By Megan Hines
Online Learning Tips Contributor
Entrepreneur, author and motivational speaker Jim Rohn once said, “Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.”
Motivation is a powerful thing for all of us. It’s what gets us up in the morning, what pushes us to succeed and what helps us reach our goals.
For many of our university students, motivation is one of the main keys to completing a degree. So when we asked on social media what motivated our students to pursue a master’s degree, we weren’t surprised that AMU and APU students share common motivators that inspired them to continue their education. These motivators include family, pride and accomplishment, greater career opportunities and a love for learning.
“I’m still active-duty Air Force and I’ve put more time into my master’s than studying for promotions. To me, a degree is for a lifetime; the Air Force can be only 20 years. Also, I wanted to be that role model for my son (he’s 10 months) and prove that education is still important.” — Gerald Wood, AMU student
“For two reasons: as I make another transition in my life, I would like to teach online so I needed to go back to school for increased credentials. Also, I am hoping to inspire my daughter to pursue her master’s, too!” — Kathy Andriaccio, APU student
“My promise to my mom that I would get my college degree if she allowed me to enlist into the U.S. Army. I got my AA degree, a bachelor’s in criminal justice and my master’s degree in homeland security.” — Vernal Theresa Garris, AMU student
“My son earned his master’s degree in remote imaging from George Mason University in 2009, which prompted me to complete my degree in international studies and move forward on a master’s degree in homeland security. If he can do it, so can his momma!” — Karyle Cohen-Tong, APU student
“As a naval officer and father, it is important to me to maximize my options to enhance my career and the quality of life for my sons.” — J. Nick, AMU student
Pride and Accomplishment
“I felt so ashamed that I squandered away 23 years of free education while I was in the military, so I enforced my own self-imposed punishment. First, I would not only get my bachelor’s degree in intelligence studies, but would also earn my master’s degree in homeland security, both within four years. I made a lot of sacrifices, but it was well worth it in the long run! Having my master’s has given me a new sense of pride and accomplishment.” — Larry Johnson II, AMU student
“I was looking for something that would place me above my peers.” — Earl Robin, AMU student
Greater Career Opportunities
“The desire for continued education and the career possibilities a master’s unlocks. I am considering a doctorate program afterwards. Three courses left after this semester!” — Malory Pope Ericksen, APU student
“Someday, I want to run a public safety firm and oversee all of the operations that are involved. I believe that having a clear understanding of the “ins” and “outs” of business is the most responsible action I can take before undertaking such a responsibility. Between my experience and my education, I hope that I can make my contribution to my family, my community and my country.” — David Basnak, AMU student
“I need to up my game to enter the career field I want to be in instead of the field I seem to be stuck in. And I love learning. A lot.” — Jaque Saunders Gill, APU student
A Love for Learning
Instagram user and APU student @lifebythesea826 said: “I have a never-ending thirst for knowledge. Having the ability to keep working full-time and to pursue my studies at a much more rigorous pace than the brick-and-mortar options was exceptionally appealing.”
“Because I love taking courses with AMU! I already have my A.S. and B.A. with AMU and can’t wait to get my M.A. in May 2017. After I was injured while serving in the military, taking classes with AMU was the only thing that kept me going.” — Sharon Stewart, AMU student
“To stop my brain from deteriorating, to show my high-school-aged kids that lifelong learning is rewarding and fun, and I just love school!” — Marie Purucker, APU student
Now that you know what motivated some of your classmates to pursue a master’s degree, it’s your turn! Share with us what inspired you to continue your education in the comments below or on the AMU and APU Facebook pages.
About the Author
Megan Hines is a Social Media Coordinator at American Public University System, where she engages with students across various university social media channels. She has more than three years of social media and marketing experience and enjoys working in the ever-changing field of social media. Megan graduated cum laude from West Virginia University with a B.S. in broadcast news and a minor in communications.
Ready When You Are
At American Public University, students are priority one. We are committed to providing quality education, superior student resources, and affordable tuition. In fact, while post-secondary tuition has risen sharply nationwide, the university continues to offer affordable tuition without sacrificing academic quality.