National Graduate Furthers Education to Pursue a Degree in Human Resources


While a student at the $$Charlottesville Campus, Crystal Smith decided a career in human resources was her goal for her future. Inspired by one of her business instructors, she liked learning about how the impact of a strong HR department can help an organization become successful. She graduated in 2011 from the business administration-management degree program as one of the first steps to accomplishing that goal.

Before coming to National, Crystal previously attended another college but she was unsure yet what career she wanted to pursue. She also had a hard time fitting their classes in her schedule because they were only offered during the day. National’s night classes worked for her. She also liked that her class sizes at National were not as big. “I felt there was more one-on-one interaction,” she explained. “I did have one experience at the [other college] where I was struggling with a math course…and the teacher wasn’t really available to help me…National was different.”

[img]When she was finally able to decide what she wanted for her future, Crystal shared her career goal with Career Center Director Anne Brown who invited her to attend a meeting of the local chapter of the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) to expose her to the continuing education availed to current HR practitioners. The meeting proved beneficial as Crystal was introduced to the chapter’s president who took this budding HR professional under her wing.

Crystal knew that continuing her education would be imperative and began seeking out HR degree programs that would complement her associate’s degree from National. She is now pursuing her bachelor’s degree in human resource management at Capella University where she was able to $$transfer* her National College credits.

Crystal has been working as a faculty assistant for the UVA School of Law while attending college and her employer has supported her efforts in getting a higher education. “It was tough because I worked full time, but you know at the end of the tunnel, there’s a light,” she said as she explained the challenges she faced juggling a busy life and school work.

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