Does WGU hold any weight with the employers?

newjacknewjack Member Posts: 106 ■■■□□□□□□□
I've been looking to get back into school and get a masters Information Security (already have a bachelors in Security) but does WGU really hold any weight? I have heard the the Masters program at WGU isn't all that great... And I am sure that this topic has been beaten to death, and if it has, I am sorry in advanced.
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  • nelson8403nelson8403 Member Posts: 220 ■■■□□□□□□□
    It should hold just as much weight as any other state school, it won't hold the same weight as an ivy league school but it'll get you past the the HR filters
    Bachelor of Science, IT Security
    Master of Science, Information Security and Assurance

    CCIE Security Progress: Written Pass (06/2016), 1st Lab Attempt (11/2016)
  • emerald_octaneemerald_octane Member Posts: 613
    I think the material is fine, I wish they offered traditional grades or something higher than a 3.0 only conversion rate.

    Also I do get weirded out when I hear of folks completing the entire program in one/two semesters. I know, at the end of the day, the work submitted is the same as someone who takes 2 or 4 years to complete their program. It just makes me uneasy.
  • olaHaloolaHalo Member Posts: 748 ■■■■□□□□□□
    No potential employer has ever said anything negative to me about WGU.
    Its popular with teachers and I work in a school district so its actually well recognized in this environment.
  • srabieesrabiee Member Posts: 1,231 ■■■■■■■□□□
    It's a regionally accredited, non-profit institution. Check and check. WGU is a great school. Its online, go-at-your-own-pace pedagogy literally allowed me to obtain my degree as an adult with a family and full-time job.
    WGU Progress: Master of Science - Information Technology Management (Start Date: February 1, 2015)
    Completed: LYT2, TFT2, JIT2, MCT2, LZT2, SJT2 (17 CU's)
    Required: FXT2, MAT2, MBT2, C391, C392 (13 CU's)

    Bachelor of Science - Information Technology Network Design & Management (WGU - Completed August 2014)
  • iBrokeITiBrokeIT GICSP, GCIP, GXPN, GPEN, GWAPT, GCFE, GCIA, GCIH, GSEC, CySA+, Sec+, eJPT Member Posts: 1,303 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I always chuckle when I see thread like this one. How exactly do you measure "the weight" of a degree?

    It certainly doesn't have the name recognition or quality of an Ivy league school but it also doesn't have the negatives of the online for-profits so the range by which it would fall is pretty wide...
    2019: GPEN | GCFE | GXPN | GICSP | CySA+ 
    2020: GCIP | GCIA | eCPPT | eWPT | eCTHP

    WGU BS IT-NA | SANS Grad Cert: PT&EH | SANS Grad Cert: ICS Security
  • BradleyHUBradleyHU Member Posts: 918 ■■■■□□□□□□
    nelson8403 wrote: »
    It should hold just as much weight as any other state school, it won't hold the same weight as an ivy league school but it'll get you past the the HR filters

    that depends on the school...

    a number of the top 100 schools are state schools...ie Michigan, UNC, Cal, UCLA, UVa, W&M, Georgia Tech, Texas, just to name a few
    Link Me
    Graduate of the REAL HU & #1 HBCU...HAMPTON UNIVERSITY!!! #shoutout to c/o 2004
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  • hurricane1091hurricane1091 Member Posts: 918 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I credit it for my current job.


    Now, the real question is: If I get an MBA in IT from WGU and try to make $200k/yr somewhere as a high-up guy..will it hold weight then and help?

    No one has ever answered that! I have attended WGU, two county colleges, and a traditional University.



    I e-mailed my traditional University teacher saying I did not want to go to class anymore but not to fail me. He agreed and I never showed up again. I also had calculus and got a 75 on the mid term, and answered only 5 of 10 questions on final (at best a 50), and had a 50% quiz average and missed like 25% of the classes. I received a C+ in that class.

    So, you let that sink in!
  • newjacknewjack Member Posts: 106 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Well, I want to get a masters in security so I can obviously learn more in security.... And make me feel and look more accredited and move up the chains quicker in the work force. I am 27 and have been out of college for 3 years. I am in a Support role for security and want to get into something more systems related rather support engineer related.... I've been working on my certs, but I think a masters would help me greatly... But I also want to be pushed to learn the tools that I kind of already have a grasp of and take it to a next level.
  • Mike7Mike7 Member Posts: 1,081 ■■■■□□□□□□
    WGU is not a degree mill and is not unaccredited.
    These are critical considerations for you and HR

    As to how much weight WGU holds, how often do you keep track of what schools your work colleagues or some CIO/CISO graduate from?
  • newjacknewjack Member Posts: 106 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Mike7 wrote: »
    WGU is not a degree mill and is not unaccredited.
    These are critical considerations for you and HR

    As to how much weight WGU holds, how often do you keep track of what schools your work colleagues or some CIO/CISO graduate from?


