Avery Dominguez

December 21, 2015

Few feelings are as powerful as the realization that you know what you want to do with the rest of your life. For University of North Carolina Wilmington student Avery Dominguez ’17, the spark was a biology class, through which he became involved in research. From then on, his sights were set on the online Bachelor of Science program in clinical research offered through UNCW.

“I’m not really an online person,” he said, but the clinical research degree is an online-only curriculum, and he had to adapt. Now a junior, Rutherfordton, NC native Dominguez just completed his first semester in the major and already knows that he made the right choice.

The self-directed program attracted him not only because it is in his chosen field, but also because it allows him to learn according to his needs. It’s often possible to get through a unit quickly, leaving more time for the next unit, in case it is more difficult or time-consuming, he explained.

The work is highly data-driven, so an affinity for statistics is essential. In that regard, experience working independently ­– which online education requires – is critical. Students who choose this program will find the employment possibilities are many and varied. Some of the career options for clinical research majors include clinical trial manager, regulatory affairs specialist and research coordinator.

For Dominguez, once he caught the research bug, he knew his life’s goal would be to work in a field that solves problems and improves medical technology.

This semester, he is enrolled in online courses on medical terminology and scientific literature, necessary foundations for clinical research studies. He is also taking a finance class on campus and finds it “very useful.” His future plans include participation in a research internship.

Asked if he had advice for students contemplating earning a degree online, Dominguez emphasized that discipline and self-reliance are key. “A lot of it is self-paced, but there are due dates,” he explained. “You’re the one who has to read through the assignments. The professors are there if you have questions, but you have to be motivated to go through the information and learn it.”

-- Tricia Vance