Back to Blog Local Clinical Research Professional Says UC Online was the Right Choice Blog Share Share on FacebookFollow us on LinkedInShare on PinterestShare via Email To excel in any field, it helps to know that there is support and guidance as you learn. This is one of the many reasons Lydia Mack says choosing the University of Cincinnati Online’s Master of Science in Medical Laboratory Science Leadership (MLSL) program is the right choice for her. As a professional who was already established in the field of clinical research, she decided to pursue this degree to enhance her knowledge in the field and achieve more in her profession. Here Lydia shares her story and the aspects of UC Online that helped her open new possibilities for her career. What motivated you to seek this degree program? I previously earned both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in microbiology. I was thinking about starting a Master of Public Health degree before I found an advertisement for the Medical Laboratory Science Leadership degree. I ultimately decided to pursue this degree to expand my career opportunities and further advance my understanding of clinical microbiology. Why did you select UC Online over other institutions? UC is the only local university offering this degree and I had previously used textbooks published by the program director during my previous degree progressions. I work and live in Cincinnati, so UC was high on my list of options when considering where to enroll for an advanced degree. The goals and mission of the MLSL program aligned with my values, so UC was an easy choice. Why did you choose an online program vs. on campus? The benefit of the program being 100% online was a major factor in choosing this program. I was able to complete assignments and lectures at my own pace while working full-time. What were your expectations of the program and do you feel they were met? I expected to be challenged, both by the workload and the content of the program, but also to be supported and guided to successfully complete the program. I could not be happier with my decision to pursue this program and feel that I was truly valued as a student during my progression. All the faculty involved are kind, caring, and easy to work with, making the workload very manageable to complete. Overall, how would you describe the online learning experience? I enjoyed the ability to work and network with individuals from other programs and institutions across the country and internationally. The online format was helpful for integrating my school assignments with my job, which I would not have been able to do if I were to attend lectures in person. The websites were easy to use, the faculty were easily accessible when questions arose, and the overall online learning experience at UC was great! What were your main concerns about enrolling in this or any online program? I was very nervous but excited to begin this program. I came into the program with an MS in microbiology and research laboratory experience. Despite completing an MS program before, I did not know what to expect when pursuing a medical laboratory science degree. Dr. Tille, the program director, motivated and supported me throughout the courses to make sure I was performing well and completing assignments, which I am so grateful for. I could not be happier with my decision to pursue this program. What would you say to someone who is considering this program at UC Online? The UC online experience is a wonderful way to earn a degree on your own time. You can easily incorporate your studies into your personal and work schedules, and the format is customizable. You can take as few or as many courses as you wish to take on during a semester, and the option of flex semester courses is helpful for completing courses in shorter time-frames, allowing you to complete credit requirements in shorter time frames. If you are on the fence about starting a degree at UC online, you won’t regret giving it a try. What do you plan to do with your degree? I am planning to study for and complete the American Society of Clinical Pathology Microbiology & Molecular Biology Certifications. I will leverage the knowledge and experience gained from completing this degree to improve my current career role and investigate potential career opportunities in clinical laboratory science and research. Overall, would you recommend the University of Cincinnati Online to others? I would absolutely recommend the University of Cincinnati Online to others! With UC Online I felt supported, valued, respected, and motivated to succeed. The UC Online experience allowed me to reach both my academic and professional goals while maintaining a positive work-life-education balance. Exploring new opportunities at UC Online The support system described by Lydia is a common draw to the University of Cincinnati, particularly the online courses. As students earn their degrees on their own time while balancing other aspects of their life, the UC staff and resources are always there to help ensure their hard work pays off and they excel in their careers! If you’d like to talk to an advisor at UC, you can do so by calling (833) 556-8611 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday or by connecting with an advisor online. Set your sights on what you want most in your career, and the University of Cincinnati will help get you there!