Kyle Clift: Finishing a Degree from the Front Lines

9/3/2010

Earning a degree can be tough under the easiest of circumstances. Earning a graduate degree while on active deployment with the Unites States Military is a whole other experience. For Kyle Clift, however, it is just another day on the job. Clift, a Senior Chief Petty Officer with the United States Navy, is working on his MS in Program Management while stationed overseas. This is possible through WebCampus, the award-winning long distance learning program offered by Stevens Institute of Technology. Now in its 10th year, Stevens' WebCampus is the premiere online education resource for students interested in furthering their career while still living their everyday lives. With a strong focus on engineering, project management, technology and sciences – areas that Stevens has built a strong reputation in over the last 140 years – WebCampus has top-quality academic programs and a tremendous commitment to the development and use of best practices in online education. WebCampus gives students a chance that they may never have had otherwise to achieve their maximum potential. Clift, who lives in Washington State with his wife and three children, is a perfect example of just that. He works as an integrated scheduler on the 787 Program at Boeing. It was at this job where he first learned about Stevens. "I liked Stevens' rich history," explained Clift. "It's not just a 'fly by night' online school and it was also accredited by the Project Management Institute." Clift said this was his first foray into online education and since joining WebCampus has taken seven online courses towards his MSPM. Everything thus far has exceeded his expectations, from the communication with instructors to the ease of the online interface. "The support from everyone at Stevens during my studies has been awesome," said Clift. "All the instructors I have had communicated as much as I needed." In the last decade students from 40 states and 40 countries have taken Stevens classes through WebCampus. It has been honored by numerous educational associations and, as such, has an impressive list of honors and awards. This list includes the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) 2010 International Distance Learning Award, the most prestigious award for excellence in distance learning. This enviable reputation has brought educators from around the world to Stevens in Hoboken, NJ to learn more about WebCampus and how it has mastered the art and science of offering quality graduate education through the Internet. It has also attracted a world-class staff and faculty who are totally committed to their students. "Learning environments are different today than they ever were and that's why we have to work to meet the new needs of the students," stated Robert Zotti, Assistant Dean of WebCampus for Stevens. "We have a strong commitment and dedication to providing students first-class education in a flexible environment." Clift, a member of the Naval Reserves, has two more courses to complete before earning his degree and said he hopes to finish the task during his downtime while stationed overseas. "Finishing my program online while I'm deployed is a goal I have set for myself," said Clift. "Hopefully whichever base I am stationed will have a good broadband connection!"