Student Spotlight: Kelly Ptak

Kelly Ptak

Kelly Ptak
Major: Associate in Arts

Kelly Ptak was looking for a school that offered both online classes and a flexible schedule.

As an adult working full time, she was wary about starting college and fitting it into her schedule. Due to College of DuPage's strong reputation in the community, Ptak decided to investigate what it offered. It helped that she has four immediate family members who either are attending COD or are alumni of various programs.

“I chose to begin my college education much later than others,” she explained. “I was a little intimidated to jump back into being a student and assumed it would be a difficult process. With the help of the COD staff, I was walked through the registration process and met with my counselor one-on-one to discuss the path that was best for me.”

In fall 2011, Ptak earned the Naperville Rotary Scholarship. She graduated with an Associate in Arts degree and a 4.0 GPA and transferred to the University of South Alabama, where she was awarded the Thomas Cocoran Scholarship based upon her GPA. She finished a bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on Business Management and Communications.

Ptak is now attending the University of West Florida for a Master’s of Science in Administration with a concentration in Acquisition and Contract Administration. 

“I am hoping this degree with transition me into a career with the Department of Defense in negotiation and contract management,” she said. “It is a two-year program that will allow me to complete my degree online. I have chosen to study online because my husband is in the Air Force and it will allow me to finish my master’s degree from anywhere in the world. We have PCS orders to move to Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha beginning next month, so we will be leaving the Mobile area.” 

Ptak is thankful that she received a strong educational start at College of DuPage.

“COD has given me an affordable opportunity to begin my college career, and my time and classes helped to prepare me for my upper-level classes. I took full advantage of the opportunities, scholarships and state-of-the-art facilities that COD offers. It was a fantastic jump-start to my adult education.”

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