Walden University student Lt. Col. Craig A. Jones builds strategic partnerships in the U.S.
By Camille LeFevre
WHERE I WORK: In the U.S. Army Pacific Contingency Command Post at Fort Shafter, Hawaii, as a senior telecommunications officer. My mission is to support humanitarian assistance/disaster relief in the Asia-Pacific region with satellite transmission, digital voice, and data services. We also extensively support switching, routers, and video teleconferences from anywhere we happen to be located.
WHAT MOTIVATED ME WHILE DEPLOYED: From March to December 2011, I deployed to Iraq to serve with a police transition team linked with the Baghdad provincial police headquarters. My duties included training focused on leadership and technology that allows police stations around Baghdad to interact virtually. At the same time, I focused on completing my doctoral prospectus. Most of my research was accomplished during non-duty hours. Honestly, nothing motivates me more than working on something that stimulates my curiosity to learn and to be the best I can be.
WHAT I WILL RESEARCH: I will examine the barriers between electronic collaboration and security cooperation among the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member militaries. I travel throughout the Southeast Asian region extensively with the Army, which affords me the opportunity to conduct various field observations, discussions, and ultimately interviews with fellow military officers. The purpose of collecting this information is to confirm that regional security cooperation is valued by ASEAN prior to comprehensively researching technical solutions that enhance and strengthen regional security.
HOW I BALANCE IT ALL: It is extremely difficult to maintain a coherent and predictable schedule due to the nature of military missions. Strategic partnerships throughout the region mean the Army in the Pacific supports numerous bilateral and multilateral training exercises with the Philippines, Thailand, Australia, New Zealand, Tonga, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Guam, South Korea, and Japan. Given the breadth of responsibility, I honestly have taken administrative leaves of absence when work and research conflicted.
WHY A DBA IS IMPORTANT: Higher education has always motivated me. With more than 23 years of active military service, an MBA in International Business, and a DBA in International Business in December 2013, I look forward to a new chapter in my life.
WHAT I PLAN TO DO AFTER GRADUATING: I intend to retire from the military and start the next phase of my life as a civilian. My wife and I are interested in employment that will keep us in the Asia- Pacific region, working with U.S. embassies, nongovernmental organizations, or global telecommunication companies.
WHAT I TELL OTHERS ABOUT WALDEN: Walden is an extraordinary institution for military service members because it understands the unpredictable struggles soldiers face. Having the ability to implement a nontraditional timeline that fits my battle rhythm is just what Walden offers.
Refer a friend to Walden by visiting www.WaldenU.edu/refer.