This came in courtesy of Post University:
WATERBURY, Conn. – On Saturday, May 5, Carl Raymond (Ray) Oelkers, a 69-year-old retired Navy Veteran from Bronxville, earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Post University. Oelkers completed his degree entirely online through the Online Education Institute of Post University.
“It’s a very strong sense of accomplishment,” said Oelkers. “It took a lot of hard work and time, but it has all finally paid off.”
Oelkers was among 65 students in Post University’s Class of 2012 who have passed their 50th birthdays. He also was among the nearly 700 students of this year’s class of 800 graduates who completed their degrees online instead of at the university’s traditional campus in Waterbury.
Oelkers, originally from Jersey City, N.J., started his college career 52 years ago at Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU). After a year of studies, he decided to join the Navy, and spent four years in the Navy as an airborne radar operator.
After his four years of service, Oelkers returned to his studies at FDU as an evening student. However, like many adult learners of his generation, his studies took a backseat to his career and he never completed his degree.
“In those days you didn’t need the education to be successful,” he said.
Until his retirement in 2004, Oelkers had a successful 40-year career in the financial investment services industry. Most recently, Oelkers was responsible for running international trading operations for the Bank of America, overseeing a staff of about 13.
Although many adults choose to go back to school for career advancement, Oelkers did so for personal reasons. He simply wanted to complete the degree he started so many decades ago, he said. His wife holds two master’s degrees, and both his sons have earned bachelor’s degrees.
“I figured, I have the time now, and with my granddaughter at age 14, I wanted to get my college degree before she does,” Oelkers said.
His wife Anita, who serves as Director of Donor Relations and Advancement Communications at Sarah Lawrence College, suggested he attend Post University. He enrolled in March of 2008; four years later he has earned the degree he started 52 years ago.
“I would highly recommend Post University,” he said. “The distance learning was very user-friendly, the professors were great, and everyone was always helpful and reliable.”
Oelkers doesn’t plan to stop at one degree, and is considering pursuing his master’s next. This time around, he is interested in studying history, one of his biggest passions.
He and his wife currently spend their time between their two homes in New York and Massachusetts, and enjoy travelling.