They say timing is everything. For Dr. Gregory Karas it certainly was.
He was working in Boston one summer several years ago, when out of the blue he decided to check out what was going on at his alma mater. He clicked on the Bridgewater State website and found a headline seemingly addressed directly to him.
“The main news item was about the launch of the new master’s program in accounting. As luck, or fate, would have it, the information session was that same night,”
Dr. Karas recalled.
He attended the event, which was held in the Moakley Auditorium, and saw a familiar face from his undergraduate years – veteran accounting and finance Professor Carleton Donchess. Next thing Dr. Karas knew, he was a Bridgewater State student again.
The Brockton native, the seventh of nine children, served eight years in the Air Force before coming to Bridgewater State. He majored in accounting as an undergraduate, and after earning a master’s degree in 2003, began working as an adjunct faculty member.
Dr. Karas earned a doctorate in higher education from Northeastern University in 2016. His doctoral thesis studied the success rate of first-generation students from low-socioeconomic backgrounds. He conducted his research at BSU.
“The students who participated in my study reinforced for me why Bridgewater is a great university,” he said. “Their stories of how Bridgewater transformed their lives, providing them with an outstanding education and opportunities to be better, personally as well as professionally, showed me that Bridgewater remained focused on its educational values.”
As recent as last year, Dr. Karas was teaching at a handful of institutions – practically living in his car, he joked during a recent interview in his Harrington Hall office. When the chance came in fall 2018 to teach at BSU as an assistant professor of accounting and finance, he jumped at the offer.
“It was surreal,” Dr. Karas said of coming back to his alma mater to teach. “I was honored to give back to the institution and its students,” he added.
Nowadays, Dr. Karas teaches alongside Professor Donchess and other members of the Department of Accounting and Finance.
“I cannot express my gratitude to Professor Donchess for spending that time with me (at the information session). If not for him, I doubt I would have enrolled again.”