Roxanne Curl: From Dreaming of a Degree to Having a Dream Job

Working in a negative work environment may not inspire some, but not Roxanne Curl. This was the motivation she needed to pursue a degree in Human Resources (HR) and become the change she knew she wanted after dealing with her past work environments.

“So many of my jobs, the work environment felt toxic – or like nobody got it,” Curl explains. “In my last job, it was under terrible management. I just don’t think people should feel frustrated coming into work, so I wanted to be the change.”

In December 2018, Curl graduated from Rasmussen College with a Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources and Organizational Leadership. Shortly after graduating, Curl accomplished her goal of being the positive change for a company’s work environment by getting her dream job working as the first human resources employee for a small printing company.

Curl’s initial introduction to Rasmussen College was at a benefit fair organized by Will County, Illinois. She knew pursuing a degree in HR was a step she wanted to take in life and Rasmussen College was able to work with her to make it happen.

This was not the first time Curl had gone back to school. Previously she had pursued an Associate’s degree in health information management at a community college. However, the program didn’t work well for her and she never ended up completing the degree. Beginning her journey at Rasmussen, Curl was more knowledgeable about what type of support and program she needed to make her educational pursuit successful.

“My student advisor was amazing. Everything was set up for me. I didn’t have to think about anything,” Curl states.Roxanne Curl: From Dreaming of a Degree to Having a Dream Job

Coming into the program, Curl knew she would be able to move faster toward her Bachelor’s degree, because Rasmussen College worked to make her credits from her previous college transfer into her degree program. Curl was also able to get her degree completely online, which allowed her to focus on what really mattered: her classes.

“I was able to focus on getting my education,” Curl states. “Not worrying about if I’ll get the course I need or even what courses I need to take next. I had advisors who said ‘this is your course schedule’ and I was able to work through it.”

This is not to say Curl wasn’t able to adapt her semester schedules to her life. In fact, while pursuing her degree, she knew she would have to have back surgery. Thanks to Rasmussen College’s Flex-Choice program, which allowed her to do self-directed assessments, she was able to move quicker through those assessments and give herself a much lighter class and homework load while she recovered from her surgery.

The efficiency of her program was paired with substantive classwork. “The way they are set up is awesome,” she states. “What you start with you are going to use throughout your entire degree. My beginning classes, the things that I learned, I was using in my final classes.”

The structure and learning material for the program is intentionally structured at Rasmussen College. The curriculum is aligned with education standards in the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) HR Curriculum Guidebook and Templates, as well as the HR Certification Institute’s (HRCI) guidelines. The program is designed to help students like Curl gain the skills that employers seek and give students the skills needed to help a business’s most-valued resource: its people. 

Curl is now working for a small printing company, Johnson Press for America, Inc., as their first human resource employee. This has given her the opportunity to lean into what she has learned at Rasmussen and begin building an HR foundation for the company. More importantly, she has been able to help create the environment she wanted in her previous job.

Now Curl works with individual employees on professional development, is leading the hiring process for new employees, and has taken on large HR projects for the company such as re-writing the employee handbook.

Curl explains that even now, after graduating, there are teachers she reaches out to when she has questions or ideas she’d like to bounce off another HR professional.

Although Curl’s path to HR was a later branch off of her original career path, it is a career switch she is ecstatic she made, and Rasmussen College is proud to have been able to help with this life transition.

Curl explains: “Rasmussen was easy to work with and their Bachelor's degree fast-track structure was so perfect. In less than two years I got my degree in human resources and now I have the best job of my life.”

About the author

Aly Hagglund

Aly is a freelance writer for Collegis Education who writes student-focused articles on behalf of Rasmussen University. She is an advocate for higher education and enjoys telling the stories of individuals who are furthering their education in pursuit of their aspirations.

Angela Zywicki | Rasmussen University

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