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NC eLearning Success Stories

John Hannah

John Hannah

Radiological Engineer

Location: Wilmington, NC
Degree / Program: Nuclear Engineering

This spring, John Hannah will become the first person to graduate from NC State’s Engineering Online program with a master’s degree in nuclear engineering. Taking the online classes, which are identical to on-campus courses in terms of content, requirements and academic rigor, meant that he did not have to give up his day job at GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) in Wilmington, N.C.

“It’s nice that it’s available now to other people,” Hannah said. “It’s certainly helped me.” The degrees have been popular with employed students because they can access recorded class lectures any time from any computer that has a high-speed Internet connection. Course assignments, lecture notes and handouts are also made available on the Internet. “You have the same opportunities that you have on campus, but you get the work experience at the same time,” Hannah said.

Hannah, learned about NC State’s program a few years ago after he started thinking about returning to school for a master’s degree. There were not any big engineering schools near Wilmington, where he was working at GEH as part of the Edison Engineering Development Program, so he started looking at online degrees. Hannah enrolled in fall 2007 and already is seeing the results. On several occasions, he said, he’s applied what he’s learned in class at his current job as a radiological engineer at GEH.

He also has enjoyed the online format, which makes it simple to view lectures and course materials. While online, he can easily communicate with the professors and other students. “Even though you can’t raise your hand, you do get that interaction,” he said. Hannah views his degree as a building block for the rest of his engineering career.