What can one person expect to achieve in a lifetime? Derrick Rodgers is trying to find out. He played football for ASU, earning All-American honors. He played football professionally for eight seasons, playing for the Miami Dolphins and New Orleans Saints. Personally, he is married with five children.
And now he is back in school, earning his college degree at ASU.
“Initially, I went back to school out of a necessity,” says Rodgers. “I wanted to get into college coaching and a friend of mine wanted to hire me, but couldn’t because I didn’t have my degree. College coaching requires a college degree since you are mentoring young men. You can’t just preach the need for a degree, you need to show it too. So a bachelor’s degree is a requirement.”
Rodgers began looking at face-to-face options in Florida where he and his family live. But the need to balance four kids and a newborn with working, he knew online options would offer him the flexibility he needed. “I needed the option to take classes and study at night so I began looking at online options and knew of ASU from my college days. I was nervous about beginning, but my wife assured me I could do this.”
Rodgers is now again a Sun Devil and is studying liberal arts. “It is geared toward any career and it opens up your mind. What you’re doing is practicing for the real-stage which is living. I feel like this program is preparing me for living with the ultimate goal of being a well-rounded individual.”
It is something he is teaching his children too. “I always tell them ‘You get success by putting maximum effort in what you do,’” says Rodgers. “Right now, I’m putting maximum effort into earning my degree. And I tell people all the time that, if you have the opportunity to do it, challenge yourself. There is always something else to learn, wisdom to gain, experience to be had. There was a student in one of my first classes who was 87-years old. It was so inspirational to me that she was returning to school too. It’s never too late to accomplish your goal, to learn new things.”
When will you be returning to school?