For more than 20 years, Malachi Simmons has served in the U.S. Army.
“My intent was to just complete a three-year term, but I fell in love with culture and being a solider,” said the chief warrant officer 4. “I first witnessed this culture through my father who inspired me to join. He was a member of the 101st Airborne Division at Fort Campbell, Kentucky and I wanted to do the same.”
Simmons’ love of serving his country has inspired him to continue to serve others, but in a different way – through the tourism and hospitality industry.
“I served my country for many years by protecting it from all enemies or foreign or domestic,” he said. “The hospitality industry will let me serve others, once again, but in a different capacity. Guest satisfaction is what individuals within the hospitality industry strive to reach and this is a goal that I am striving to always accomplish.”
Simmons, who has graduated with a bachelor’s in hospitality and tourism from CSU in 2012, said as a soldier, he was attracted to the online university because of the tuition assistance through the Army, textbooks at no cost, lack of an application fee and transfer credit.
“I felt that I was being rewarded for my dedication to the military and hard work at previous universities,” he said referring to the fact that some military training can be applied toward transfer credit with CSU.
Simmons enjoyment of CSU led him to return to earn an MBA to help him achieve his career in hospitality and tourism.
“My master’s degree has given me an insight at the business executive level. This insight has introduced me to the fields of human resources, advance marketing, business strategies, organization theory… and several other areas which can be proved invaluable in the hospitality industry,” he explained.
Simmons currently works at the Army Warrant Officer Career College at Fort Rucker, Ala. He serves as an academic facilitator/instructor and provides educational instructions to warrant officers in the areas of joint, interagency and multinational operations.
As he transitions into a civilian career, Simmons said he has learned the key to preparing for a career after the military is anticipation. “My human resource management methods class, which was delivered during my master’s level program, stressed the idea of anticipation. I gathered from the class that this idea of anticipation is what employers used to capture the true nature of a new employee’s skills. This can assist me in identifying my personal skills that can be tailored to a desirable employer’s needs.”
Simmons added that his learning experiences with CSU are reasons he would recommend the online university to other military members.
“The body of CSU is composed of professors, academic advisors, student services representatives, and other faculty members that are dedicated a student’s success. My academic advisors and student services representatives were determined that I receive the most from all applicable programs that CSU had to offer.”