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For years, Kirk Bradford wanted to go back to school to earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing, but as a single father raising a daughter (who is now in college herself), time and resources always got in the way. Last year, when Kirk’s boss suggested he look into WGU Texas, he was astonished at how little tuition cost and decided it was time to finally earn a degree to validate his 15 years in nursing. “All of the excuses that I had in my head for not going to school were taken away with WGU Texas,” Kirk said. He enrolled in WGU Texas’ MSN Leadership and Management (RN to MSN).
As the director for applied clinical informatics for Tenet Healthcare in Dallas, Texas, Kirk travels often for work. “WGU Texas seemed to fall in line with an active work and personal life; I could make time to do it. Whether on nights or weekends, or if I need to take a break, it was all up to me,” Kirk said.
He was able to accelerate through many of his BSN courses, but was able to take time with harder coursework, too. “That’s what I really like about itwhen I know my work schedule I can focus on that and then move back to school later. It’s been a great, great experience for me,” he said.
One of Kirk’s shining moments in the past year was when he received a notification that he completed the BSN coursework for his degree and showed it to his boss. She responded with, “You just started! How did you do this?” Kirk replied that he buckled down and focused on what he needed to do and WGU Texas’ competency-based format worked well for him.
Earning a degree has given Kirk a lot of personal satisfaction. He is the oldest of three children in his family; both of his younger siblings have at least a bachelor’s degree. Kirk thought he’d never finish his degree. “My parents sent me a gift recently and said, ‘We knew you could always do this,’” Kirk said. “This has been such a good experience. I feel great. I don’t have to worry about this anymore and have realized it’s never too late.”
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