Izolde “Zoe” Rhodes

Major/Minor(s): English, Business Management minor

Estimated graduation date: April 2019

Hometown: Salt Lake City, Utah

Favorite book: it’s like picking a favorite child (I assume, as I don’t have any children), but some of them are The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, The Princess Bride by William Goldman, and The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd.

Favorite author: Probably J.K. Rowling because Harry Potter was such a huge influence on my childhood.

Favorite genre/subject matter: don’t want to answer this question because I don’t have an answer for this question. Actually, lies, I really like historical fiction (or even non-fiction) about WWII.

Favorite classes:  I’ve had a few favorites. Transatlantic Lit was awesome, but YA Lit with Chris Crowe probably takes the cake as the most interesting and engaging. I also really enjoyed Martial Arts, but that was for non-academic reasons.

Tell us more about your experience using your Business minor in conjunction with your English major?  What do you like, dislike, etc?

I’m still just getting started in my business, but I’ve already noticed how helpful it is to be able to communicate effectively and eloquently through writing. I’ve spent a lot of time proofreading group projects and the difference between English majors and non-English majors is readily apparent. The critical thinking skills I’ve developed through upper level English classes have also been extremely helpful in understanding concepts and asking good questions.

What are your future plans/professional aspirations? 

The dream as of now is to use my minor and work experience to move into management and perhaps eventually take over the family business (an environmental laboratory in South Salt Lake) and do some writing and/or editing/proofreading on the side. 

What has been your experience balancing your extracurriculars with your coursework?  What have been your roles on the BYU Ultimate Frisbee team?

I’ve only been really involved in one extracurricular during my time here at BYU, but that is because the one I’ve chosen has required a huge time commitment. I joined the BYU CHI ultimate frisbee team as a freshman and have been involved in the leadership of that team for the past 5 years. The ultimate frisbee community is really incredible and has become such a great support system for me while also providing a great outlet for stress and helping keep me in shape! Our program name, CHI, carries a few meanings. It is the Greek letter that symbolizes Christ and also serves as an acronym for Competition, Humility, and Integrity, which are the core values that we work to exemplify as we play. Over the past 5 years, I’ve watched the team grow into a nationally ranked Top 25 team.

What have you learned from your major?

Critical thinking, effective research, and articulate communication are invaluable skills I’ve learned and improved through my major that are widely applicable and will serve me well regardless of which career path I end up taking. 

Have you had any cool travel experiences? What language did you use to fulfill your language requirement?

I chose to learn German for my language requirement and went on a study abroad to Vienna, Austria for the Fall semester of 2016 to improve my German and get out of my comfort zone. While in Vienna, we took classes through BYU, but also worked in part-time internships. I worked as a “language assistant” in a secondary school (the Austrian equivalent of grades 8-12) and loved every minute of it.

What was your experience in Vienna like?

Vienna was such an incredible experience! It forced me out of my comfort zone and taught me that I was capable of a lot more than I thought. I successfully lived and worked in a new city and became passingly fluent in a second language. I traveled independently and extensively and loved every minute!  I actually got to live with an 82-year-old Hungarian that married Austrian royalty and became a princess. (Side note: We lived on the street that Hitler rode into Vienna on.)