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DEAC Outstanding Graduates & Famous Alumni

Following UMT graduates became DEAC's "Outstanding Graduates" & "Famous Alumni". These graduates are recognized for their excellence in educational accomplishment. They have distinguished themselves in their careers and in society.

UMT's 2016 Outstanding Graduate





Janet G. Robinson

Catonsville, Maryland

...distance education enabled her to keep a promise she made to herself 50 years ago.



Janet quit high school at age sixteen to get married. She made a promise to herself to continue her education but that was delayed by the sudden and unexpected responsibility of two small step-children and then a new baby. Over the next 45 years Janet managed to obtain an associate nursing degree taking classes in five colleges in three states in pursuit of her degree in an effort to keep her promise to herself. Her work and family schedule made attending traditional classes difficult and over the years her educational pursuit was interrupted multiple times.

In 2010 a coworker told her about UMT. Thanks to UMT's flexible schedule she was able to complete her Bachelor's in Health Administration in 2013 and immediately enroll in the master's program. The MHA program provided a broader view of healthcare and enabled her to enrich her leadership skills. Her enhanced abilities were recognized by her company as she was promoted to vice president during the time of her studies. Janet planned to retire in October 2015, however in further recognition of her leadership, she was asked to take on the program oversight of the last year of a troubled contract, delaying her retirement until early 2016. She retired and completed the Master of Health Administration program with a 3.74 GPA the same week in February 2016. Janet hopes to use her degree to consult and teach, helping others to fulfill their own degree goals as she moves into the next phase of her life.

"It is never too late to pursue a goal to its successful conclusion if you want it badly enough. The supportive faculty and the flexibility of the University of Management and Technology allowed me to keep a life-long promise of earning my degree – a promise I had made to myself as a sixteen-year-old girl."


UMT's 2015 Outstanding Graduate





Glen Laman

Atlanta, Georgia

"Completing a doctorate was the most amazing experience. I had almost given up on the idea and was facing retirement when I stumbled upon UMT's distance education program. It changed my life."



Glen Laman's recently published book, Jamaican Entrepreneurship, has put him on the interview and lecture circuit among the Caribbean communities in the USA and Caribbean. The well-received book, which emerged from the doctoral dissertation he wrote while studying at the University of Management and Technology (UMT), examines 15 outstanding Jamaicans and their divergent paths to success.

Dr. Laman's educational journey began as a boy attending classes in open-air schools in rural Jamaica. After coming to America, he was able to complete his bachelor and master's degrees through hard work and scholarships. Ultimately, he became an executive at Coca Cola headquarters in Atlanta. While in Atlanta, he was a founding board member of the Jamaican Chamber of Commerce of Atlanta, and served as the Vice President of Membership. As he approached retirement age, he thought about achieving the pinnacle of education attainment: a doctorate. He enrolled in UMT's Doctor of Business Administration program and found himself immersed in learning how to carry out advanced research in the behavioral sciences.

In selecting a dissertation topic, Dr. Laman turned to a question that had long intrigued him: How is it that poverty-stricken Jamaica, a Small Island Developing State (SIDS), possessed so many independent small business owners who were able to survive and even thrive in a tough economic, political, and social environment? Applying the research methods covered in his doctoral program, Glen addressed this question by interviewing 15 accomplished entrepreneurs to discover what made them tick and carrying out a content analysis of their comments. The result is an original, engaging study of the human side of entrepreneurship in a poor country that identifies systematic factors contributing to entrepreneurial success. The dissertation was so well-written that the UMT faculty urged Laman to publish his findings as a book – which he did.

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UMT's 2014 Outstanding Graduate





Ben-Johan F. van der Walt

Fredericksburg, Virginia

...distance education's flexibility made the dream of obtaining an MBA a reality.



Ben-Johan van der Walt immigrated to the USA in 2000 with a degree in Electronic Engineering and restarted his career as a Software Engineer. To advance his career, he enrolled in a Master of Business Administration program at the University of Management and Technology, with a concentration in project management.

While juggling family obligations and a fulltime job, UMT made a Master's degree possible with their flexible distance learning degree programs. In 2011, Vizuri, a division of AEM Corporation, recognized his potential and offered him a new career opportunity.

