Narrator
As a Walden Ph.D. student, you’ll attend the Milestone One residency—focusing on orientation to the program—within 90 days of completing your first course.

Dr. Howard Schechter
(Faculty)

I’ve been teaching Milestone One, which is the first milestone that students straight out of their Foundations course will take. There are a lot of processes that they have to get involved in … in order to make progress very quickly… so we give them the tools by which to look at the whole experience. The students really need to know how to use the library, how to back up their data, how to develop attitudes of excellence using the tools that we’re providing them.

Dr. Alice Eichholz
(Director of academic residencies)
We want them to have some sense about what the whole process is … to get an idea of the different steps that they’re going to have to go to. But we’re not interested, at least at the first level, of saying, well, what’s your dissertation going to be? That comes later on. So we try to break down that anxiety of thinking … let’s just focus on what is going to happen during the first year and how can you manage your life and manage your research so that you can get to the next stage.

Dr. Elizabeth Wilson
(Faculty)

One student said to me this: I’ve never been a member of a learning community before. I said to him, welcome, and he smiled. That’s success.

Narrator
Although you’ll have completed an introductory course and perhaps more, you, like many Walden students, may find that you mark your first academic residency as the real beginning of your doctoral journey.

Dr. MaryFriend Shepard
(Faculty)

We want you to read real research studies that have been published in a dissertation form … yes, you can read dissertations that have been from refereed journals, from peer-reviewed journals … so we want you to do good research studies.

Dr. Dale Swoboda
(Faculty)

A new student, coming to the first residency, they come with trepidation … they look around and they’re not quite sure. But by the end of that, they are part of a community called Walden.

Vivian Stewart
(Ph.D. in Education student)
Now that I’m here it feels like, OK, I’m just starting off in a brand new direction, and you know like a little kid, I’m just starting off getting ready to just go at full force because I can do it.

Narrator
At a Milestone One residency, you will hone your time management skills to better balance work, family and Walden responsibilities … review the fundamentals of critical-thinking skills … and develop strategies that will chart your educational path.

Dr.  Mark Gordon
(Faculty)

Students come to their first residency with a lot of questions about the process ... and we tackle that feeling with knowledge, with information, so they have the tools to go back home to remain motivated, they work their plan.

Narrator
Milestone One seminars also give you an orientation into the specific form your online program will take. Some Walden Ph.D. programs are course-based—providing critical concepts in a structured online classroom. Other programs use a combination of courses and Knowledge Area Modules, or KAMs. KAMs are doctoral research projects unique to Walden University. KAMs emphasize faculty-guided, independent research—preparing you for the dissertation ahead.

Narrator
As a Walden student, you should leave a Milestone One residency with enhanced clarity about your program and its requirements. You should also leave feeling connected—to other students, to faculty, and to Walden itself.

Kevin Rastegar
(Ph.D. in management student)

The residency program … is a great opportunity to network with my colleagues, with my other scholar-students, and find commonality in the areas of interest. And what I like about it is it gives me an opportunity to socialize with some of the people that are going through the same challenges that I’m going through with the same goals in mind, with the same timeline, and with the same passion. So it is an opportunity to focus on what it takes to accomplish the Ph.D. program in our given timeline successfully.

Dr. Dan Salter
(Faculty)

Every one of my mentees and every student I encounter in my job who comes here is changed by it. A lot of times they will say, I wish I’d come sooner; now I understand it. It’s just a wonderful turning point for new students, and that tends to be the students I work with the most.

Dr. Howard Schechter
(Faculty)

You can see aha’s go over their face. You can see people actually come out of themselves and come to a visceral understanding of what it is that it is to be a graduate student and to become a scholar.