Writing Her Own Future
PROVO, Utah – Jun 10, 2020 – While many college students spend summers between semesters developing their talents or learning new skills during internships, few can say they spent their summer producing an original musical. BYU Marriott global supply chain management (GSCM) senior Sarah Stoddard spent the summer after her sophomore year in 2018 producing her own musical, Spellbound—and that’s only the beginning of an impressive list of achievements she’s reached throughout her life.
Stoddard produced her original musical near her hometown in Bonsall, California, in the San Diego area. In addition to writing the script and composing the music, she recruited additional directors and thirty-six cast members and worked with them to book a venue, design costumes, create marketing materials, and sell concessions.
“We rehearsed for the bulk of the summer and then performed in August,” Stoddard says. “My actors ranged in age from five to eighteen years old, and I enjoyed recording and teaching the music that I’d written with them. We ultimately broke even and eventually made a little profit. The entire process of bringing the musical to life was a lot of fun.”
The accomplishment of producing a musical is certainly impressive, but anyone who knows Stoddard isn’t surprised that she is capable of such a feat. Stoddard has been pursuing her dreams and reaching lofty goals throughout her life.
Among other accomplishments, Stoddard has earned her emergency medical technician (EMT) certification, and she hopes to complete her paramedic and fire license training after graduating from BYU Marriott. She also plays the piano, violin, and organ; she even ran her own piano studio for four years. She started studying at BYU at seventeen years old, and she hopes to attend law school to pursue a career in litigation after graduating from BYU Marriott in 2021.
As Stoddard was deciding which college to attend, she knew that she wanted to eventually attend law school, but she also wanted to earn an undergraduate degree in a field that would provide a good back-up plan in case law school didn’t work out. “I knew that business would be a practical choice, and I wanted to study at BYU because I knew that I could find well-ranked business programs at BYU Marriott,” she says. While examining the different majors offered by the school, Stoddard talked to Scott Webb, an associate teaching professor of global supply chain, who mentioned that the GSCM program felt like a family where all the students supported each other.
Stoddard liked the idea of being part of this family environment that Webb had mentioned, and she has experienced the unity of this GSCM family throughout her time in the program. “We’re always talking about our goals and actively helping each other,” says Stoddard. “Even when we’re interviewing with the same companies, we make a conscious effort to support one another. The faculty in the supply chain program encourage the students to celebrate others’ successes.”
Stoddard is also grateful for the support of the faculty and staff of BYU Marriott. Utilizing some of the available resources provided by BYU Marriott, Stoddard completed two internships in the healthcare industry in 2019. “The hoops I had to jump through in order to get those internships were unreal because the healthcare industry is different than a lot of other industries that employ supply chain students,” says Stoddard. “But the people at BYU Marriott who helped me find those internships supported me through the entire process.” Stoddard interned with TractManager Inc., a company that provides technology to run healthcare organizations, and Masimo, a company that produces patient-monitoring technologies.
With help from BYU Marriott and through her own hard work, Stoddard has reached many goals that she has set for herself. However, she doesn’t consider her proudest accomplishment to be producing a musical, being accepted to the GSCM program, or studying at BYU at age seventeen. Instead, she’s most pleased that she works to continually improve herself each day and help other people through her efforts. “I honestly feel like my biggest accomplishment is staying motivated and trying to be inspired every day,” she says. “I’ve been able to reach what I’ve achieved by constantly reminding myself of the impact that I want to make in the world and the people that I want to help through my efforts.”
When Stoddard thinks about the future, central to her plan is to never stop learning, and always keep improving and striving to reach her goals. “I want to keep progressing for the rest of my life,” she says. “Sometimes it’s easy for people to identify one milestone where they’ll feel like they’ve ‘made it’ in life and don’t need to keep growing or learning. But I believe that life is about continuing to learn, continuing to progress, and continuing to help others on their paths.”
Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Kenna Pierce