Success Story: Transitioning Into a Career in Higher Education

Crystal was a Nursing Home Administrator before she was laid off from her position in 2009.  She earned her MBA in Healthcare Administration and worked for over 10 years in her field.   Losing her job propelled her to make a major career transition into Psychology and pursue a new career in higher ed teaching.  She currently teaches at a local community college and a state university.

Crystal enrolled in PhD in Psychology- Educational Psychology at Walden after speaking with an academic advisor who inspired her to pursue a PhD.  She obtained a position at a residential treatment center for males to gain hands-on experience in her new field.  During PhD residencies, she attended networking and career management skills sessions, and was inspired by a residency presentation on how to teach for a college. 

After gaining effective networking and job search skills, Crystal contacted a local community college and introduced herself to the Dean of Psychology and Dean of Academic Affairs.  Crystal believes that her program at Walden has opened doors for her.  She impressed them with her knowledge of Psychology, work experience, and enthusiasm, and was hired to teach her first Psychology course.  Additionally, she may obtain a full-time position in the Distance Education Department. 

Crystal continued to network with co-workers, former professors, and others in her community.  She informed everyone that she was looking to teach Psychology.  She gained insider information from a former co-worker who told her that a local university needed an instructor to teach a Monday evening course and she was hired to teach Developmental Psychology. 

Crystal continues to network with current and former classmates and professors.  Recently, she saw one of her former professors at a library and asked him who she can talk to about adjunct positions at her alma mater.   This opportunity is currently pending.  We expect Crystal to have many more successes in years to come!

Written by Career Services Advisor Dina Bergren

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