Maurice is originally from Cleveland, Texas in the heart of the San Jacinto National Forest. Maurice enlisted in the Army in June 2009 where he attended Basic Combat Training at Fort Knox, Kentucky and his Advanced Individual Training at Fort Gordon, Georgia where he learned how to become a Satellite Communications Systems Operator-Maintainer.
Throughout his time in the military, Maurice deployed to Kuwait where he provided critical communications to United States and Allied Forces serving in the Southwest Asia area of responsibility. After his tour of duty in Kuwait, Maurice served at Fort Belvoir, Virginia where he provided enterprise communications capabilities to key military and civilian leaders within the United States Government.
Maurice’s military awards and decorations includes the Army Achievement Medal with one oak leaf cluster, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, a Battalion-level Certificate of Achievement, and a United States Army Marksman Qualification Badge for the M16A2 rifle.
Maurice’s attended various military and civilian courses including business courses and general education courses at Lone Star College System in The Woodlands, Texas, criminal justice courses at University of Phoenix, and the Warrior Leader Course at the United States Army Noncommissioned Officer Academy at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania. Maurice is an eligible bachelor living in Huntsville, Texas where he attends Sam Houston State University for a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice with a minor in Legal Studies. Maurice is passionate about individual rights, social justice, business capitalism, education, human rights, and the American political system. He hopes to attend law school to learn how to become a strong advocate for individual rights.
I enrolled in my first college class at Lone Star College- Montgomery in Conroe, Texas. My very first college class was Basic Computer-aided Drafting using AutoCAD to learn a new skill. At the time, I was still enrolled in high school and elected to take this class as a dual-enrollment program with my high school. After my first college class, I decided to study American Government, Economics, and Business Principles at the local college. While I was enrolled in these classes, I discovered I was truly passionate about the free market system and our system of government. However, as a full time college student, I struggled to pay my own tuition for college so I had to get a full time job at the local Wal-Mart to pay cash for my tuition. Initially, this was a good fit for me because I was only working 20 to 25 hours per week and had enough money to cover my expenses and enough time to concentrate on school. But then, management began doubling my hours and even offering me overtime. I was soon working between 35 to 60 hours per week while trying to manage a full workload of classes. Money was good but I had little time to focus on studying outside the classroom. I watched my perfect grade point average drop a whole point from 4.0 to 3.0. I had to think of a better solution to maintain my grades while financing my education.
Five years ago, I met an Army recruiter and he showed me how I can earn college credit for military training, learn a skill, and how the Government can pay for my education. I enlisted in the Army in June 2009 where I served for 5 years as a Satellite Communications Operator-Maintainer. The Army awarded me almost 40 semester hours for physical fitness, military operations, electronics engineering, and leadership among other things. In addition, I enrolled in college classes while I was deployed in the middle-east. I studied Criminal Justice classes online at University of Phoenix classes to continue to further my education. University of Phoenix truly has a perfect suite of online courses for military personnel deployed in remote locations around the world. I could focus on my classes any time and any place that was convenient for me. In addition, because I was 15 hours ahead of the United States, I felt like I had a little extra time to make the required participation posts and refine my course projects to perfection. The only disadvantage to a University of Phoenix education is the University’s reputation. The University has a reputation as a diploma-mill where students can simply pay for a college degree. Because of this reputation, I chose to save the last couple of years of college for a reputable public college after I transition to civilian life.
I chose to go back to school at Sam Houston State University to study Criminal Justice and Legal Studies in preparation for law school. However, because I have a law school ambition, I was careful to pick the right school and the right program to prepare me for the law school of my choice. I only have a couple of years of college left so I need to think carefully about the courses and the degree plan I work towards. I used my freshmen year in college to get a feel for the college lifestyle and discover my interests. I used the sophomore year to declare a major and enroll in as many transferrable lower division courses at University of Phoenix. My junior year is my time to concentrate on advanced courses relevant to my major and my senior year is my time to concentrate on the Legal Studies minor.
I recommend every college student to take the courses that will be most helpful for the next level of education. A high school senior should prepare for an Associate’s degree. Freshmen and sophomores in a two year college should prepare for a Bachelor’s degree. College juniors and seniors should prepare for a professional degree or a graduate degree. Although many students typically enter a four-year college, I believe students can learn a lot from two-year colleges, save tuition money, and use two-year colleges as a good transition from the high school to the college lifestyle.