Whitley Graduated Saturday, Now Headed to Prestigious MPA Program
WASHINGTON – Grant Whitley of Greenville wanted to improve his station in life. “I have been a manager in state government for the last eight years,” said Whitley. “I needed a college degree in order to advance further in the field.” He enrolled at University of Mount Olive at Washington and took classes while working full time. On Saturday, December 8, Whitley graduated with his bachelor’s degree. He is already looking to reap the benefits of his degree.
Whitley, 33, majored in the Management and Organizational Development program. “The format of the program was the main thing that appealed to me,” he said. “The one-night-a-week classes and the compressed class format made acquiring my bachelor’s degree seem more attainable.”
Having his family support him every step of the way made it a bit easier. “It can be difficult to combine college with a family and a full time job, but I have a loving wife, Laura, who was very supportive throughout the entire experience. I could not have done it without her.” With a caring family at home, Whitley was able to stay focused. “I dedicated a lot of time every week to my studies. I also drastically scaled back or eliminated most of my hobbies. School became my only hobby.”
Whitley’s hard work paid off. He received a North Carolina Public Service Fellowship scholarship when he applied to graduate school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He was one of about 30 students nationwide accepted into their respected Master of Public Administration program. “UNC’s MPA program is one of the most prestigious in the country; it is ranked sixth nationally in the specialty of city management,” Whitley shared. “I will be attending the new online format of the program.”
The educational experience Whitley received in the accelerated program at University of Mount Olive at Washington helped improve his future. “Completing my degree at University of Mount Olive and enrolling in the MPA program at UNC has completely transformed my career prospects.”
Whitley is one of 320 University of Mount Olive students to graduate on Saturday, December 8, 2012. University of Mount Olive is a private institution rooted in the liberal arts tradition with defining Christian values. The College, sponsored by the Convention of Original Free Will Baptists, has locations in Mount Olive, New Bern, Wilmington, Goldsboro, Research Triangle Park, Washington and Jacksonville. For more information, visit www.moc.edu.