The DCP Blog

Benefits of Earning Your Degree

Benefits of Earning Your Degree

A college degree is so much more than just a piece of paper or a diploma hanging on a wall. In today’s society, earning a Bachelor’s Degree equals the ability to earn a higher salary, be more satisfied in a career, and develop an overall higher quality of life. New studies are showing that the “earnings gap between young adults with and without bachelor’s degrees has stretched to its widest level in nearly half a century.” In the long run the value of a college education outweighs the rising cost of tuition. The Pew Research Center recently published a report on the Rising Cost of Not Going to College. Their findings point out that “virtually every measure of economic well-being and career attainment – from personal earnings to job satisfaction to the share employed full time – young college graduates are outperforming their peers with less education.” They explain that when today’s young adults are compared to others from previous generations, the disparity has never been greater between the economic outcomes of college graduates and those who have a high school diploma or less formal education. The study of employed 25-32 year-olds also finds that those who are “college graduates are more likely than those without any college experience to say that their education has been ‘very useful’ in preparing them for work and a career (46% vs. 31%).” This study also states that the young adults with an education agree that they have the necessary training to advance in their careers. The benefits of earning a Bachelor’s Degree far outweigh the financial burden of the cost of the...
Academic Concerns for Adult Students

Academic Concerns for Adult Students

Students returning to school after several years are often concerned about keeping up with academics. Taking tests and writing essays may seem like a distant, and often unpleasant, memory from long ago. Yet when the goal is as important as finishing a degree, many are working hard to brush up on the study skills from the past to keep up with classmates in the present. The Degree Completion Program (DCP) at ACU is conscious of the concern that many adult students have regarding study skills and collegiate writing assignments. The accelerated, 20-month schedules for the Behavioral Studies, Business Administration, and Christian Ministries Bachelor’s Degrees all begin with a course specifically designed for adult students to set them up for success. This course helps adults sharpen the skills they already have from previous college and workplace experience. Here are five tips for adult students to keep in mind when preparing to go back to college: 1. Let God be part of your journey. He has made it possible for you to come this far, lean on Him to carry you through to the celebration at the end. Pull together support from family and friends and ask them to pray you through each class and any times of struggle. 2. Be patient with yourself. The more time you’ve spent away from school the more difficult it may be to feel comfortable. It’s possible that it will all come rushing back, but if it doesn’t, be gracious with yourself and keep trying. You are doing something noble and worthwhile, don’t let negativity weigh you down. 3. Adjust your schedule. Carve out an...

ACU Provides a Christian Educational Environment for Adults

Jena Bitikofer can often be found in the library at Arizona Christian University. She is a Christian Ministries student in the Degree Completion Program who works as a Behavioral Health Technician in a residential program for teenagers ages 11-18. In her classes, she enjoys being able to discuss life’s pertinent circumstances with other adult students who will pray about those circumstances, and keep the focus on the Lord above. “I like and appreciate being challenged in the DCP program by aiming for the best results with the awesome communication between professors and students,” she explains. “We all have ONE focus, ONE aim, ONE heart that joins us together and that is to worship, praise, and live for the Lord.” Students like Jena are the backbone of the Degree Completion Program. Adult students are able to immediately apply the lessons being learned in the classroom to real-life professional settings. The courses work to improve current skill sets and give the tools needed to pursue career aspirations and ministry dreams. Her hope is to open a safe home for battered women and children. She also plans to establish an outreach organization where families can build their lives up again with confidence. The Christian educational environment at ACU is the reason Jena chose the Degree Completion Program. It is through this program that Jena is able to learn from the experienced faculty in the Christian Ministries program that teach her the biblical principles and practical ministry skills she needs with a Christ-centered focus. Are you thinking about going back to school? If this is something that’s been tugging at your heart for...
Fernando Cota Joins the Degree Completion Team!

Fernando Cota Joins the Degree Completion Team!

