Graduates you should meet

Meet some of our graduates who have shared their stories about the impact Thomas Edison State University has had on their lives. Our students and graduates have diverse backgrounds but all have one thing in common: the desire to achieve their educational goals.


Tonya Badillo, BA

“Thomas Edison State University changed the course of my family’s life. Within a week of completing my bachelor’s degree, I was promoted to Diversity and Literacy Manager at the Long Branch Public Library…”

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Michael Balka, BSAST

“Attending a traditional school to finish a degree never worked for me because each time I’d get a class under my belt, I’d be faced with relocation.”

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Brad Brezinski, BSAST

“After completing the degree, I was selected for Chief Petty Officer, which is a great honor for an enlisted member of the Navy...It allowed me to go on and pursue my graduate school goals…”

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Arthur C. Brooks, BA

“Thomas Edison State University's academic model was unique and useful to me, and it was the only effective way I could have earned my bachelor's degree…”

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Dr. Harry Carter, BA

“I was able to apply my education and advance my career as a captain of the Newark Fire Department…”

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Audrey Cooper, MSHRM

“I believe that adult students value education more because we have a better understanding and appreciation of the cost and financial commitment. Scholarship support of non-traditional students seeking to advance their education is essential…”

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Gary Heavin, BSHS

“Thomas Edison State University thinks out of the box. They've instituted a paradigm shift in education and have made quality education accessible to people like myself…”

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Rosetta Lattimore, BA

“I believe in the power that education has to transform lives. Working with adults, as an adult, to help them earn their GED was the most gratifying position I've ever held..."

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John McCann, BSBA

“Thomas Edison State University offered me the ability to complete my degree while simultaneously fulfilling my role as an executive on Wall Street…”

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Greg Milzcik, BSAST

“Thomas Edison State University was a perfect solution for me. In total, I banked credits from five different colleges to complete my degree…”

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Sonja Newhouse Spadaccino Semidei,  BSN

“The scholarship was not just financial support – it was proof that others believed that I could complete my degree.”

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Kristina Sisco Romero, BA

“Thomas Edison State University gave me the opportunity to pursue my dreams on my time…”

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Michael Vagianos, BSAST

“I am grateful for the lasting impact my degree has had on my career. I believe in giving back to support the University's mission and its students…”

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Paula Vaughan, BSBA, MSM

“When I found TESU, as a potential student, I was grateful for the recognition that working adults needed a different approach to fulfill their educational goals…”

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Ernest Wooden, Jr., BSBA, MSM

“The University has provided a framework which encourages motivated adults of all stripes to grow in their understanding of the world…”

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