Anderson, Indiana

Starting alone, finishing together in Adult Learning

Mon, 2010-08-02 08:00 -- univcomm
August 2, 2010

They both had been down this road before. It was all familiar, yet it was still incomplete. Supporting each other, they decided to embark together on the rigorous journey of lectures, papers and exams. Now, two years later, they have earned their degrees, finishing what they began together.

DzelmeJohn and Adrienne Dzelme have been successful in their careers, working at Roche Diagnostics. But, in order to continue working and gaining success, they decided to finish their degrees. John took a few classes at some local schools, but nothing was quite challenging enough for him. “I knew I needed to go back to school,” said John. “But I really struggled with it because I had professors who clearly had never done my job.” When John challenged the professors, they would reply with no answer because they didn’t have his experience.

When talking about school with their community group at church, a friend recommended the Advance program at Anderson University. At first, John and Adrienne were a little skeptical based on recent experiences at other schools. But when they looked into the program, they realized it would be a great opportunity. The ability to go through school together was ideal for them.

“I think what was so attractive about AU is that you can go at it at your own pace,” Adrienne said.

After starting online, they eventually moved into face-to-face classes at the Anderson University Flagship Center in Anderson. While the workload was intense and the courses were challenging, they believe they have further developed their skills. “There is no doubt I am a better writer,” said John. “I hate writing papers, but I can tell that when I’m even writing e-mails, I find myself writing better. I still hate writing, but I know it will help me in the long run.”

There were a couple of classes that challenged them spiritually. “Everything had been focused on homework, and I had neglected that relationship and the Word,” John admitted. “Taking these classes challenged everything I had believed in and forced me back into the Word.”

Now that they have earned their degrees in organizational leadership, John hopes to break out of corporate America and do consulting on his own. “It would be interesting to use the skills we’ve learned in managing and marketing in our business,” he said. They would like to continue the careers they began with Roche but apply it to smaller companies.

The future is still uncertain and nothing is ever etched in stone. But the future looks bright for John and Adrienne. With their recent accomplishment, they have the knowledge, wisdom, and experience to continue their careers ... together.

— Joshua Mifflin is a senior from Anderson, Ind., majoring in communication arts and Spanish. Mifflin is an associate with Fifth Street Communications writing on behalf of Anderson University Office of University Communications.

Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,700 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson continues to be recognized as a top Christian college: in 2009, U.S. News and World Report ranked Anderson University among the best colleges and universities in the Midwest for the sixth consecutive year. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, education, music, nursing and theology.