For a kid raised in New York City, life growing up can be full of temptations and distractions from education. But while things weren’t always easy for Jeremy Ramos, he knew that his hard work, focus, and dedication would one day pay off and allow him to help others avoid the pitfalls of a vicious cycle.
Education wasn’t always at the forefront for Jeremy’s family. It was mostly considered a way to get by and remain out of trouble. But Jeremy wanted to change the culture and thinking process for his family and others, because he feels that education is important for everyone.
After earning his master’s, Jeremy believed his next step in career counseling would be better served by a doctoral degree. He began looking for programs that matched his interests, but most schools were focused on clinical psychology, which wasn’t what he wanted. Then he discovered the online Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership program offered by Maryville University.
Gaining knowledge to support his career goals
“I came across Maryville in a TV commercial,” Jeremy remembers. “So, I looked them up, and after speaking to an admission counselor, everything seemed to align with my goals. I just felt a sense of connection with Maryville.”
Over the course of three years and 19 classes, Jeremy learned from an experienced and knowledgeable faculty of education leadership professionals who motivated him to achieve beyond his own expectations.
“My professors and advisors helped shape my time here,” Jeremy says. “Just knowing that supportive people are out there who want you to succeed is something I will take away from Maryville. My time here has definitely been a great experience.”
During his first year in the program, Jeremy went to London with his cohort to learn about the United Kingdom’s education system and approaches — and to see how they compare to those in the United States. Later, he would learn firsthand how Maryville’s online Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership program’s dissertation and residency components provide additional knowledge and structure.
Just knowing that supportive people are out there who want you to succeed is something I will take away from Maryville. My time here has definitely been a great experience.
Strengthening the classroom learning experience
Like many doctoral students, Jeremy was required to write a dissertation, but it was a type of project he had never attempted before. However, the School of Education provides every student with a template for the assignment.
“I came in not knowing the correct format or what to look for,” Jeremy says. “But the outline provided me with the foundations for each section and the definitions of each component. It was a great layout.”
For Jeremy, it was more than just an assignment: It was personal. His thesis was inspired by an undocumented friend who earned a master’s degree and began living the American dream — only for that dream to be put on hold because his immigration status prevented him from finding employment.
“My dissertation was on the career advising process for undocumented students after higher education,” Jeremy says. “I felt that was a major issue, because it’s a population that needs better assistance. I feel like there’s a lot more that can be done.”
Jeremy also participated in two residency experiences — one on campus and one online. As the youngest student in his cohort, he took advantage of the opportunity to learn from the professional experiences of his fellow classmates.
“Residency was another way to complement the dissertation experience,” he says. “It was really great because that’s where you get to ask questions face to face, with both your professors and your advisors.”
Accomplishing his dream through hard work and dedication
Jeremy says his thesis assignment, residency, and study abroad experience also helped him to develop different leadership styles that will impact his career beyond graduation.
“It’s still a surreal feeling, because I’ve always thought I could never take part in something like this,” he says. “When you think back, it makes you proud for accomplishing something so rigorous.”
During the program, Jeremy explored dimensions of leadership such as collaboration, strategic thought, time management, and organization that can help him learn and grow within his position.
“I would definitely refer the program to others,” Jeremy says. “And when you make it through the program, you’re a Saint for life. That’s something I will always cherish.”
Education can help someone become brave. That’s exactly what Maryville has done for me over the past three years.
Finding new opportunities to pay it forward
Having earned his doctorate in higher education leadership, Jeremy plans to continue making an impact in his community.
“For me, it’s about getting people re-engaged in community employment,” Jeremy says. “Finding the proper resources, how to write a resume, dress properly, and work with others. That’s a set of education skills that’s rarely tapped into.”
Eventually, Jeremy plans to pivot toward the role of career advisor in higher education, with the goal of becoming a dean. His decision to pursue his doctoral degree took courage and commitment. And through his desire to foster positive change, he also experienced change within himself.
“Instead of asking ‘What can education do for a person?’ maybe we should ask ‘What can education do to a person?’” Jeremy says. “Education can help someone become brave. And that’s exactly what Maryville has done for me over the past three years.”
If you’re ready to see how Maryville Online can help you be brave and pursue your educational and professional goals, we’re here for you. Check out our online bachelor’s degrees, master’s degrees, and doctorate degrees, or schedule a call with an advisor today.
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