Outstanding Online Graduate Student Award Winner Interview: Ayana Worrell-Grogan

Ayana Worrell-Grogan is our 5th recipient of the Online Outstanding Graduate Award! Ayana is graduating with her Master of Arts in Human Resources Management (MA). We asked her to reflect on her degree program and her experience with WebsterU Online:

Why did you choose to do your degree online?
Selecting an online degree was the best option for me due to the lifestyle I live. Being married to an Active duty military member often means, being on the move every two to three years. The online degree program provided me with ability to attend one university with the singular goal of achieving my Master’s Degree in Human Resources.  It also provided me the benefit of being able to spend time with my family while simultaneously providing me the opportunity to work on my schooling at a pace that was achievable for me.

What advice would you give students who are considering getting their degree online?
I would recommend discipline and time-management as they have been the keys to my success in completing my degree.

We usually recommend that online students set a time and place to “go to” class. Did you do this? Would you give us tips?
Setting a specific time and place to complete my coursework was not an option for me.  I overcame this by removing all distractions such as television and any internal distractions that would redirect my focus when completing my coursework.

How long did it take you to feel comfortable with the fact that you would never see your classmates? 
During my second semester of my online program, I finally became comfortable with the idea that I may never see a classmate or a professor. Throughout the program, I recognized many of my classmates by their names, from courses we have taken together.

How did you approach your class on a daily basis – did you have a set pattern for accessing certain tools or parts of the course each day?
My approach to my classes was not daily but at least every other day. I utilized the mobile Canvas-Student app and WorldClassRoom to be able to access the course material. For example, I would review class discussion, professor notes, group participation and had the ability to review upcoming assignments. This application provided me with the benefit of overviewing course material as long as I had an internet connection.

What was your most memorable online course and instructor? Can you elaborate why?
One of my most memorable courses while attending Webster University was Cross-Cultural Management with Professor Bernadette van Houten. This class allowed me to view the world from someone else’s perspective. Having the understanding of how different cultural views can be interpreted. Professor van Houten made this class memorable not only because of her rapid response to grades and answering questions but her meaningful feedback and involvement throughout the entire semester.

What does the Outstanding Graduate Award mean to you?
The Outstanding Graduate Award is a reflection of my hard work and dedication. Throughout my degree program, I encounter many challenging moments where my motivation grew weak but was able to recover and regain my momentum to preserver and succeed. I am humbled and truly honored to been selected for the award.