BYU alum Ethan Gross exemplifies that hard work and making a plan can help you achieve your goals. His persistence and BYU education helped him land a dream position with Ford.
Gross, who graduated in 2015 with a degree in electrical engineering, currently works in the Global Product Planning and Strategy division of Ford as an analyst and software developer. Since starting this position, he has realized that he loves the flexibility his position offers him. Gross and his wife have two children, but working at Ford has allowed him to manage all work responsibilities while still having time to spend with his family.
"Ford is a family run business, and the employees here are family oriented," he said.
Gross has also found that his time at BYU has been beneficial to his career at Ford. He said that his education challenged him in engineering, and challenged him to be a well-rounded individual.
"So often I was pushed to my limits [at BYU] and it was for my own good," Gross said. "This has helped me to stand out as an employee when my employer looks at my work ethic and my resume and sees all of the service, leadership, and extracurricular experience. I am confident that the skills I learned at BYU will push my career to greater heights."
Gross has learned a lot from his first few years in the professional world. Even though he has a great position, Gross still has to set goals for himself. Gross made the goal to move from working with electric vehicles to autonomous ones. He achieved this goal and worked with autonomous vehicles for a year, which helped him better realize how he wanted to grow within the company. He emphasized the importance of setting these types of goals and doing all that you can to achieve them.
"I see others in the same situation I have found myself, who do nothing to change it," Gross said. "Sometimes we are handed opportunities, but usually, we need to find those opportunities and not be afraid to put forth the effort to take them. I determined early on what I wanted to be, where I wanted to go, and what I wanted to be doing in my professional life."
Gross gave some final advice to students who are worried about finding a job or feel that their GPA is not competitive enough. He emphasized to not focus too much on GPA. Focus more on strengths and how you can improve.
"Focus on the companies that you qualify for at this time and don't give up," Gross said. "I am confident that you will get to where you are wanting to go if you are willing to do all that you need to do to get there."