Entrepreneur gets good start on degree after 30 year gap

Joe Hills credits UWFox faculty and staff for his painless return to academia in his late 40s.

Joe Hills graduated from Loyal High School in 1981…and enrolled at the University of Wisconin-Fox Valley from 2010 to 2012.

Meanwhile, he had been working and raising a family in Waupaca.

“I’ve been a management professional working predominately in the lumber manufacturing business,” he says. Most recently, he was a self-employed entrepreneur, working with local industry to find markets in which to recycle industrial waste.

“Having been away from academia for 30 years, I was concerned that I would be unable to adjust to the role of a student,” Joe says. “The faculty and staff have made the transition painless by giving me the tools and resources I have needed to succeed.”

He adds, “At UWFox I feel the professors appreciate the diversity in the age of the students. Non-traditional adult students are encouraged to share their life experiences with fellow students as part of the learning process.”

Joe’s plan after UWFox is to re-enter the workforce as a manufacturing professional while pursuing a UW-Oshkosh liberal arts degree with an emphasis in leadership development.

UWFox also has provided a good start for the rest of Joe’s family, he says, describing the family educational tree: “My oldest son completed studies at UWFox, transferred to UW-Madison and is now enrolled in law school at Marquette (University). My wife attended UWFox, transferred to UW-Stevens Point and earned her degree in art history in 2010. My son’s wife (whom he met at UWFox) transferred from UWFox to UW-Madison and then completed her master’s degree at UMASS in Boston. My youngest son also attended UW-Fox for one year and his credits will be transferred to Fox Valley Technical College.”

Joe concludes, “All of us were considered non-traditional students and were impressed with the professionalism of the faculty and staff.”

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