Looking at A Day in the Life of an “O”nline Student

For Paul Shihadeh every day starts with homework and ends at Cirque du Soleil! As a spouse, parent, Artistic Director at Cirque’s “O,” and online Master’s student in the College of Fine Arts’ Master of Music in Music Education, each day is full of new challenges. Paul’s work at Cirque du Soleil is unusual for a student in the Music Education program, and it gives him a unique perspective on course material. In each course, he brings a new voice to discussions and interacts with students in a variety of educational settings.

Paul embodies the best qualities in an online student: he’s passionate, communicative, and very proactive. He does a great job of communicating any questions and problems efficiently, and is an inspiring example of someone who advocates for himself. Even in phone calls and emails, his excitement about the course material shines through.

“I chose to do my Master’s with Boston University Online now mainly because of the challenges. I had the idea of doing a traditional Master’s, but with my schedule it was impossible I thought,” Paul says in the video, which can be seen above, or on our YouTube Channel. “Having just finished my first course, it was very exciting, but it was also really, really challenging. It was a whole part of my brain that I think had been dormant for a long time. It was fascinating. I really enjoyed it. And I think that’s part of the challenge and the real joy I get out of it: It brings me back to what it was like 20 years ago when I was doing my undergrad.”

Paul’s story is the second installment in our “Day in the Life” series, produced by Senior Media Producer Rob Haley and sponsored in part by Metropolitan College’s Chadwick Fellowship. If you are a BU Online student and think your story is one Rob may want to tell in a future installment, please drop us a note at disted@bu.edu.

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