Madison Makes the Most of Online College

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Granite State College Alum, Madison
Granite State College Alum, Madison

Madison Vasquez ’22

In many ways, Madison Vasquez is exceptional. While earning her online B.S. in Human Services, the 22-year-old Granite State College graduate balanced her schoolwork, career, and the demands of her everyday life with remarkable maturity.

Throughout her experience at Granite State College, Madison was determined to take full advantage of online learning. She didn’t hesitate to interact with her classmates or pose questions to her instructors. She sought out opportunities to learn more about career services and engaged with the marketing department and advising team at the College.

She possesses the focus and drive needed to thrive in today’s complex workplace, along with the grace and self-awareness of a lifelong learner. Yes, Madison is exceptional – but she also shares a lot in common with other students at Granite State College.

Maximizing Transfer Credit at Granite State College

Like 81 percent of Granite State College students, Madison’s experience at the College began as a transfer student.

I had gone into a lot of debt attending a private four-year college. I realized I was spending too much money on my bachelor’s if I wanted to pursue my master’s.

Granite State College helped Madison maximize her transfer credit by examining her coursework and reviewing her background, identifying opportunities to award credit for what she learned outside of the classroom.

Experiential Learning

Like 90 percent of Granite State College students, Madison earned her degree while working. Madison said she was attracted to Granite State College because it offered her the flexibility to continue working while earning her degree. 

The online classes at Granite State College gave me the opportunity to balance different areas of my life.

She noted that the experiential learning has added depth and real-life meaning to her education and allowed her to apply what she learned in the classroom directly to her work.

Though balancing her classes with her job and busy life was challenging at times, Madison was able to improve her skills with time management, prioritization, and communicating boundaries to meet her academic goals. She also built a resume along the way, making her a more attractive candidate to recruiters.

Having experiential learning opportunities that are related to your desired industry can really help propel you farther.

Balancing Work, School, and Life

Like all Granite State College students, Madison balanced her online education with the demands of her everyday life. Madison arrived at the College during a difficult transitional period as she navigated grief from the loss of her mother to cancer and a complex family situation. She said Granite State College met her where she was and gave her the support needed to succeed. She acknowledged the personalized approach that the College’s faculty take and their dedication to supporting students through their academic journeys.

The instructors are incredibly responsive. If you want to meet with them, they’re there for you.

Madison said her educational experience has gone beyond simply learning the skills needed for a successful career.

I didn’t just receive an education. I learned how to advocate for myself as a woman, as a person. And there’s a lot of value in that.

Benefitting From Career Services 

Like all Granite State College students, alumni, and prospective students, Madison has access to Career Services, which have helped her to find her path and build her career.

In fact, not only has Madison benefitted from these services – but she also worked as a Special Projects Assistant at the College, supporting the Director of Career Services.

Madison learned key professional development skills like how to build a resume and cover letter, network, and use social media tools like LinkedIn. Then, she was able to apply those skills by teaching them to others.

The professional development skills that Madison developed, along with her educational experience, helped her to land a new role as an Operations Support Specialist for Career and Professional Success at UNH.  In this role, Madison supports recruiters looking to hire UNH graduates. She helps them get acquainted with the career management platform Handshake, supporting on-campus career events, and more.

For Madison, the Sky’s the Limit

Now that Madison has completed her bachelor’s degree, she already has her sights set on a master’s program. As for what she plans to study, she’s taking some time before she makes that big decision.

I want to make this time of transition and discernment worthwhile.

No matter what Madison does next, it’s clear: the sky’s the limit.

 

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