Brett McPherson, U.S. Army National Guard
I was already attending Regent University when I decided to join the National Guard and Army ROTC. Trying to balance the demands of school, ROTC and the National Guard was hard work, but Regent had wonderful staff that accommodated any need a studying soldier might have. I received all the help and resources I needed from the university's military director in a timely, professional manner and promptly started training with ROTC. At first, I thought the work load was too difficult to handle. Yet, isn't that what it feels like when growing? Therefore, I found these challenges to be positive.
While taking classes, I sharpened myself as a future leader and built confidence and a networking base along the way. My tuition, housing and books? No matter. The benefits of being in ROTC and the National Guard paid for it all! The Lord provided through Regent and many other ways, and for that I cannot thank Him enough.
As a future Second Lieutenant with a B.A. in Cinema-Television under my belt, I am confident about the future. Looking back, I have undoubtedly changed for the better because of my decision to attend Regent University and join its ROTC program. I would recommend it to anyone who has decided to attend school while training to become an officer. I have seen other schools and Army ROTC programs, and there is no doubt that Regent's is in the cream of the crop. It provided everything one would need for excellent academics, spiritual growth, social networking, and financial assistance. I cannot imagine graduating from anywhere else but Regent University.
Tanisha, U.S. Navy
I settled on Regent after visiting Facebook, which promoted Regent as being one of the top 'military-friendly' colleges in the nation. From there, I ended up Googling as much information about Regent as possible, getting onto their website and clicking on 'Military Affairs.' I contacted their director of military and veterans affairs, Mr. David Boisselle, and he told me more about Regent. He explained that it's not just your typical college, but it helps your relationship with Christ to grow at the same time you are getting an education. Regent has prepared me academically based upon the challenge that it gives. The last session I had, I took The Making of the Christian Mind and Philosophy. I thought these two classes were going to be a challenge because I'm active duty and I worried that I would not be able to juggle military and college at the same time. But through the grace of God, I was able to juggle both.
It helped me to know that I'm not just getting my bachelor's degree, but I'm doing it in God's favor and on His behalf. It makes you more fulfilled because you're not just learning, but also growing in your relationship with Jesus Christ. That's something a lot of people who go to college don't even consider. They just want to get a degree to make money and advance in a career path, but Regent helps you to put God first and then everything else will follow: 'Seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.'(Matthew 6:33, ESV) At Regent, I feel like I am advancing in my relationship with Jesus Christ as well as growing in an educational aspect. I know that attending Regent University is going to open up doors. I always wanted to be involved in making film, but I also want to model Christian morals and values. Attending Regent, I'm able to grow in a career that emphasizes Christ's work and purpose, and that's something that you won't find at your average college.
Lindsey Glodt, U.S. Air Force Spouse
We have many choices when it comes to pursuing schools, but none come close the prestigious status of Regent University. The school was highly recommended to me from a current student, and after a bit of research, I found Regent to be a perfect fit due to the online and on-campus course offerings.
Being a military spouse has its challenges when it comes to trying to plan long-term goals; however, Regent University simplifies academic ambitions by putting the most educated staff in place. From the moment you send your application in, you are welcomed with open arms to a community that is dedicated to answering all questions, helping process all military paperwork, and ultimately supporting all of your endeavors.
I thoroughly enjoyed my first semester here at Regent and have noticed that the students range in age, race, religious beliefs, and personal situations. I feel it is my calling to lead, assist and support others, and feel at home at the university.
My husband has been active duty in the Air Force for over 12 years. While we are unsure of where our military orders may take us in the future, one thing is sure - Regent University will support us in our journey!
Bill Bishop, U.S. Navy Veteran
As a chief petty officer in the U.S. Navy on sea duty, whose schedule was subject to constant change, I needed a master's program that was flexible. At the same time, I wanted to attend a university that was founded on Biblical principles and recognized for its academic excellence. Regent more than exceeded those requirements and provided an academic atmosphere that was surpassed only by its commitment to Christian values. My professors cared more about me and my growth, both academic and spiritual, than they did about policy. They were guided by the Spirit, not procedure.
In addition to the wonderful education I received, Regent University provided an incredible opportunity to network and forge meaningful relationships through its faculty, staff, and leadership events. This unique experience became the impetus and basis for my book, Going Home: A Troop's Guide for Successfully Transitioning to the 'Real World'. Additionally, it evoked in me a passion for networking that I didn't even know I had and guided me to forming a niche in my doctoral studies in strategic leadership. Specifically, it led me to discover and develop the concept of servant networking and to a life of service to both others and God.
