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University of Phoenix College of Doctoral Studies holds third annual colloquium supporting doctoral students 

By Sharla Hooper

Doctoral Journey Colloquium brings together students, faculty and facilitates networking and support opportunities

University of Phoenix College of Doctoral Studies hosted an in-person Doctoral Journey Colloquium April 19-20 on the university campus in Phoenix, Arizona, in an event supporting doctoral students’ studies and networking, as part of the College’s integrated approach for doctoral student success. 

“We design our colloquium to support our doctoral students on their educational journey,” states Hinrich Eylers, Ph.D., P.E., vice provost of the College of Doctoral Studies. “We build each event responsive to feedback on the ones prior, enhancing opportunities for connection, networking and empowerment. This was the best and most highly attended colloquium so far.”

Networking receptions opened and concluded the event. There were 71 students, alumni, and faculty members in attendance, from the areas of Business/Management, Education, and Healthcare, as well as 33 staff and speakers. College administrators, staff, and faculty supported the event with interactive workshops and panels that stimulated deeper thought and provided valuable insights for students' doctoral progression. 

The Colloquium is an essential component of the College’s Doctoral ecosystem and is intended to:

  • Provide additional support to students and alumni

  • Share updates, resources, and information 

  • Build life-long relationships between students, alumni, and CDS

  • Create networking opportunities to strengthen the College’s doctoral community

  • Identify opportunities to improve programs and student/alumni support systems.

Throughout the event, participants had opportunities to engage with students from across practitioner doctoral programs, phases, and experiences and network with alumni. 

Freda Ascenia Richards, a doctoral student enrolled in the Doctorate of Management program, and manager, Digital Campaigns at University of Phoenix, attended and found inspiration in connecting with her faculty, peers and mentors. “It was a wonderful opportunity to connect with other doctoral students, exchange experiences, and gain insights into their plans for moving forward. Dr. Kimberly Underwood’s reference to the attendees as "all future doctors" was a pivotal moment for me, as it helped me realize that my aspirations are attainable and that I am on track to achieve them,” she shared.

This year, the College conducted multiple blind reviews for a Call for Proposals to present at the 2024 CDS Doctoral Journey Colloquium and accepted three proposals:

  • Antoinette Dziedzic, Ph.D., Doctoral Instructor, Dissertation Chair, Healthcare Program; presentation, Mind-Mapping Your Way Through the Dissertation

  • Mark McCaslin, Ph.D., Doctoral Instructor, University Research Methodologist; presentation, Research Alignment in Qualitative Research Design

  • James Lane, Ed.D., Doctoral Instructor, ACCESS and Panel Validator; presentation, Clear Windows or Clouded Lenses? Viewing Data Through Ethical Frames.

“We were excited to share this unique opportunity as part of our commitment to fostering collaboration and professional growth,” states Shawn Todd-Boone, Ed.D., associate dean, ACCESS, Research and Residency. “The proposals were informed by instructors’ years of experience teaching working adult learners and the subsequent presentations were built to address concerns and empower doctoral students on their journey.”

The College is already planning the 2025 colloquium, as well as an interim virtual version. 

About the College of Doctoral Studies

University of Phoenix’s College of Doctoral Studies focuses on today’s challenging business and organizational needs, from addressing critical social issues to developing solutions to accelerate community building and industry growth. The College’s research program is built around the Scholar, Practitioner, Leader Model which puts students in the center of the Doctoral Education Ecosystem® with experts, resources and tools to help prepare them to be a leader in their organization, industry and community. Through this program, students and researchers work with organizations to conduct research that can be applied in the workplace in real time.

About University of Phoenix

University of Phoenix innovates to help working adults enhance their careers and develop skills in a rapidly changing world. Flexible schedules, relevant courses, interactive learning, skills-mapped curriculum for our bachelor’s and master’s degree programs and a Career Services for Life® commitment help students more effectively pursue career and personal aspirations while balancing their busy lives. For more information, visit