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Millikin University - Decatur, IL
Student Stories 


Dianne Bailey

Dianne has been a student at Millikin since February of 2012 and joined the OL cohort in Fall 2013 and expects to graduate in Spring 2015.  She brought in about 10 credits from the University of Illinois and Lakeland Community College.  She also took proficiency tests to exempt out of 15 other credits based upon the new prior learning experience feature in PACE.

Dianne is currently the Manager of Health Information Technology at Pana Community Hospital.  She married her high school sweetheart and has one adult son and two young granddaughters.  She enjoys nature, motorcycle rides, adventures with her granddaughters, and genealogy research.

She says a good work ethic and lifelong learning helped her to excel in her jobs, but she was unable to attain her full potential without a bachelor's degree.  Her CEO and a Millikin alumni convinced her that Millikin's PACE's accelerated format was the perfect environment for mature students who were striving for a better life.  She discovered that their helpful, supportive personal advisors set the program apart from other college experiences.

Dianne chose Organizational Leadership as her major because the communication skills, leadership, and team dynamics emphasis were traits that she believed were invaluable not only for advancement in employment, but also throughout life in every personal or business relationship that might be developed.

Dianne says all the general education courses she has taken in PACE have been life-altering and knowledge expanding.  Some favorites were Flora & Fauna, Global Nutrition, and families Across the Generations.  She also claims all her professors have been exceptional.

Her experience at Millikin has been worth the investment of time and funds.  It has been a far better experience than her other colleges!  Millikn's PACE format understands that an adult student's purpose in life is not to master facts, but to expand general knowledge while attaining a degree.

Dianne hopes that her Millikin bachelor's degree will provide further growth opportunities at her current employer, as well as open new opportunities in the future.  A degree in OL will provide the tools to be a good and effective leader anywhere going forward!


Tory Coleman

Tory is 25 years old and has been at Millikin since July of 2012.  She transferred 52 credits from Lakeland Community College where she earned an Associate's of Applied Science in Management.  The same week she graduated she started at Millikin.  She joined the OL cohort the moment she arrived and is expected to graduate in Spring of 2014.  

Tory is married and has a 2 year old son.  She also works full time as the Manager of a Verizon Premium Retailer in Pana.  She is very dedicated to completing her education.  She got pregnant during school took a final exam while having contractions!  She took a summer off to recover and bond with her baby before getting right back to classes to earn her degree.

She chose Millikin because of its reputation, and the recommendation of her sister who earned two bachelor's degrees from Millikin.  The degrees were all highly rated and the PACE format allowed the flexibility she needed being a young mother working full time.  It was the only way she could also finish school full time, and going part time was too slow in her mind to reach her goals.

PACE also allowed her dual enrollment options which could speed her degree and lower her overall educational costs.  Tory takes her OL major courses, 4 per semester at Millikin.  At the same time she supplements her schedule with 2-3 courses at Lakeland to finish her general education requirements.

Tory felt Organizational Leadership was the fit major for her because of the freedom it offered in selecting a career.  With her Associate's in Management she believes OL could open up several more doors than just a management degree alone.  He also hopes to operate her own company one day and she thinks it is important that she learn to lead it instead of simply manage it!

Tory's has had nine instructors at Millikin and all have been in the OL program.  She has three favorites so far, Matthew Tucker, Melinda Reuter and Elizabeth Lahey.  They made class fun and she says she actually could not wait to get to class to see what the night's events held in store.  But, more importantly, the instructors make the material relevant to everyday life.  It was easy to take what they taught and apply it because of the way it was presented.  She went on to say that every one of her instructors have been helpful in working with the students and understanding the demands of adult's lives.

Tory is very happy with her decision to attend Millikin.  She has grown both professionally and personally in the courses she has taken.  The people she has met, both instructors and peers in the cohort, will leave a mark on her path in life!


Karen Logue

Karen has been attending Millikin since the fall of 2010 where she began taking a variety of the general education courses she needed to graduate.  She transferred in about 30 credits from Richland Community College.  She joined the OL cohort in Fall 2012.  She expects to graduate in May of 2014.

Karen has worked at ADM for over 27 years.  She is currently employed as their Customer Service Supervisor for the Specialty Feed Ingredients Division.  She has held that position for about five years.

Karen is the mother of a 21 year old boy.  Her son, along with her sister, was the inspiration for her to finish her degree.  Her had always preached to her son that he needed to go to college, yet she had not done so herself.  She decided it was important to be a role model, to set an example, instead of just paying lip service to the concept.

She chose Millikin for two reason.  First, it was local as she lives in Decatur.  Second, and more importantly, was the adult accelerated PACE program they offered.  The PACE program fit well into her family life and her work schedule.

Choosing Organizational leadership was a natural fit for her career choice.  She had been in customer service her entire working life and was a fairly new supervisor struggling to deal with employees.  OL's emphasis was on the human behaviors and interactions within an organization.  The curriculum was a perfect match to her career needs!

Karen's favorite instructor came early in the general education portion of her degree.  Anne Matthews helped her perfect her writing skills which Karen finds is key in business world.  The writing skills have also served her well in the rest of her courses at Millikin.  It set a strong foundation to succeed in college.

Her favorite OL instructor was Matthew Tucker.  His class on Communication and Conflict was very insightful.  What she learned in the class will be useful throughout her schooling, career, and life.  And, he taught it in an interactive way that made Karen actually practice the concepts.

Karen is looking forward to completing her degree.  She knows she will be able to use the material gained in OL throughout her career in customer service.  She is also hoping it opens new opportunities at ADM.  Karen is also exploring the possibility of continuing her education.  She enjoys learning and feels their is still more she might get from a master's level program!

Millikin University - Decatur, IL
Millikin University - Decatur, IL