NACTEL Student Stories

Working Adults Earn Their Degrees and Fulfill Goals

"The knowledge that I gained at PACE is directly aligned with the trajectory of the telecommunications industry."

Daryn Edwards

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Ray Whitman Grayson, GA Director, Customer Information Services AT&T B.S. Degree Telecommunications Graduated May 2014

 

 

"Life happens and sometimes you feel like you don't have time to fit everything in, but you can do it, no matter how hard it is. Just keep pushing and don't be afraid to reach out to the professors and advisors because they are there to help you."

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Natasha Blanford Clarksburg, NJ Fiber Network Technician Verizon Communications IBEW Local 827 B.S. Degree Telecommunications Graduated May 2014

"Had it not been for the professors and especially the NACTEL staff, I might not have finished. They aren't just administering a program; they are involved and committed to you completing the program."

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Pierre Matthew Brooklyn, NY Communications Systems Engineer Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) B.S. Degree Telecommunications Graduated December 2013

"Don't hesitate to take the first step. If you think you might want to do it, try it for a semester. Once you start rolling, you won't stop until you're done."


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Anthony (Tony) Visciglia LaGrangeville, NY Firewall Manager Verizon A.S. Degree Telecommunications B.S. Degree Telecommunications M.S. in Internet Technology – Security and Information Assurance Graduated May 2014

“I think if people really sit back, they’ll realize that there’s time in the day, especially with online learning.”

Daryn Edwards

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John Mondala
Associate of Science, Telecommunications
AT&T
Force Load Analyst
Streamwood, IL

"When I first started, it was all about phones; now it's all about computers; and next is where I want to go, which is wireless. The emerging wireless technology course I took has definitely helped me and geared me toward the right path."

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Alphur "Slim" Willock Flushing, NY Telecommunications Technical Associate Verizon CWA Local 1106 B.S. Degree Telecommunications Anticipated Graduation: 2015

"For someone who doesn't feel like they can get an education because they don't have the time, this is the perfect solution. The classes aren't easy, but the program is, thanks to the great support staff and professors at Pace University."

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Amadeus Santos Denville, NJ Area Manager for Facilities/Property Management AT&T A.S. Degree Telecommunications Graduated August 2014

"I wouldn’t have been able to get my degree if I wasn’t able to do it online."

Daryn Edwards

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Jovany Alvarez
Verizon
CWA 1101
Field Tech
New York, NY
B.S. – Telecommunications

"The NACTEL program is designed in a way so that if you’re dedicated, you will succeed."

Daryn Edwards

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Mike Anderson
Verizon
CWA Local 1101
Field Tech
New York, NY
A.S. – Networking Technologies

"Online learning has been a great way to accomplish my educational goals."

Scott Blauth
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Scott Blauth
Verizon
IBEW Local 827
Outside Plant Technician
Hightstown, NJ
B.S. - Telecommunications

"Now if someone were to give me a full scholarship to go to a class on campus, I wouldn't want to do it!"

Daryn Edwards

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Austin Davis
Verizon
Tech Coordinator
Atlanta, GA
A.S. - Networking Technologies

"Earning my degree will open up a lot of avenues for me because telecom is a broad field."

Daryn Edwards

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Kelly Holland
AT&T
CWA local 4004
Service Representative for Credit and Collections
Detroit, MI
B.S.- Telecommunications

"Earning this degree gives me a more well-rounded experience. It really opens me up for more opportunities in this company."

Daryn Edwards

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Christopher Latty
AT&T
Administrative Manager, Records, Construction and Engineering
Saginaw, MI
A.S. - Wireless Networking

"This degree gives me a sense of completion, and now that I've started, I don't want to quit."

Marc Ouellette

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Karl Peterson
Frontier
IBEW Local 89
Construction Supervisor
Snohomish, WA
B.S. - Telecommunications

"I definitely think having my degree helped me get my current job."

