Erik S. Wright |  College of Information | Department of Learning Technologies | University of North Texas
Erik S. Wright DOCTORAL PORTFOLIO University of North Texas
GENERAL SUMMARY As a student in the ATPI PhD program, I feel that I have grown from my practical business background and branched further into the realm of research and development of the HR function.  My MBA program gave me the tools I needed to be successful in upper management, but it was not until my enrollment in the ATPI program that I was moved further into the developmental aspects of business and workforce development.  I see the progress that I have made from a being a novice at academic research to truly understanding statistical analysis and research.  I have found that I enjoy the research aspect of the ATPI program and I am looking forward to several research projects that I have upcoming, including my dissertation.  My writing style and abilities have also shown substantial improvements over the course of the last six years and I believe are now on par with other academic professionals.  I have pursued new teaching and service opportunities that participation in this program prepared me for.  Not only have I completed the coursework in the program with high standards, but I have managed to do so while working full time and starting a family.  This makes me proud to be at this point in my doctoral degree plan and I look forward to completing my dissertation and graduating soon. AREAS OF PERSONAL STRENGTH The ATPI program has opened my eyes to numerous strengths that I was not even aware that I had.  I have always had a strong mind for business and business studies.  What I was not aware of was my abilities to research into a problem and provide solutions that businesses could utilize.  The coursework has expanded my capacity and confidence to evaluate problems, produce solutions, and evaluate my efforts.  I feel that this is one of my newest strong points that has complemented my business background the most.  An additional strong point that I feel has been developed by this program is my ability to organize and develop coursework and training to meet the needs of industry and academia.  As for research, I believe that a strong point that I have developed has been the ability to look at a data set and see not just the statistical implications of the data, but also the effect that the data has on an issue or problem.  Understanding the usefulness of the data is just as important as the significance of the data itself.  I feel that this skill has developed over the course of my studies and is now an area of personal strength.  Finally, I feel that my dedication and perseverance has been one of my biggest strengths in this program and my career.  I have often found myself with a plate that was overflowing, but taking on tasks and challenges has kept me strong and given me determination to complete this program and to solve whatever issues come my way. AREAS FOR FURTHER IMPROVEMENT As much as people do not like to discuss their deficiencies, there are always areas of improvement that they can focus on.  At times I have been mildly disadvantaged in the ability to participate in some academic activities due primarily to my distance from the academic institution and my peers.  I have worked to bridge that gap and believe that I have done a good job working with my peers from a distance.  I do feel that I could participate further in the academic setting as opposed to focusing so heavily on the business aspect of my career.  While I feel that I have made great strides in the field of academic research, I do believe that this is an area that I can and will improve upon.  Over the course of the next semesters, I will complete additional research projects including my dissertation and focus on the publication of several articles that I have written.  I am also looking to participate in several conferences within this next year in an effort to improve my research and presentation skills.  Finally, I believe that as I focus more heavily on research methods heading into my dissertation, I will gain a better understanding of various statistical analysis tools and methods that will improve my abilities as a researcher.