Alumni Profile - Hanna

1 - How has your degree from BYU-Idaho affected/influenced you in your career? Additionally, how has your degree influenced your life in general?

  When my husband graduated from the business department, he knew exactly where he was going. When I graduated, I didn't have a clue. While this was scary, and honestly a bit frustrating, I had to take a step back and realize that I had skills that were applicable to ANYTHING I wanted to do. I chose to take a job at a tech company. Every day I am confronted with things I don't know how to do, but instead of saying I can't do the things asked of me, I say, "I don't know how to do this now, but I am willing to learn." With this confidence in my abilities to learn, I have been able to make a positive and strong impression in my company.    In my life in general, I have a greater optimism for my future that I never had before. Being a humanities major is a source of great pride for me, and with this pride, I have the confidence to tackle whatever the future brings. This helps fight off the feelings of stagnancy or inadequacy that often come after college graduation.   

2 - Why did you decide to major in Humanities?  

During my time at BYU-Idaho, I had three majors: history education, art history, and finally humanities. The first simply wasn't a good fit for my interests. The second was a perfect fit, but I wasn't being challenged. As long as I could regurgitate a date and an artist's name, I got an 'A'. And so, I found humanities! I loved that art history was used as a vehicle to learn about critical thinking, reading, writing, and speaking skills. I could study what I loved while acquiring priceless skills.   

3 - Of what value is your Humanities degree to you?  

My humanities degree is PRICELESS. I am working at a job that I love that has brought great monetary value, but this isn't why I loved my time as a humanities major. I loved my time as a humanities major because of the impact I have on the world. This feeling of worth and confidence is what is priceless. (You only gain this worth and confidence if you listen to the advice in the next answer :))   

4 - What advice would you give to upcoming Humanities majors?  

You have to want it. You have to go above and beyond. You can't just do the reading and show up to class expecting an 'A'. There aren't answers you're looking for in your reading assignments. Your assignments just serve as a starting point to greater analysis and thought in your personal study and deeper conversations and learning with your peers. In some classes you can just quote your favorite line out of the text and look smart--in humanities classes, you can't. You MUST develop your own ideas.