Jim Jameson, U.S. Marine Corps Veteran
Regent University, with its caring professors, beautiful campus, and military friendly approach, was instantly a perfect fit for me. That said, it was the growing and impressive reputation of the MBA program that made my final decision to attend an easy one. My decision has been rewarded for the past 14 months with challenging academics and enriching activities - all with God at the very center of the University’s coursework, culture and activities. The staff at Regent made getting my military benefits easy, and even arranged a “Yellow Ribbon” scholarship for me. The Office of Military and Veterans Affairs hosts events and provides resources for both active duty military and veterans; there is a great military community feeling here.
I enlisted in the Marines in 1974 and retired in 2009. Over those years, I had the opportunity to serve with some great leaders. Similarly, here at Regent, I have the opportunity every day to work and study with focused Christians leaders who will surely change the world.
Semper Fi, Jim
Jonathan Santiago, U.S. Navy Veteran
Pursuing further education was not on my list of things to do, frankly. In the world of digital design and advertising, a solid portfolio and connections seemed more important than an advanced degree. Nevertheless, I now find myself just months away from finishing my M.A. in Communications from the Regent's School of Communication & the Arts.
My journey started in the United States Navy. I served four fantastic years and left to finish my undergraduate degree at the Art Institute of California, San Diego. After that, I did various design and video jobs until I began working for an advertising agency in Virginia Beach - mainly as an interactive designer and video editor. It was here that I learned about the advanced degrees offered by Regent University.
I took a trip to the campus and was blown away by the beauty of the school. What actually won me over to finally pursue an advanced degree was the professional resources offered by the Com Arts School, as well as the curriculum. Regent made getting my military benefits sorted out a breeze. They also continued to offer events and resources for military/veterans through out my time there.
God used Regent to expose me to the big building next door with all the satellites known as CBN. I've since begun a career with the Digital Media Group of CBN, and continue to associate with Regent. Working with CBN was also not a place I thought I would be years ago, yet God has worked things out better than I could have done for myself. I'm thankful to Him and excited to see what is in store for the future.
Carlos Overton, U.S. Navy Veteran
The ten years I spent in the United States Navy helped me to develop character and integrity. Therefore, upon my decision to leave the Navy to pursue a college education, my goal was to attend a university that would foster an environment conducive to these same virtues while also providing me with a top-notch education. Regent University has more than exceeded these expectations. This wonderful university has allowed me to learn at a capacity fitting to my busy life style. The online classes and convenient evening courses the university offers allow me to be a single parent, full-time worker, and full-time student. Regent University does a great job at providing course loads that fit the individual’s schedule.
Regent University also provides superb professors who show genuine concern for the student’s overall learning progression. These professors are well-versed and knowledgeable in their subject matters. My experience as a student at this university has equipped and given me the passion to continue my education at the graduate level, with hopes of being accepted into Regent’s School of Law. At Regent University, you will come in excited to have all of your educational needs met and leave having a clear vision and purpose for your career goals. Christian Leadership to Change the World!
Darren Paul Shearer, U.S. Air Force Veteran
Upon arrival to Regent after four years of service in the Air Force, I had heard about the life-long support that veterans provide to each other after active duty. As a member of Regent’s military community, this highly underrated benefit of military service became a reality. Because there were fellow veterans in nearly every class that I took at Regent, there was no shortage of camaraderie and support from my classmates. When I published my first book during my second year at Regent, In You God Trusts: The Five Domains of Personal Responsibility, Regent’s Student Veterans Association staged my first book signing, which was a huge success! It is rare to find a closer bond among people than the friendships formed between Christian service members and veterans. Regent has cultivated a first-class academic environment in which these friendships can thrive.
DARREN PAUL SHEARER is the founder and president of Totality Fitness, an organization dedicated to helping people to become physically fit, financially free, and purpose driven. As a Captain in the United States Air Force, Darren earned the Commendation Medal for his meritorious service in Kuwait during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Darren has served as the Academic Writing Instructor at Regent University in Virginia Beach, VA where he also completed an M.A. degree. He currently serves as a Totality Fitness Coach in New York, NY.
Alphronzo "Al" Moseley, U.S. Air Force Veteran
After retiring from the Air Force, I relocated to Northern Virginia where I had once lived while being assigned to the Pentagon. I had never heard of Regent University. I found Regent through a google search. The subjects of leadership and mentoring had always intrigued me so I sought out universities with a leadership curriculum. I began my first residency at Regent University in May 2007 and completed all requirements for the Doctor of Strategic Leadership degree in December 2010.
