For many students, the decision to further their education comes with twists and turns, but for Benito Soria, Ph.D., the steps leading up to his doctorate degree with Keiser University were relatively straightforward.

Soria said that after earning his undergraduate degree in psychology, he began to scour the job market for the most successful industries. He discovered a field known as Industrial Organizational Psychology (IO), where he could apply his passion for psychology to an occupation with the highest potential for growth.

According to the U.S Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook Handbook,  Industrial Organizational Psychology is predicted to be one of the fastest growing psychology fields in the next 7-8 years.

“Especially now, after COVID, the way that employers are having employees who do not want to work at work,” Soria said, referring to the importance of his new degree. “It is taking everything, trying to apply what we know and what we have learned, to help make that relationship better.”

Choosing Keiser University’s online programs to earn his doctorate in IO gave Soria real-world experience in classes with professors such as Dr. David Bracken, who was also  Soria’s dissertation chair-head and mentor.

“The professors are always there for advice,” he said, speaking highly of Dr. Bracken. “The faculty is great.”

In the 2017-2018 school year, the IO program brought Soria from his home in Dallas, Texas to the Flagship campus in West Palm Beach for a series of short residency programs. Soria said that the experience gave him lifelong friends and that growing a comradery with his classmates really helped him power through any difficulties in the program.

“I like to compare it to combat – if you have not been through it, then you do not know,” Soria said.

Soria spent 12 years in the military before he chose to put his G.I Bill to use and complete his education. Going forward, he would like to continue working for the military in a Navy sponsored program known as Aerospace Experimental Psychology.

“I am already a doctor and [the Navy] will also let me be an officer and a pilot,” Soria said. “It is a whole office within the Navy that is devoted to helping pilots fit in better and making sure that their head is good whenever they are in the air.”

Keiser University is a private, independent, non-profit university serving nearly 20,000 students at 21 Florida campuses, online, and two international sites. Co-founded in 1977 by Chancellor Arthur Keiser, Ph.D., and Evelyn Keiser, Keiser University currently offers more than 100 degrees from associates to the doctoral level. Keiser University is a member of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities and was ranked No. 11 in the U.S. in Social Mobility by U.S. News and World Reports in 2021. Keiser University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges as a level VI institution. For more information, visit www.keiseruniversity.edu.