I am so excited to announce the addition of Fernando Cota to the Degree Completion Team here at ACU! Fernando is joining us as the new DCP Admissions Counselor and will be working with the adult students entering in the program. As a graduate of ACU’s Class of 2009, Fernando is a familiar face to Arizona Christian University. His experience as a previous student gives him a unique understanding of the culture of the University and is valuable in getting new students excited about joining the ACU Community. Fernando has also worked as an Admissions Counselor with traditional students. For the last eight months, however, Fernando has been on active duty with the Navy, training to become a Corpsman. His training involved learning a lot about Navy medicine, EMT training, Basic Training, Battlefield Medicine, and taking care of Marines in combat. “I believe I can use my experience in admissions and the Military to better serve our students,” Fernando explains. “Much of my job prior was in helping students line up a plan towards getting into ACU and making sure that they had their applications and recommendation letters ready to go. My Military service, I believe, will help me better serve some of our Military students and Veterans by having that common connection with them. The Military lifestyle is a unique one and I am excited that I not only get an opportunity to share that with our Military students, but that I also get to be a part of helping them reach their educational goals.” If you’re thinking about going back to school as a working adult, Fernando...
Going Back to School for Your Behavioral Health Degree at ACU

Going Back to School for Your Behavioral Health Degree at ACU

One of the most popular degrees in the DCP at Arizona Christian University is Behavioral Health – for good reason! Students who earn a degree in Behavioral Health are able to choose from a variety of job opportunities in the mental health community. Earning a Bachelor’s Degree through the Degree Completion Program also prepares them to pursue graduate work leading to licensure in counseling. Within the Behavioral Health Program at ACU, adults coming back to school can learn about the psychological, emotional and spiritual well-being for individuals as well as families. Students are able to gain these insights in the Degree Completion Program through courses such as Principles of Counseling, Human Development, Addictions, and Abnormal Psychology. All of the courses within the Behavioral Health curriculum are taught by Christian faculty who are qualified and experienced. They understand the demands and responsibilities of working adults because they are already living and working within the field they are teaching. In addition, all of the instructors teach their subject from a Christian perspective and biblical worldview. There are a number of great things about getting a Bachelor’s Degree in Behavioral Health through the Degree Completion Program at ACU. The one-night a week format, the convenient location, and the ability to graduate in less than 20 months are all great reasons to check it out. Are you thinking about a degree in Behavioral Health? Give us a call at 602-386-4183 to speak to Fernando Cota, DCP Admissions Counselor or e-mail him at Fernando.Cota@arizonachristian.edu and he’ll be glad to work with you on mapping out your individual academic...
ACU’s Degree Completion Program: A Great Experience

ACU’s Degree Completion Program: A Great Experience

Watching students grow in their confidence in the Degree Completion Program at Arizona Christian University gives me the opportunity to see the value that education has on one’s life. Education is worth more than a piece of paper – or the cost in gaining that piece of paper. A Bachelor’s Degree can benefit and transform your life in ways that are significant and profound. Even within her first semester, I have been able to see that significance in the life of Tamara Yanke. Tamara is one of the students working toward a degree in Business Administration. It has been a joy to watch her grow in her confidence this past semester. She is discovering skills that she never knew she had, and through each course she learns more about developing the gifts that God has given her. Tamara chose the DCP because she liked the way the program is designed. “If you follow the program the way it is planned out,” she explains, “you will complete your degree in two years!  I still can’t believe I am finished with my first semester and starting on my second.  Going to class one day a week and having the rest of the week to study works well for my busy schedule.  So far it has been a great experience.” When I asked her what she enjoys the most, she described her experience like this: The thing I like most about the Degree Completion Program, is the camaraderie and support of the other students and instructors in the program.  In my cohort we were all working adults with busy lives and commitments,...
Transform Your Life – DCP Student Testimonies

Transform Your Life – DCP Student Testimonies

Recently, I asked some of the Degree Completion Students to share one way that the Degree Completion Program at ACU was impacting their life. I was both blessed and impacted by the responses. We have some amazing students in our program and their affirmation on the very aspects that we work hard to achieve was incredible. I wasn’t surprised to receive responses that centered on the “wonderful education” they receive, the fact that our professors are “top notch”, and that the cohorts groups the students join are like “family”. Many of the students also mentioned and elaborated on the convenience of the scheduling as being a huge impact. Having classes for working adults only one night a week allows them to balance school with their everyday lives and responsibilities and gives them the opportunity to pursue the very career opportunities they are learning about through each course they complete. Are you thinking about going back to school? See for yourself what a few of these students have to say: Jena (Behavioral Health): Sometimes words just aren’t enough to express how grateful I am to step out in faith and obtain this wonderful education at Arizona Christian University!! Becky (Christian Ministries): ACU has given me the time I need to devote to my growing ministry while I still earn my degree in a timely manner. Without the once a week schedule, it would be difficult to maintain the time standards I have set in motion. John (Business Administration): Right after I enrolled at ACU, I was able to start my own business. The DCP program has allowed me to complete...

