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The Value of Education Keeps Steve Taravella Coming Back

Steve Taravella first stepped through Bryant & Stratton College’s doors in 1986.

The associate degree he earned then helped him land a job with a company that has offered him upward mobility for 30 years. He entered in the accounts payable department. Today Taravella, 52, is assisting the company’s lawyers with paralegal duties.

“Over the course of many years my job has evolved as the business evolved,” Taravella said. “At one time we had only one paralegal in the office with no backup. I saw an opportunity since I already work with the company attorneys. I was willing to be ambitious and the company was willing to pay for school.”

Taravella returned to Bryant & Stratton in 2015 to earn a certificate in paralegal studies.

“I had a great experience. I wouldn’t keep coming back if didn’t,” he said, adding that the cornerstone of the school’s motto is the key to its success.

“You know the old commercials, when they said our graduates get jobs, I’m living testimonial to that,” he said. “My simple accounting degree turned into a 30-year-career.”

Taravella said returning to school now, with technological advances and the ability to attend class remotely, makes earning  a degree more attractive to older students.

“When you are a husband and a father and you have a career and outside interests, going to a brick and mortar school is a challenge to everything else. Attending online is the perfect opportunity. I would not have gone back if I had not had the opportunity to study online,” he said. “They certainly have improved the ability for adult learners to navigate school and balance the rest of their life.”

After 30 years, Taravella said he found that Bryant & Stratton was able to maintain its core values while improving services.

“I got a quality education with instructors who work in the real world. They are attorneys and accountants and I could talk to them about the real world experiences I was having,” he said. “You know the old adage, those who can’t do teach? At Bryant and Stratton, it’s the opposite.”

The courses have already made a difference in the workplace.

“It’s made my job easier,” he said. “And it’s saved on legal fees. We don’t have to speak to lawyers two and three times. Because of my training here I can speak the language of attorneys and don’t have to keep asking questions.”

Taravella said his time online with classmates also taught him about younger generations.

“The exchange of knowledge is important. I learned about their point of views from a lot of students who were younger than me,” he said. “Getting to understand those opposing viewpoints can only help you grow. “

After earning his certificate, Taravella said he continues to take classes that are pertinent to his daily job and even some that he is simply interested in.

“I wouldn’t let a small amount of money keep me from taking a class here,” he said. “The value and the education you get is worth 100 times the cost.”


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