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Student Spotlight: Melanie Gard, MS in Criminal Justice: Criminal Behavior

Melanie Gard, MS in Criminal Justice: Criminal Behavior

Current occupation: Fraud Specialist

What made you decide to pursue your degree as an adult?

I achieved my bachelors degree when I was young, and still unsure what I wanted to do from a career standpoint. I decided to pursue my graduate degree because I had more life experience under my belt and I better understood my passions.

Why did you choose to study at Tiffin University?

It was a university with a positive reputation and it had great programs for what I wanted to pursue.

What has been your experience with the program so far?

The program went at my pace and it was easy to balance with work and home life. It was all online and everything is geared toward your success. I was nervous about having difficult and unforgiving professors, but I never had this issue. I only had professors who knew my potential and wanted to provide a challenge. Moodle was the interface used in online classes and it was easy to learn and navigate.

How are you juggling work, life and going back to school?

I learned that you never know how much extra time you really have until you add more to your plate. You may feel busy in your current life situation, but when you choose to go back to school, you find pockets of time in your evenings or on your lunch breaks, where you are able to switch gears and do some reading or brainstorming.

What keeps you motivated to stay in the program?

I look forward to how much more marketable I will be once I have the degree on my resume. I also just love learning. I changed my way of thinking on many different things based on the classes I took. I looked forward to new classes because it was an opportunity to learn more.

What advice would you give to a prospective student who is thinking about going back to school?

It is achievable and it is worth it. You must make sure you stay disciplined and see it through.

TU’s motto is: Without risk there is no gain. Can you tell us about a time when you took a risk and what you gained from it?

I took on a concentration of Fraud Forensics and Examination to add onto my degree. It added more time to my degree path, but I learned so much from it and it made me that much more marketable.

Learn about our MS in Criminal Justice: Criminal Behavior program