Emma Kaplan

Emma Kaplan headshot

With my increased confidence from completing this program, I know I can hold a leading role within a nonprofit and, maybe someday, run one.

Q: “Tell us about yourself.”
A: “I am a native Vermonter, having grown up in the Northeast Kingdom. I love spending time with my family and friends, reading, and watching movies. I have a background in broadcast journalism and spent a few years living in Southwest Florida. I returned home in March of 2020 and have spent the last two years working for a nonprofit organization in Northwestern Vermont. I also love to travel and learn about different cultures.”

Q: “What was your motivation for pursuing your degree?”
A: “The love I have for my current job is what drove me to pursue my master's degree at Norwich. I didn't have any previous experience working in nonprofits, nor did my undergraduate classes provide me with that background knowledge, so I decided it was time to pursue another degree.”

Q: “What are your future professional plans?”
A: “I believe everything I have learned from the Master of Public Administration program will help me make the world a better place, even if it’s just my personal world. I hope to apply what I have learned from this program to my real-life experience. With my increased confidence from completing this program, I know I can hold a leading role within a nonprofit and, maybe someday, run one. I believe everything I have learned has given me the skills and opportunity to make the world a better place for those around me. I plan to use my degree to make the world a better place; to help those less fortunate than myself. I want to take the information and skills I gained throughout this program and apply it to my career.”

Q: “Why did you choose Norwich?”
A: "I chose Norwich after doing an extensive amount of research. I was specifically looking for online programs so I could continue to work full-time. I was surprised and excited when I learned that Norwich not only had a fully online master's program, but their Master of Public Administration is a top 10 program in the country.

In my limited experience, Norwich is unique in that it offers everyone a chance to be a part of the community, whether you completed your undergraduate degree there, your post-graduate degree, or both. I am so very grateful that I chose this program."

Q: Did you have any uncertainties with choosing an online program?”
A:” The biggest uncertainty I felt when pursuing an online degree was that I had never done an entire degree online before - I had only ever completed a few classes online. I am a very outgoing person and love to meet people and discuss subjects face-to-face, so I was skeptical and worried about what that would look like for me as an online student. I was happily surprised that within the first week of my first class, I had a classmate reach out to the class to ask if anyone would be interested in discussing the classes and assignments together. I believe this classmate is one of the many reasons I was able to complete my degree.”

Q: “Prior to beginning your courses, what were some of your expectations for an online degree?” 
A: “I expected that this program would be challenging due to it being completely online and the fact that it was a higher degree than I had pursued in the past. It was a challenging program, and because of that, I feel incredibly accomplished and proud of myself for completing it and doing my best.”

Q: “What is one piece of advice you would give to future students enrolling in one of Norwich's online programs?”
A: “Don't be afraid you won't be a part of a community. Norwich has this amazing way of making everyone feel as though they belong there and are part of the family. I wouldn't have believed that as an online student until I experienced it myself, and it was worth every single assignment.”