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Testimonials

Kathy Trump

Career Goals:
I am currently a teacher with the Mat-Su Borough School District. I plan to remain there, in the same great job, but am seeking a Masters to sharpen my critical thinking skills and knowledge base.

Why APU?
APU partnered with the Skagway School District to create an eighteen credit graduate course in American history designed to help teachers become highly qualified in history. I was lucky enough to be chosen for this grant. I also received my undergraduate degree from APU. What keeps me coming back to APU is the quality of the professors. As private schools go, APU is inexpensive yet manages to attract professors who are creative, kind, and deep thinkers. APU’s professors are knowledgeable in their field and know how to teach.

What have you enjoyed most about MAP?
For the most part, MAP is a solitary program in which the work can be done in the comfort of home. To counteract what could make the program seem impersonal, MAP regularly schedules colloquiums. These meetings are a chance to brainstorm with others and to see the projects on which colleagues are working. I always leave the meeting inspired and with a wealth of new contacts.

Words of Wisdom for future MAP students:
The program director is flexible, kind, and patient as you work out the scope of your program. Replies to your questions will be immediate, helpful, and thoughtful. I came to the MAP program unsure of my direction. Half of my credits are part of the American history grant. The other half can be any of the myriad interest that speak to me. With all the world to study, I have had a problem narrowing my focus. In fact, I have changed my plans three times. Karen has remained calm and reassuring as I feel my way through.

Matt Childs

Career Goals:
I am currently employed as a computer programmer (which I enjoy immensely) – however I would like to teach history someday at either the high school or college level.

Why APU?
I chose APU because it gives me the chance to work one on one with faculty who are genuinely interested in their students. It’s rare to find a program that offers both flexibility and an environment very conducive to learning. My MAP is a hybrid degree mixing creative writing and history. This is definitely not a mix that I would have been able to work on in a more traditional environment. To me the best thing about it has been the ability to blend my work to create a much fuller and richer learning experience.

What have you enjoyed most about MAP?
The people – both faculty and fellow students. Wow – what an opportunity to meet some extraordinarily bright and thoughtful folks. I always look forward to our colloquiums as I am interested to hear about other folk’s projects and their research. Even though most of us are working on unrelated projects – there is a great sense of community among the students. We know how hard each of us works and that has created a bond among us.

Words of Wisdom for future MAP students:
Take advantage of the relationship with your advisor and don’t be afraid to change directions. This is a learning process and I think that includes growth and change – so you may find yourself headed in a completely different direction from the one you started in.

Kelly Springer

Career Goals:
To obtain a doctorate in mass communications and teach journalism.

Why APU?
The fit of the program; being able to study the area I wanted- especially as there are no journalism programs in state at the graduate level.

What have you enjoyed most about MAP?
The individuality of both the program itself and the people involved. Plus, the flexibility and precision of each phase allow the student to optimize their experience and education to a level worthy or better of any Lower-48 institution.

Words of Wisdom for future MAP students:
You can get an education here unlike anywhere else in Alaska. You’d be foolish not to take advantage of it!

Dena Luchsinger

Career Goals:
My career goals are not specific; I simply want to hone my skills and be prepared for whatever the future may hold, whether that means writing for publication, an organization, or teaching/tutoring writing skills.

Why APU?
APU offered the program that best fit my needs by allowing me to design my program of study.

What have you enjoyed most about MAP?
I have appreciated the individualized approach to education. I design study plans to address my particular goals; mentors provide the input I need to push harder and succeed. As a Valley dweller, I have also appreciated the willingness of mentors to work via e-mail and phone, saving me the time and money involved in driving to Anchorage and allowing me to concentrate on my writing.

What was your experience with the phases of the program (research, practicum, project demonstrating mastery)?
This past semester I worked with a mentor to write a 200-page non-fiction manuscript. The experience pushed me to work hard and I experienced a number of turning points. It was incredibly helpful to have an expert opinion to identify the nature of my struggles and to advise me in moments of uncertainty. As a result, I have gained new clarity in my writing process and feel that I have, in a fairly short period of time, gone from being a dabbler to a writer.

Words of Wisdom for future MAP students:
In my opinion, the MAP at APU is an excellent value in terms of learning for money. My program is specific and ambitious, and my mentors are willing to work as hard as I am. The precision of focus motivates me to strive for excellence and I feel confident that I am becoming a master of my focus. I will graduate with far more than a piece of paper. No other program that I know of (in Alaska) offers this kind of opportunity.

Dave Block

Career Goals:
Continue in the education profession and extend my abilities into the realm of Theatre and the Arts.

Why APU?
APU offers the only program in the state that is local and offers a degree in the area I wanted. It is flexible and built to suit MY needs.

What have you enjoyed most about MAP?
The flexibility of the program offers students a chance to adapt their program as they go to the discoveries they are experiencing through the process.

Words of Wisdom for future MAP students:
The rigor of this degree program is not diminished by the fact that the student forms the program of study.

Liz Hilpert

Career Goals:
I hope to teach and counsel individuals in the ways of vocal technique and health (B.S. emphasis in nutrition.)

Why APU?
Because it’s APU! I enjoyed my break from the role of ‘student’ but after years of observing the outstanding work of faculty and contribution from staff, I decided I couldn’t pass an opportunity to revisit the study of music.

What have you enjoyed most about MAP?
Not just the rich environment of ideas but the freedom for exploration and growth both as individuals and as a MAP community.

Words of Wisdom for future MAP students:
I recommend you have a firm idea of what you want to achieve, since the experience is a fruition of intense research and active learning.