A Guide on the Path to Success
PROVO, Utah – Dec 03, 2020 – Case competitions test students’ business skills, work ethic, and stamina, but few people find that case competitions bring out their emotional side. However, Liz Dixon often sheds joyful tears as she watches her students present their solutions and find success at international case competitions. Through her work as an adjunct professor of management communications at the BYU Marriott School of Business, Dixon empowers students to excel in many different areas, and she loves seeing them succeed.
Every semester, Dixon spends much of her time coaching four students for the NU-CUIBE international case competition at Northeastern University. During this coaching process, Dixon requires students to work through practice challenges, learn strategies that showcase their results, and practice presenting in front of other BYU Marriott faculty members. “I take these students to the competition, and they often do an amazing job of presenting. When those students get up on stage, they help make all of the students at BYU Marriott look like world champions,” she says. “Watching them succeed brings a feeling that no amount of money can buy. “
In addition to helping her students win case competitions, Dixon also encourages them in her management communication courses and strives to give her students constructive criticism. “The first thing that I want my students to know is that we’re friends. I also want them to know that, because we're friends, I will give them unfiltered feedback,” she says. “My students understand that the feedback I give them comes from a place of love. I want them to improve and learn from their mistakes. I often say that my class might be the most comfortable uncomfortable classroom experience they have.”
Dixon finds joy in helping her students, but she didn’t always envision herself as a professor. In fact, she originally graduated from BYU Marriott with the intent to work as a healthcare analyst. After earning her undergraduate in philosophy from BYU in 1991, she worked as a technical writer at a third-party healthcare administrator before returning to BYU Marriott to earn her Master of Public Administration (MPA) in 1996. After graduating with her MPA, she held analyst and consultant positions at multiple healthcare administrators.
However, as Dixon raised her three children and worked full-time, she wanted to continue making an impact in her career while also remaining present in her children’s lives. “I got a call from BYU Marriott back in 2000, and the management communications department asked if I would be interested in coming to teach,” she says. “I was intrigued because I took a management communications course during my master's program, and I liked the idea of teaching that course to students. Taking the job turned out to be a complete change of direction in my life.”
This new opportunity to teach enabled Dixon to influence many students’ futures while also spending quality time with her family. Now that her children are older, she looks back with immense gratitude on the years she spent teaching and raising young children.
“While teaching and working part-time at BYU, I helped out in my kids’ classrooms, and I attended field trips with my kids. I’ve spent many precious moments with my family,” she says. “The administration at BYU Marriott accommodated my schedule, and the leaders at BYU Marriott are the reason I’ve been able to build a fulfilling career while also spending that time with my family.”
Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Kenna Pierce