Master’s Program at Thomas College: Worth the Time and Investment

Published: Monday, February 11, 2019

Crystal Richard

Three separate supervisors approached Crystal Richard M.B.A. ’19 to encourage her to continue her education before she hesitantly started searching for graduate programs.

“I say hesitantly because I wasn’t sure that I had time in an already-busy schedule as a full-time employee, wife, and mother of two young children to take classes.”

But, she knew it was important for her career; so, she searched several programs in state and online. She chose Thomas College’s Master’s program.

“Thomas was not only close in proximity but was cost effective. Thomas also offered enough flexibility that I could create a course schedule that fit my already-busy life,” she said.

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Crystal is the Director of Women’s Health at Northern Light Inland Hospital in Waterville.  She manages the daily operations of the Northern Light Women’s Health practice, a multi-practitioner OB/GYN office delivering health care to the women of Central Maine. In addition, she is leading an organizational effort to establish a women’s health service line across the Northern Light Health system, which encompasses nine hospitals and more than 100 care sites across Maine.

Crystal says studying for her MBA in Healthcare Management has already been applicable to her job.

“There have been countless times that I have been able to apply my new knowledge to my current position,” she said. “I have also been able to strategically align my papers and presentations to support current work projects and proposals.”

Crystal says she would recommend other area professionals to study for their master’s at Thomas College.

“I would recommend Thomas College for the same reasons that I chose Thomas:  faculty are local business leaders, CEOs, Vice Presidents, etc. who want to share their current knowledge that is relevant to the local area.  Classes are convenient for most schedules, and the classes are pretty cost effective.”

Crystal says that Thomas also offers the Next Step Maine Employer discount which allows employees of participating organizations discounts, such as waived application fees, first course free of charge, and a 10% course discount each semester.    

Although Crystal was apprehensive about the time commitment, she is proud she stayed the course and will complete the program this May.

“I have to credit my completion to my husband, Josh, for bearing the load at times and to a couple of fellow MBA students, Melissa and Cole, who came through the program at the same time,” she said. “When the demands of work, home, and school seemed overwhelming, we supported each other and prodded one another to continue. It would have been a much more difficult journey without them.”

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