Why did you choose the Salus Biomedicine PhD Program?
I completed my master’s degree at Salus University and fell in love with the school and faculty. Thus, when I decided to further my education, I contacted the University’s Office of Graduate Programs in Biomedicine and was very pleased with the willingness of the staff and the faculty to help and offer information. Everyone was very kind and supportive, which is something I look for in a school because it creates a very positive learning environment! I also really liked that the students have a lot of freedom in choosing their dissertation topic. This is a unique aspect to this program that I do not think you can find elsewhere. Lastly, I liked that the program is designed to allow students to further their education and continue working simultaneously.
How does the program complement your current career?
I chose to further my education in studying Blindness and Low Vision because I believe in each individual's right to continue living an independent and fulfilling lifestyle regardless of visual impairment. During my studies it became obvious that the number of individuals who are visually impaired is increasing due to longevity and complications of age-related diseases, but not enough research is available on this population, especially related to rehabilitation. As such, I decided that once I completed my master’s program, I would focus on finding ways to help individuals who are visually impaired continue living as they see fit, as well as raise awareness of the resources available. Research on the rehabilitation process for individuals who are visually impaired can assist in identifying the best compensatory strategies, assistive devices and/or ways to heighten sensory awareness to enhance independence and quality of life.
When do you expect you will complete the program and how has your experience been so far?
I am scheduled to complete the PhD program in Biomedicine by 2020. Thus far, I have found the program to be quite challenging but very rewarding. I feel I have learned a lot in just two semesters both academically and personally. The professors and administration have been very supportive, helpful and easily accessible; the dean is also actively involved and communicates with his students which is hard to find at the graduate level.
Do you have a message for potential applicants?
I would suggest that any potential applicants contact the department’s dean and discuss the program. It was my conversation with the dean that made my decision to enroll in the program much easier. I believe that any career goal is achievable. However, keep in mind that this program is primarily online and has numerous requirements. Additionally, the expectations from professors are also very high. The academic component is very challenging but with good time management and organizational skills, it is doable!