Tag Archive | "APU"

Student Profile: Preserving the Environment One Park at a Time


American Public University Alumna, Heather Groen

American Public University Alumna, Heather Groen

Interview with APU Alumna, Heather Groen

The following profile is the eighth in a series of student profiles of our students and alumni at the university.

Job title: Biological Science Technician, National Park Service

Degree earned: M.S. Environmental Policy and Management, 2012, American Public University

What have you been up to since earning your degree at APU?

Receiving my master’s degree from APU was a pinnacle in my life. This degree enabled me to work for several land management agencies, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Park Service. To assist the USFWS motto in conservation management, I served at the USFWS National Conservation Training Center as a training technician and delivered content on resource management, sustainability and conservation. From there, I began working for the state side of fish and wildlife management for the Management Assistance Team in Shepherdstown, WV.

Presently, I am a park ranger working for the National Park Service as a Biological Science Technician. The knowledge and resources I obtained from earning my degree at APU gave me the ability to work for land management agencies and focus on resource management and conservation in a field I am passionate about.

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Goal Tracking for Academic Success in the Online Environment


goal-tracking-schoolBy Allyson Donohue & Stephanie Kennedy
Assessment Specialists, Academic Advising at American Public University

We have all heard how important planning and tracking our progress is to reach our goals, but this can be especially important in an online environment. How do some students reach their goals more efficiently, or seem to have it “easier” than others? Many students focus on goal planning and track their progress throughout their online program, and this includes creating and achieving short-term and long-term goals. Short-term goals can include getting at least a ‘B’ in your next two classes, while a long-term goal could be graduating with a GPA of 3.0 or higher. Short-term goals can be created and crossed off a list as they are completed, while long-term goals can be revisited at specified time intervals.

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A Bachelor’s Degree Years in the Making


bachelors-success-story-straighterlineBy Beth Dumbauld
Online Learning Tips, Special Contributor

This article was previously run on the StraighterLine blog

Sonya Young lives in Florida and has been in the workforce for nearly 20 years. She’s an accountant who already has her Associate in Applied Science in Accounting. Over the years since her first job, she got married, and kept working. Life was busy – and it continues to be busy. But that hasn’t stopped Sonya from pursuing additional academic credentials and her bachelor’s degree.

Sonya originally started her career in an entry-level position in accounting, and her talent in accounting quickly became apparent. After she earned her associate degree, she was able to take on new responsibilities. She got promoted – several times. Now, she’s a financial officer at a nonprofit.

And yet, around 8 years ago, Sonya realized that “not having my bachelor’s degree was becoming an issue. To advance even further in my career, to earn a directorship at a nonprofit, I knew I needed to go back to school.”

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Webinars for Graduate Students Emphasize Tools for Career Advancement


managing-conflict-grad-webinarBy Dr. Jennifer Douglas
Director, Graduate Studies at American Public University

As reported by the Council of Graduate Schools, employment for individuals with master’s degrees is expected to grow 22% from 2010 to 2020. Completing a master’s degree can enhance your career prospects by providing you with deeper knowledge in the content area as well as transferable skills for the current job market. According to research conducted by the Council of Graduate Schools, graduate students need to develop transferable skills in order to be successful in the workplace, whether seeking a new career or advancing in a current one.

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How to Run a Business Transition War-Game


bus-wargame-online-classBy Dr. William Oliver Hedgepeth
Program Director, Government Contracts and Acquisition at American Public University

When I was Chair of Logistics Department at the University of Alaska Anchorage, I was asked to visit Hawaii for two weeks; I was part of a brainstorming exercise into what Hawaii wanted to be known for. So, my Dean and I shipped off to Hawaii, along with Senator Ted Stevens (Alaska) and Senator Daniel Inouye (Hawaii).

We were participating in a business transition exercise with about 100 other “experts.” At the end of the week, I had learned that Hawaiian business people wanted to add a brand to their identity that was not tourist, pineapple or any number of things that seem, well, Hawaiian. I purchased five Hawaiian shirts many Alaskans wear in the summer. Ultimately, I learned two things. One was that some leaders in Hawaii wanted to be known for biomass that is, burning all that green stuff that grows all the time and product alternative energy sources. The second thing was seeing how a brainstorming session could be seen in different viewpoints, not just from the different ages of the participants or different cultures.

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Where Are the Luddites Today?


digital-addiction-LudditesBy Dr. William Oliver Hedgepeth
Program Director, Government Contracts and Acquisition at American Public University

Have you tried to live without your iPhone or cell phone for a day? A week? Two weeks? Can you imagine leaving your cell phone at home, cut off, and drive away to the coffee shop to meet some friends, to the hardware store, or to the grocery store? How does this make you feel?

My granddaughters told me that they use their cell phones to stay in touch with their friends, and they instant message or text others over 300 times each day. Have you gone out to dinner with your friends or spouse and seen a family of four or a couple on a date sitting at the table, each texting or checking email? I have. I suspect you have.

Has that person been you? When we go to dinner, we routinely turn the sound off of the iPhone or turn it off. I place my phone in my coat pocket. My wife’s cell phone is in her purse. It ,too, is turned off, lest her brother text or call her to ask some silly question like what is the weather like in Virginia or to tell us what his two cats have done today, lying around in the sun and doing nothing.

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How to Prepare for School Assessments


test-taking-tips-online-learningBy Nichole Ahlstrom
COLL100 Faculty at American Public University

Have you ever wondered how in the world you did so poorly on a test when you studied your heart out? Have you ever wondered if you misinterpreted the information, or maybe you didn’t study the right material? If you answer yes then you are not alone. Many students think they’re taking accurate notes, know how to properly review the material, and can ask the professor questions in preparation for tests. Putting forth every effort in studying to only find out that the efforts made were not good enough can be detrimental to a student’s psyche.

In preparing for a test certain techniques must be addressed. For example, where and when studying occurs is important. How much material and what specific information must be studied, taking proper notes, and the list goes on. The most important aspect of studying for a test is not only reviewing class lectures, notes, and textbook material, but also the process that needs to follow is imperative. Here are my thoughts as an instructor on the most important features of studying for an exam.

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How to Read More Critically in College


critical-thinking-reading-tipsBy Kim Bessolo
Faculty Member, School of Arts and Humanities at American Public University

When we read critically, we question our comprehension, double-check to ensure we understood a concept accurately and connect what we read to what we already know. Critical reading is thinking while we are reading. It is engaging with text as if there were a conversation between author and reader. It is hard work, going beyond simply consuming information on a page, to actually participating in the process of creating meaning. Critical reading extends beyond understanding words and moves us into making judgments and drawing conclusions.

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