Cheryl Palmer

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Paul Ratcliffe
CSX Corporation
CWA 2108
Central Office Tech
Silverspring, MD
B.S.- Telecommunications

"And don't be scared. It's going to seem like a lot, and it's going to be new, but give it a shot and you'll fall right into it."

Eric Richardson

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Edwin Sanchez
Verizon Wireless
CWA 1101
Field Technician
New York, NY
A.S. - Wireless Networking

"With this degree, I'll be able to compete five years from now."

Bob Toth

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Jay Thomas
TDS Telecommunications
Analyst 
Madison, WI 
B.S. - Telecommunications

"This program went well beyond my expectations. It was fabulous!"

Jeanie Bird

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Jeanie Bird
Verizon/Frontier
Fiber Network Field Tech
CWA 2001
Elkview, WV
AS - Telecommunications

"I really wanted my degree, but knew that I would never be able to attend a traditional school. Without the NACTEL program, I wouldn't be a college graduate."

Stacy Calderone

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Stacy Calderone
AT&T
Interconnect Engineer
Elgin, IL
AS - Networking

"The NACTEL program helped me gain the big picture view of networking and all of telecom." 

Joe Cartwright
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Joe Cartwright
AT&T
Network Technician
CWA 4123
Dexter, MI
AS – Networking

"Every instructor was knowledgeable, very accessible, and honestly cared what I thought."

Daryn Edwards

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Daryn Edwards
AT&T
Telecom Specialist
IBEW 21
Mount Vernon, IL
AS - Telecommunications

"I was a bit concerned entering the world of online learning, which was new to me. It turns out that I am a better online student than I thought."

Frank Fontana

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Frank Fontana
Verizon
Mahopac, NY
BS - Telecommunications

"The instructors and staff at Pace University were outstanding. They were extremely helpful."

Edwin Ortiz

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Edwin Ortiz
Qwest
Customer Data Tech
CWA 7032
Yuma, AZ
BS - Telecommunications

"Online programs are the best thing for education."

Marc Ouellette

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Marc Ouellette
Frontier
Customer Zone Tech 1
Alpena, MI
BS - Telecommunications

"I am very grateful that Verizon helped pay for my education. I would never have been able to do it on my own."

Cheryl Palmer

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Cheryl Palmer
Verizon
Network Provisioning Specialist
Ontario, CA
BS - Telecommunications

"Getting a degree can help you survive in a job market like this."

Eric Richardson

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Eric Richardson
AT&T
Telecom Specialist
CWA 4900
South Bend, IN
AS - Telecommunications

"Just having the degree in my hand makes a huge difference. It will help me better position myself to explore options in the field."

Bob Toth

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Bob Toth
Verizon
Central Office Tech
Lynchburg, VA
BS - Telecommunications

"This opportunity was too good to pass up. My new Bachelor's degree keeps me marketable." 

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John Main
AT&T
Outside Network Designer
Clinton, CT
BS - Telecommunications

"This was my first experience with online education. It was extremely easy from start to finish, from registering for classes to communicating with the instructors."

Vito Barnes

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Vito Barnes
Verizon
Fiber Network Field Tech
CWA 6171
Whitesboro, TX Associate's Degree

"I enrolled in this program to strengthen my career security. I now have a stronger skill set thanks to the NACTEL program at Pace University."

Richard Benn

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Richard Benn 
AT&T
Telecommunications Specialist
Spring Arbor, MI
CWA 4040
Bachelor of Science Degree

"The people who put the NACTEL program together really understand the working adult." 

Todd Berguetski
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Todd Berguetski
Qwest
Central Office Technician
CWA 7743
Grand Junction, CO
Associate's Degree

"I chose the NACTEL program at Pace University because of the affiliation of all of these leading telecommunication companies."

Jim Case

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Jim Case
AT&T
Service Delivery Business Tech - DSL
CWA 1298
Berlin, CT
Associate's degree

"Everything I learned in the NACTEL program was geared 100% toward improving what I am doing on the job everyday." 

