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Daniels thanks our military students for their service

The Daniels College of Business is proud to have numerous veterans choose the College to continue their education. We have nearly 60 active or retired military servicemen and women enrolled in our graduate programs.

Today, we let them share a bit about their journey to Denver.

We thank you for your service and we’re grateful you’ve chosen Daniels!


Steven Cruz (MAcc 2020), United States Air Force

Steven Cruz (MAcc 2020)

I served in the United States Air Force for six years. I enlisted in the military as a way to serve my country, travel, all while gaining values and life experiences.

After completing my enlistment in the Air Force, my family and I moved a couple of times, eventually settling in beautiful Denver, Colorado. Prior to transferring to DU, I was attending Arapahoe Community College. As the time came for me to pursue my degree, I was not familiar with universities in Colorado and asked a number of professors, students, locals, and searched the web for colleges with the top accounting degree programs. I ended up picking DU over CU-Boulder not only for its reputation but also its location.

Daniels has helped me be ready for my future career and remain competitive in the workforce. There are also tremendous amounts of guidance from the professors, staff and fellow students.

I expected to graduate in the spring of 2020. For the winter quarter, I will be doing an internship with PwC in audit. I can honestly say that I am proud to be a future alumnus of Daniels.

Tanya Durham (MBA 2019), United States Marine Corp, pictured with her husband Patryck

Tanya Durham (MBA 2019)

I was a UH-1N “HUEY” helicopter pilot in the United States Marine Corps (USMC), serving 10 years active duty. My husband, Patryck Durham, was an infantry officer in the USMC, serving 22 years active duty. I joined the USMC because I wanted to serve my country and because I was impressed with the character and qualities of the former Marines I worked with in my previous job as a police officer with the Los Angeles Police Department.

I chose the Executive MBA program at Daniels College of Business because the College is ranked as one of the top business schools. I was especially impressed with the Daniels staff and faculty’s dedication and commitment to its students and alumni. I have always been passionate about education and consider myself to be a lifelong learner. Since my bachelor’s degree was in communications, Daniels will help me improve my business acumen and further refine my leadership skills.


Nate Jones (MBA 2020), United States Army

Nate Jones (MBA 2020)

I was in the Army for nine years, from 2006-2015. I chose to serve because I was a college dropout working at a deli, wanting something more for myself. I knew the military would give me the chance to learn important life skills, give me a chance to see the world and give me a sense of purpose in my young life (I enlisted at 19). I was very fortunate to get the chance to travel the world, lead soldiers and eventually start an amazing family.

I worked in government/communications/public relations my entire adult life and knew that I would want to cross over into the corporate world at some point. I knew I wanted to be a leader again and I had grown up in Colorado hearing about the University of Denver being a place of prestige.

When I moved back to Colorado following my service separation, I enrolled in an online master’s program at Syracuse University to further my career. I then immediately applied to Daniels because I wanted to be able to eventually leverage my experience and education in the Denver community and with the amazing network that being a DU alumnus gives access to.

Every step has been a blessing, and I’m glad to be in my Professional MBA cohort. I get a chance to take this journey with some of the most incredible, smartest and talented professionals in the Denver area. I’ve learned just as much from them as I have from the program, and I know that these relationships coupled with the first-class education I’m receiving in the classroom are going to prepare me for that next step upon graduation.

Whitney Sjostrom (MBA 2021), United States Army and Army National Guard

Whitney Sjostrom (MBA 2020)

I served in the U.S. Army and continue to serve in the U.S. Army National Guard, 12 years and counting. My priority in life is to help people in need. I believe in solving systemic problems for those in less fortunate situations. The U.S. military is one of the most powerful tools that assists toward this goal. Throughout my career, I have been fortunate to be a part of protecting and defending fundamental human rights and freedoms I so deeply believe in. I have helped improve the economics, health and governance for people that live in countries that have historically struggled to stabilize these vital areas.

The Daniels College of Business caught my attention through standard advertisement but retained me with its values. The College is dedicated to solving big challenges currently facing our world. Curriculum is sophisticatedly designed to ensure students receive diverse perspectives and effective tools to combat global challenges through business practices. I graduate in another year and feel very confident that with my Daniels education, combined with my unique military experiences, that I am exceptionally prepared to have significant impact in a business role.



Note: Daniels values the service of military veterans. In partnership with the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA), Daniels offers unlimited Yellow Ribbon funding to candidates that have 100% GI Bill and Yellow Ribbon eligibility (as determined by the VA) to cover the full cost of tuition for our graduate programs. More information.