As a software and technology expert he was able to combine his technology experience with business knowledge gained through the UMT program to gain a deeper understanding of business processes and how technology can improve those processes to deliver customer satisfaction and to generate new market opportunities. This was demonstrated soon after receiving his MBA when he successfully delivered a new insurance business solution to a Texas-based company in 2013.

"UMT's MBA earned through flexible distance education helped me overcome difficult challenges, allowing me to stay competitive in a very fast-moving industry."

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UMT's 2014 Famous Alumni





Dr. L. David Olson

Kennewick, Washington

…distance education allowed him continued oversight of billion-dollar clean-up projects.



L. David Olson was working in an engineering services company as a Project Manager, holding a Project Management Professional (PMP) certification. To strengthen his skills as he progressed up the managerial ladder, he enrolled in the University of Management and Technology's online Doctor of Business Administration program, emphasizing Project Management.

Dr. Olson's Doctorate in Business Administration solidified his selection as President of Washington River Protection Solutions in 2013. At the Hanford nuclear site in eastern Washington, Dave oversees a $400M+ annual budget for a 1,650-person engineering-services-based organization utilizing highly-specialized, cutting-edge technology to turn hazardous waste into a safe, immobile glass — thus rendering the Northwest US environmentally safe from this nuclear hazard.

In addition to serving on the boards of several universities and non-profit organizations, Dave reaches out to local universities, providing on-campus career planning seminars for students, heightening his interest in pursuing future opportunities to teach at the university level, now made possible by his DBA degree from UMT.

"The University of Management and Technology's doctoral track strengthened my strategic planning knowledge and prepared me for future university teaching opportunities. The positive impact of UMT's DBA program has been noticed by my employees as well as my corporate board."

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UMT's 2013 Outstanding Graduate





Jacqueline Howard

Madison, Wisconsin

...an MSM and PMP certification meant less stress and greater career opportunities.



A military spouse with a full-time career, a toddler, and another child on the way, sudden moves to California and Alaska convinced Jacqueline Howard to reinvent herself. Excited to discover UMT’s flexibly structured Masters in Management with a Project Management concentration, Jacqueline succeeded in obtaining a Project Management Professional certification.

Within months of graduating from UMT with a 3.9 GPA, Jacqueline passed the PMP Exam. Her advanced degree and professional certification enabled her to tackle complex projects with confidence, drive change management efforts at a large hospital in Anchorage, and enjoy a significantly strengthened formal educational foundation for a career in project management. Inspired to continue learning, Jacqueline fulfilled a long-time goal by enrolling in training for MS Project. Further motivated by her success at UMT, she joined several online professional Lean, Six Sigma and PM groups to stay current and engaged in her field. She is now a Strategic Business Process Specialist helping to cultivate Six Sigma company culture.

"I was pleasantly surprised at how far distance education has come since my undergraduate days. My UMT Master’s revitalized my career, motivating me to take advantage of educational, professional, and certification opportunities available online today. "

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UMT's 2013 Famous Alumni





Robert A. Chapman

Mansfield, Texas

…distance education enabled him to overcome a disability to complete his degree.



A 100% service-connected Viet Nam-era disabled veteran who had experienced narrowed opportunities for lifelong learning, Robert Chapman happily marks his Master of Science in Management with an Acquisition Management concentration at the University of Management and Technology as the launching point of his current personal success in business.

A U.S. Contracting Officer, Special Deputy U.S. Marshal, and Federal Law Enforcement Officer with the U.S. Department of Justice (BOP), Robert has served two tours of duty with the U.S. Department of Justice, at the U.S. Embassy, Baghdad, Iraq. Robert managed all contracting and administrative support for Saddam Hussein’s trial, and performed armed courtroom security for the highest court in Iraq. On one combat mission to Kurdistan with the U.S. Marshals Special Operations Group, Robert was responsible for saving the life of a witness. Robert also designed and implemented an agency wide energy acquisition program focused on cost savings and received a Presidential Award for Leadership in Federal Energy Management.

