Alumni

  • Daniel A. Dowler

    #KennedyTech
    Daniel Dowler is a software quality engineer with Dell EMC, based in Draper, Utah, where he works on the Mozy infrastructure team to develop and test features for storing and protecting customer data. Curious about his career pathway from international relations to tech, we asked him a few questions.

    How did you start exploring career paths?
    I’ve had some interesting and great experiences over the years, many of which the international relations program helped prepare me for. I did an internship in Washington, DC, in the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee under Senator Bob Bennett. While there, I met a University of Utah student who was thinking about a Fulbright opportunity. I thought it sounded interesting, so I applied after a year and was selected to study in South Korea. I had proposed to do research on inter-Korean economic relations. While in Korea I realized that I needed more quantitative skills.

    What was your next step?
    I applied to some master’s programs in economics but didn’t get in. The following year I applied to the math graduate program at BYU and somehow convinced them to let me have a go at it, even though I had only minored in math. It was a lot of work, but it gave me skills and confidence in the field. In particular, I had to learn how to program to do some of my thesis research. This gave me just enough computer skill to get into the tech industry as a tech support engineer for enterprise clients. I proved myself there and was able to move up to software engineer.

    “I kept at it until something else materialized.”

    —Daniel Dowler

    How did you decide that tech was where you wanted to be?
    My interest in the tech industry was sparked by a few things: a great work culture, challenging problems to work on, the opportunity to make an impact, and good compensation. The facility I work at has an on-site gym. I received one month of paternity leave when my youngest child was born. And they paid most of my tuition for a second master’s degree—in information and data science from UC Berkeley—which I finished in January. I hope to move into a data science role at some point, which uses programming, math, and statistics.

    What has your career strategy been and how has international relations played a role?
    If I were to sum it up, I’ve just looked for opportunities and applied to a lot of schools, jobs, and internships that I didn’t get. I’m pretty stubborn, so I kept at it until something good materialized. I saw opportunities and challenged myself to work hard toward them. Looking back, the international relations program gave me excellent writing preparation and a good quantitative introduction. It also helped me to appreciate diversity and work well with people of different cultures and backgrounds.

    2017-1
  • David C. Pollei

    David C. Pollei is CEO of Blair Cannon Financial, a company in Provo that provides funding for various organizations in the industries of technology, education, and communication. In addition, Pollei is the chairman of the board of directors for Ominto Inc. and a consultant for NewsCheckMedia LLC. He possesses an extensive background in business and works to provide companies with his industrial insight. BAs: international relations and French, 1968

    2017-1
  • Melanie Sanders-Smith

    Melanie Sanders-Smith works independently as a business consultant in the Washington, DC, metropolitan area. Sanders-Smith draws from years of experience directing and presiding over various institutions, such as the Institute of International Education and Chemonics International, a trade and development company. BA: international relations, 1982; MA: political science, 1984; MBA: 1997

    2017-1
  • David N. Campbell

    David N. Campbell is a professor at BYU–Idaho, where he teaches courses in foreign policy and international relations. Campbell spent decades as a Canadian civil servant in the capacities of linguist, analyst, and professor at the Royal Military College of Canada. He received an MBA in political science from the University of British Columbia and a PhD from the University of Toronto, with areas of study in China, international relations, and comparative politics. Campbell speaks Mandarin fluently. BA: political science; minor: Asian studies, 1986

    2017-1
  • Tyler B. Thompson

    Tyler B. Thompson is an account executive at Chronus, a software company in the Seattle, Washington, area that develops tools for professional mentorship. Thompson received an MBA in international business from the University of San Diego and an MA in marketing from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education in Mexico. BA: Latin American studies; minor: Spanish, 2005

     

    2017-1
  • Carl H. Brinton

    Carl H. Brinton is a program director at Boston Children’s Hospital and a senior fellow at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital. In addition, Brinton is a researcher on the WomanStats project, compiling quantitative and qualitative data on women’s status worldwide. He received an MBA from Harvard Business School and a certification in Chinese public policy and analysis through the Chinese Flagship Program. BAs: Asian studies, economics, and Chinese, 2009

    2017-1
  • Stephen R. Griffiths

    Stephen R. Griffiths is a consumer-insights associate at General Mills, one of the world’s leading food companies. At the company’s headquarters in Minneapolis, Griffiths analyzes the behavioral data of customers to improve and develop products. He specializes in market research and analysis. Griffiths received an MBA from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. BA: international relations; minor: management, 2009

    2017-1
  • Bryan S. Kerr

    Bryan S. Kerr is the director of operations at DishOne in Provo. DishOne is the public face of the Fortune 200 company Dish Network. Kerr is responsible for managing logistics and organizational output. He speaks Italian and Hebrew. BA: ancient Near Eastern studies, 2010

    2017-1
  • David J. Gygi

    David J. Gygi is a consultant for the Northern Trust Corporation, an organization headquartered in Chicago that provides financial advice to corporations and individuals worldwide. Gygi received a JD from Loyola University Chicago School of Law and possesses an extensive background in legal work. He also serves in the Army National Guard as a judge advocate, providing legal counsel to administrative
    officials.
    BA: international relations, 2011

    2017-1
  • Alan N. Rosenhan

    Alan N. Rosenhan serves as a U.S. Army civil-affairs team leader with the 405th Civil Affairs Battalion/411th Civil Affairs Battalion, acting as a liaison between the army and civilian authorities and populations. A resident of Midvale, Utah, Rosenhan also serves as a physical fitness instructor to the fifth-graders at a local Challenger School. He speaks Arabic and French. BAs: Middle East studies/Arabic; minor: military science, 2011

    2017-1
  • William P. Hussman

    William P. Hussman is a management consultant at Arabic Language Solutions in Washington, DC, where he assesses the need for Arabic translation and linguistic assistance for various individuals and organizations in the professional world. His background includes six years with the U.S. Air Force as an airborne cryptologic analyst. He received an MEd in higher education leadership and Arabic curriculum design from the University of Texas at Austin. In addition, he studied Arabic language and literature through the American University in Cairo. BA: Middle Eastern studies/Arabic, 2012

    2017-1
  • Jeremy M. Huppe

    Jeremy M. Huppe is a quality-assurance specialist for Willis Towers Watson, a risk management and insurance brokerage company in the Salt Lake City area. Huppe ensures the functionality of digital assets, testing plans, and verification codes before release. BA: Latin American studies; minor: management, 2013

    2017-1
  • Daniel W. Draper

    Daniel W. Draper is a project manager at OneSpace in St. Louis, Missouri. OneSpace emphasizes workforce management, generating a platform for clients to network with other professionals and provide their services. BA: international relations, 2014

    2017-1
  • Steven C. Hill

    Steven C. Hill is a finance associate at Convergys, which specializes in customer-experience outsourcing. While the company is based in Salt Lake City, Hill oversees international collaboration and is responsible for financial management. He has a strong background in business and has administered courses on self-employment, finance, and marketing strategy. BA: Latin American studies; minor: management, 2014

    2017-1
  • A. Keith Savage

    A. Keith Savage is a lease coordinator at Zions Bank in the Salt Lake City area. Zions Bank is a prominent financial institution throughout the Intermountain West. Savage’s work as a lease coordinator involves financial oversight of properties within the region. BA: Middle East studies/Arabic, 2014

    2017-1
  • Spencer K. Brown

    Spencer K. Brown is an associate consultant in the Houston office of Bain & Company, a Big Three strategy consulting firm that advises businesses and organizations worldwide. Brown assists clients in overcoming obstacles and provides business advice. BA: international relations; minor: management, 2015

    2017-1