Special recognition: February 2017 Student of the Month
Semester of anticipated graduation:
I plan to continue to advance in rank as a law enforcement officer, and I look to start my second business, as an entrepreneur, in the next few months.
Tell us a little about yourself and your life:
I was born and raised in the Washington, D.C./Maryland area, and I attended St. John’s College High School. After high school, I enlisted in the U.S. Army and started my training to become an Army Ranger. I served in the 1st Battalion 75thRanger Regiment until 2004. Achieving the rank of sergeant, I served two combat tours, one in Afghanistan and one in Iraq; I took part in the rescue of Jessica Lynch.
In 2004, I was discharge for a medical condition and relocated to Naples, Florida. In 2005, I joined the Naples Police Department and have since achieved the rank of master police officer. As a police officer, I served on road patrol, DUI/traffic enforcement, and I am currently assigned to community policing. I also serve on the SWAT team, Honor Guard and teach in numerous disciplines as a department instructor.
I was recently married in 2016 and have an 8-year-old stepson.
What are your hobbies/extracurricular activities?
In my free time, I play multiple instruments and train for triathlons. I play the trombone, guitar and am currently learning the bagpipes. I have completed multiple triathlons since I started in 2013. I run every distance, and I have completed multiple full-iron distance runs, which is 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike and 26.2-mile run. I also enjoy public speaking.
What has been your favorite class at Hodges University?
My favorite class since I have been at Hodges has been Speech. As a public speaker, this class has been most beneficial to my immediate future. Learning is one thing, but spreading knowledge is key. General George S. Patton once said, “A pint of sweat saves a gallon of blood.”
Who are some of your favorite professors and why?
If I have to select a few, it would be Thomas Pear and Dr. Katherine Dew. Professor Pear worked with me to make my speaking engagements easy and fun. He is an upbeat professor and really cares about the needs of his students. My second favorite would be Dr. Dew. Being a business owner and entrepreneur, her attention to detail and teachings has created ideas I have never considered in the past. Currently, I am taking her class and starting my second business. I am using her class to create my business plan, which I will implement in the coming months.
What is the biggest challenge you have faced and how did you overcome it?
The biggest challenge I have faced since being at Hodges has been time management. I am great at time management, but working full time, running a business, family time, training and going to school has been tough. I take four classes each semester, so my schedule is full. To overcome this, I have focused, prioritized and implemented a good plan of action. The most important part is sticking to it. It can be done, but managing your time properly is the key.
What does receiving a degree at Hodges mean to you?
Receiving my degree is a long overdue step in my life. I have been putting it off and thought I would never achieve it. It is important for my education and knowledge. We are all sponges and need to soak up as much information and knowledge as we can to enrich our lives at home, work and within society. I never realized the sense of accomplishment I would feel on completing my degree.
What is one piece of advice you would give to students who are considering Hodges University?
Hodges is a great educational institution and you should go for it. It is a gateway to new opportunities and possibilities. Dream big and the teachers will work with you and ensure your success. Go Panthers!