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Sometimes past connections pay off in unexpected ways. In the mid-1990s, Laura Chase was at an event near her home in Virginia when she ran into an old high-school friend. The friend was working as an administrator at Strayer University, and when he told her about the place, his eyes lit up with passion and excitement. Chase was intrigued.

“I mentioned to him that I had spent a few years at a university but then some personal life circumstances got in the way, and I didn’t finish,” she recalls. “He said, ‘Come see me,’ and he gave me his card.”


Chase was familiar with Strayer but she believed that the school was focused on business, primarily serving students who wanted to become administrative assistants. (At the time, Strayer College was on the verge of expanding to Strayer University.) Upon further investigation, she discovered that the school had diversified its focus and had a much wider range of options for coursework than she anticipated. “Strayer offered a degree in information systems, which aligned well with my previous studies in computer science and was a good fit for the job market at the time,” Chase says.   

She began to think seriously about going back to school. Could she afford it? Did she have time? Could she transfer credits from her previous education? She had been just 18 credits shy of graduating before she withdrew. Chase met with her old high-school friend, who put her in touch with an admissions officer.

The Strayer admissions officer helped Chase get answers to the numerous questions she had. School staff helped her apply for financial aid, and she began to explore the coursework related to an IS degree. She was able to test out of some courses and transfer numerous credits from her old school.


Chase ultimately finished in two and a half years, rather than the traditional four— all while working full-time. Earning a bachelor’s degree helped her get a promotion at her job at the time. More recently, the bachelor’s degree has allowed her to apply for positions where a college degree was a hiring requirement. She currently work as a Team Lead for a government contactor that handles retirement benefits for federal employees.

“Strayer was the right place for me,” Chase says. “I still pride myself that I was in the first class that graduated not from Strayer College, but Strayer University.”


Learn more about earning your degree faster with transfer credits at Strayer University.


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