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    UC Student of the Month Archive - James Evers

    James Evers - SIU  

    As a nontraditional student, 34 year old James Evers made the decision not only to return to school, but return with an intense dedication to complete his studies as expeditiously as possible. Not content with attending classes full time, Evers has consistently pushed himself to take extra classes each semester. He says that for those who think they can’t do this, that it is possible. He says that with conviction because while he is pushing himself academically he is also working two jobs that require from 40 to 50 hours of his time per week.

    While attending Triton, Evers met Ms. Antigone Sharris the Coordinator and one of the Instructors for the Engineering Technology program. When he expressed an interest in furthering his education, Ms. Sharris suggested he take a look at the Industrial Technology bachelor’s degree completion program from Southern Illinois University. Upon reviewing the program, he immediately noted two things. He liked the courses that were offered in the program and the great flexibility in the class schedules. As a working adult with his already full work schedule, that flexibility was key to selecting a program. Evers noted that the schedule he chose has been convenient for him. He decided to take the weekend classes and is glad he that he does not have to go to class every weekend and is also happy that he is not having to attend classes that meet until 9:00 or 10:00 pm during week nights.

    One thing Evers said that he really likes about the program is the professors. They are great instructors and come from industry with real-world experience. The classes are not just some dry and abstract ideas out of a textbook, but rather a rich combination of instructor led discussion that incorporates examples of their own personal experiences in industry which help to illustrate textbook concepts. Then, you add in the experiences of the other classmates of whom many are already industry professionals themselves with much to add to the discussion. And finally, there have been a number of plant tours to see first-hand examples of these concepts in action. This confluence of factors make for some very interesting classes.

    He also noted that while class sizes vary, there are distinct advantages and disadvantages of the smaller and larger class sizes. The smaller the class size, the greater the opportunity for you to share your own workplace experiences. However, larger class sizes bring greater depth of experience from other students anxious to share their stories from which much can be learned as well. Evers has also taken one of the classes online. When asked which method of instruction was better, he simply said that for him one is not better than the other, just different. He said he received very quick responses when working with the online class so being outside of a traditional classroom setting was not an issue.

    While James is undecided for now as to which long-term career path he will ultimately choose, he knows the Industrial Technology bachelor’s degree from Southern Illinois University will add impact to his resume which will in turn open the door to many new career opportunities.

    This is a follow up with a former University Center Student of the Month. Now his post-graduation story continues in the form of a “Thank You” letter sent to Antigone Sharris, Program Coordinator for the Engineering Technology program here at Triton College. Results like this prove that earning advanced degrees from Triton College and Southern Illinois University can truly be life changing. Read James’ letter below.

    Subject: Thank you

    Antigone, I just wanted to write you to let you know how grateful I am for all of the help and guidance you provided as well as the benefits of the program at Triton. When I first started the Engineering Technology program I was working in a restaurant and had no manufacturing/engineering experience. The program allowed me to find a job doing CAD work, which I later parlayed in to a position at Elkay Manufacturing after I had transferred into the SIU Industrial Tech program.

    Now I am just about to start a new position at a new company, this time as an Applications Engineer. The combination of the program at Triton and SIU allowed me in just over 2 years to go from around $32000 to $65000 plus bonus. Thank you again for all your help. Your students are lucky to have you.

    James Evers

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