By means of trial and error, Amori Colbert tried several schooling options before landing on something that accommodated her life and work. She tried brick-and-mortar schools only to find that they didn’t work with her active-duty schedule. After conducting research in search of something better, she found WGU. “I had given up on school until WGU came along. It’s really helped to build my confidence in what I’m capable of,” Amori says. Now, she is serving in the military while earning her bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity and information assurance. “Being active-duty military, I enjoy how WGU caters to students with military backgrounds,” she says. The go-at-your-own-pace online format of her degree program allows her to use the lulls in her work schedule to catch up on coursework. When she’s busy with work, she can put school on pause. This setup has allowed Amori to bring her career to the next level and prove to herself how successful she can be. “[WGU] gives people with busy schedules and full-time jobs a second chance with a bonus of certification that are industry standards,” she says.
Amori has faced hardship in her journey to earning her degree. “Recently I’ve been through a lot and on top of that I lost a family member very close to me,” Amori adds, stating that WGU gave her the time and space to handle whatever life threw at her. “My mentor has been so understanding and adjusts my timelines to ensure I’m able to stay on track.” WGU mentors are there to help students like Amori stay motivated and have a successful journey throughout their education, even when life is unpredictable. “It can be difficult to feel like someone is actually taking care of you as it pertains to diversity and inclusion, and I have such an amazing mentor who does a phenomenal job at ensuring I’m set up for success," Amori shares.
Every student, regardless of lifestyle and career, should have access to high-quality education. Traditional four-year colleges and universities simply aren’t set up to offer this to everyone. With significant time and money investments, in-person courses, and rigid schedules, earning a higher education from an on-campus school is often not doable. That’s why it’s important that alternative, flexible options exist—so nonconventional college students like active-duty military members can earn their degree while serving their country.
Many students like Amori can benefit from degree options that are more flexible than those of a traditional four-year institution. Can you earn your college degree while on active duty? The answer is a resounding yes, and Amori stands as a testament to that. “As an African American woman serving in an active-duty capacity, I am elated with how WGU does their best to represent every part of who I am and I’m so thankful to God to have found this school,” said Amori. The Military Order of The Purple Heart, Idaho Department, has recognized WGU as a Purple Heart University for its support of military veterans, noting that WGU has a large and highly decorated veteran population. Whether you’re pursuing a degree to help you advance in your military career or transition to a civilian career, WGU offers the degree options, flexibility, financial support, military scholarships, and mentorship designed to bolster your success.