    I guess my second concern is will I be learning whats widely used on the job?
  • CodyyCodyy Senior Member Member Posts: 223 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Concur with everyone else. If I come across a company that is snobby toward WGU I'll move on, that's probably not a place I want to work anyway.
  • srabieesrabiee Member Posts: 1,231 ■■■■■■■□□□
    newjack wrote: »
    I guess my second concern is will I be learning whats widely used on the job?

    I'd wager no more or less than any other institution with a similar degree plan. Most of what you learn you will learn on the job. That's why early on in their IT careers, regardless of 4-year degree and actual level of knowledge, most people tend to start out in helpdesk, desktop support, or similar roles. Those who learn quickly and have a passion for IT can and will move up the ranks very fast.
    WGU Progress: Master of Science - Information Technology Management (Start Date: February 1, 2015)
    Completed: LYT2, TFT2, JIT2, MCT2, LZT2, SJT2 (17 CU's)
    Required: FXT2, MAT2, MBT2, C391, C392 (13 CU's)

    Bachelor of Science - Information Technology Network Design & Management (WGU - Completed August 2014)
  • markulousmarkulous Member Posts: 2,394 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Actually, the HR lady I talked to at this job for my initial interview (VMWare) knew exactly what WGU was and highly endorsed it. And as mentioned it is regionally accredited and non-profit. So it's a good program for sure.
  • MitechniqMitechniq Member Posts: 286 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I've always given the explanation to people who are pursuing a degree at WGU as follows:

    If you are in need to learn and gain educational value from a professor who can teach you in ways you can't. Do not go to WGU.
    If you are self motivated, capable of balancing your tasks, and resourceful enough to value research and developing you own learning habits. I welcome you to WGU. (Which are qualities you will need at any job position.)

    WGU will not open doors a state (1A division football school or highly valued school) might, but if you have the experience, knowledge and need a degree to VALIDATE your field of technology. I am pleased to say WGU can do this for you.

    I currently work from home as a Cyber-Security Engineer in central Texas (not Austin) making 100k+.
    I currently am a Cyber Officer in the Texas National Guard.
    I currently teach as an Adjunct Faculty member at a local community college.

    All of these required a degree and despite boards and several intense interviews my degree from WGU did not become a concern nor a point of weakness.

    If I could do it again I would of graduated high school and went straight to UTexas or TA&M for a CompEn degree but I am so grateful I found WGU when I did.
  • JamesKurtovichJamesKurtovich Member Posts: 195
    WGU has a good reputation, but its popularity (or lack thereof) probably works against it in some cases. Most people I speak to about school have never heard of WGU.

    If I had two applicants for a position, one from an unknown state school (traditional B&M) and one from an unknown online school, I'd be inclined to go with the former. Thanks to the for-profits, online schools have a long way to go.

    Ultimately, I decided to go with WGU because I'd rather a potential employer hire me based on my skill level and personality as opposed to what school I went to.
  • newjacknewjack Member Posts: 106 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Mitechniq wrote: »
    I've always given the explanation to people who are pursuing a degree at WGU as follows:

    If you are in need to learn and gain educational value from a professor who can teach you in ways you can't. Do not go to WGU.
    If you are self motivated, capable of balancing your tasks, and resourceful enough to value research and developing you own learning habits. I welcome you to WGU. (Which are qualities you will need at any job position.)

    WGU will not open doors a state (1A division football school or highly valued school) might, but if you have the experience, knowledge and need a degree to VALIDATE your field of technology. I am pleased to say WGU can do this for you.

    I currently work from home as a Cyber-Security Engineer in central Texas (not Austin) making 100k+.
    I currently am a Cyber Officer in the Texas National Guard.
    I currently teach as an Adjunct Faculty member at a local community college.

    All of these required a degree and despite boards and several intense interviews my degree from WGU did not become a concern nor a point of weakness.

    If I could do it again I would of graduated high school and went straight to UTexas or TA&M for a CompEn degree but I am so grateful I found WGU when I did.