"Improvise, adapt and overcome no matter what! I learned this as a young man and I continue to live by my motto every day. It has served me well since becoming disabled as has completing my education at UMT."

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UMT's 2012 Outstanding Graduate





Todd Cotsman

Savannah, Georgia

…a dynamic deployment schedule pointed to distance education as the obvious choice!



While juggling family commitments with multiple deployments on active duty in the United States Air Force for over 17 years – including 12 years as a C-17 pilot – Todd Cotsman successfully completed his Master of Business Administration with a Project Management concentration at the University of Management and Technology.

Looking to further his education beyond his current career path, as a liaison with the Army at Fort Stewart, and with an airline industry lacking the luster it had shown in the past, Todd Cotsman discovered UMT's MBA track, and reasoned it would be wise to branch out; it was time for him to expand his horizons.

Because of the self-paced structure and at-a-distance flexibility of the course offerings, alongside the facts that military tuition assistance and the UMT Book Loan program left no out-of-pocket expenses, this was truly a win-win situation for him, an opportunity to retool in order to expand his job opportunities in anticipation of military retirement.

"I completed 70% of my University of Management and Technology MBA in Kuwait, Qatar, and Iraq. Textbooks shipped promptly and on-line features were available as if I were in the good ol' US of A. Talk about true distance learning!"

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UMT's 2012 Famous Alumni





Henrique K. Ho

Pensacola, Florida

...when 9/11 interrupted his studies, he went online to complete his degrees.



After his traditional, brick-and-mortar studies were put on hold by a military transfer in the wake of 9/11, Henrique K. Ho turned to the University of Management and Technology, where he was able to earn an Associate of Science in November 2008, and a Bachelor of Science in June 2010.

If, like Henrique Ho and his family, you have moved your home address 7 times in the last 10 years, then you can begin to appreciate some of the challenges the military life has in store for those who serve our great nation. However, tuition assistance, book loan programs, the flexibility of distance programs, and participation in consortiums like the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC) go a long way.

Henrique Ho is currently balancing the demands of providing logistics and material support to keep the Hornets and Hercules crafts of the famous Blue Angels aloft, while pursuing a Master of Science in Management online with the University of Management and Technology.

"My education has been a long and difficult path. Many institutions set such discouraging requirements and obstacles, and I did not want to keep taking classes here and there. But my luck turned around in 2006 when I found UMT!"

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UMT's 2011 Outstanding Graduate





Esteban Roche Jr.

Oxford, Pennsylvania

…studying from a distance allows him to juggle family, career, and education.



Seeking further education while holding down demanding jobs, Esteban Roche, Jr., discovered the University of Management and Technology, where he has completed a Bachelor of Business Administration degree, an Executive Certificate in Project Management, and a Master of Science in Information Technology degree.

Mr. Roche has worked in dynamic environments including Patrol, Tactical Response Teams, and Advanced Training. Currently with the FBI Task Force, Mr. Roche is assigned to the Philadelphia Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory, having undergone rigorous training to become a Computer Forensics Examiner. He has recently been promoted to Laboratory Quality Manager.

In addition to his work as a Law Enforcement Officer, Mr. Roche serves as a Field Intelligence Support Specialist with the U.S. Coast Guard Reserves. This past year Mr. Roche was inducted into UMT's Kappa of Virginia Chapter of the Delta Epsilon Tau International Honor Society and is now embarking on a Doctoral program in Business Administration at UMT.

"UMT's structured assignments are so practical that I can immediately apply new skills to my dynamic work environments. Distance education enhances not only my knowledge base but also increases my opportunities for growth within my profession."

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UMT's 2010 DEAC Outstanding Graduate





Timothy M. Riley

Covington, Georgia

…he furthered his education while balancing career and family.



Tim Riley spent eight years, two months, and six days – not that he was counting – in the U.S. Army as a Satellite Communications Controller. Upon exiting, Tim rose to a private-sector management position. Military duties, career demands, and family responsibilities left precious little time for furthering his education. However, switching to convenient, online studies, Tim's tuition costs shrank by more than 50% and he received full consideration for transfer credit. Curricula were presented in straightforward formats. Professors were accessible, providing prompt feedback. Best of all, he could progress at his own pace versus that of a cohort or forced timeline.


