Accepting the Credit

Posted by Paula Paine on March 18, 2014 in Herb Cody’s story is that of countless middle-aged professionals – industry-trained; proficient in his field; extensive, progressive experience; excellent reputation – but his real-world qualifications can no longer land the jobs that match his expertise. The new marketplace reality dictates that he have a degree.
“I knew I had to go to the next level,” said Cody, an OU-Wisconsin student enrolled in the Management program with a minor in Marketing. “I had been in the broadcast industry for more than 20 years, with experience from sales and marketing to programming to creative to senior management. But every job I applied for across industries required a bachelor’s degree.”

Cody wasn’t without education. He graduated from the Specs Howard School of Broadcast Arts and earned his radio operator 3rd class license. He also completed his Associate’s in Applied Science, Business Management degree through Milwaukee Area Technical College (MATC).

When he decided to get the needed bachelor’s degree, Cody explored several options, including Ottawa University. He had actually looked at OU years earlier when he serviced one of its advertising accounts, but at that point he wasn’t in a position to go back to school. This time, Cody realized that OU was the perfect fit. “The focus of the school was perfect for where I was in life,” he said. “OU is geared towards individuals in my demographic and psychographic – older professionals looking to move forward but who need to fit their education into their existing lifestyle.”

Another deciding factor for Cody was the credit transfer agreement that Ottawa University has with MATC. Of his 70 associate’s degree credits, 68 were accepted towards his bachelor’s degree at OU, accelerating the realization of his long-sought-after achievement.

“WATC brought in representatives from various schools to speak to students about pursuing their bachelor’s,” said Cody. “By far, Leanne Iverson was the most impressive. She knew the product. She was able to look at my transcript and devise a tentative education plan on the spot. Plus, OU’s program was flexible, allowing me to design my own schedule.”

Cody enrolled with OU-Wisconsin during the summer of 2013 at a time when he was unemployed and doing piecemeal work. It wasn’t long before he knew that going back to school was the right move, however.317817_2152068119906_1923554351_n.jpg

“I had just completed the Organizational Communications course with instructor Billy Knight, who was an incredible teacher,” said Cody. “Then I got a job interview, and I was amazed that everything the company covered in the interview had been addressed in the course. I even had to write a business plan paper in APA format as part of the job application, so having to write papers in my classes and the Org Comm course both proved instrumental in getting the job as market manager with QueenBee Radio. In fact, I got the call with the job offer while I was in an OU class. It just seemed appropriate.” He had been on the job only 20 days at the time he was interviewed for this article.

Now he just has to finish his degree. If all goes as planned, Cody will earn his diploma by the end of 2014, and it will be his turn to accept all the credit!