On March 16th, 2010, Grantham University held the first of several celebrations honoring the University's upcoming 60th anniversary of providing a high quality online education that is accessible and affordable. The University, which was founded on January 2, 1951, plans to host similar events throughout the year to honor its students and alumni in their local communities. The theme of the 60th Year Celebrations is "Serving Those Who Serve – 60 Years of Excellence. Be a Part of It.".
On the evening of March 16th many area students and alumni gathered along with members of the Grantham University Board of Governors, staff, and members of the military voluntary education community at the Key Bridge Marriott Hotel in Rosslyn, Virginia. Several students received academic awards, and recent graduate, Mr. Charles Diamond, was presented with his Bachelor of Science degree in General Studies. Mr. Diamond graduated Cum Laude.
Dr. Jeffrey Cropsey, vice president for strategic initiatives at Grantham University, presented Mr. Diamond's diploma with these words: "Charles is a true American patriot who with the support of his family and the staff at Grantham University relentlessly pursued his degree so he could move forward in his career and continued service to our nation."
Mr. Diamond served in the United States Marine Corps until 2006, when he obtained a position as Senior Security Program Officer for the State Department. His duties sent him to the US Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq on numerous occasions. While in the Marine Corps, he received several medals and commendations and has served tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Currently, Mr. Diamond is pursuing a position as a Federal Agent with the State Department's Diplomatic Security Service, a position which requires a bachelor's degree. So, he turned to Grantham University and began pursuing his degree in General Studies.
During his time with Grantham, Mr. Diamond formed a special bond with his Student Progress Representative (SPR), Laura Garcia. Ms. Garcia began working with Mr. Diamond at the start of his first course and all the way through to his graduation. She motivated and encouraged him to reach his educational goals. Mr. Diamond commented, "Laura is a person of character and was key to my having stayed on course to earn my degree." Ms. Garcia was similarly impressed with Mr. Diamond's dedication. "His determination to achieve his educational goals and his resolve to receive high scores in his courses were motivating to me in my role as an SPR," she said.
Mr. Diamond's story is a wonderful example of a University and its staff working together to help students achieve their dreams of earning an undergraduate or graduate degree. Mr. Diamond plans to pursue his master's degree while his wife, Zanelle, completes her Bachelor of Science degree in Multidisciplinary Studies at Grantham University.
The University was founded by Donald Grantham, a veteran of World War II, over 60 years ago to help prepare veterans for new jobs in the electronics' industry and a better future upon their return to civilian life. Over the years, the University transitioned from a "brick and mortar" school with several campuses across the United States to a 100% online degree university located in Kansas City, MO.
The University's mission is to provide students with an accessible, affordable, professionally relevant education. Sixty years after its founding, serving those who serve remains at the heart of the University. A significant portion of its student body is made up of active duty military, prior service, and military spouses.
"We believe that every service member, every veteran, and every member of a military family should have the opportunity to pursue a college education," said Dr. Cropsey. "To ensure that our programs are accessible and affordable to these deserving students, we have developed numerous scholarship programs, an interactive online learning environment and a solid student support structure to ensure that this belief becomes a reality for those who sacrifice for us all."