I’m using my Regent education to change the world in several ways. First, in my current position as performance learning director for the leadership and management curriculum at the Defense Acquisition University, I’m involved in creating and revising curriculum that impacts over 150,000 members currently in the acquisition workforce. Secondly, I was recently certified as a Defense Acquisition University Executive Coach through the Cambridge Group Worldwide executive coaching qualification training program. In this capacity, I aid in the leadership development of senior defense program managers who are responsible for efficiently executing billions of our taxpaying dollars. Thirdly, I’ve created executive program management curriculum that emphasizes leading change in a dynamic, fiscally constrained environment compounded by major drivers such as globalization, knowledge explosions, technology revolutions and unrelenting change. Fourth, the evangelism and missions ministry in which I’m the director is involved in Christian missions in Brazil and Kenya. Last, but not least, the best is yet to come!
Clifton Patterson, U.S. Army Veteran
I joined the Army in 2005 as a Chaplain’s Assistant to serve my country and be exposed to a unique form of ministry. During my service, I took advantage of the opportunity to go to school when I could fit it into my schedule. I attended a nearby community college to find some direction and solidify my educational goals. Afterward, I decided that I wanted to major in Biblical Studies, and found Regent University. I began to attend online while at Fort Benning, Ga. I was impressed with the online format that was offered, and I quickly found that I was being more challenged academically at Regent than the previous college I attended. The professors genuinely cared about my spiritual growth as well as my academic growth.
As the fulfillment of my military obligation neared, I started considering my next step. My wife and I decided to move to Virginia Beach to attend Regent University on campus. Two weeks after we had arrived, we discovered we were pregnant! I must be honest that the realization of a third member to the family was a bit daunting. I wondered how we would survive financially, but the Lord indeed provides.
I have found that the Post 9/11 GI Bill has been more than generous at helping us maintain the financial necessities of our household on campus. Furthermore, I find Regent to be very military-friendly. They have partnered with Veterans Affairs to offer the Yellow Ribbon Program to military veterans, and this helps pay my full tuition. I am so thankful to attend this university. Regent appreciates our nation’s veterans and they do what they can to ensure an open door for veterans and active duty soldiers to study at this fine institution.
Saundra McDowell, U.S. Air Force Veteran
Before coming to Regent, I spent eight years in the Air Force. During that time, as I moved from base to base, I attended seven different undergraduate schools. I have wanted to be an attorney since Career Day in the fifth grade, but I didn’t know where I wanted to go to law school. God led me to apply to Regent's School of Law. It felt like everything was so easy with the application process and even afterwards when I was accepted. It seemed like God really wanted me to go here. Once I started at Regent, I could see why. As I had experience with a number of schools, I could see right away that Regent Law's academic education was top-notch.
I know I received a great academic education at Regent, but the best part was that I met my husband here! We met our first year and were in the same law classes throughout the three years. Spiritually, I was re-saved. My husband and I were both re-baptized during our time at Regent, and the university helped foster spiritual growth through caring and compassionate professors and 10-minute devotions that start every class. The professors have open door policies where students feel comfortable walking in without notice to get help or just talk. God knew what I needed in every way and knew Regent was the place I was going to find it.
Kenneth Rice, U.S. Navy
As a convenience store clerk in South Carolina at 17, Kenneth W. Rice never imagined working at the Pentagon, dining with the Mexican president, or finishing his Ph.D.
Lt. Cmdr. Rice, who has also worked as a prison guard, is now a rising leader in the U.S. Navy as an aide to four-star Adm. Patrick M. Walsh, vice chief of naval operations. He's also completing his doctoral studies at Regent University. Rice, who has never forgotten his roots, didn't want an ivory tower Ph.D.—long on theory but short on practical applications. Rice chose Regent's School of Business & Leadership because he could use what he's learning to impact not just today's Navy but also the Navy through the 21st century.
Rice earned a Master's of Education in Educational Leadership from Old Dominion University in 2004 and enrolled at Regent in 2005. "My cohort at Regent includes people from a variety of fields—medical, military, ministry, the federal government—and we're each able to apply what we're learning to our specific area of expertise," Rice says. "A lot of our professors are consultants, and although they haven't worked in every single field, they are able to help the students apply that knowledge in various areas of the workforce. It's exceptional. There is no 'one-size-fits-all' lesson. That was key for me."
