Last week I had the privilege of participating in the Norwich University College of Graduate and Continuing Studies 2015 Residency Conference. NU runs several online graduate programs, which have the requirement of spending one week (at the end of the program) on campus in Northfield, VT.
As a member of the advisory board for the highly-rated Master of Science, Information Security and Assurance (MSISA) program, I find it interesting to meet the students and see the breadth of backgrounds, interests and future plans that they have. Online university programs are real, concrete, and provide access to education that would otherwise be very difficult for working professionals to accommodate in their busy lives.
The Residency Conference is the icing on the cake as students have the opportunity to meet each other and some of the professors they’ve been working with throughout their program.
And, really, who could resist the opportunity to spend a week in Vermont?
Not I, clearly — this was my second opportunity to participate in the annual conference. Last year, I gave an introduction to Internet governance, among other things.
This time, in addition to helping with facilitating case study discussion at the conference, I had the opportunity to participate by hooding in the Academic Recognition Ceremony for the MSISA and MPA programs — a fine opportunity to wear academic regalia! The school’s photographer caught some pics, so there is evidence!
I’ve long been convinced of the importance of continued learning — always keep stretching, doing, learning. Last week’s Residency Conference energy was a reminder that formal education, whether in person or online, can be an even more intense and rewarding experience than self-directed learning.