AFIT bestows doctorate degree to an NCO for first time

  • Published
  • By Bill Hancock
  • 88th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
U.S. Army Master Sgt. Jeffery Morris is the first enlisted student to earn a Ph.D. from the Air Force Institute of Technology. Morris completed his doctorate in Systems Engineering with research focused on quantum cryptography.
"This has been a fantastic experience," said Morris. "AFIT reached out to me immediately after I was chosen for the program and provided me with all the support and encouragement needed to successfully finish this challenging program. Along with AFIT, I would also like to thank my wife, who also supported me during my endless study and research ... ."

Morris will take his degree to his next assignment at U.S. Military Academy, where he will be teaching within the West Point Cyber Research Center.

"As AFIT's first ever NCO granted a doctorate degree, Master Sgt. Morris is the very epitome of an AFIT graduate," said Dr. Adedeji Badiru, dean, AFIT School of Engineering and Management. "His hard work, dedication and accomplishments have certainly opened the door for future enlisted with aspirations of attaining a higher education at AFIT."

Morris' past experience includes operations and intelligence functions at battalion and brigade units and a tour handling strategic issues and communications at the Army G-2 and Joint Staff. Morris possesses two master's degrees: one in Strategic Intelligence with a focus on Information Operations of terrorist/ insurgent groups, and one in Information Systems and Information Security. He also completed the postgraduate Intelligence Program at the National Defense Intelligence College.

Morris was hooded by his dissertation adviser Dr. Michael Grimaila Sept. 4 at AFIT.

"Master Sgt. Morris is an amazing senior NCO and in addition to all of his academic accomplishments, he ... has helped all of the 600 students at AFIT by creating a student sharepoint site, a task tracking system, led Wingman Day training, was instrumental in student retreat formations and the list goes on and on," said fellow Ph.D. student, Col. Angela Suplisson