Is WGU a good choice?

JSNJSN Member Posts: 48 ■■■□□□□□□□
So I had a recent exchange with someone who said ROI regarding degrees is based on initial investment comparing WGU to Harvard. So with this being said, am I wasting my time going to WGU? If I'm going to be working hard to earn a degree. I expect some sort of return, not just a piece of paper. My goal is to work for a highly regarded company or Fortune 500. For what I've heard opinions wise, you get out of your education what you put into it. But I am concerned, is my hard work going to result in a rewarding career or not?

Comments

  • scascscasc Member Posts: 262 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Let's put this into perspective. I am from the UK, so only really know about the IVY league universities in the US, though have heard a lot of talented and interesting folks who contribute to this site who attend/have attended WGU, Capitol, Norwich etc. I am of the opinion that it depends what you do and where you are headed. For example, I don't believe there is a dedicated degree/masters in some (not all) of the top uni's in the US (within Cyber). If you work/want to learn Cyber uni's like WGU would be excellent to build that foundation.

    Now, if you did a traditional subject such as Economics/Accounting etc. I still do believe WGU would be a good bet, however what really establishes the Ivy League is their alumni, links to industry etc where you can network and call someone who is the head of an IB/Hedge Fund etc. This will help possibly fast track your application/career. Education is pretty awesome too. 

    In a nutshell don't stress about this. You are at a good place and you can leverage this with the skills you build and develop in the future which can hopefully take your career high. Best of luck 
    MSc, BSc (Hons), AWS CSA, C-CISO, CISSP, CCSP, CCSK, CISM, CISA, CRISC, GSTRT, GSNA, GCCC, CEH, CHFI, TOGAF, CISMP
  • E Double UE Double U Member Posts: 1,635 ■■■■■■■■□□
    JSN said:
     is my hard work going to result in a rewarding career or not?
    I believe the answer to this is yes regardless of which university you choose, but you must also believe that in order for it to manifest. 
    Alphabet soup: CISSP, CCSP, CISM, CISA, GDSA, GPEN, GCIA, GCIH, GCCC, CEH, Azure Fundamentals, etc

    2020 goals: AZ-900, AZ-500, GDSA

    "You tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try." - Homer Simpson
  • KyloQuadrenKyloQuadren Sec+, CEH, CHFI Member Posts: 7 ■■■□□□□□□□
    edited March 27
    JSN said:
    So I had a recent exchange with someone who said ROI regarding degrees is based on initial investment comparing WGU to Harvard. So with this being said, am I wasting my time going to WGU? If I'm going to be working hard to earn a degree. I expect some sort of return, not just a piece of paper. My goal is to work for a highly regarded company or Fortune 500. For what I've heard opinions wise, you get out of your education what you put into it. But I am concerned, is my hard work going to result in a rewarding career or not?
    I mean no offense however comparing WGU to Harvard is ridiculous. What I will say is by having a BS in Comp Sci with a decent GPA from a good college (not great...just good) is a good foundation to work off of towards a rewarding career. The better the reputation, the more the degree will carry itself. Another element that needs to be mentioned is how much you actually learn vs the reputation of the piece of paper itself. Although you mentioned Fortune 500--you need to an extent to know what you want to get after in one of those companies. Do you want to be a SOC analyst, a SOC manager, front-end developer, back-end developer, Pen-tester, SysAdmin? Once you have that question answered you know what you need to get good at and what certs you need to reflect your skills in addition to that foundational BS Comp Sci degree.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray Certification Invigilator Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 11,589 Admin
    What degree program will you be in? It's often more useful to compare degree programs rather than the schools themselves.
  • stryder144stryder144 Senior Member Member Posts: 1,633 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Honestly, if you are talking about the undergrad level, I would say that getting a degree is more a checkbox ticker than a career booster.  Where you get your graduate degree, at least for some companies, can be a big deal.  Given the cost of getting a degree from WGU, I would say that since it is a private, nonprofit, regionally accredited school, you will have checked most of the boxes that employers are looking for.  Sure, name recognition can do wonders for a career, but considering the cost of an Ivy League education relative to the ROI, it might not really be worth it.  Especially so if you are interested in a career in IT. 

    Honestly, as someone who has made and influenced hiring decisions, I would be less likely to think that a Harvard grad would want to accept the amount of money that my budget sets aside for that position.  Granted, I don't work for a Fortune 500 company, so there is that.  If you want an Ivy League education, I would recommend going to a local, state school for the undergrad degree and get fantastic grades (3.75+ GPA).  Then apply for entry to an Ivy League graduate program.  Or, instead of Ivy League, consider getting your WGU undergraduate degree, then apply to Georgia Tech's Online Masters program through edx.org (assuming you are interested in their Cybersecurity program).  That would be the best balance of cost ($10k) and name recognition (as Georgia Tech is well respected).
    The easiest thing to be in the world is you. The most difficult thing to be is what other people want you to be. Don't let them put you in that position. ~ Leo Buscaglia

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  • JSNJSN Member Posts: 48 ■■■□□□□□□□
    To give some updates: I am taking the BS in Cyber Security and Information Assurance. Spoke to a few graduate programs from UC Berkley, Johns Hopkins and Columbia University. All said they would consider me as a candidate with an undergraduate from WGU. Thanks for all the feedback, I just wanted to hear I was making the right choice in choosing where I did. WGU has a great program, it's affordable and for what I've heard high quality. Pretty sure someone who works at Cisco from here got their BS and MS from WGU. So I suppose I should be in good shape.
  • stryder144stryder144 Senior Member Member Posts: 1,633 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Not only does @Iristheangel work for Cisco and has two degrees from WGU, she is also a soon to be published author!
    The easiest thing to be in the world is you. The most difficult thing to be is what other people want you to be. Don't let them put you in that position. ~ Leo Buscaglia

    Connect With Me || My Blog Site || Follow Me
  • shochanshochan Member Posts: 914 ■■■■■■□□□□
    Duder/Dudette...Having an Associate's degree & a lot of certs can get you anywhere you want...Thing is, backing up what you know how to do.  Having hands on experience with many projects can command the big dollars, but then again who frickin knows??  I won't ever say I know it all, as that is egotestical.


    "It's not good when it's done, it's done when it's good" ~ Danny Carey
    2020 Goal ~ Linux+
  • IristheangelIristheangel CCIEx2 (Sec + DC), CCNP RS, CCNA V/S/R/DC, CISSP, CEH, MCSE 2003, A+/L+/N+/S+, and a lot more from m Pasadena, CAMod Posts: 4,133 Mod
    Not only does @Iristheangel work for Cisco and has two degrees from WGU, she is also a soon to be published author!
    That I do. Don't regret it at all. I might get bored at some point though and go for my doctoral from DSU. 
    BS, MS, and CCIE #50931
    Blog: www.network-node.com
  • PCTechLincPCTechLinc CISSP, CHFI, CEH, MCSA Server 2008, Project+, Security+ce, Server+, Network+, A+ King City, CAMember Posts: 641 ■■■■■■□□□□
    I have been extremely happy with the results of getting my degrees from WGU.
    Master of Business Administration in Information Technology Management - Western Governors University
    Master of Science in Information Security and Assurance - Western Governors University
    Bachelor of Science in Network Administration - Western Governors University
    Associate of Applied Science x4 - Heald College
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