Videos

By Roadtrip Nation

Paul Kennedy

Highlight

Milestones

My road in life took a while to figure out.
After high school, I started working full time, got married young, and started a family—I eventually tried to go back to school part time after work, but the balance was too much of a struggle.
I spent some time working in both manufacturing and sales, but those jobs seemed like they wouldn’t lead anywhere or be fulfilling in the long term.
I decided to join the Army and learn a skill—I pursued telecommunications for six years in the Army.
After leaving the Army, I decided not to continue with school and instead work my way up from within the workforce—I spent years working for various information technology companies.
When a startup I was working for dissolved and I was left unemployed, I didn’t have a degree to fall back on.
Some friends recruited me to work at the U.S. Army Medical Command—I started as a contractor and worked my way into a government job, but was still held back by the fact that I didn’t have a degree.
When my kids moved out, I finally decided to enroll at Western Governors University—balancing school and work was a struggle at times, but WGU’s program provided the flexibility and support I needed.
I graduated from WGU in information technology management and now work as the chief technology officer for the U.S. Army Medical Command.
Keep following my journey

Education

High School
Bachelor
Information Technology Management
Western Governors University

Career

Chief Technology Officer

I lead the technology department for the U.S. Army Medical Command.

Career Roadmap

Roadmap
My work combines:
My work combines:
Technology
Armed Services
Accomplishing Goals

Day to Day

My day-to-day work entails dealing with issues across the Army Medical Command globally. We’re currently transitioning away from the Army, Navy, Air Force medical systems into a defense health agency, which involves the movement of all of our assets. I’m involved in all of that. I also travel a lot to the Pentagon and Washington, DC for briefings.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for high school students

If you want to explore the business side of IT and merge it with the technical side of your job, I believe the rewards are greater for someone who has a degree. I faced many roadblocks throughout my career because I didn't have a degree. I'd recommend researching if it is in fact something you'll need and then putting in the effort to pursue your education if so. If you aren't really sure what you want to do, I suggest pursuing an education anyway because it can only open more options for you.

Recommended Education

My career is related to what I studied. I'd recommend the path I took:

undergrad
Bachelor
Information Technology Management

Hurdles

The Noise I Shed

From Society in General:

"You need a degree in order to move up."

Challenges I Overcame

Work Stress
Work-Life Balance
Job Loss