Rice, who finishes his Doctor of Strategic Leadership in May, writes his papers with two people in mind: his professor and his Navy bosses, not necessarily in that order. "Every paper I write for Regent, I give to my boss as a white paper," Rice says. "I don't just think about the theory. I think about what's going on in my office. My boss uses the information in the paper to help determine what changes need to be made to improve the Navy."
Rice is one of a growing number of armed services men and women choosing Regent's graduate programs. They like the relationships they can build with professors and the opportunities to put their education to work building a stronger military.
When Rice eventually goes back to sea, he'll be second in command of a ship and then, if things proceed according to plan, will become commanding officer. When that time comes, Rice knows he'll be calling on what he's learned at Regent, making critical decisions.
Delores Stanley, U.S. Air Force
In the post-9/11 world, extraordinary circumstances are daily fare for military chaplains. For Delores Stanley, a major in the U.S. Air Force who will graduate this May from the School of Divinity, these circumstances have included everything from serving as chaplain to the Thunderbirds air demonstration squadron to ministering to wounded airmen returning from Iraq. "The Thunderbirds met every morning," she says, "and called on me for words of encouragement and prayer." At Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland, the calls for prayer came at all hours—from a different sort of hero. "One night, when I was asked to go out to meet the wounded," she remembers, "the colonel warned me it was going to be ugly. I'd done hospital visits, funerals—but when I got there, I had to take a deep breath. There were all these cots, one on top of another. There were 40 wounded that night—some with broken bones or bullet wounds, some unconscious, one they thought was surely going to die."
Stanley talked to them all, prayed with them all—or just listened to them without words. "I was there to encourage them," she says, "but they touched me so profoundly." And she was there to help them any way she could. She recalls it took six people to carry each cot to the bus that would transport them to hospitals: "I asked the colonel if I could help carry them. I couldn't just pray and leave. Afterwards, I went back to my car and wept. Those soldiers blessed me."
For a congregational pastor or priest, ministry is generally the spiritual care of a community of people of a specific faith tradition—leading them in regular worship and through life-cycle events. The role of a chaplain, in contrast, is to minister to people of all religious beliefs and affiliations, often in extraordinary circumstances. Stanley explains that the faith traditions of today's military men and women range from mainstream Christianity to Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, Wicca—she's even encountered Satanists and atheists. "The military doesn't discriminate," Stanley says, "and neither do chaplains. I don't have to agree with them to minister to them."
Christopher Murphy, U.S. Army
As an Army psychologist, U.S. Army Capt. Christopher "Topher" Murphy often sits down with soldiers recovering from life-changing brain injuries caused by explosions of improvised explosive devices (IEDs). Murphy '08 (Psychology & Counseling ) doesn't just talk the talk—he knows all about how life can be turned upside down in an instant. As he counsels soldiers, Murphy draws on his personal fight with cancer as a teenager.
"When I was 14, I had two types of cancer: Burkitt's lymphoma and leukemia," Murphy says. "I was on death's doorstep and not expected to live." When he sought to serve his internship in the Army, Murphy, whose cancer has been in remission for years, had to obtain medical letters stating he was cancer-free and fit to serve.
He is now serving his residency at Dwight D. Eisenhower Army Medical Center at Fort Gordon in Augusta, Ga. His responsibilities include individual therapy, group therapy and substance abuse counseling. Murphy also performs neuro-psychological assessments of soldiers with head injuries and evaluates soldiers for fitness and suitability to serve.
When it came time to consider a school to pursue his doctorate, Murphy looked no further than Regent. He didn't want to be a nameless face sitting in a large lecture hall. He chose Regent because he knew he'd get one-on-one interaction with his professors. "As opposed to being known by the last four digits of your Social [Security number], I was able to drop by a professor's office and say, 'I have a question,'" says Murphy, who also earned a Master's in Clinical Psychology as part of his doctoral program. "Dr. Lynn Olson was not only my supervisor, but also a mentor. She allowed me to grow personally and professionally. We still talk regularly about cases and concerns in the field of psychology."
The Regent community maintained a balance between independence and support. "The professors fostered a sense of independence, while at the same time, a camaraderie where you can call up a professor at any point and ask for assistance," Murphy says. "That has greatly helped me here. I can operate independently when appropriate, yet I'm comfortable to go at any time to an appropriate commander to consult for help."
Erica Dobbs, U.S. Navy
I am a Lieutenant in the Navy, and my specialty is information professional. I have been in the Navy for 27 years. My military experience began as an enlisted sailor where I served for approximately 16 years, at which time I was accepted into the Navy's Limited Duty Officer program. What drew me to Regent was my struggle as a woman in ministry and the obstacles that I faced with regard to the ministerial call that I knew I had upon my life.
