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Q&A with DBA Accounting Student Sean Cogdell

Q&A with DBA Accounting Student Sean Cogdell

Originally from Norwalk, Connecticut, Sean Cogdell received his undergraduate degree from Central Connecticut State University, which indirectly led to his career. His college roommate went on to start the company where he currently works, and Cogdell and his partner acquired it in 2016.

Today, Cogdell is pursuing his Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) at the Chambers College.

Learn more about Cogdell and how enrolling in our online DBA program has benefited him both professionally and personally.


Q: Why did you choose the DBA program at WVU?

A: I was looking into doctoral programs, and while attending a Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) trade show in Las Vegas, West Virginia University had a booth opposite our company booth. At the time WVU did not offer an asynchronous DBA program, but the WVU representative mentioned a DBA program was on the horizon, and stated he would keep in touch and confirm when the program went live. About eight months or so later, I was contacted by WVU. The new program with the flexible asynchronous curriculum was the biggest selling point.

Q: What has your experience been with online learning?

A: For me, online asynchronous learning has been a great experience. I am able to keep up with the demands of the DBA program at my pace while meeting the obligations of my work and family life. The coursework, while demanding, has been excellent. The professors are sharp, knowledgeable, have a real-world focus, and they're funny! They are accessible, compassionate and flexible.

Q: Are there any courses that have changed how you think about business and how it is applied in the real world?

A: All the coursework in the first year of our cohort has been beneficial to me in my professional life. Even the courses not directly related to my profession challenge me to think beyond the superficial, to dig below the surface, and support conclusions with data and information.

Q: How have your professors influenced your learning?

A: All of my professors have influenced my learning. I have found that no two professors are alike. Each not only has an area of expertise, but also an individual perspective on learning and research. I have found that each professor has provided me with added insights and depth that have only been beneficial to me and my knowledge development at WVU.

Q: How has the DBA program advanced (or how will it advance) your career?

A: I am currently the CEO of an international staffing firm located in the greater Boston area. I am at the apex of my career in my current position. In my second career, I want to teach at the university level. Completing my DBA from WVU will allow me to pursue that dream.

Q: What advice would you have for a student thinking about the DBA program?

A: My advice to prospective students is that the WVU DBA program is a commitment of time and energy. The coursework is challenging and demanding, but I can guarantee you it is well worth the effort. The opportunities to learn and develop seem endless.

Q: How do you hope to change the future of business? 

A: My area of research is Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I) in upper management and the boardroom. I am hopeful that my research will be impactful and utilized to change the composition of both for the better.

Q: Any final thoughts?

A: The saying, “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks” has been shattered by the WVU DBA program. In just a year of study, I have grown both academically and personally. This old dog has indeed learned new tricks.

Learn more about our Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) program here and apply today.

Chambers College