Rich Damiano

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Rich Damiano
Verizon
Senior Staff Consultant
Randolph, NJ

Associate of Science Degree

"I like the NACTEL program at Pace University.  It seems to be the closest to hands-on work, and it is designed with an eye on what the industry needs."

David Furey

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David Furey
Verizon
Network Technician
IBEW Local 827
Oldbridge, NJ
Bachelor's Degree

"The reason I could do it is because Pathways paid for my tuition and books. All I had to do was give my time."

James Grose

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James Grose
Qwest
Central Office Technician
CWA 7702
Pueblo, CO
Bachelor's Degree

"I thought for a long time about the decision to enroll.  It’s a major commitment, but it was a great program.  Everyone should take advantage of it."

Wm. Shane Mason

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Wm. Shane Mason
AT&T
Service Delivery Business Tech - DSL
CWA 6311
Ofallon, MO
Associate's Degree

"Because this industry is so unpredictable, I wanted to earn my degree to keep my resume on the ‘top of the pile’. "

Randy Massow

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Randy Massow
AT&T
Technical Sales Consultant
Fox River Grove, IL
Bachelor's Degree

"I’m looking forward to walking across the stage at graduation, getting my degree, taking it home, and hanging it on the wall.  I am the first person in my family to earn a degree, and am proud and excited about it."

Wendy McNichols

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Wendy McNichols
Noble Energy Inc.
Telecommunications Tech
Humble, TX
Bachelor's Degree

"This program helped me learn more about troubleshooting and how networking is related to my job."

Luwanda Owens

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Luwanda Owens
AT&T
Telecommunications Specialist
IBEW 21
Chicago, IL
Associate's Degree

"I have been working on my degree for 35 years.  I would start, then stop, then start up again.  I enrolled in the NACTEL program at Pace University program because this program provided a way for me to finally complete it. "

Royce Potts III

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Royce Potts III
RP3 Enterprises
Owner/CEO
Jackson, NJ
Bachelor's Degree

"I really liked the NACTEL program at Pace University because I could do it at my own pace."

Linda Rodriguez

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Linda Rodriguez
Verizon
Analyst – Edge Team
San Angelo, TX
Associate's Degree

"My Associate’s degree gave me confidence.  My Bachelor’s degree will expand on that confidence with the skill, knowledge, and expertise to be truly successful in the telecom industry."

Aimee Sumereau

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Aimee Sumereau
Brookhaven National Laboratory
Senior Technology Engineer
Northport, NY
A.S. Degree May 2007
B.S. Degree August 2009

"This program has given me a high level of personal gratification and self esteem.

Stephanie Swenson

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Stephanie Swenson
AT&T
Communications Tech
CWA local 6360
Basehor, KS
Associate's Degree

"To be successful in this program, you need to have a time management schedule.  The program is very user friendly.  Just make a plan and manage the time when you will study." 

Phillip Young

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Phillip Young
AT&T
Network Engineer
Baltimore, MD
Associate's Degree

"As I was taking a course through Pace University, my office was dealing with technology changes. I was able to explain things to my co-workers with out even thinking about it.  NACTEL has made a lot of things possible for me."

Robert Linville

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Robert Linville
Verizon
Central Office Tech
IBEW 824 member for 11 1/2 years
Palm Harbor, FL
Bachelor of Science degree

"Both Verizon and IBEW 2323 support and strive to educate their employees; they both view an educated employee as a great asset."

Arthur Cabral

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Arthur Cabral 
Verizon
Central Office Technician
Dayville, CT
IBEW 2323 member for 25 years
Bachelor of Science degree

"I was a single mom with two teenagers and was working 12 hours a day, 6-7 days a week.  Looking back, the outcome was worth it.  I would do it all again in a heartbeat." 

Mary Billanti
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Mary Billanti
Verizon
Field Tech
CWA 1122 member for 35 years
Amherst, NY
Bachelor of Science degree

"My telecommunications degree is important because it has helped me better understand the technologies out in the field, adding to my knowledge base, and increasing my value to Verizon."

