For University of Maryland Global Campus’s 75th anniversary, we spoke with alumna Tiana Clark about some of her favorite UMGC experiences and where she hopes to see the university in years to come. Clark earned her associate and bachelor’s degrees in political science from UMGC Europe in 2004. She is a U.S. Air Force veteran. During her service, she led U.S. war target strategy and won Airman of the Year at her UK airbase. Clark is also the creator and executive producer of Soci Circle, a diverse, multi-award-winning tween web series aimed to improve young girls’ confidence and resilience. She’s a former “underserved community” schoolteacher who set high expectations and empowered her students to exceed them, and a nonprofit founder, whose organization received an award from Big Brothers Big Sisters for recruiting mentors for the agency.
Where did you live when you attended UMGC?
I lived in England when I originally enrolled, and I was deployed to Kuwait as well.
When you were applying to school, what made UMGC standout?
I was overseas military, and UMGC was the best school in terms of its maturity in class offerings, online availability, and flexibility, including accepting credits from multiple schools.
What was your favorite part about studying at UMGC?
The fact that I was still able to work on my college degree while deployed for war.
How has your UMGC degrees helped you today?
My goal was to complete my degree before my honorable separation from the military. My graduation and separation were within just a few weeks of each other. Without UMGC, there's no way I would've met my goal.
What one piece of advice would you want to share with UMGC students as they pursue their educational goals?
Getting on the path is a critical step. If you've registered for class(es), you've gotten on the path. Now, take it one step at a time. Graduation will be here before you know it.
UMGC recently introduced its new mission “Inspire hope, empower dreams, and transform lives ... one student at a time.” What does this mean to you?
It defines my experience at UMGC.