Career Training and Personal Development go Hand in Hand
By Christine Albers
When Mohamed “Moe” Hassan emigrated to the United States from Sudan in 2016, with a degree in architecture and his green card, he naturally began searching for a position in his field. But the only work he could find was in customer service for the airline industry, where he pieced together several part-time jobs just to pay the rent.
Mohamed Hassan, M.S.D., Coralville, Iowa
A Sudanese friend suggested that Hassan apply for the Master’s in Software Development (M.S.D.) program at Maharishi International University (MIU). His first reaction was, “Me, study IT? I’ve worked with software programs in architectural design, but I don’t have experience in software development.”
But his friend, who was a graduate of MIU’s Computer Science program, insisted: “Stop everything, take this chance, and go. This is your time to start a new life. And don’t laugh at the meditation—you’re going to need it.”
With 12 to 18 months of on-campus or online coursework, M.S.D. graduates are equipped with the skills most in demand for the software development job market.
Interested in exploring a new career in software development? MIU is accepting applications for the next entry.
Here are the top six reasons why MIU’s M.S.D. graduates feel the program gives them the tools for success.
1. Prepares Students for Top Positions in Just a Year
Hassan enrolled in MIU’s Master’s in Software Development in August 2019 and never looked back. “I knew if I didn’t do something, I would be stuck in that life of working 14 to 17 hours a day, 7 days a week, and trying to support a family,” he said.
Haile Tesfu, M.S.D., worked as a civil engineer in Eritrea before he came to the United States and joined MIU’s software development program. Now he is working as a code analyst for Infosys in Seattle, Washington. “We are using Angular Development at Infosys, and it was easier for me because I had already learned everything about it at MIU,” he said.
Tesfu and Hassan are just two of the program’s first-year graduates who have accepted jobs at leading companies—including Google, Citibank, USAA, Hays Companies, Boeing, and others—with an average starting pay of $95,000 (ranging from $75,000 to $130,000). Within a few months of completing the program, 60 percent of the students have accepted offers—and they are thrilled they are finding jobs so quickly.
First-year graduates have accepted jobs at leading companies—including Google, Citibank, USAA, Hays Companies, Boeing, and others—with an average starting pay of $95,000 (ranging from $75,000 to $130,000).
2. The Latest in Software Training from Industry-Experienced Faculty
Ashim Ghimire, M.S.D., Seattle, Washington
“It’s the faculty who make it work,” said Ashim Ghimire, M.S.D., who is originally from Nepal and earned his undergraduate economics degree at South Dakota University. “We are all from different backgrounds—and no one has been in Computer Science before—but in a span of 10 months, we are confident we can do the job, and that shows a lot.”
Students appreciate the industry expertise and international experience of the M.S.D. faculty as well as their dynamic delivery of the course material, which makes the courses exciting and enjoyable. The professors in software development have experience at many top companies, such as Google, e-Trade, Honeywell, AT&T, and Wells Fargo, as well as with governments around the world. They are familiar with the latest technologies needed to succeed in the IT industry.
Shawn Daudi, M.S.D., Fairfield, Iowa
“Teaching computer science is an art,” said Shawn Daudi, M.S.D., who is from Los Angeles and joined the program with a B.A. in Business from MIU. “There’s a gray area between teaching computer science and making it so we can understand. You can be the most expert developer in the world but not know how to teach. But the faculty did an incredible job because they understand the art of teaching this subject.”
Shawn is working in MIU Admissions while pursuing a position in web development. He learned how good MIU’s faculty and curriculum were from people in the field: “The nature of the computer industry is that there’s so much information that it’s impossible to know it all, so I talked to my friends who work in the industry. When they looked at the curriculum, they said, ‘You are way ahead with this.’ That was a big relief and boosted my confidence.”
3. Faster Learning and Reduced Stress with MIU’s Innovative Block System
So students can immerse themselves in a single topic at a time, MIU uses a modular block system of one class per month. Students can focus and learn quickly without the distraction of juggling four or five other courses simultaneously. They learn more with less stress.
“When I was in college studying civil engineering in Eritrea, I had to take 5 or 6 courses at a time,” said Tesfu. “It was stressful to try and remember everything, and tiring for my mind to constantly switch from one subject to another. But with the modular system, taking one course at a time, I didn’t have that stress. My mind stayed fresher, and it was easier to retain the knowledge. It’s the best way of learning.”
Michael Woldemedihin, M.S.D., Seattle, Washington
Michael Woldemedihin, who came to the M.S.D. program from Seattle, Washington, with a background in pharmaceuticals and information technology, also credits the modular system with helping him keep up with the pace.
“The Master’s in Software Development is a rigorous course, and we had to work hard. There was no time to slack off,” Woldemedihin said. “Taking one course at a time made it easier to stay focused. The daily assignments helped us integrate the knowledge in the evenings and stay on top of things.”
The block system helps students acquire the latest skills needed to succeed. “It’s a challenging program, but we have all the up-to-date knowledge,” he added. “I really think anyone who graduates with this degree can survive anything in the industry.” Woldemedihin is doing just that. He landed a position with Boeing in Seattle and is working for them from Fairfield during the pandemic.
