Anne Bayerkohler is only two semesters into the Master of Legal Studies in Compliance and Risk Management. This program at Seattle University School of Law has helped her in her accomplishments and she is already gaining recognition. For example, Bayerkohler was named among the 2020 Women Leaders in Technology by Consulting Magazine.
As part of the first cohort of students to enroll in the online MLS program, she knew that it would be valuable to her career. However, she just didn’t expect to see results so quickly.
Since starting the MLS program, Bayerkohler has been promoted to Senior Director after five years working remotely for Coalfire. Coalfire is a Colorado-based company that provides cybersecurity advisory and assessment services.
“I think it is all due to learning how to be more objective in delivering my findings to top management!” Bayerkohler said. “I cannot wait to see what happens when I finally have a degree under my belt.”
Claiming A Place At The Table
Bayerkohler expects that earning an MLS will help her realize her wider career goals. Women are generally underrepresented in the cybersecurity field, comprising just 24 percent of the workforce. Because she wants that percentage to increase, she sits on Coalfire’s diversity and inclusion council and co-founded RISE. RISE is a group supporting women in cybersecurity at Coalfire.
“As this industry continues to grow, revealing more and more diverse talent, I want to be part of that growth. Also, I want to make sure I am still there to lead and to bring something new to the table,” Bayerkohler said.
She knows that an MLS will help her do just that and put her on a similar footing with C-suite and executive leadership in her organization.
“On the technical level, I have earned many certifications, but I realized my superpower is that I can take the super-technical language of the cybersecurity service delivery folks and translate it into what the C-suite needs to know,” Bayerkohler said. “With my experience and an MLS in my pocket, I will have the knowledge I need to have a seat at the table, to speak to all stakeholders with the same passion and understanding as I do everything else, to bring my ideas into the light of day and have them understood.”
So far, she has found the most value in the Legal Writing and Research. As well as, the Fundamentals of Regulatory Compliance courses. They have advanced her understanding by “a wide margin.”
“I am able to research and provide evidence, not just my gut reaction,” Bayerkohler said. “Although my gut has served me well so far, the evidence provides much less push-back. I credit these two courses with a recent promotion to Senior Director.”
Online Learning From A Law School
Bayerkohler had considered an MBA program and even thought about working toward a Juris Doctor, but she soon realized that neither option perfectly matched her goals. “I chose this program for Seattle University School of Law’s reputation. I did not want an “online school”; a recognized law school with a flexible program is what I was looking for, so I could keep the job I love,” she said.
She is able to pursue her degree from a school in one state while working remotely for a company in another state and living in a third state. The flexibility of the program perfectly matched her lifestyle.
“The degree plan was uniquely suited to my experience, and I found there was a gap in the availability of programs like this one at other universities with a similar standing to Seattle U,” Bayerkohler said. “This unique program gives me just what I need to know.”
In an increasingly regulated global environment, businesses need experts like Bayerkohler with deep knowledge in their industry and an understanding of compliance and risk management concepts.
Finding A Law School That Fits Your Schedule
“This degree plan covers much of what I need to be able to work with our legal team seamlessly,” Bayerkohler said. “Someone in my position, with the knowledge of how to speak ‘legalese,’ means I can instantly demonstrate ROI to top management.”
Bayerkohler continues to build her knowledge while working full time. She doesn’t need to choose between working at the job she loves or advancing her career through education.
“Many risk and compliance activities are unplanned and fall outside of normal business hours, such as business continuity during a pandemic,” Bayerkohler said. Online study gives her the flexibility to succeed in her work while also advancing her education.
Sharing a virtual classroom with other risk professionals and professors has expanded her understanding of the cybersecurity industry. “I have seen risk and compliance from the finance industry to the port authority, so my understanding is no longer limited to just the IT field.”
To anyone considering an MLS in Compliance and Risk Management, Bayerkohler says, “Just do it!”
Are you ready for advancement and recognition in your own career? Enroll in the MLS in Compliance and Risk Management Program from Seattle University today. To learn more about the Compliance and Risk Management Program fill out our form on the website. You can also call us directly at 206-398-4268. We look forward to helping you.