In July 2006, Tim earned a BBA at the University of Management and Technology. That same month, Tim learned that his job was slated for elimination within the year. He utilized the time remaining to earn an MBA in Project Management by May 2007… and started work for a new company that same month!

"Distance education allowed me to pace my studies. In August 2009, I completed a Master of Science in Information Technology degree. The material was challenging! It really gave me quality migraines but I found the whole experience invigorating and definitely worth it! I don't know where I'd be if it weren't for the University of Management and Technology!"

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UMT's 2009 DEAC Famous Alumni





Timothy J. Krawczel

Cape Charles, Virginia

...distance education gave him the skills to remain competitive.



In his civilian career, Tim Krawczel was a county government Director of Planning and Community Development and had retired from the US Army Reserve as a Lieutenant Colonel with thirty years of service and overseas deployments to Europe, Korea, Bosnia and Iraq when he applied to the University of Management and Technology's MPA program. After returning home from service in Iraq as the Deputy Senior Advisor to the new Ministry of Environment, Tim hoped to retool his technical skills and deepen his understanding of management.


Tim and his wife had raised four children, and he had earned a Bachelor's Degree in Economics and a Master's Degree in Urban Planning, and written award-winning comprehensive plans for local communities when the desire to study political philosophies, leadership and management motivated him to look for a new program of graduate study. After back-to-back year-long deployments in the global war on terrorism, a full time job and the needs of family life, Tim thought a second master's degree was a dream that could not happen. UMT provided a learning opportunity that fit his needs.

"I am using the knowledge and skills gained through UMT's graduate program to begin a new chapter in my career of public service."

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UMT's 2009 DEAC Outstanding Graduate





Daniel Spagone

Charleston, South Carolina

...he found distance education the most military-friendly way to learn.



Commander Daniel Spagone proudly completed his Bachelor of Business Administration Degree Program with the University of Management and Technology (UMT) in September of 2008 and assumed full command of the U.S. Naval Consolidated Brig in Charleston, SC, that December.


His three decades of service show a patriot's devotion to his country and a love of learning. Dan was an Honor Student and was twice "Sailor of the Year," from submarine Electrician's Mate on to Surface Warfare Officer School Command as Director of Engineering and Material Readiness, and Curriculum Instructional Standards Officer.

But it wasn't always this way. Born into urban poverty and a 10th-grade drop-out, Dan was invited to live with the family of a Salvation Army minister on condition that he go back to school and attend church. Thus he graduated from high school and went to college on a scholarship. However, he joined the Navy before finishing his degree.

"I was asked why I was working so hard for a degree I didn't really need for career advancement. My answer was always the same--I take college courses to better myself, not my career. Struggling through the process of coursework completion makes me a better person, father, husband, and Naval Officer. If you want a better career, make a better you."

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UMT's 2008 DEAC Outstanding Graduate





Sarah Santorsiero

San Ramon, California

...distance education provided her with the confidence she needed to succeed.

Sarah Santorsiero was already a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) when she discovered the University of Management and Technology. Beginning with an Executive Certificate in Project Management, she successfully completed her Bachelor of Business Administration degree in June 2007.

Sarah had managed successful software and networking projects for over 17 years, but over time she realized employers increasingly wanted employees with bachelor's degrees. Working as a consultant and starting a new family, Sarah thought a degree was infeasible.

At UMT she found a partner to help achieve her educational goals. For her, the primary benefits in getting a BBA from UMT were the high quality education at an affordable price with flexible scheduling amongst course activities and the professional staff. The Executive Certificate and BBA enhanced Sarah's PMP credentials and skill set, and increased her opportunities within a competitive job market.

"I am very excited that I received my BBA because of the wealth of cutting edge methodologies in project management and business that I now hold. UMT opened the door for me to many opportunities that I previously would not be considered for without a BBA."

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UMT's 2007 DEAC Outstanding Graduate





David A. Elliott

Carlstadt, New Jersey

...distance education aided his career.