“Taking one course at a time made it easier to stay focused… It’s a challenging program, but we have all the up-to-date knowledge.” —Michael Woldemedihin, M.S.D.
4. More Personal Growth and Deep Rest with the TM Technique
The foundational element of MIU’s Consciousness-Based education is the TM technique. Regular TM practice refreshes the mind and body, reduces stress, and increases intelligence and memory, making it far easier for students to absorb the knowledge from their courses and retain it. It’s also a tool they can take with them in their new career.
“Before MIU all I knew of meditation was from movies and TV shows,” said Hassan. “I learned Transcendental Meditation and didn’t know what to expect. Honestly, I have no idea how, but the meditation works. If I was tired or nervous or even panicking before exams, meditating for 20 minutes settled me down and helped me focus. I think TM will also help now that I’m moving to a new city to start a job and have to learn everything about the company and the environment.”
Michael Fitzgerald, Fairfield, Iowa
Michael Fitzgerald, from Crystal River, Florida, earned his B.A. in Mathematics at MIU before entering the M.S.D. program, so he was experienced with Consciousness-Based education. Still completing his M.S.D. coursework, he has already landed a position as IT Administrator for Maharishi School in Fairfield.
“MIU is the only university I know of that encourages its students to stay rested and have a healthy lifestyle,” Fitzgerald said. “For me, that’s as important as the knowledge. Many of my M.S.D. classmates didn’t think much of meditation before coming here, but they were impressed with the results from TM. They noticed they didn’t have as much stress and had greater clarity and focus in school after learning the TM technique, and it came as a surprise to them.”
Tesfu appreciates how it’s helping him in his new position at Infosys. “I love the meditation! It really works for me. It gives me energy and clears my mind, and it’s helping me with my new job. If I’m working and feel tired, I stop for my TM session and feel refreshed and ready to start again,” he said.
“I love the meditation! It really works for me. It gives me energy and clears my mind, and it’s helping me with my new job.” — Haile Tesfu, M.S.D.
5. Career Strategy Workshops Help Students in Their Job Search
Once students finish their M.S.D. course work, they are ready to apply for industry positions. That’s where the program’s vital job coaching comes into play, with a two-week workshop plus continued coaching for one year or until they land a job.
Amelework (Amele) Cheklie, M.S.D., Seattle, Washington
Amele Cheklie was a well-known journalist for the Ethiopian News Agency before she immigrated to the United States and joined the M.S.D. program.
“The Career Strategy class was well-designed, and we learned so many techniques to help us find a job,” said Cheklie, who landed in Seattle and is interviewing there for many software developer positions.
“We improved our ability to promote ourselves by communicating professionally. Practicing with my team helped build my confidence in speaking about myself,” Amele said.
“We improved our ability to promote ourselves by communicating professionally. Practicing with my team helped build my confidence in speaking about myself,” —Amele Cheklie
Abel Nedi, M.S.D., Atlanta, Georgia
“The job coaching program was very helpful,” says Abel Nedi of Atlanta, Georgia, who joined the M.S.D. program with a B.S. in Computer Science.
“I learned how to prepare a professional resume and how to communicate with recruiters and hiring companies. It was great to get my team’s feedback and see where I needed to improve. I definitely think this program helped me get my job,” said Nedi, who is working as a Java developer at Bank of America in Charlotte, North Carolina. He’s working remotely from Atlanta, Georgia until he can move to Charlotte when the pandemic ends.
“I definitely think this program (career coaching workshop) helped me get my job.” – Abel Nedi
6. Training for a Global Market with an International Community
The M.S.D. students in the first class of 2019 came from countries all over the world, representing multiple cultures, religions, educational backgrounds, and age groups. They were curious about learning the TM technique as an educational tool for personal development and committed to the challenge of mastering a new field of knowledge together. In the process, they were preparing for interacting with a global market.
“It’s beautiful to see many different cultures overlapping and co-existing,” said Fitzgerald. “Even students from countries with a conflict between them interact joyously and peacefully here. I’ve made lifelong friends from around the world and had unique and unforgettable experiences—like listening to a traditional Ethiopian singer while working on projects with Ethiopian students.”
For Fitzgerald, being on this journey with an international community was part of the M.S.D. program’s success. “We may have been from different countries, but we were all on the same trajectory, taking our classes together. There was a cool group feeling that we were in this together. The whole program and curriculum were laid out, so it was like riding a train—with the sense that the train would take us to totally new heights.”
“The whole program and curriculum were laid out, so it was like riding a train—with the sense that the train would take us to totally new heights.”
—Michael Fitzgerald, M.S.D.
Learn More about the Life-Changing M.S.D. Program
With their year of coursework completed, all the students agree that it has been a life-changing experience. They are proud of the time and effort devoted to their Master’s in Software Development and excited to start new lives and new careers.
And as Fitzgerald pointed out, “If the idea of self-development appeals to someone, they will gain so much more than they ever expected from this program.”
Note: If you’d like to embark on a career in software development, MIU is now accepting applications for our next entry.
Questions? Contact an Admissions Consultant any time by calling or texting (800) 563-9673 or emailing: email@example.com
This article was reprinted from Enjoy TM News, © 2020 Maharishi Foundation USA, Inc.