Online colleges helping students further their careers

Online colleges helping students further their careers

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LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Many young adults are making the decision to boost their careers by going back to school.

When Chelsea Montervino decided to go back to school, she already had a busy schedule, so earning a degree online became her best bet.

“I do believe there were a lot of resources within my own company that I’m currently at to be able to support you if there are stressful moments in addition to WGU’s resources and different sectors of their schooling,” Montervino explained.

The rise of online education is helping reshape people’s careers. Online colleges like Western Governors University offer affordable and flexible coursework for those balancing work and family obligations.

Rick Benbow, the Regional Vice President for WGU on the West Coast said not only are they bridging the job gap by offering degrees in education or healthcare, but have continued to expand their online campus including right now in Nevada in the last several years.

“Just regionally from the standpoint of WGU applications, we have received and noticed an increase of upwards of 25% in applications and enrollment is a little bit higher,” Benbow explained.

The non-profit, online university was first launched in Nevada back in 2015 by former Governor Brian Sandoval.

“Being a workforce partner, we strategically identify or position ourselves to offer degrees in high-demand fields, knowing we want the ultimate return on investments to be there for our students,” Benbow said.

Montervino was able to finish her MBA in healthcare administration in just under 3 years and now works as a controller at Encompass Health.

“Healthcare moves a lot, whether you’re going to stay in town or if you’re going to move to a different state, it allows that ease and flow to go be able to be a part of your life in a different state if you have to move,” Montervino said.

Montervino said this nontraditional approach helped cut down the stress, time, and financial worries while helping her achieve her goals. It’s an option she said many of her peers have considered in this competitive job market.

“It gave me the confidence to go forward in my career path, also I don’t feel like I missed anything by not going to a brick and mortar because I was already established in some of my career path and I needed that extra curriculum to push it over the edge a little bit,” Montervino added.

WGU Nevada currently has over 3,600 students and over 8,000 graduates. About 78% of WGU Nevada students work while enrolled, and 67% are employed full-time.

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