I came to UWF to pursue an interest in distance learning. I am a Commander in the Saudi Navy, and for the last 15 years, I have been working in the Navy's training department. In 1998, distance learning was new in Saudi Arabia, and I was interested in getting involved with training management and distance learning counseling. Attaining a master's and doctoral degree with an emphasis in instructional technology and distance learning would allow me to help my country in those new fields, so that year I started looking for a university in the USA. An American who was working with me in Saudi Arabia recommended UWF, so I looked at the UWF web site. It seemed like a nice university, and both the master's and the doctoral programs looked good. The main factors that persuaded me to pursue a college degree from UWF were that it was an accredited school, it had a good environment for international students, and the weather in Pensacola is the same as the weather in Saudi (sunny).
In 2000, I earned my master's degree in Educational Leadership with a specialization in Education and Training Management, and in Fall 2007 I attained my Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with a specialization in Instructional Technology and Distance Learning. Since graduation, several remarkable things have happened in my life. First, I became director of three divisions in the training department: the Curriculum and Testing Division, the Training Aids Division, and the Naval Training Simulators Division. After that, the Navy appointed me Director of the Curriculum Division and Director of eCurriculum at King Fahad Naval Academy (KFNA), where I am currently developing standards and guidelines for eLearning and supervising an eBook development project that involves the production of 25 eBooks over the next two and a half years. I recently published an article on training management in one of the Saudi military magazines in which I explored the consequences of bad training management, and I am planning an eLearning conference at KFNA.
My UWF education has enhanced my career and has helped me to make a significant contribution to education in Saudi Arabia. I am proud to be one of the UWF alumni.