Why Students Feel ECPI is the Right Choice

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College Spotlight

by Jenny Faubert

ECPI building

Choosing a college to attend can be difficult. What would help with that decision? Would getting opinions from students already attending that college help? On a recent trip to ECPI College of Technology in Virginia Beach, VA, we decided to do just that. By speaking with their students, president and staff, we got an inside look on how the college operates.

When ECPI first opened its doors years ago, its main programs were in the technology field. Today, Surgical Technology, Criminal Justice, Culinary Arts, and Simulation and Game are among the many programs available. ECPI serves students in North and South Carolina and the Virginia area through its 13 campuses. ECPI's Online campus also serves students in 38 states across the country.

Alex Thomas

In 1966, Alfred Dreyfus founded ECPI to cater to non-traditional students seeking quality higher education. Mark Dreyfus, Alfred's son and president of ECPI, has continued this proud tradition. Numerous students, including ECPI students Alex Thomas and Travis Nissen, have chosen to attend non-traditional higher education institutions like ECPI. After serving six years in the U.S. Navy, Alex decided to pursue higher education. ECPI's accelerated pace, availability of classes, and high quality of institution are a few of the reasons, Alex decided to attend ECPI.

Travis Nissen

Travis, also a U.S. Navy veteran and student at ECPI's Virginia Beach campus, works part-time and attends ECPI during the day. Travis spent six years in the Navy working with electronics.

"Playing around on the computer became more than a hobby," said Travis.

With his Navy experience and passion for computers, Travis knew the IT/Networking & Security Management program at ECPI was an ideal choice for him.

ECPI Career Services

Another key resource for students like Travis and Alex are ECPI's student services. The Career Services department helps students in many ways.

"They have information on jobs, relationships with local businesses, and offer valuable resumé assistance," said Alex.

Students can also use the testing centers located on campus to get additional certification outside of their programs.

"This additional certification will help me get job offers," said Travis.

ECPI's close relationship with local businesses and its aggressive career services are more ways ECPI helps its students find careers.

"Local businesses are very pleased with our graduates," said Mark. "Our graduates have been hired by over 2,500 career employees in 34 states."

ECPI also participates in all of the Imagine America scholarship programs, including Imagine America for high school students, Imagine America Military Award (MAP) and Imagine America Online. Both Alex and Travis are 2006 MAP recipients. The $1,000 career education award is available to any qualified active duty, reservist, honorably discharged or retired member of a United States military service branch for attendance at a participating career college. With the financial assistance of the Imagine America MAP scholarship, MAP recipients like Alex and Travis were able to keep their out-of-pocket cost at a minimum.

John Jeffcoat, Vice President of Military Affairs and Continuing Education, has worked with the Foundation's programs extensively. "They are fantastic and offer students a great opportunity," he said.

"I really like the instructors because they have extensive knowledge in their field due to their real-world experience," Travis said. "They can give you great advice because they have already experienced it."

Debbie Haynes-Carter, president of ECPI Online, also points to ECPI's expert instructors. Their online instructors are very strict when it comes to students' interaction in the class. Participation in online discussion is one of the many ways they do this.

ECPI computer lab

Whether their students attend right out of high school or are adults continuing their education or making a career change, ECPI offers a student-focused collegiate environment where students have the opportunity, through a hands-on learning approach, to prepare them for the career of their choice. If you would like to find out more about ECPI College of Technology, please visit www.ecpi.edu.