The COVID-19 pandemic has turned the world of business on its head. From moving toward a virtual environment, social distancing, supply shortages and take-out only, we can confidently say all industries have been affected by the global health crisis.
As we all struggle to identify what this means for us and the future of our industry, we want to be sure we build up our resilience and are ready for whatever may lie ahead. In that regard, University of Phoenix has been consistent with its mission to serve its diverse set of students, ensuring all have the opportunity to enhance their education while improving the talent entering our workforce.
In the fall of 2020, University of Phoenix launched its latest podcast exploring the ways careers and industries are changing and how higher education prepares students for success as they enter the workforce. “How Tomorrow Works” is hosted by Dan Benjamin, and each episode shares insights from University of Phoenix faculty, leaders, and alumni discussing how they got there and their best advice for seizing new opportunities.
How Tomorrow Works – First Episode with Ivan Nicholson
In the first episode of “How Tomorrow Works,” Benjamin interviewed University of Phoenix Academic Advisor and Career Coach Ivan Nicholson. Nicholson has been with the University since 2007, improving his skills and enhancing his career for an impressive 13 years. His role is to work primarily with military veterans and scholarship students.
During the podcast, Nicholson discussed his vision for the future and how students and incoming working professionals can take advantage of available resources to set themselves up for success. Most important, he noted, is enhancing your education in the industry that most excites you.
Nicholson explained to Benjamin that this is a two-fold process. Students must enhance their education now because there have been and will be so many drastic changes with how business is conducted, especially as we turn to a more digital footprint. Additionally, University of Phoenix encourages business and education to collaborate to ensure that the content students are learning is most relevant to the current needs of each industry.
Nicholson shared that the best time to make a change is when a student feels ready for a bigger challenge. He said, “Making a change can be challenging, especially when you’ve been in your career for a long time.” He went on to explain that “education is important because it gives you more opportunity to move up” either to a new position within the same company or find a new, more seasoned opportunity elsewhere.
In addition to his position with University of Phoenix, Nicholson is a community volunteer. He is a volunteer basketball coach for the girls’ basketball team of a local Phoenix high school. He bragged that the school has gone to the state championships three of the last five years since he became involved. He is passionate about helping people get to that next level, whether in basketball, education, or careers.
The best part of his job? Seeing his students graduate. He said, “That is why I come to work!” He aims to help all students to the finish line.
Nicholson said the excuse he hears often is “I can’t,” and he enjoys reminding the students he works with of all that they have endured and accomplished in their lives. He is encouraging and supportive, explaining to his students that “you can’t say you can’t when you haven’t even tried!” When not helping students achieve success or coaching on the court, Nicholson enjoys spending time with his children.
The “How Tomorrow Works” podcast series will continue to provide insight from faculty, staff and alumni for individuals interested in enhancing their education. It is a motivating, honest portrayal of why University of Phoenix exists, to respond to the changing needs of the workforce and to help people enhance their lives through education.
About University of Phoenix
University of Phoenix was founded in 1976 by Dr. John Sperling who identified a gap in education and the changing needs of the workplace. Sperling’s goal was to create a university that prepared students for a changing workplace while still allowing them to meet other obligations.
University of Phoenix is one of the largest, American for-profit online universities. The University maintains an innovative approach to helping working adults enhance their careers by offering flexible schedules, relevant courses and interactive learning options. The University offers many options to enhance one’s educational expertise through innovative classroom experiences that enhance the talent pipeline in communities across the country.
Image Credit: kentuckyauthorforum.com