Logged on Learning
Finding the right educational path to fit your lifestyle
by Doreen Ninsiima Kasozi
I never thought I would pursue an online doctorate. I’ve always had misconceptions about online study, and my priority after earning my master’s degree in economic policy management was to focus on my family and build my career.
From my background and upbringing in Uganda, a quality education was limited to classroom learning and required physically being in the room with the instructor. Little did I know that the evolution of technology was going to change my life, reengineering the delivery of not only undergraduate and master’s degrees, but also how doctorates are pursued.
My bias against online doctorates for adult learners caused me to embark on a challenging journey of applying for international on-campus doctorate programs. Unfortunately, none of my applications were accepted. I had to go back to the drawing board and rethink my career in light of my family and commitments.
Given my full-time work in quality assurance, I decided to restart my application process with a clear focus on a doctorate degree that would give me the latitude to remain relevant in my quality profession, be marketable and competitive, and most importantly, be there for my young children.
Finally, my relentless search paid off. Not only did I find the right degree—a doctorate in business administration in quality systems management—I was also admitted to the program. But the joke was on me—it was an online program. I put aside my preconceptions about online degrees and gave it a shot.
That was three years ago. Today, I am proud and humbled to be part of the doctors of quality systems management who transform quality systems in businesses, educational institutions and organizations around the world. I also was privileged to be the only African student in my doctorate class.
I made a commitment to myself to champion online degrees specifically for other parents who want to pursue their education while also balancing their family and work lives.
With this invaluable achievement, I jumpstarted my career as a quality compliance expert, applying the skills and knowledge acquired from my degree program to mentor doctoral students in their research projects on quality systems and to enhance my consultancy work in strategic quality planning and development.
Online education did this for me and if I can do it, anyone can.
Doreen Ninsiima Kasozi is a quality compliance expert and consultant in Nairobi, Kenya. She earned a doctorate in business administration in quality systems management from the National Graduate School of Quality Management.