Aspiring Author Moves Closer to Goal with Help of GWU’s Online Master’s Program

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Nickie Crowe (’16) Learns new Writing Techniques, Gains Confidence in Public Speaking

Through the Master of Arts in English online program at Gardner-Webb University, Nickie Crowe of Ferndale, Wash., is taking steps to make her lifelong aspirations come true.

“I always thought I’d get a degree in English and go to work reading for a publishing company, or I could write a novel, perhaps an action adventure with a romantic undercurrent,” Crowe shared. “Life has a way of taking us in different directions, and somehow I ended up in Nome, Alaska, working with numbers for more than 10 years.”

After she moved to Washington, the city of Nome allowed her to continue to work from home as an accounting technician. “I like my job, yet I just knew I needed to keep pushing myself toward writing,” Crowe said. “Maybe someday, I’ll have an opportunity to share what I’ve learned with other writers.”

As she began her search for an affordable online program, a friend from South Carolina recommended Gardner-Webb. Crowe likes the format and has learned something new from each course. “Successful writing programs facilitate communication skills, both verbal and written. Those are necessities of any career,” she assessed. “I enjoyed the cohort model; staying with a specific group of people helps make learning easier. Each class and professor has added something to my writing tool box.”

The professors who have meant the most in her educational experience are Dr. Jennifer Buckner and Dr. June Hobbs. “Dr. Buckner’s courses and teaching style have had the greatest impact on me. New Media, Texts and Technologies, and Visual Rhetoric are relevant to what is going on today,” Crowe observed. “The way she set up each course and also shared the history of each subject provided an engaging theoretical framework for understanding. Dr. Hobbs’ course helped me gain confidence to give a speech, which I never thought I could actually do. Her knowledge in the field of rhetoric makes my head spin. I also appreciate her willingness to mentor one of my projects and share her knowledge of women and culture in the 19th Century.”