Patricia Manning lives in a Houston suburb and works at Baker Hughes, an oil field services company. She joined the company in 2001 and currently works as a Records Specialist.
"It’s a made-up title," admits Manning, who points out that the job simply fell into her lap when the company recognized their need to develop a records retention schedule and create a records and information management system. She loves the job, but felt she needed to expand her education in order to maximize her abilities.
"I can’t tell you how thrilled I was when I heard about the MARA program," she says. She had been debating whether she should pursue an MBA or a Master’s in Project Management, or take the exam to become a Certified Records Manager. When she heard about the MARA program, the decision was clear. Manning feels strongly that the MARA program will benefit her career. "The knowledge I’m gaining is tremendous,” and the degree will give her greater advancement opportunities in the future. It also lends credibility to her position, she points out. “Having a master’s degree makes people realize that this is more than an administrative job."
Another benefit of the program is the opportunity to connect with other MARA students. "I love being able to network with others in my field and tap into their collective knowledge base."In addition to collaborating on coursework, MARA students share ideas about their professional projects. As the solo Records Specialist at her company, MARA’s cohort model is an invaluable asset to Manning.