When David Stec was asked when the right time is to start an advanced degree program, he said: “Now!”

A Senior Manufacturing Tech II at AbbVie, responsible for the downstream fine purification of commercial drug substances, David took advantage of the opportunity to earn his Master of Science in Bioscience Administration when his employer partnered with WPI to bring the program to their corporate campus.

“I felt it was prudent to take advantage of the chance because the courses offered were directly related to my work and the convenience of attending class on-site couldn’t be beat.”

David thinks a key benefit to the WPI program is the way it helps to set him apart from his peers who have not sought out advanced degrees.

“Earning that degree is so important to opening doors—especially a degree from a respected university like WPI. It demonstrates you have the scientific knowledge required in this field, and also makes you a better candidate for future management opportunities.”

When asked what he liked most about the program, David was quick to point to the faculty. “They knew their material inside and out and were able to answer any questions we had. There was an excitement to their teaching—you could tell it was something they really loved. And they had a real sensitivity to the needs of working students—very accommodating and courteous and upfront with their requests. I can’t say enough about what a pleasure it was to be a part of the WPI student body.”

David admitted that the transition to part-time student while working full-time required an adjustment. Newly married at the time he started the program, his family had grown by two by the time he earned his degree, so he understands quite well the need for balance between work, family, and learning. “In the beginning I was concerned about what I had gotten myself into,” he said. “It was a little overwhelming at first. But with the support of my peers, my family and my professors, and the incredible flexibility of WPI’s program, that sentiment quickly changed to ‘thank goodness I did this now and didn’t put it off!’”

David’s best advice for those who are considering pursuing an advanced degree? “Strike while the iron is hot, especially if you work for a company that is offering a tailored program like WPI’s Master of Science. There’s no better time to take control of your professional future than now.” He concluded with, “It was an exciting journey to go through and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is considering doing the same. I feel that I’m a better person for seizing this opportunity.”


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