Mr. David Elliott started his engineering career managing telecommunications projects. Since 1992, he has served the United States as a reserve soldier. In 2003, he participated in the initial invasion of Iraq. His team completed 29 major reconstruction projects under combat conditions. He earned the Bronze Star and Combat Action Badge.

David enrolled at The University of Management and Technology (UMT) in January 2005. He initially completed an Executive Certificate in Project Management. He then continued his studies at UMT, completing an MBA in April 2006.

In addition to his MBA from UMT, David holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Technology from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. His other awards include the Army Commendation Medal, Soldier of the Year (1993-1994), and the Leadership Award from the Army Armor School. He is employed by Ernst & Young.

"Getting my MBA from UMT helped me bridge the gap between technology and business. To make a real contribution, technology has to be directed and managed with an eye on the business needs of the customer. I now understand how to do this, and make sure my choices are made from a technical and business perspective."

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UMT's 2006 DEAC Outstanding Graduate





John T. Halter

Fairfax, Virginia

...he fulfilled a 30 year dream to complete his degree.



Mr. John T. Halter found himself competing for senior information technology positions with younger and less qualified candidates who had college degrees. That's when John enrolled at UMT, completing the Executive Certificate in Project Management program and subsequently earning his Bachelor of Science in Computer Science.

John had left college in the early '70s to join the U.S. Army, where he learned computer programming. Since leaving the service, he excelled in his career, reaching executive level and working for global multibillion-dollar software leaders. Even though successful, John realized his 30+ years in information technology wasn't going to maintain his viability in the job market or satisfy employer requirements for a Bachelor's degree.

At UMT, John was able to pursue studies on his own terms, becoming a stellar student and earning his Executive Certificate in Project Management in record time. When UMT received accreditation for its computer science program, John was first in line to enroll, and the first to complete UMT's B.S. in Computer Science, graduating magna cum laude!

"UMT's distance education programs allowed me to earn a degree that reflected my years of experience in information technology... a dream come true! I highly recommend UMT for achieving one's goals in life."

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UMT's 2005 DEAC Outstanding Graduate





Robert Bryan Parker

Euless, Texas

...he is a lifelong learner.



Mr. Robert Bryan Parker was certified in 2001 as a Project Management Professional by the Project Management Institute. He was looking for a program to provide the continuing education training required to remain certified. He selected the University of Management and Technology to provide the training and to earn an Executive Certificate. His success in the program led him to enroll in the Master of Science in Management program, which he completed with outstanding grades in September 2004. He is now considering a second masters.

Bryan has been a strong and increasingly important contributor to his corporation. he is currently the senior technical infrastructure project management for the conversion of the FLeet bank to the Bank of America's retail platform.

In his interactions with faculty and staff and as evidenced by his coursework, clearly he has gained considerable knowledge, skills, and abilities by completing his programs with UMT.

"I've been a lifelong learner, however the challenges of obtaining an advanced degree was difficult due to job and travel requirements. With the curriculum offered by UMT, I was able to take specialized classes in my chosen profession, developed and delivered by some of the foremost experts in the field."

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UMT's 2004 DEAC Outstanding Graduate





Kenneth Alan Hudacsko

Silver Spring Maryland

... distance learning rewarded his ambition.



Mr. Kenneth Hudacsko was already well established in his career, but he was driven to learn more. he was attracted to the University of Management and Technology because he wanted to be involved with and contribute to an innovative educational program. The expertise of the project management program's creator also encouraged him to enroll.

Ken was one of the first students to enroll in the program. he immediately took a leadership role in the student body and was instrumental in creating and launching the Student Council. Under his leadership, the Student Council served many important functions that are vital to the distance learning student: providing a means for the students' voices, improving the courses, instruction, and student services, organizing student activities, and creating a sense of community.

Ken is an acknowledged expert in project management in the federal government. Since graduating from UMT, he has increased his focus on helping the Office of Information Systems and Technology Services at the U.S. General Accounting Office to achieve its strategic goal of demonstrating model management practices for the federal government.

"UMT gave me an extraordinary opportunity to build on my project management experience while continuing full stride in my profession and keeping an important balance with my family and community."

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