NECB Alumni Spotlight: Jeffrey Easley — Raising 4 Kids and Working Full-Time While Achieving his Bachelor’s in Business Administration
NECB: Why did you decide to attend NECB?
Jeffrey: I received an email from our HR team letting me know that we had formed a partnership with NECB. I participated in the informational call which answered all of my questions and explained the partnership. I had always wanted to go back and finish my degree. This turned out to be the chance I had been waiting for. Another way to put it, I had run out of excuses to continue putting my education off. The online platform, and ability to take as many or as few classes as I wanted offered the ability to balance my family, my work, and my educational time.
NECB: What advice would you give to someone who is considering going to NECB?
Jeffrey: Take the time to invest in yourself, and to invest in your career. Life can be overwhelming, but there is always time to do the things that are important to you. I have four kids, a full-time job, and volunteered at our church all while attending NECB. Not only can it be done, you may find yourself looking forward to sharing your experiences with your classmates. The curriculum will allow you to use real-world examples from your current or past work experiences in your actual coursework. That simple connection will make the learning experience real and more applicable to your career. Once you see the application of your education in your professional life, the coursework becomes something you want to do, versus having to do it.
NECB: What advice would you give to students to be successful with online learning? Any challenges you had to overcome? Or any misconceptions you had going in that turned out to be untrue?
Jeffrey: Plan your week and block out time in your calendar for coursework. Then respect the times you’ve set aside for yourself. Taking the time in the beginning of the week to plan ahead will prevent surprises and all-nighters. Procrastination is the surest way to add unneeded stress to your education that will cause you to stumble. Personally, I completed my assignments early in the week. This prevented the chaos of life from interfering with my success as the week went on.
NECB: How did you juggle working and attending college? Any tips you can share with future / current NECB Students?
Jeffrey: Schedule your time. I got my big assignments knocked out on the weekends when work wouldn’t interfere. Planning out the week in advance allowed me to complete everything and get it out of the way. From there, it was only a matter of setting aside 30 - 45 minutes a night, three times a week for coursework and participating in discussions. Planning lets you tackle the coursework in bite-sized pieces to keep you from getting overwhelmed.
NECB: What’s your biggest takeaway from attending NECB?
Jeffrey: Accomplishment! My education was something that I had begun and never finished. That hung over me and limited my career opportunities for over 20 years. Taking the time to complete my bachelor’s degree in business administration proved to myself that I could do it. It also illustrated to my children the importance of continuing your education.
NECB: What’s next for you?
Jeffrey: I was able to leverage my experience and my education into a new position that provides me with an enormous amount of satisfaction. I’m currently doing what I love and making an income that allows me the freedom to pursue leisure activities I enjoy.