Shifting Gears: Engineering to Human Resources

PROVO, Utah – Nov 23, 2022 – Empowered by the BYU Marriott School of Business, MBA graduate Betsy Rose always strives for positive impact. In every capacity—whether she is working on human resources (HR) projects from a New York City office or cheering up the elderly by volunteering with her therapy dog—Rose is all about making a difference.

However, Rose, who worked at NYC-based financial institution Citigroup for more than a decade as a human resources leader, was not always in Manhattan high-rises. After completing her bachelor’s degree from Utah State University in engineering in 1999, she worked for the United States Bureau of Reclamation. After four years, Rose decided to make a career switch to human resources, earning her MBA from BYU Marriott in 2005.

Rose’s coworkers played a key role in influencing this decision. Many of them were nearing retirement, and their foresight—considering and preparing for the future in a way young professionals might not—rubbed off on Rose. She was also influenced by the government’s method of operation. “The government had HR,” she says, “but its approach was more administrative.” Intrigued by the impact an organization with a strategic approach could have on its employees, Rose dove into the world of human resources.

Her time at BYU Marriott prepared Rose for a legacy of impact, giving her both excellent skills and the confidence to apply those skills by serving as a leader. Upon receiving her MBA, Rose began working for Citigroup. She quickly climbed the ranks and stayed with the company for nearly 15 years, mostly working in various vice president capacities. Rose’s time at the company was full of highlights, including meeting her husband and working in Hong Kong for six months. She credits her successful career at Citigroup to the abilities and confidence she gained from BYU Marriott.  

“My time at BYU helped me understand who I am and what I can do,” Rose says. “The network I gained at BYU Marriott—my BYU family—will always help me feel that I can make a difference in whatever I’m doing,” says Rose. 

Her proudest career accomplishment was a massive project that she calls a “game changer.” She explains that the task, a multiyear endeavor, revolutionized the way Citigroup managers access and report on employee records. Previously, most managers at the company kept employee data on individual spreadsheets. Rose’s team worked with managers to access and report that information from a centralized system. Unsurprisingly, this project was her favorite because of the positive impact she saw her work have on the organization, including increased transparency, accessibility, and reduced report reconciliations.

Rose’s impact is not limited to the workplace. No longer at Citigroup, she and her family now reside in Knoxville, Tennessee, where Rose volunteers in her community. One of her favorite ways to serve is visiting an assisted living facility with her dog, Rufus. A therapy dog, Rufus brings smiles and energy to residents in need.  

“These individuals are barely mobile, but they make an effort to pet my puppy,” Rose says. “Seeing the difference Rufus makes in their lives is amazing.”

An engineer, HR leader, and eager community volunteer, Rose is far from being done with her career. She confidently anticipates the future. “I know my connections and experience—especially from BYU Marriott—will help me prepare for whatever comes next,” says Rose. “I’m not sure what that is, but I do know that I have a foundation I can rely on.” 

Betsy Rose, BYU Marriott MBA alumna, with her family. Photo courtesy of Betsy Rose.

Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Jaden McQuivey