Paul Watson

1) Why did you choose Anaheim University?
Basically, because of 5 key reasons:

  • The professional and kind staff
  • Accreditation
  • Researched based and relevant academic programs
  • Competitive cost
  • Practical payment system

Its online MBA and DBA Programs are practical, modern and relevant
Its Accreditation - nationally accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC)
Its Professors - all of whom are qualified with terminal degrees and real life practical experiences
Its Ongoing Enrollment System - prospective students can start at the beginning of any term
Its Accessibility to the Professors - we have access to the Professors’ contact info, who usually have a quick response rate
Its Cost - quite reasonable especially compared to other institutions
Its many modes of payment – a one-time payment system, per term payment, or pay in installments through a formal promissory agreement.

About the Staff- I remember when I was enquiring many years ago about the program and the university. I had many questions, but the administrative personnel were always kind, patient, and informative. I thought that should I choose this university, I would then feel comfortable as there will be professional staff who will be able to assist me anytime. Anaheim’s academic, administrative, and technical staff are all professional. They really serve by the university motto: Student First, Always. 

2) Can you tell us briefly about your career?
I am a qualified foreign language Instructor. I have a BA in Spanish, a Post Graduate Foreign Language Teachers' Diploma, an MBA from Anaheim, and presently pursuing my DBA also at Anaheim. I have over 20 years of teaching experience at all age levels, teaching Spanish, French and Maths in Jamaica, and EFL in Japan. My wife and I have been managing a small English Conversation school here in Japan, and I have just been offered a part time EFL lecturing position at a University in Japan. I have been President of many Organizations, including President for Okayama Association of Japanese English Teaching Programme (Okayama AJET) and President of Jamaica Spanish Teachers' Association. During my tenure in these positions, some of my roles included liaising with different Ministries of Education (Education Officers/Consultants). For example, Jamaica's Ministry of Education, Okayama Board of Education, diplomats, University lecturers, teachers and students, for the promotion of foreign language education in the respective regions.

3) Why did you choose to earn an MBA?
I have been a teacher all my life. I thought that a business qualification would give me more opportunities and marketability.

4) Why did you decide to pursue a DBA?
I am interested in academia and teaching at the university level. In addition, I am interested in having and running a business. I thought that pursuing a DBA would give me the choices of being a University Lecturer/Professor, heading an educational institution, managing a private corporation or running my own business. I have even known people who have done all or most of the above in their lifetime, so if the DBA can give me that platform, then why not?

5) What did you like best about the program?
First, the research aspect and secondly, the stimulating discussions. Almost every week we have to research and investigate a business topic and turn in a formal report. It’s basically learning by researching and seeking ways to apply the knowledge in the real business world. In addition, our daily student-led online discussions and the Real-time online classes with the Professors provide the opportunities for stimulating discussions with a diversified student population. We can share on various business topics in a respectful manner. The interesting thing is that we can hear different viewpoints from peoples with different cultural, educational, and working backgrounds. This helps to make the leaning process quite engaging.

6) What is your favorite memory from the program?
The program is so practical and knowledge based that I was able to a research assignment on an NPO where I worked, and use the knowledge which I learned to implement some changes in the organization.

7) How was the experience studying online?
In a nutshell - Superb! Challenging! Engaging! Enlightening! Fulfilling! It can be challenging but overall a wonderful and rewarding experience. I remember the proud moment getting my transcript after finishing the MBA. I felt it was worth it!

8) How do you balance the time required to study while working full-time?
It’s very difficult. I am not going to lie. When you have a paper or two to write every week, a 40-hour per week full time job, family, and community commitments, it can be daunting. Many times I wanted to give up, but it takes personal commitment, determinations and family support to finish the program successfully. I have to literally make a conscious decision on a regular basis how much time I have to set aside for my studies. After a while, it becomes a routine.

9) Do you feel you were part of a learning community?
Yes, the online discussion board and real-time classes help us students to always present and share our different points of view, whether you choose to do so in a relaxed manner or formal academic register.

10) What was the most unusual location you joined an online class or discussion forum from?
At a Wedding Center. I remember once I had a real-time online class, but it clashed with my wedding invitation. I did not worry because the good thing about Anaheim’s system is that I could arrive early at the wedding, sit in my car in the parking lot, log into the system, join the class, participate in the discussion, and afterwards was just in time to participate in the wedding without missing a beat.

11) What would you say to someone who is hesitant about studying online?
Yeah, I would understand their feelings. I was hesitant too at first but now I have no regrets. Online studies are convenient, where you have the ability to study while working full time. It’s recognized just the same as classroom style learning. There is no distinction on the certificate if it is online or in a face-to-face class. The Degree title is worded the same as some who attended on-site classes. The best advice I would give for someone who is hesitant is to first check the program and the university’s accreditation. As long as it is globally recognized and you are comfortable with the program, then you are good to go. Anaheim provides all of that and more.

12) Do you feel the MBA is helping to develop your career?
Yes. I have already been offered a part time university position because of my MBA. The interviewer actually told me that another person who had an MA had also applied, but I was offered because of the MBA.

13) What advice would you offer to the Anaheim University incoming students?
I would say be prepared to sacrifice some social activities and make sure to divide your time structurally. Decide at first how much time is needed for your family, faith, job, assignments, hanging out with friends etc., all of which must be clearly allocated. If not, you will find out that that your studies are left behind. In the end, if you keep up with the Anaheim’s program structures, schedules, Professors’ advice, and your hard work, then then you are guaranteed success. The emotional feeling you get when you receive the Diploma in your hands is beyond words. Thanks Anaheim for a great experience.