Taking on Leadership Roles
PROVO, Utah – Dec 07, 2020 – With her boss more than 5,000 miles away, Allison Harker took charge of projects to impact a Portuguese company from her apartment in Provo. As she remotely completed an internship, the human resource management (HRM) junior applied the skills she had learned at the BYU Marriott School of Business to make a difference across oceans.
Harker, a native of Rexburg, Idaho, completed an internship with Battaglia Capital, a venture capital firm headquartered in Lagos, Portugal. During her internship, she created an employee value proposition to help potential employees understand why Battaglia Capital is a great place to work. “I dove into the company culture and explored what they have to offer. I created an employee value proposition that the company could add to their career page to describe their company culture and values,” she says.
While Harker completed her internship in the summer of 2020, her desire to study business started long before that. “An interest in business runs in my family,” she says. “My father is a professor of business at BYU–Idaho, and many of my siblings have also studied business in college.” Even though Harker knew that she wanted to study at BYU Marriott when she arrived in Provo, attending club activities and a little sibling encouragement helped her decide to focus on human resources.
“My sister suggested that I look into HRM, so I researched the program and started going to the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) meetings,” she says. “SHRM helped me understand what HR entails and showed me what my responsibilities would be as a human resource professional.”
Harker’s experience in clubs such as SHRM has played a major role in her overall BYU Marriott experience. “I also went to the marketing association meetings quite a bit because my sister was a director,” she says. “Those meetings were my first experiences of networking with companies and seeing how companies were interested in me as a student. I feel like BYU Marriott clubs connect us students to the real business world.”
Through these clubs, Harker better understands how she can make an impact in the business world. “I learned that HR is an opportunity to make a difference while also enjoying myself and feeling like everything I do has a purpose,” she says. “Human resources is a tool to help people by improving their lives at work.”
Harker has already started making an impact as a student through her leadership roles within SHRM. “I had only been in SHRM for a couple of months when the leadership team invited me to apply to be a director,” she says. “I felt like I didn’t know anything, but I accepted the challenge of that leadership opportunity.” Harker is now the vice president of recruiting for SHRM, a role that allows her to invite students to events and helps others to discover the field of human resources.
These experiences in SHRM leadership have helped Harker see that she has the power to make a difference for other BYU Marriott students. “My experiences at BYU Marriott have taught me to have confidence in myself,” she says. “This newfound confidence has allowed me to take on leadership roles and to know that I can help make things happen.”
As Harker continues in her junior year at BYU Marriott, she wants to enable others to make an impact in their own spheres of influence. “I enjoy helping other people through my leadership responsibilities,” she says. “I’ve learned that I have something to offer those around me, and I can help guide others because of what I’ve learned.”
Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Kenna Pierce