More Than an Education

The adult students at Arizona Christian University (ACU) gain much more than an education in the Degree Completion Program (DCP). Personally, it’s been very rewarding to watch them network and build relationships with other classmates as well as staff and faculty. While students work toward their Bachelor’s Degree by taking class only one night a week for less than two years, they are able to develop bonds that will last far beyond graduation. Becky Capps is one of the students in our Christian Ministries program, she is planning to use her degree for a Chaplaincy Program or a Spiritual Directorship position. In her current profession, she supports herself as an artist and reaches other for Christ through her “Trust in the Lord” ministry that has over 1,630,000 on FaceBook. Although she is nearing the age where many would be looking at retirement, that is not at all in Becky’s plans. She explains that, “As a later-in-life student, perhaps the oldest one in the DCP program, I am seeking God’s will to give back in any number of ways. His plans are far better than mine.” Becky chose ACU to complete her degree after one of the professors introduced her to me and suggested she look into the Christian Ministry Degree where she could take classes with other adult students. She explains: My plans were to attend another university to finish my Bachelor’s Degree, but I was not feeling it was really the right place and fit for me. After a lot of question and answer time with Lisa, I knew getting my degree in Christian Ministries would be the...

“What Do You Want for Christmas?”

Have you found yourself asking your friends and family that question? We all want to give that perfect gift – the one that will bring joy and excitement to the faces of our loved ones. However, many times the holidays can bring stress and strain on ourselves as we work toward bringing happiness to everyone else. It’s so easy to get caught up in the rush of everyday life, and the holidays only bring an additional strain on our sanity, as well as our wallets. If you’re a non-traditional college student on top of your full-time work and family obligations, you may feel overloaded to the max! Maybe, all you want for Christmas is some peace and quiet and relaxation time. This Christmas, be sure to take a little time for yourself. Take a moment to soak in all of the joy and the festivities around you. Listen to Christmas music. Read the Christmas story. Drink a cup of hot cocoa or tea. Give a gift to someone in need. Hug your loved ones. In other words… take time for a break. The Best Gift You Can Give Sometimes, you are the best gift you can give to others. Your time, your love, your attention is far more valuable than gifts with shiny bows and bright paper. Yet, in order to give them all the best of you, it’s up to you to take the best possible care of yourself. Getting the proper rest is a big part of that. Take a deep breath. Give yourself permission to relax for a moment. And smile. Don’t forget to smile. Have...
A New Year – A New You?

A New Year – A New You?

2015 is just around the corner. A new year always brings out the best of intentions, doesn’t it? It’s a great symbol for a new start. Yet, how many of those good intentions fall to the wayside for some reason or another? We start out strong, but somehow fizzle out in our New Year’s resolutions – sometimes before the first week of the New Year is over! The Degree Completion Program, however, may be the perfect answer and opportunity for you to begin a fresh new start and get plugged into classes in Behavioral Health, Business Administration, and Christian Ministries. These classes will not only give you skills and abilities toward self-improvement goals, they’ll help you work toward a Bachelor’s degree that can give a fresh start in your career or help you accomplish a goal you may have started long ago. Our unique cohort system helps students continue on in their goals as relationships are built. Students encourage each other and form strong bonds that press them on toward the goal of wearing that cap and gown and walking across the stage to receive their well-deserved diploma. DCP students enjoy coming to class one night a week and learning alongside other adults in Christian community. These classes keep those good intentions intact and prevent them from fizzling out and falling to the wayside. Is there a better time to get started than now? Classes for the Degree Completion Program start in January with Orientation on January 6th at 6:00 pm. It’s not too late for you to get plugged in and registered! All you need to do is...
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