Hi all, I used to spend a ton of time here and other places talking about distance education, elearning, accreditation, etc. These days I suddenly find myself being the "old guy". I never thought it would happen, but life has a way of going on no matter what we busy ourselves doing. For those who recognize my name, it's been a while so forgive me for not being here as much as I used to. For those who don't, allow me to introduce myself... I first read Dr. Bear's Guide to Distance Education a lifetime ago. From his book I earned an Associate of Science in Criminal Justice from Ashworth College (not sure if they are still called that) accredited by the then Distance Education and Training Council. From there, at the encouragement of my friends here, I moved on to a Bachelors of Science in Criminal Justice from Southwestern College (a school I still love). Not to be satisfied and moving on to management in law enforcement, I earned a Master of Business Administration from Ashford University (after a brief stint at St. Joseph's College of Maine) and a Master of Science in Management Information Systems from Bellevue University. Along the way I picked up various certificates, moved along in my career, but my prized accomplishment (humble thought it may be) was a stint of classes at Stanford University in their now defunct Advanced Project Management Program, studying alongside many employees of companies you've heard of. Personally, my journey has taken a turn. I've met a lot of fascinating people, done a lot of interesting things...some involving guns, some involving Microsoft Project but life is weird and on this father's day I find myself nostalgic. I have attained the fabled "corner office" in a major downtown area for a large financial interest. I have been through a horrible divorce, a few health ailments, and somehow landed on my feet with custody of my children. I have learned that quibbling over accreditation of your school, who went to where, all of that...at the end of the day...is kind of inconsequential. My lessons learned (here 3 1/2 years shy of my 20 year retirement) are (for what they are worth): 1. A degree gets you an interview. It's up to you after that. 2. A degree doesn't mean you have skills. It should mean you can think critically, read, write, and discern. 3. Where your degree comes from means far less than what you majored in. 4. Certifications are important. 5. What you can actually articulate and apply are far more important than certifications. 6. When you get the job, you've only just begun. It gets harder and more demanding. 7. Management sucks. Don't do it if you can avoid it. 8. The "corner office" sucks...if you get there you'll never enjoy it, because you'll always be in meetings and working 24/7. Just don't if you can help it. 9. Your health is your #1 priority. Take care of it. 10. Your family is your #2, #3, and #4 priority, take care of them. Your career comes somewhere farther down the line. Finally I can say this...Steve Foerster (jeez I forgot how to spell his name) and Gregg DesElms are prophets. Listen to them. Heed their warnings and take their advice. They are smarter than you or me and far more well meaning. Last I heard Gregg had a bout with illness that changed his paradigm, so he may not be here anymore. I am in much the same boat. But I feel like I should finish out one more thread to contribute to this awesome community of wonderful and well meaning people. I'm not dying, don't freak out (or giggle) but I am moving on to other things in life. Anyway, study hard. Be a life long learner. Don't quibble over the trivial things like National vs. Regional accreditation when you should be focusing on your major, your skills, your family, your friends, your knowledge, and most of all...your purpose. I'm back momentarily. Good to see you all. Say...is Bruce still a cop? (Edit) I am editing this to acknowledge that upon a brief search, my long lost friend Gregg DesElms has passed on. The world is a lesser place. He was a sage and benefited me and my family tremendously. God bless him.