Crazy or Crazy Credentials?

Discussion in 'IT and Computer-Related Degrees' started by TEKMAN, Mar 1, 2019.


    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    What is your first thought about this individual educational credentials?

    - DBA in Cyber Security, California Southern University, Irvine, CA (est 2019)
    - MBA in Strategic Leadership, Amberton University, Garland, Texas
    - MS in Cybersecurity and Information Assurance, WGU, Salt Lake City, UT, (est 2018)
    - MS in Information Assurance, University of Maryland University College, Adelphi, MD, 2012 -
    - MS in Information Technology Management, Trident University International, University, Cypress, CA, 2009
    - MS in Education, University of Phoenix, Sierra Vista, AZ, 2006
    - BS in Computer Information Systems, Wayland Baptist University, Plainview, TX, 2004

    Certified Ethical Hacker (C|EH), EC-Council, License ECC53008745578 Comptia Advanced Security Practitioner (CASP), Comptia, License COMP001020856240
    Cisco Certified Entry Network Technician (CCENT) License
    CompTia Security + Certified (Sec+), Comptia, License COMP001020856240 CompTia Network + CE Certified (Net+ CE), Comptia License COMP001020856240 Information Technology Infrastructure Library(ITIL-Foundation), Axelos, License
    Phdtobe likes this.
  2. dlbb

    dlbb Active Member

  3. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    Most of the schools they attended are non-traditional. There's nothing inherently wrong with that, but many are already skeptical of online, for-profit, and adult-serving schools, and this person has a bunch of degrees from them, which might make people think "diploma mill." I know these schools don't qualify as diploma mills, but most people aren't aware of the technical definition.

    Having a lot of IT certifications seems about normal to me. Getting a degree in information assurance and cybersecurity and information assurance is redundant.
    JBjunior likes this.
  4. JBjunior

    JBjunior Active Member

    I don't know anything about IT certs but this is what it screams to me. Those are all "obviously" distance learning degrees, not that there is anything wrong with that or that the average hiring manager would care, it just stood out to me.

    Second thought is either this person hasn't been working, but primarily going to school, or is using the time at the IT desk to go to school.... potentially an MS, an MBA, and a DBA completed within a year apart is work.
  5. JBjunior

    JBjunior Active Member

    It is a DBA, a Doctor of Business Administration, which is the degree title. I don't think it is a Doctor of Business Administration in Business Administration. They have a few concentrations but also say on the website you can create a "designer degree" which is likely what he did.
  6. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    Setting aside any for-profit/non-profit or online vs B&M issues...

    Five masters degrees in the same field? That isn't impressive. That's compulsive.
    JBjunior likes this.
  7. nyvrem

    nyvrem Active Member

    i guess he was worried HR might miss his first degree in security.
  8. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    It's certainly compulsive but also not very smart. I mean, why bother? Anyone who is at all familiar with the field will look at that and say "WTF?" Maybe they think it looks impressive but I think it looks foolish.
  9. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Remember, it's an industry in which "paranoid" is a compliment. ;)
  10. dlbb

    dlbb Active Member

    Well, I must have missed that. I did see they have zero computer science or cyber security courses online at the master's or graduate level, so I assume he is just transferring in all his credits and going for a dissertation. But who will be supervising the dissertation? Does he even have a subject matter expert?
  11. JBjunior

    JBjunior Active Member

    Excellent questions. They allow 30 credits to be brought in though so they probably allowed a big chunk from one of his masters. I bet it is going to be a business related dissertation related to his place of work which happens to be cyber related as well.... maybe TEKMAN knows more.
  12. dlbb

    dlbb Active Member

    Or it could be a DBA that is misrepresented.
  13. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

    It looks great!
  14. dlcurious

    dlcurious Member

    I would question it "why", but as someone with 3 masters in different but *semi* related fields myself I should probably keep my big mouth shut.
  15. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    So there's really two issues here...

    One is unnecessary duplication. One Masters in CyberSec and Info Assurance followed by two separate Masters in CyberSec and InfoAssurance.

    The other issue is simply having too many degrees to paint a cohesive picture.

    In my experience, I think I have only ever encountered a candidate with a max of three Masters degrees. And of the ones I recall, it was a matter of two complementary Masters followed by a completely unrelated Masters degree. The one that jumps to mind immediately was the guy with an M.Acc., an MBA and an M.A. in English Lit (he timed out of an English Lit PhD program).

    Not an unreasonable stacking of degrees and even his related degrees weren't so closely related that it raised any flags.

    The red flag to be raised with a degree stack like this is that you can, and should, acquire skills throughout your professional life without resorting to another degree. If, for example, a person transitions into a corporate training role and is really good at it they don't necessarily need a degree in Organizational Development or Adult Education or something like that. Their experience and any portfolio they might have should speak for itself.

    There is a principal in creative writing of "show, don't tell." The idea is that if you are writing about a scary basement you should describe the basement and let the reader conclude it is a scary basement as opposed to simply writing "he walked into a scary basement." Don't tell me the basement is scary. Show me the basement is scary. Let me get there on my own.

    I, personally, feel the same principal applies in hiring. If the only way to demonstrate your qualification is through a degree then you're not trying hard enough and the next candidate with event a hint of creativity is probably going to overtake you.
  16. dlbb

    dlbb Active Member

    I was looking for a property search for a certain county, and I came to a sketchy site that offered to link me to the appropriate site. I clicked on the link, and it took me to

    I only ever visited that site yesterday in connection with this thread, looking at their doctoral offerings.

    It is evident then that Cal Southern is paying for some sketchy web redirection, truly the signs of a very legitimate, high caliber school. :rolleyes:
  17. FTFaculty

    FTFaculty Well-Known Member

    JBjunior likes this.
  18. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    To me it seems like trying to increase the value of your car by adding more bumper stickers.
  19. TEKMAN

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    Everyone responses are the same as my thought. This individual stacks up Master degrees, but has issue looking for job. Sometimes I really want to go for an MBA, but I feel that 3 different Master degrees seem to be odd.
  20. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

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