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Most of us attend college with a dream job in mind! We study hard and invest lots of time and money into helping us earn that degree that will open the door to our future careers. While we prepare to take that next step, we frequently get the million-dollar question..."So what are you going to do when you graduate?" As students, everyone wants to know what we are studying and what we will do with that degree. The question does not go away. Even as professionals, everyone just wants to know what we do. While "hey, what is that you do?" is a great way to break the ice. I have come to learn that we are asking the wrong question! Even more so, we are focusing on all the wrong things!

Early in my career, I heard this quote from Andy Stanley, "It's always a mistake to decide what you want to do before you decide who you want to be." This was transformational for me as I had just decided to change careers. I spent my whole life on a path to become a Police Officer. An officer is not only what I did, but it was who I was. As a young wife with a baby on the way, I knew my priorities had to change, and being on patrol was no longer suitable for me or my growing family, so I changed jobs. Changing careers was scary and hard. I was struggling with my identity and finding a path to a new career. Since I’ve always been goal-driven, now was the time to get back to the basics and make some new goals.

Hearing those words and taking them to heart, I had a new sense of purpose, thinking more about who I was going to be and focusing less on what I was going to do. I made a decision that day to write out my "Be Goals"

  • I wanted to be a loving mother!
  • I wanted to be someone other people could count on!
  • I wanted to be trustworthy!
  • I wanted to be someone that gives her best!

I ask you, what is it that you desire to "be" known for? These new goals led me to a new career in Human Resources, which brought me back to where I started my career, UTPB. We never know where life will take us, but we can all intentionally pursue becoming the best versions of ourselves.

Megan Baeza

Texas PB '09

Megan Baeza currently serves as the Director of Internships and Employer Relations at UT Permian Basin. UTPB has a special place in her heart as that is where she graduated with a Bachelors's in Criminology and started her law enforcement career before transitioning into HR. Megan most recently served as the Director of Human Resources for Lone Star Instrumentation and Electric Companies. Prior to that, she served in Human Resources at The Sewell Family of Companies. Megan has her SCP from the Society of Human Resource Management. She is a board member of Permian Basin SHRM, a member of the Junior League of Odessa, a past member of YPO, and board member for Centers for Children and Families. As a Permian Basin native, Megan and her husband, Abraham, have two daughters, Ava (7) and Olivia (1), and reside in Odessa.
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