Tim Wagner

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Tim Wagner
Verizon
Specialist, Web Technology
Brandon, FL
Bachelor of Science degree

"The NACTEL online program at Pace University has paid off.  Both AT&T and CWA were very supportive of me obtaining my degree." 

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John Underwood
AT&T
Communications Tech
CWA 6225 member for 15 years
Lorena, TX
Associate of Science degree

"Don’t wait another day to get started on your degree.  The day you need a degree is not the day to start."

Thomas Corum

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Thomas Corum
AT&T
Communications Technician
CWA 6313 member since 1997
Carl Junction, MO
Bachelor of Science degree

"I thought, maybe I could do this.  The classes were relevant to my job, and I could set an example to my daughter that she shouldn’t complain about her homework when I was doing mine.’’

Bonnie Boord

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Bonnie Boord
Verizon
Frameworker
CWA 9000 member for 15 years
Woodland Hills, CA
Associate of Science degree

"The NACTEL program was a great way to connect and learn from other people in the telecommunications industry."

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Vishal Brown
McKenzie Global Consulting Firm
Video Engineer
Brooklyn, NY
Bachelor of Science degree

"I changed positions and elevated my career thanks to the online classes I took through the NACTEL program at Pace University. "

Matt Cariveau

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Matt Cariveau
Qwest
Broadband Technician
CWA 7200 member since 2000
East Bethel, MN
Bachelor of Science degree

"If you really want a degree, online learning is the way to go."

Kyle Irby

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Kyle Irby
Qwest
Network Technician
CWA 7601 member for 4 1/2 years
Gillette, WY
Associate of Science degree

"The NACTEL program is for people that want a degree and want to work for it."

Chris Kaylor

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Chris Kaylor
AT&T
Network Technical Specialist
CWA 3250
Atlanta, GA
Associate of Science degree

"College degrees are a plus.  A degree makes a difference in the way you are perceived by your peers, it elevates pay and promotes job security. "

Donna Hull

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Donna Hull
Qwest
Service Delivery Coordinator
Seattle, WA
CWA  7800
Associate of Science degree

"The NACTEL/Pace program has let me continue schooling in an online atmosphere, which worked well while trying to juggle work, family and school."

Debbie Minser

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Debbie Minser
Verizon
Specialist – Workforce Development & Performance Management
Marion, OH
Bachelor of Science degree

"I never expected so many of my classes to relate directly to my current position at Qwest."

Kathy Phillips

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Kathy Phillips
Qwest
Central Office Tech
CWA 7500 member for 31 years
Sioux Falls, SD
Associate of Science degree

"After getting my Associate’s degree online through Pace University I thought, ‘Why stop now?  Keep going and get your Bachelor's.

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Debbie Condron
Verizon
Section Manager OSP Engineering
Snohomish, WA
Bachelor of Science degree

"People make lists outlining why they can’t accomplish something; not enough time, too difficult to schedule, costs are too high, etc. NACTEL’s online programs remove those excuses so that all that’s left are the positive aspects of why you should go back to school."

Anthony Visciglia

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Anthony Visciglia
Technical Manager
Verizon
Telecommunications Track

"I just know a lot more now and with knowledge comes power.  Not superfluous things, but more in-depth knowledge within my field.  I now have industry-specific expertise and I know that I am a better Technician because of time spent in the NACTEL program."

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Jeffrey Baer
Switching Equipment Technician
Verizon
CWA 13000
A.S. Degree Applied Information Technology in Telecommunications

"Because of NACTEL I am better at what I do.  I’m able to troubleshoot customer issues faster and more efficiently. Everyone wins; me, Qwest and our customers." 

Anthony Visciglia

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Wayne Leroy Beall
Call Center Screener
Qwest
CWA 7603
A.S. Degree Applied
Information Technology in Telecommunications

"NACTEL’s curriculum is current, relevant and comprehensive.  The courses I took while earning my Bachelor’s degree are directly related to the work I do on a daily basis."

