Earning a Degree Online

Marcus Myers

Marcus Myers, an IT staff member at UTC, was the first person to sign up for the online UTC Achieve Degree. Photo: Jaimie Davis.

By Cindy Carroll

Marcus Myers is a familiar, friendly face at UT Chattanooga, an emissary from the IT Help Desk sent to save employees and students with computer problems. The 1989 high school graduate decided fall 2013 would be the beginning of the end of his undergraduate experience. He was the first person to sign on for the new UTC Achieve Degree.

This completion degree is perfect for Myers, who had already earned 70 college credits at UTC and Chattanooga State Community College. He now attends part time and plans to finish in approximately two and a half years. “This degree program is all online, and I believe that will help me. I have had a hard time focusing and listening in traditional classes. With online classes, I can pace myself,” Myers explains.

Some studies estimate that more than 100,000 individuals in the Chattanooga area hold some amount of college credits but did not finish a degree. “The main goal of the UTC Achieve Degree is to assist working adults to complete their college educations so that they can advance in their careers,” says Gretchen Potts, director of the UTC Achieve Degree. “We need more college graduates to grow our economy, and this online degree program offers a route for some students to achieve that goal.”

Graduates of the Achieve Degree program will earn a bachelor of integrated studies degree with a concentration in professional studies. The UTC Achieve degree is targeted directly at adults who are busy with jobs and families. The best candidates are those with 60-70 college credit hours who are eager to move forward in their careers. For Myers, the UTC Achieve Degree is the key to positive results in the workplace.

“Many jobs in my field require a bachelor’s degree. I have the experience, but I don’t have the degree. This will make me more marketable in my career,” he says.

For more information, please visit utc.edu/integrated-studies.