Even though Las Vegas’ biggest industry is hospitality and tourism, education is still the key to create a better future for Southern Nevada.
Joni Flowers Ed.D, understands the value of higher education as a professor at the College of Southern Nevada for the education department. Part of her curriculum includes creating and implementing a program to prepare teachers to use technology for online classrooms.
She is also the founder, president and executive director of the Cultural Diversity Foundation, a nonprofit organization that creates and manages a variety of educational programs for Las Vegas residents.
“Recently, to get licensed for a program in computer software application, the foundation had to go through the Commission of Postsecondary Education to apply,” Flowers explained. “I felt as if I were writing another dissertation. Had I not acquired those skills from my own education, it would have been extremely challenging for me.”
The decision to invest the time and effort to obtain her post-graduate degrees came when, “I looked at the various positions I wanted to attain; those individuals in the positions I wanted had their master’s and doctorate degrees. When I looked at employment opportunities with a higher salary, I realized I needed to go for the higher education.
“I knew that getting this education was going to get me to my goals faster than time spent on the job,” she stated. “I looked at the time needed to obtain my degrees versus years on a job with no additional education. In fact, each time I got a degree, I moved up and achieved another goal.”
It took her 18 years, but Flowers was awarded an Associate Degree in Business Management, Bachelor in Secondary Education, Master’s in Information and Library Studies and a Doctorate Degree in Computers in Education/Distance Education.
This was also one of her motivating factors in creating the Cultural Diversity Foundation, which promotes education and awards scholarships towards obtaining a degree. “I encourage our scholarship recipients to consider goals involving a higher education and promote the opportunities available with those degrees.”
Debbie Hall is practically a Las Vegas native (34 years and counting) and loves experiencing everything in Southern Nevada from the Las Vegas Strip to the surrounding mountains and Lake Mead. She also teaches at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and loves sharing her knowledge. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.