My life has changed tremendously since I embarked upon my journey at Regent. Two years ago my husband [also a Navy veteran] planted a church in Virginia Beach. At the onset of my journey, I knew that I had a call upon my life to be a pastor; however, I never dreamed of becoming a church planter.
The education that I have obtained from this university has been the cornerstone for the success of my quest in ministry. I have utilized my degree to empower individuals spiritually and professionally in America and abroad. As a joint student in divinity and education, I have found that God is opening doors for me to minister to international students by affording me the opportunity to provide them one-on-one tutoring sessions in TESOL. My recent efforts in this area have been extended to an enlisted sailor currently deployed in Afghanistan where I am assisting him with the English language at the collegiate level. I am the founder of the Women of Worth Inc. and CEO of CC Homes—this home has been in operation since 2005. It has served single mothers and single women who are transitioning in their life's journey. My life is an example of Regent's mission to equip and empower Christian leaders to change the world.
Rachel Colbert, U.S. Air Force
When a B-52 bomber crashed off Guam last summer, killing six crew members, Capt. Rachel Colbert's phone rang about an hour later. Colbert runs the mental health clinic at Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana where the plane was based. Helping crew members deal with such a loss is one of the many duties she has as the only psychologist serving the base's 7,000 active-duty service members.
After the crash, Colbert talked to members of the unit, helping them face their fears. "That was pretty grueling," she says. "A crash brings up your own mortality, knowing you could die flying. A lot of times you put that in the back of your mind, because [otherwise] you can't function."
Colbert is serving her psychology residency with the Air Force, where she is gaining experience and responsibility well beyond what she'd get in the civilian world. "Outside the military, I would never get this much responsibility and experience," she says. "I graduated a year ago, and I am running a clinic. This level of hands-on training wouldn't have been possible if I had chosen a civilian residency." She sees people for depression, anxiety and sleep problems, as well as emergencies. About 50 people come through the clinic in a week. Colbert also works with primary care doctors as part of a program to help patients whose health problems, such as insomnia, are related to emotional issues.
What she learned at Regent helps her meet these challenges and has prepared her for leadership roles. At Regent, Colbert grew as a person and a therapist as she worked closely with a research team that developed an online enrichment program for marriages. That experience has helped her in the military, where she often counsels couples who have married young and then faced problems as they matured.
Although Regent is bigger than she initially thought, Colbert appreciates the close relationships with professors—especially from her mentor, Dr. Jennifer Ripley. She also values the hands-on opportunities that she believes she wouldn't have gotten at a much larger school. "I was Dr. Ripley's teaching assistant," Colbert says. "I co-authored a book chapter with her. She helped guide me on my dissertation. She helped guide me to different conferences and mentored me, helping me get involved professionally in the field. Working as her teaching assistant and working on other projects, I learned a lot about leadership skills. I really liked the fact that the professors were our mentors, and we could develop relationships with them."
Sherry Kosnar, U.S. Army
She has wanted to jump out of airplanes since she was 10, and her passion to become a teacher began even earlier. The United States Army helped her do both. Sherry Kosnar, who served in the Army from 1985–1998, credits the G.I. Bill for helping her earn a B.A. in Religious Studies and a Master's in Education from Regent.
"The education I received at Regent allowed me to sharpen my skills and make me even more determined to become the best teacher I can be," Kosnar says. "I couldn't have done it without the G.I. Bill."
Dr. William Cox, who was director of the master's degree program Kosnar completed, knows firsthand about that determination. "Sherry has a fervor and commitment for educating children matched by few other educators," Cox says. Describing her in military terms, he continues, "Sherry has gone beyond the call of duty to prepare herself for teaching children to honor God and country."
When she has her mind set on doing something, Kosnar is known for doing it. In addition to completing more than 50 marathons and the Rattle Snake 50K in West Virginia, she finished the JFK 50-miler in the mountains near Hagerstown, Md.,—after falling off the backside of a mountain where she broke her arm, injured her knee and had a slight concussion at the halfway point in the race. "I was six minutes behind the lead male when I fell," Kosnar explains. She finished the race as the 13th female overall.
Currently attending the Washington Montessori Institute at Loyola College in Baltimore, Md., to obtain her Primary Montessori certification, Kosnar plans to return to Hampton Roads to teach. It is a profession she undoubtedly will jump into with the same determination she used to run all those marathons and jump out of all those airplanes. And for that, we salute her.