Stay-at-Home Dad Wins Online Scholarship

Paul Kopulos – a 41-year-old stay-at-home dad living in Vermont, is finishing his bachelor's degree in humane leadership from Pittsburgh's Duquesne University. What is unique about Kopulos and the other students in his program, is that he is earning his degree completely online, while caring for a two-month-old baby, a two-year-old toddler, and three pets, writes

An increasing number of nontraditional students are turning to the Internet in training for new careers for one, because of its relative flexibility, and also for its scope in including a wide variety of niche and unique courses.

"With the kids and everything else going on in my life, I can do my school when I need to," says Kopulos. "I can take an exam at midnight or 1 a.m."

Vicky Phillips, GetEducated's founder, says that:

"A decade ago, a narrowly specialized degree like this one — leadership in the animal welfare sector — would have been impossible to find. One physical college could not have found enough students within commute distance to sustain such a narrow career specialty."

Online education is fast becoming a considerable part of American's higher education landscape. For people who are looking for a new direction, Philips advises people to consider pursuing an online course, as these internet organizations emerge as a considerable alternative to face-to-face institutions. is a consumer advocacy group that rates and ranks online colleges, awards several distance learning scholarships each year. The awards are based on grade point average, a written essay and demonstrated financial need. is rewarding Kopulos with a $1,000 Excellence in Online Education Scholarship. Online schooling worked perfectly to coincide with his lifestyle.

 "Online education is at the forefront of providing fast and flexible degrees in hot career areas such as green construction, computer forensics and information security," says Phillips.

Kopulos says he may use the certification he gained as part of his online learning to train workers in nearby animal shelters.

Matthew Tabor

Matthew Tabor

Matthew is a prolific, independent voice in the national education debate. He is a tireless advocate for high academic standards from pre-K through graduate school, fiscal sense and personal responsibility. He values parents’ and families’ rights and believes in accountability for teachers, administrators, politicians and all taxpayer-funded education entities. With a unique background that includes work in higher education, executive recruiting, professional sport and government, Matthew has consulted on new media and communication strategies for a broad range of clients. He writes the blog “Education for the Aughts” at , has contributed to National Journal’s ‘Expert’ blog for Education , and interacts with the education community on Twitter and Google+.
09 6, 2011
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