Marriott School Announces 2009 Hawes Scholars

Mar 04 2009

The Brigham Young University Marriott School of Management named eight MBA candidates as its 2009 Hawes Scholars. The honor, which carries a cash award of $10,000, is the highest distinction given to MBA students at the school.

The 2009 Marriott School Hawes Scholars are second-year MBA candidates: Christian Hsieh, from Taipei, Taiwan; Bryce LaPierre, from Woburn, Mass.; Bryson Lord, from Salt Lake City; Justin Maner, from Taylor, Ariz.; Sean Morrison, from Eugene, Ore.; Brandon Robinson, from Lakeland, Fla.; Catherine Sawaya, from Orem, Utah; and Mark Seely, from Brigham City, Utah.

"Almost two-thirds of the members of the second-year class were nominated," says Craig Merrill, MBA program director. "This is a wonderful reflection of the high quality of contributions made by the vast majority of our students. We enjoy a community of students who both aspire to high performance in their profession and are concerned about the success of their classmates."

Selection is based on academic performance, leadership maturity and a commitment to high ethical standards. Nominations for the Hawes Scholars are made by students and faculty and voted on by both groups. Final selections are made by the Hawes Scholar Committee.

Named for successful corporate executive Rodney A. Hawes Jr. and his wife, Beverly, the award was created in 1998 to recognize the accomplishments of graduating MBA students. The Hawes Scholar award is one of many initiatives made possible by the Hawes Endowment, a gift of more than $2 million used to facilitate the growth and enhancement of the Marriott School's nationally ranked MBA program. Mr. Hawes, a Baker Scholar from the Harvard Business School, and his wife wanted to create a tradition at the Marriott School that recognizes and rewards excellence among students entering the business world.

Mr. Hawes served as chairman and CEO of Life Re Corporation, a leading provider of life reinsurance in the United States. In addition to being widely recognized for his expertise in finance, Hawes has a reputation for integrity, hard work and community service.

2009 Hawes Scholar Bios

Christian Hsieh
, from Taipei, Taiwan, is a second-year MBA candidate with an emphasis in finance. He graduated summa cum laude from Brigham Young University–Hawaii with a degree in business management. Hsieh has made several contributions to the Marriott School including co-founding the Marriott School's Morning Market Call, a daily financial news Web cast, serving as vice president of the Graduate Finance Association and organizing the 2008 MBA Dubai trip. "In addition to getting a great education, the friendships I have developed with my fellow students have been the most valuable takeaway from the program," Hsieh says. "Working with men and women of extraordinary integrity and virtue has motivated me to become a better person and hopefully a better contributor to society."    


While earning undergraduate degrees in economics and government from Dartmouth College, Bryce LaPierre, from Woburn, Mass., help found an international service program. He continued his innovation and leadership when he came to BYU. LaPierre, a second-year MBA candidate with an emphasis in global supply chain management and strategy, is serving as co-president of Net Impact, a global service organization. "I have been able to participate in an academic setting that engages my whole mind by encouraging spiritual as well as theoretical discussion in the classroom," LaPierre says. "This unique enlightenment has been a great source of motivation throughout the program."


Bryson Lord
, from Salt Lake City, started making waves in the business industry as a top performing employee at Nextel, where he worked for three years before coming to BYU. A second-year MBA candidate with a finance emphasis, Lord earned an undergraduate degree in accountancy from BYU. After graduation, Lord will be taking a job with Banc of America Securities in New York City. He worked at the company during the summer of 2008 preparing pitch books and presentations for mergers and acquisitions transactions and debt-financing. "One of my goals has been to work with Wall Street professionals," Lord says. "If it weren't for the MBA experience, alumni, administration and support system in the Marriott School, that dream would still be just that — a dream."


Card and board game enthusiast Justin Maner, from Taylor, Ariz., is a second-year MBA candidate with a marketing emphasis. Maner earned an undergraduate degree in economics from BYU. Along with maintaining his position in the top 10 percent of his MBA class, Maner is the recipient of many honors, including the Stephen Mack Covey Scholarship, Driggs Brothers Scholarship and the 2004 Chairman's Award from Payless ShoeSource, Inc. "I love the Marriott School's atmosphere of collaboration — where students want to see each other succeed and will go out of their way to help," he says. "The education here is world class, and I have been prepared to go into the world and compete with students from other top programs."


After graduating magna cum laude from Oregon State University in political science, Sean Morrison, from Eugene, Ore. enrolled in BYU's MBA program. A second-year MBA candidate with an emphasis in OB/HR, Morrison is the vice president of career development for the Organizational Behavior Student Association. He has worked in human resources for Best Vinyl and Procter and Gamble. "I have been challenged, inspired and motivated to become the best me," Morrison says. "Doors of opportunity have been opened because of the dedication and commitment of supporters of this university as well as alumni who have preceded me."


Brandon Robinson
, from Lakeland, Fla., is a second-year MBA candidate with a finance emphasis. He has dedicated much of his time to service, leading an after-school program for elementary schools students, coaching sports for middle school students, and writing a column for the MBA newsletter.  He earned his undergraduate degree in political science from BYU. Robinson was the first BYU student to work as a finance management associate with Citigroup, with whom he will be working upon graduation. "I have the opportunity to work with some of the best and brightest students and faculty each day," Robinson says. "The faculty seem to genuinely care about my progress as a student, leader, family member, church member and businessman."


Catherine Sawaya
comes from a line of BYU graduates; all of Sawaya's immediate family either graduated from BYU or are currently working on degrees here. Sawaya, from Orem, Utah, earned an undergraduate degree in accountancy from BYU, and is a second-year MBA candidate with a finance emphasis. Sawaya worked for two years as a wealth management associate controller for Inlign Wealth Management and for two years as a corporate senior accountant for Core Molding Technologies. "I have been so blessed because of the relationships that I have with classmates, the administration and the faculty," she says. "Each time I interact with someone in the program I come away feeling empowered to be a little better."


Mark Seely
is a second-year MBA candidate with an emphasis in finance from Brigham City, Utah. He earned undergraduate degrees in information systems and economics from Utah State University. Seely co-founded Morning Market Call and created and moderated "Markets in Crisis," a faculty panel discussion. "I have been greatly pleased to find a wealth of diversity at the Marriott School that has challenged my thinking and perceptions and helped me to see the world and business issues through a broader lens," Seely says. "I have seen the best in students who collectively catch hold of a vision of what a program can become and work tirelessly to lay the foundation for those who will follow."

Contact Joseph Ogden (801) 422-8938
Writer: Sara E. Payne