An assistant vice president within the Securities and Lending Division at JP Morgan Chase, Kaveen Benedict earned his Ashford University master's degree with an information systems specialization at the age of 36. The 2012 graduate was working full-time when he took online classes and credits the university with helping him keep a "healthy work-family-study balance.""Online education is the way of the future," said Benedict. "I used new tools, such as the Ashford mobile app, to post assignments and discussions at any time and from any location. My education has given me the tools for managing larger teams and to fast forward my career." John Dyer, a seasoned law enforcement professional with 25 years of experience, earned a bachelor's degree in organizational management from Ashford. Soon after, he was promoted to chief of police in Rifle, Colo. Like millions of working Americans, Dyer wanted to pursue higher education but was limited by choices. "I wouldn't have been able to make the move up to chief without the degree and would never have been able to fit coursework into my schedule without online education." As a leader and mentor to his staff of 22, Dyer continually stresses the importance of education. "I tell sergeants and everyone I come in contact with – you have to think three steps ahead to achieve your goals." Zimmerman's, Benedict's and Dyer's preference for online higher learning parallels a national trend. According to a recent national consumer poll by Penn Schoen Berland on behalf of Ashford University, more than 60 percent of adults between the ages of 35 and 48 say online degree programs provide a more realistic learning environment that mimics today's work culture than traditional campus programs. Technology makes it possible for students of all ages and backgrounds to advance their careers and become leaders in their fields.