of TESU’s School of Business and Management’s Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) program recently shared their motivations for choosing the University’s rigorous program and provided narratives of their experiences.
The Orientation, Research Symposium and Networking event held on Saturday, Dec. 3, provided an opportunity, both in person and virtually, for current and new students enrolled in the DBA program to hear from alumni of the inaugural 2022 cohort. The sessions delineated the ways that the program’s scholar-practitioner instructional model is immediately applicable to real-time professional practice and provides flexibility in topic customization that can benefit students’ research work.
Mimi Lenyugha Nkwepo, a student enrolled in the program, finds the school’s staff and DBA course mentors nurturing and supportive. During the day’s orientation, symposium and breakout sessions, she said that she was glad to have the opportunity to share her impressions with attendees.
“It always helps to hear what others at different stages of DBA program completion have to say,” said the Middlesex, N.J., resident who balances the program’s requirements with a full-time career as the head of Talent Acquisition for Coach USA while raising her two young sons.
The sessions also helped her understand how alumni tackled the program’s culminating Scholar-Practitioner Field Project and the mindsets they adopted that resulted in their success.
“I never took a traditional path in my education. My graduate-level work occurred after I was married and running a household while working,” said Nkwepo, who was also the recipient of a $2,000 Dr. George A. Pruitt Endowed Scholarship that helped to offset the costs of her doctoral degree pursuit. “If I can do it, I’m convinced that almost anyone can do it. It comes down to putting in the time and work. The interactions with fellow students who bring diverse leadership perspectives to our online discussion assignments are priceless.”
The 48-credit online DBA program features low-cost educational resources, a unique curriculum design, personalized support and instructional delivery in areas of specialization encompassing organizational leadership, human resource management and general management. Students have the option to enroll in one 3-credit course per term distributed across consecutive 8-week terms to complete the 16-academic course sequence in 32 months. The culminating Scholar-Practitioner Field Project 3-course sequence is completed in an 8-week course format.
According to the Dean of the School of Business and Management Dr. Michael Williams, who oversees the program, the DBA’s academic model sets its students and graduates apart.
“The DBA program is a professional differentiator that turns out scholar-practitioners who thrive on confronting 21st-century global business issues as they advance in their careers or forge new professional pathways,” he said. Williams noted that professionals pursuing the degree typically apply their learning and expanding leadership acumen to their workplace.
Many students in the program are also TESU alumni who have seamlessly transitioned from bachelor’s and master’s-level study to the DBA program.
“I was already familiar with Dr. Williams and the school’s academic model as a TESU 2014 Master of Science in Human Resources Management (MSHRM) program graduate,” added Nkwepo. “When I found out about the DBA’s courses and structure I was excited to enroll because of my existing comfort level and familiarity with TESU’s staff.”
A grant from the Thomas Edison State University Foundation helped support the cost of developing low- or no-cost course materials for students enrolled in the program. To learn more about the DBA program and how to apply, visit tesu.edu/dba. To learn more about the programs in the School of Business and Management, visit tesu.edu/business.