John Woods

John Woods
Doctor of Philosophy in Organizational Leadership and Development

“The support you receive from the staff and faculty at University of the Rockies is better than I have ever experienced before. They genuinely care about student learning and success.”

John Woods is 48 years old and lives in Colorado Springs, CO, where he is pursuing his Doctor of Psychology in Organizational Leadership and Development at University of the Rockies while working as a Team Leader at the Colorado Springs Vet Center.

“I decided to pursue my doctorate degree so that I can improve and develop my leadership and management skills,” says John. “My long-term goal is to transfer to the regional office in Denver and work as a Regional Manager, which means I would be responsible for 30 Vet Centers. I believe the PhD in Organizational Leadership and Development will help me achieve this goal and will improve my effectiveness as a manager.”

John feels that University of the Rockies was the best option for him to pursue his doctorate while still working for the Department of Veterans Affairs. “The campus administration is very responsive and helpful, and that helped me select Rockies over other programs in the area. Now that I’m enrolled, I enjoy the on-campus format a great deal. I like having classes that run once a week for four hours. Even though this may seem like a long time, it provides plenty of time for in-depth dialogue that I think shorter classes would not provide.”

John has also been very pleased with the faculty. “They are well versed in organizational leadership and bring a great deal of insight and experience to the classroom. I have been learning things already that have made an improvement in my work area and in my abilities as a team leader.”

As John moves further into his program, he plans to look at the impact resiliency has on preventing job burnout and compassion fatigue within the mental health care field. “My experience has taught me that this is an issue within the larger Veterans Affairs mental health care system, and I believe that identifying resiliency skills will benefit clients, staff, and the VA health care system as a whole.”

To anyone considering a doctorate program, John assures them that it’s normal to have anxiety or reservations about beginning such a program. “But the support you receive from the staff and faculty at University of the Rockies is better than I have ever experienced before. They genuinely care about student learning and success.”

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