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Christian DeCosta
Fiber Optic Equipment Technician
Verizon
CWA 9588 Union Steward
BS Degree in Professional Technology Studies, Telecommunications Concentration

"I can say this course of study has helped me in many parts of my work.  I am normally involved in meetings with end user IT departments, their contractors, and other consultants.  Having knowledge to intelligently converse on a professional level is a distinct advantage.  I reach for some portion or piece of reference from NACTEL’s curriculum almost daily." 

Joe Fleming

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Joe Fleming
Contract Consultant
IBEW 716 since 1971
BS Degree - Professional Technology Studies, Telecommunications Concentration
Graduated Magna cum Laude

"Globalization will continue to drive technological advancement, forcing companies to commit to outsourcing and cost containment.  The only chance you have of surviving this change is to meet it head-on with knowledge.  NACTEL’s program will help you compete and maintain your professional edge."

Eduardo Garza

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Eduardo Garza
AT&T
Systems Tech
CWA 6143
Bachelors in Telecommunications – Telecom Focus
Graduated with Distinction

"NACTEL has made me more marketable and more intellectually ready for the dynamic future of the telecom industry."

Phillip Horgan

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Phillip Horgan
Cable Splicer
Verizon
BS Degree in Professional Technology Studies, Telecommunications Concentration
Graduated Summa cum Laude

"I plan to use my NACTEL credentials to transition into a more administrative career path.  NACTEL helped me gain the confidence and expertise I need to make that happen."

Joseph Leger

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Joseph Leger
BS Degree – Professional Technology Studies, Telecommunications Concentration
Verizon
Splice Service Technician
IBEW 2321
Graduated Summa cum Laude

"If it weren’t for NACTEL, I might not be in my current position.  The program has allowed me to reposition myself with knowledge and technical expertise that I otherwise wouldn’t have had. "

Joseph Mancini

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Joseph Mancini
Wireless Survey Developer
Verizon
A.S. Degree Applied Information Technology in Networking

"I got more than I ever expected out of the NACTEL program.  Not only did I receive an excellent education, I also gained an overwhelming sense of accomplishment and was able to make new friends along the way."

Carols Martin

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Carlos Martin
BS Degree - Professional Technology Studies, Telecommunications
Concentration
AT&T
Testing Technician (DSL)
CWA 9412
Graduated Summa Cum Laude

"I am curious by nature and want to understand how things integrate and operate. NACTEL provided the perfect platform for me to continue my quest for knowledge with telecom-specific information that is both current and robust."

Pamela Mccullough

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Pamela Mccullough
Technical Specialist
AT&T
CWA 4009
A.S. Degree Applied Information Technology in Networking

"College degrees are a plus.  A degree makes a difference in the way you are perceived by your peers, it elevates pay and promotes job security. "

Julie Nietz

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Julie Nietz
Central Office Technician
Qwest
CWA 7019
BS in Professional Technology Studies, Telecommunications Concentration
Graduated Summa cum Laude

"Earning a degree was a life-long dream for me and NACTEL helped make that dream a reality."

Veronica Rivers

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Veronica Rivers
Retired in 2006 after spending 25-years as a Verizon employee
Networking Track

"I’d tell people who are sitting-on-the-fence to just try it.  The worst thing that can happen is you’ll fall on your face.  The more likely thing is you’ll open your mind, gain new information and expand your world."

Michael Steffens

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Michael Steffens
Site – Focal End User Support
IBM – contractor for AT&T
A.S. Degree Applied Information Technology in Networking

"When I entered the NACTEL program, my life began to change.  I feel more confident now.  Bottom line, I see myself in a different light." 

Aimee Sumereau

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Aimee Sumereau
Senior Technology Engineer
Brookhaven National Laboratory
A.S. Degree Applied Information Technology in Telecommunications

"For me, the most unexpected benefit of the program was how it helped me learn to effectively manage my time."

Juan Villon

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Juan Villon
Maintenance Splicing Technician
AT&T
CWA 9509
A.S. degree -  Applied Information Technology in Telecommunications

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