Heart of Service

PROVO, Utah – Jan 22, 2020 – Sam Aden attended a private Christian school for his primary and secondary education and never even heard the name Brigham Young University until he was sixteen years old. Once he discovered BYU Marriott’s finance program, however, Aden knew BYU was the right fit for him. Now as a senior, Aden embodies the “heart of service” he has seen at BYU Marriott.

Growing up in a Methodist home in Roswell, Georgia, Aden had limited exposure to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. During his junior year of high school, Aden began researching universities to attend. One of Aden’s classmates recommended looking into BYU after learning that Aden liked to mountain bike and ski, two hobbies Utah could provide.

“I did a five-minute Google search of BYU after talking with my friend, and the first thing I noticed was the tuition price,” says Aden. He was blown away by the low cost of tuition and the highly ranked business school and decided to visit the campus.

“As I started to do more research on BYU, I learned about the BYU Marriott School of Business and its finance program,” says Aden. “I felt like BYU could open doors for me after I graduated. I knew I wanted to go to a school that had a global name and an alumni network.”

Upon visiting BYU campus and learning it was a Church-sponsored university, Aden’s parents expressed hesitation about him applying to the school. Regardless, Aden wanted the finance education BYU Marriott could provide. He applied to BYU and eventually received a congratulatory admissions letter. “Once I found out I got into BYU, I immediately accepted,” says Aden.

Aden began his studies at BYU in Fall 2016, but after taking an introductory class about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, his parents were worried he would join the Church and informed him he would be transferring back home to Georgia State University that winter. Aden was disappointed to leave BYU but followed his parents’ wishes.

After attending Georgia State for one semester, Aden knew he needed to return to Provo. “I decided no matter what, with or without my parents’ support, I’d go back to BYU,” says Aden. He missed the rigorous academic environment and wanted the education BYU Marriott could offer him. After speaking to his parents and telling them his educational goals, Aden’s parents supported him in his decision to return to BYU.

Back at BYU, Aden was determined to get accepted into the finance program at BYU Marriott. He kept his eye on the prize as he completed his prerequisites for the program. After working hard in his classes and networking within the student-led Finance Society group and with finance professors, Aden was accepted into the program.

Now a senior, Aden hopes to take the lessons he has learned from BYU Marriott to help others. “The most valuable thing BYU Marriott has to offer is its heart of service,” he says.

Aden tries to live his life with the same heart of service. As a finance teaching assistant, Aden is constantly helping his students and making sure they know they can always come to him for help. “I want to be a good resource,” says Aden. “I email students back at 2:00 a.m. who say their computer isn’t working. We have all been that student trying to get an assignment done before it’s due, and I want to help students in that moment.”

Aden recently accepted a position at the investment banking firm Greenhill & Co., in the Dallas, Texas, office. He is excited to continue to serve others in his new job and hopes to help future BYU Marriott students. “I want to be somebody who a student can call and ask questions that you don’t always ask in recruiting,” he says. “The more transparent I can be, the better it is for the student. Sharing my advice and giving back is rewarding.”

Sam Aden
BYU Marriott finance student Sam Aden. Photo courtesy of Sam Aden.
Sam Aden
Sam Aden with fellow finance students. Photo courtesy of Sam Aden.

Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Nikaela Smith