    Did you get your masters? I think I learn more when I teach myself rather then the professor writing on the board. I self taught myself for my two certs at my own pace and learned more then I did in college. I just want to be able to get quality material from WGU from the Information Assurance masters program.
  • MitechniqMitechniq Member Posts: 286 ■■■■□□□□□□
    BS Information Technology (2 Years) 2010
    CompTia A+, Network +, Security +, Project +, CIW Database Design, MCP Windows Vista, Sun Java
    12K

    MS Information Assurance (2 Years) 2012
    EC C|EH, CHFI, DRP, GIAC G2700, CCENT
    14K

    Roughly 26K, no student loans, more than 12 certifications and 2 degrees.. I think that is the best ROI I could of received from any institution.
  • Christian.Christian. Member Posts: 88 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I think that as almost everything, it depends on you, in this case in your professional situation. If you are doing the degree to basically mark the "has a degree" checkbox, WGU is a great option. I'm on that boat (student there doing my bachelor) and -among many other things (such as price, doing it faster than regular program at other places, certifications, etc)- it met my goals and needs. But my goals and needs may differ from others looking for something else.

    WGU doesn't have the reputation of being a degree mill or similar like other online universities, but it also isn't really renowned so it won't open many doors, you have to do that part by yourself. If you already have experience/many relevant certs on your back, then it's a great option. That's what I'm doing and I'm really happy with the place.

    Now.. personally, I wouldn't do a Master/MBA at WGU. I think that there are other better options out there and it makes more sense for me to try to put a little more money and do it online in a more recognized B&M university. I believe this because in our field, the master's degree will probably be the last degree one earns in their career related to IT. It doesn't have to be a Master from Harvard, but it can be something that stands out a little more than WGU. That's my take on it at least.
    CISSP | CCSM | CCSE | CCSA | CCNA Sec | CCNA | CCENT | Security+ | Linux+ | Project+ | A+ | LPIC1
  • Mike-MikeMike-Mike Member Posts: 1,860
    Mitechniq wrote: »
    BS Information Technology (2 Years) 2010
    CompTia A+, Network +, Security +, Project +, CIW Database Design, MCP Windows Vista, Sun Java
    12K

    MS Information Assurance (2 Years) 2012
    EC C|EH, CHFI, DRP, GIAC G2700, CCENT
    14K

    Roughly 26K, no student loans, more than 12 certifications and 2 degrees.. I think that is the best ROI I could of received from any institution.


    Similar boat here, just different years and certs, but yeah, i paid more for my Associates at University of Phoenix and dropping out of local schools than I did for the combination of my Bachelors and Masters at WGU

    and I know for a fact it's paid for itself, i have had multiple interviews over the years where they bring up my long list of certs as a point of interest, and I got a 10k bump after my B.S., and a 17k bump after my M.S.
    Currently Working On

    CWTS, then WireShark
  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb Member Posts: 3,298 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I've heard their Master's in Security & Information Assurance isn't the greatest as far as curriculum.

    But pretty sure, once you get it, it will hold it's weight up to almost any other school as far as what potential employers see.
  • Dakinggamer87Dakinggamer87 Gaming Tech Expert Silicon Valley, CAMember Posts: 4,016 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Mike-Mike wrote: »
    Similar boat here, just different years and certs, but yeah, i paid more for my Associates at University of Phoenix and dropping out of local schools than I did for the combination of my Bachelors and Masters at WGU

    and I know for a fact it's paid for itself, i have had multiple interviews over the years where they bring up my long list of certs as a point of interest, and I got a 10k bump after my B.S., and a 17k bump after my M.S.

    That is awesome!! Congrats to you I am hoping to have similar pay increases along the way. ;)
    *Associate's of Applied Sciences degree in Information Technology-Network Systems Administration
    *Bachelor's of Science: Information Technology - Security, Master's of Science: Information Technology - Management
    Matthew 6:33 - "Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need."

    Certs/Business Licenses In Progress: AWS Solutions Architect, Series 6, Series 63
  • Danielm7Danielm7 Member Posts: 2,298 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I have a BS from WGU, no issues with it ever so far and I don't expect any. For my MS I'm looking at my options but I don't really want to accumulate debt to get it. I get tuition reimbursement from work. My thought process is that I could get an MS from WGU pretty close to free, or I could go somewhere more "known" end up with 20K+ more debt easily. With that money I could build a crazy home lab if I wanted, do all sorts of other training, other certs, or of course I could just not spend it.

    I feel like in IT, an MS is so rarely required in the first place, it's like the icing on top, I can't imagine an MS from WGU vs another non-ivy school would be a tipping point in hiring or promoting.
  • Hatch1921Hatch1921 Member Posts: 257 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I'm 50% through the MBA-ITM degree... and yes... as others have mentioned they are accredited. Just something to think about... they carry the same accreditation as BYU. You can't beat the cost of tuition. Class work... has been a challenge thus far. I work for a large utility on the network side of things and several people I work with have gone through WGU or are attending now. It's worth your time and $$$ IMO.

