Alyssa Moore came to the University of Southern Indiana to run cross-country and track and earn a degree. By the time she crossed the finish line, she had two.
Moore graduated with a Master of Business Administration from the online program in April 2019. She completed a bachelor's degree in accounting on campus two years earlier.
''I did not know where I wanted to go for my MBA prior to going to USI for undergrad, but I knew that it was something that I wanted to do,'' Moore said. ''I fell in love with the university and the faculty. It was an easy place to stay. I love it so much.''
Moore not only competed for the Screaming Eagles, she also served as a tutor, student worker and graduate assistant during her time in Evansville. She continued working on campus while enrolled in the online graduate program.
''Because I love the faculty so much, I was sort of nervous,'' she said. ''I love the camaraderie of being in the classroom with your classmates and instructors. But you still get that sense of community in the online courses, which I loved. The flexibility is a huge benefit.
''I wish I could have done online through undergrad. It was so nice. I work well in the mornings, so I could wake up early and do my coursework before work. You find your niche, your routine and your rhythm.''
Moore initially planned to earn a graduate degree to obtain the additional 30 credit hours needed to sit for the Certified Public Accountant Exam.
''I ended up changing career paths, but the MBA is still an excellent fit,'' she said. ''When I was younger, some of my teammates were in the MBA program, which also gave me the confidence to do the program. We were an academically inclined team.''
Moore grew up in New Albany, Indiana, and earned a scholarship to run for USI. She competed for three years before sustaining an injury that limited her participation during her senior year. She was a four-time Academic All-Great Lakes Valley Conference selection in cross country and still runs 50-60 miles per week.
''When I came to college, it's not that I had no idea what I wanted to do,'' she said. ''I knew I liked business. I quickly took to the accounting courses, but it was the mentoring more than the lessons of the faculty that helped me discover what I really wanted to accomplish. Accounting was always a good fit.''
Prior to completing the bachelor's degree, Moore did two corporate audit internships at Vectren, a local energy company.
''I knew from doing internships and talking to friends in the MBA program at the time that it was super valuable and something I wanted to do anyway,'' she said. ''Looking at when everything was offered and everything I was trying to accomplish, I said, 'I think I need the autonomy offered with online scheduling.'''
BAN 602: Data Driven Decision Making was one of Moore's favorite courses in the online MBA program.
''There were three faculty members teaching that course,'' she said. ''Data is something that you work with in any industry, so it is super important to be able to analyze and interrogate the data to make informed decisions.''
Moore also completed a corporate accounting internship at George Koch Sons, a local engineering company, and she was heavily involved with on-campus organizations while enrolled in the MBA program. Those experiences gave Moore additional insight into the applicability of the curriculum to real-world situations.
''Some of the skills, like with data analytics, you use in research,'' she said. ''With the knowledge, it was so neat to work on a paper and apply some of the concepts we learned in class to the papers and brainstorming. It was really helpful.''
Building on her academic achievements at USI, Moore will begin a doctoral degree program in accounting at Florida State University this summer. However, she now has her sights set on becoming a college professor.
''I am very passionate about education,'' she said. ''I attribute that to the phenomenal programs and faculty here. They definitely heavily impacted my career goals.
''I want to mimic my mentors and heroes. I want to be a professor at a respected university, produce meaningful research and teach students and impact their lives, like they do here at USI.''
Moore's passion for education is infectious. Her aunt, Sara King, and her father, Brian, plan to also enroll in the online MBA program at USI. Her aunt is a project manager based in California.
''My experience in the program has been positive,'' she said. ''I don't have a very good poker face, so my family knew that I loved it. My dad is president of a snow blower company in Michigan. He is a busy man, and I am confident that he can do this and enjoy it and still learn those valuable skills, knowledge and competencies.''
Perhaps someday Moore can follow the trail back from Tallahassee to Evansville and teach business at USI. She knows the online MBA program gave her a strong foundation for her future career accomplishments, whatever they may be.
''No matter where you are coming from in life, it is intimidating to take on any new endeavor,'' she said. ''But you will be so thankful, glad and proud that you did the MBA program at USI.
''It is challenging, but it is designed for your success. You are going to get so much out of it. It's worth the time and energy. Don't wait. I had some high expectations, and the program exceeded them all.''
Learn more about the USI online MBA program.
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