Student Profiles


Ryan Cope, Marketing Graduate, 2013

ryan cope

There’s an unofficial course offering at Woodbury School of Business called “Ryan Cope 101.” It should be required learning for every student. The 1 year accelerated plan is hardly textbook and includes international travel, real-world internships at companies like Blender Bottle and Leadgenix (followed by job offers), and a social life to die for. There are no pre-requisites except an open heart and mind. Oh, and an unyielding passion to get involved and do something remarkable with your business school education. All of that will garner you an “A” for awesome, and memories for a lifetime.

Cope did a lot of personal research to arrive at this final “course correction” that was launched last Spring. Uncertain of his initial major, jumping from pre-med to geology to finance and finally landing in marketing, Cope knew he needed a change. Urged by Paige Gardner, Marketing Advisor, he joined UVU’s American Marketing Association (AMA) chapter and the rest is history. “I made the decision to jump in and that changed everything,” said Cope. “There are so many resources and experiences available at UVU and it is never too late to get started.” With one month left until graduation, he isn’t slowing down anytime soon. “It’s been an incredible journey,” said Cope who also happens to be married with an infant who he recently toted around on a 10-mile+ hike.

European graduate school is in the wings, and make no mistake about it, the world is definitely Ryan Cope’s oyster.


Clark Harris, Personal Financial Planning Graduate, 2012

clark harris

When I started school at UVU I wanted to earn more than a degree, I wanted more than just a piece of paper. After dabbling in the insurance industry and changing my major a couple of times I realized that I needed set myself apart in a crowded job market.
I remember I was invited to a meeting sponsored by the investment club at UVU where I met Jacob Sybrowsky, a professor in the personal financial planning department. His presentation on the growing demand for PFP professionals struck a chord with me. The program has a 100 percent job placement record and even entry-level PFP professionals make a really good salary. The PFP program at UVU was named one of the top 10 programs in the nation by Financial Planning magazine and the curriculum is registered through the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc., so you graduate completely prepared to pass the CFP exam.

In school I was the only student member of the national New Professional Advisory Council, the student liaison for the Financial Planners Association of Utah and president of the Investment Club on campus.

In December 2012 I was one of the first graduates from UVU's personal financial planning major. I got a great job offer right out of school and now work with a top company that I've been admiring for years.


Erin Thompson, accounting major

erin thompson

When I came to UVU from Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, I wanted to find myself in a program where I would not only be successful, but one that would lead me to great job opportunities. The accounting program at the Wo

Woodbury School of Business has provided me with these opportunities. Great faculty such as Sheldon Smith and Joshua Cieslewicz are committed to UVU and the success of their students. As Beta Alpha Psi President and UACPA Campus Ambassador I planned a mini-conference for accounting students in December and all of my professors were very supportive.

I have been able to work with top students and professors. It's been an intense learning experience and great for my resume. Joel Helquist, the faculty advisor for BAP and Stan Jenne, the faculty advisor for the UACPA campus ambassador program have both been very supportive while I've served in these roles.

The Woodbury School of Business provides so many opportunities for students to get to know business and accounting professionals in the community and sets up students for success when we apply for internships and jobs. Very recently I accepted a position with PEG Development in Provo, as their assistant controller and I love the job. Over the next couple years, I also plan on working towards CPA licensure. My dream job is to be the controller of a company. I love the variety of doing several accounting functions for one company.


LaRae Bellows, human resources major


My name is LaRae Bellows and I am a student at the Woodbury School of Business emphasizing in human resources. I have enjoyed the enthusiasm of the students and professors here as I have worked with them on projects within the community. This has increased my learning as I gain the benefit of others' experiences.

The service learning projects have been my favorite part about being in the WSB. They have given me the opportunity to put what I have learned to the test in the real world. I have also had great advisors along the way. Specifically, I have enjoyed being in classes with Bernd Kupka, Johnathan Westover, and Tammy Huffman. Each of these professors has an engaging teaching style that instills excitement about learning and a desire to apply yourself to the best of your ability. These advisers are knowledgeable about the subjects they teach and even more important they know how to coach us through an excellent project.

I intend to use my Human Resource emphasis to begin a career with a company that will benefit from my knowledge, skills, and abilities. My previous experience has been enhanced through the UVU Business programs and I am looking forward to getting back into the working world. I will graduate at the end of this summer; however, I have been granted an exemption to walk with the graduates this spring. I'm excited to be able to participate, even if I do get to return for one more semester.