    Hope this helps.
    Hatch
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 0 ■■□□□□□□□□
    It doesn't seem like a bad school. I just think that it will hold that stigma of an online school no matter where you look. It is just the type of stigma that goes with online schools. I went to a traditional 4 year school and lived in the dorms and all that jazz. I think that a traditional college is harder then doing an online degree imo.
  • Hatch1921Hatch1921 Member Posts: 257 ■■■■□□□□□□
    It doesn't seem like a bad school. I just think that it will hold that stigma of an online school no matter where you look. It is just the type of stigma that goes with online schools. I went to a traditional 4-year school and lived in the dorms and all that jazz. I think that a traditional college is harder than doing an online degree imo.

    Just from my experience, I went the "brick and mortar" route for the BS degree. I'm pursuing the MBA online and it has been MUCH harder. Yes... it is supposed to be difficult, content wise. That being said, you really have to be self-driven to push through an online program. With WGU its comprehension based. You better know the material because, you are not going to pass the exams otherwise. Not to mention each course I've been through has had a single final...no midterm or additional tests to help you along the way. My last class... 24 chapters... one 50 question exam. NIGHTMARE! I think with the number of online schools out there, including Ivy League schools, online is here to stay. The stigma will fade with the more "tech savvy" younger generations.

    The debate to which is harder… all opinions I suppose. What counts IMO by completing a degree, you show your future employer you are teachable and can commit to something to see it through.

    Hatch
  • Dakinggamer87Dakinggamer87 Gaming Tech Expert Silicon Valley, CAMember Posts: 4,016 ■■■■■■■■□□
    It doesn't seem like a bad school. I just think that it will hold that stigma of an online school no matter where you look. It is just the type of stigma that goes with online schools. I went to a traditional 4 year school and lived in the dorms and all that jazz. I think that a traditional college is harder then doing an online degree imo.

    I think it is different for everyone but I think two unique and major edges that WGU has is the cost and flexibility. I went to a traditional school and enjoyed it!! I learned a lot and meet a lot of new friends and future colleagues. However, WGU helps me mark the degree check boxes on my resume and for cheap. School name I am sure can be put into consideration but for me I don't want to be in debt forever like many of my colleagues and friends from states and university schools. Plus I don't want to be stuck in school forever especially the way traditional schools are operated. Experience will always be the most important to complement them. I think for most TE members it just works if they have families or work long hours.

    This is just my personal opinion both have pros and cons and I have enjoyed both avenues. :)
    *Associate's of Applied Sciences degree in Information Technology-Network Systems Administration
    *Bachelor's of Science: Information Technology - Security, Master's of Science: Information Technology - Management
    Matthew 6:33 - "Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need."

    Certs/Business Licenses In Progress: AWS Solutions Architect, Series 6, Series 63
  • Dakinggamer87Dakinggamer87 Gaming Tech Expert Silicon Valley, CAMember Posts: 4,016 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Hatch1921 wrote: »
    Just from my experience, I went the "brick and mortar" route for the BS degree. I'm pursuing the MBA online and it has been MUCH harder. Yes... it is supposed to be difficult, content wise. That being said, you really have to be self-driven to push through an online program. With WGU its comprehension based. You better know the material because, you are not going to pass the exams otherwise. Not to mention each course I've been through has had a single final...no midterm or additional tests to help you along the way. My last class... 24 chapters... one 50 question exam. NIGHTMARE! I think with the number of online schools out there, including Ivy League schools, online is here to stay. The stigma will fade with the more "tech savvy" younger generations.

    The debate to which is harder… all opinions I suppose. What counts IMO by completing a degree, you show your future employer you are teachable and can commit to something to see it through.

    Hatch

    I agree I think that is what sets online degrees apart such as WGU is how it's very self-disciplined.
    *Associate's of Applied Sciences degree in Information Technology-Network Systems Administration
    *Bachelor's of Science: Information Technology - Security, Master's of Science: Information Technology - Management
    Matthew 6:33 - "Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need."

    Certs/Business Licenses In Progress: AWS Solutions Architect, Series 6, Series 63
  • JamesKurtovichJamesKurtovich Member Posts: 195
    Hatch1921 wrote: »
    Just from my experience, I went the "brick and mortar" route for the BS degree. I'm pursuing the MBA online and it has been MUCH harder. Yes... it is supposed to be difficult, content wise. That being said, you really have to be self-driven to push through an online program. With WGU its comprehension based. You better know the material because, you are not going to pass the exams otherwise.

    It's almost like trying to get six pack abs by working out at home. :)
  • EngRobEngRob Member Posts: 247 ■■■□□□□□□□
    newjack wrote: »
    Does WGU hold any weight with the employers?

    I weighed my diploma and compared to the one my wife received from a B&M college. They pretty much weigh the same icon_lol.gif
  • cyberguyprcyberguypr Senior Member Mod Posts: 6,912 Mod
    and... /thread
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