The Fruit of Her Labors
PROVO, Utah – Nov 22, 2021 – When Patricia Wilson thinks about her hometown in Cali, Colombia, she remembers the fruit: fresh mangoes, ripe bananas pulled directly off the trees, and her favorite—maracujá—also known as passion fruit. While Wilson loved many aspects of Cali, she left in 1993 and moved to Provo to pursue her college education. Two decades later, she returned to BYU as an employee, where she now works as the business manager for the School of Accountancy (SOA) at the BYU Marriott School of Business.
After graduating high school, Wilson wanted to pursue her lifelong dream of attending college. She worked, saved her money, and came to the United States at the age of 22. She registered for an intensive English course to help her learn the language better and then applied to BYU.
Wilson graduated from BYU with a degree in Spanish translation in 1998. One memorable aspect of her BYU education was the kind and unwavering support of her professors. “When I started at BYU, I had just learned English,” she explains. “Sometimes communicating was difficult and required patience. My success in college was significantly influenced by the encouragement and support of my professors.”
After graduating from BYU, Wilson took a break to raise her five children, which she considers to be her proudest accomplishment. She focused on teaching her children the value of showing respect for others. “I wanted teachers to be proud of my kids, not because of their grades but because of the way my kids treated their classmates,” she says. Now that her children are grown, Wilson recognizes the fruit of her labors as a mother. “My kids are respectful, compassionate members of society,” she adds.
As her children grew older, Wilson decided to dive into a career. Her husband, Daniel, served in the United States Army as a chaplain for 26 years. During her husband’s time in the military, Wilson and her family were stationed in San Antonio. While living there, Wilson worked at the University of Texas at San Antonio as a supplemental instructor, which gave her a glimpse of working in a university setting. She loved that job and wanted to work in a similar environment when her family permanently relocated to Provo after military retirement.
Shortly after moving to Utah County, Wilson decided working for BYU would be an exciting opportunity. She found an open position in the university’s Department of Spanish and Portuguese as the graduate program coordinator. Although she enjoyed her time in that department, she jumped at the chance to work for the School of Accountancy.
“I wanted a new position that could challenge me,” she says. “I felt like I’d ‘graduated’ from the Spanish and Portuguese department and needed a change of scenery.” When Wilson saw the business manager opening at the SOA, she decided to apply.
As the business manager for the SOA, Wilson deals with several responsibilities related to human resources. She works with contracts, ensures that newly hired faculty and staff have the necessary documentation in place, and manages the department’s finance and budgeting. Her different responsibilities provide a welcome variety to her work routine.
Although Wilson is fairly new to the SOA department, she loves her coworkers and looks forward to continuing to work with them. “I haven’t met every person yet, but the people I have met are incredibly kind and welcoming,” she says. “I feel wanted in the SOA and I’m happy to be here.”
Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Sarah Calvert