Alisa Cloward, University of Utah

Alisa Cloward is a first-generation college graduate who worked at Education at Work on behalf of a global technology company for more than a year and was accepted into a prestigious program with the same global technology company. She earned her Bachelors of Business Administration from the University of Utah this May along with a total of $7,875 in tuition assistance from Education at Work.

Alisa grew up in Okawa, Japan in a twelve sibling household. Out her all her siblings she was the first to graduate with a degree. Since Alisa was young, she always had a drive to succeed. At nine years old she started learning the guitar because she was captivated by watching her mom play. Alisa says that at nine years old the guitar was way too big for her but her mother showed her how to play a few cords and after that, she says, she took off on her own. Coming from a large family Alisa says music and a love of basketball bonded them. She describes growing up with eight brothers – all with boundless energy – going to the park every day to play basketball. She’d play even though she was smaller than her brothers because she could shoot “a mean three-pointer.”

Alisa first became aware of Education at Work when she stepped into her career counselor’s office on the hunt for a job that would work around her packed and hectic schedule. When she learned about the opportunity at EAW, and because she needed the money, she applied. She says that without Education at Work she wouldn’t have gotten as close to her goals so quickly; she says making connections, interacting with clients and higher-ups gave her opportunities to advance.

Speaking of Education at Work she says, “There are people here who foster your success and want to see you succeed.” She refers to clients and EAW employees alike who offered her feedback and guidance when it came to writing her resume and improving her interview skills.

“I've gained crucial technological skills like troubleshooting computers and using Office, while being allowed to pursue my passions in data analysis projects for our clients,” says Alisa.

Through Education at Work, Alisa learned that fun and work are not mutually exclusive. She says she’d have fun at other jobs because of coworkers but not because of the actual job itself. “At EAW, though, I've constantly seen management strive to create a positive, engaging environment for all their employees, and it's worked,” says Alisa.

We wish Alisa the best of luck and a very bright future! Congratulations on all you’ve achieved.

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