Getting an Advanced Degree Around Work and Family

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Learn about the Online Master of Science in Computer Science from Georgia Tech and Udacity in January.

By Jeffrey Ligon

Georgia Tech was always on my short list as a kid.

I only completed my bachelor’s degree in 2012, after 30 years. Then I saw the opportunity at Georgia Tech. I applied and much to my delight was accepted. It was an opportunity I could not pass up.

I joined the first cohort from AT&T and started the Online Master of Science in Computer Science with Georgia Tech and Udacity in January.  My specialization is software and data base engineering.

I have been with AT&T for six years as a Systems Administrator, based in Birmingham, Al.  This degree will help me keep my skills current as we move to a software and fully mobile-centric business.

What surprised me the most is how difficult it was and this class didn’t have any tests; it was all project-based and completely online. We broke into teams and developed an Android task management application. My portion of the project was in developing the test strategy and risk assessment. It worked out great; it’s still loaded into my phone.

For me to get an equivalent degree from an in-classroom program, I would either have to take the classes through a local institution or to take a leave of absence to attend Georgia Tech in Atlanta. I wasn’t prepared to do that over two or three years, and don’t have the funds to do that.

By taking the courses though an all-online MOOC format, I’ve been able to do the work on my own schedule around work and family. I completed the first semester last month and am taking the summer off to prepare myself for the class starting in the fall.

View this post on our Consumer Blog to find out Jeffrey Ligon's grade in the online course.