A Self-Starter and Group Contributor
PROVO, Utah – Apr 07, 2021 – The first time Graham Carman applied to the information systems (IS) program at the BYU Marriott School of Business, he didn’t get in. However, that initial rejection didn’t deter Carman from trying again, and the second time he applied, he was accepted. Now a senior, Carman is well acquainted with the value of persistence.
When Carman first started his studies at BYU, he wasn’t planning on majoring in information systems—in fact, he planned to study either English or philosophy. However, after exploring a variety of subjects, he finally landed on information systems. “I found learning about business and technical skills to be interesting, and I enjoyed working on the projects in my introductory IS classes,” says Carman, who hails from Highland, Utah. “Although I was rejected the first time I applied, I kept working hard and eventually got accepted into the program. Persistence is the key to success.”
Hard work and persistence are values that motivate Carman to excel in his classes. One of his proudest accomplishments at BYU is getting an A grade in one of the more difficult classes he’s taken so far: the FIN 201 course. He also thrives in his IS classes by cultivating and refining skills that come in handy both inside and outside the classroom.
Carman applies the skills he learns in the classroom in his internship as a data analyst at Eide Bailly Technology, where his position encourages him to be self-motivated and contribute to a larger cause. Carman’s responsibilities include organizing all of his clients’ data into one resource, which simplifies the process of building reports off of the data.
The nature of Carman’s position teaches him how to be a self-starter. “My manager doesn’t give me specific instructions and then try to micromanage everything I do,” Carman explains. “Instead, my supervisors encourage me to take initiative, interface with the client, figure out what the client wants, design a solution for them, and build a good relationship. Having that self-motivation allows me to grow personally while also recognizing that I’m a part of something bigger.”
Outside of his internship, Carman also works to develop his leadership abilities in his role as president of the Tocqueville Society at BYU. Carman explains that the Tocqueville Society is a political philosophy discussion group and part of a larger organization called the Intercollegiate Studies Institute. “The society differs from what most people think of when they hear the words ‘political philosophy,’” he says. “We aren’t a partisan club; we study theories of people such as Hobbes and Locke or contemporary philosophers.”
Carman enjoys the discussions that take place among members of the Tocqueville Society. “We pick what we believe to be the best ideas from each philosopher and discuss them,” he says. “Our discussions are thoughtful, nuanced, refreshing, and unifying. Group members aren’t trying to argue with one another; we just want to meet together, look for goodness, and find common ground.”
The Tocqueville Society isn’t the only place that teaches Carman about the value of discussion; in fact, one of his favorite aspects of being a student at BYU Marriott is the school’s emphasis on working in groups. “When you're in the junior core of the IS program, you are placed into a group, and you stay with the same people throughout the whole semester,” he says. “The groups that I’ve been a part of are fantastic. I’m surrounded by incredible people, and even after we complete our projects, we remain friends. The IS program does a spectacular job of bringing students together and teaching us to work in a group environment.”
As he prepares to graduate, Carman looks forward to applying his group work skills in the workplace. “BYU Marriott culture centers around helping other people, encouraging me to be a person who works well with others and takes initiative,” he says. “The combination of my group work experience from my IS classes and my ability to listen and seek common ground, thanks to my time spent with the Tocqueville Society, will truly allow me to become a force for good in my future groups, teams, and communities.”
Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Sarah Calvert