James Hall named 2024 BYU Student Employee of the Year

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A BYU Student Employee of the Year is chosen every year by the University. It serves as a way to recognize some of BYU’s talented and dedicated workers. (Courtesy of Ko’olina Pahulu)

The 2024 BYU Student Employee of the Year has been chosen. James Hall was named the Student Employee of the Year. Jacob Memmott was awarded second place and Adri Barton took third place.

With thousands of student employees, BYU has plenty of dedicated workers. This award was created to attempt to recognize those who go above and beyond. Nominees for the Student Employee of the Year award were nominated by their supervisors to be considered for the award.

Hall has worked as an advertising assistant for the BYU grounds crew for almost a year. His main task, he said, is recruiting new employees to tend to the 740 acres under BYU grounds’ jurisdiction. Since he started working last May, the department’s labor force has doubled.

“I don’t take full credit for this, I’ve obviously been doing advertising methods, but it’s kind of shocking how much we’ve grown,” Hall said.

He said if he were to win, he would be shocked. He joked it would shock his friends and family, too.

James Hall was named the 2024 Student Employee of the Year. As a recruiter for BYU grounds, his work has led to a doubling of the BYU grounds labor force. (Andrew Osborn)

“It’s such a big group of, like, the most elite, talented, amazing people,” Hall said, “It’s hard to imagine that I would be at the top.”

In the nomination letter submitted by Hall’s supervisor, Michelle Gioglio, she listed his ability to communicate with students and faculty as a quality worthy of recognition.

“James has the type of personality which is friendly to all, no matter who they are or their background,” she wrote. “His calm demeanor is welcoming to everyone he contacts.”

Prior to coming to BYU, Hall spent two years at the University of Kentucky studying marketing. After being rejected from BYU four times, Hall was finally accepted.

“I decided to go and regretted it for almost a year,” Hall admitted. “It felt like I didn’t fit in, in terms of the culture and just how intense the education system was.”

After getting involved in the advertising program and BYUSA, he said he found himself “accepting BYU more and more each day.”

When he started as a recruiter for BYU grounds last year, he realized that it would be more than just a summer job.

“It’s not … just a way of making money. This is actually like the start of my career,” Hall said.

Memmott, the second-place finalist, has worked as an early morning custodian at the Clyde Building for more than a year.

Jacob Memmott was the second-place finalist for the Student Employee of the Year award. He works as an early morning custodian at the Clyde Building and shows up for work at 5 a.m. every morning. (Andrew Osborn)

A self-proclaimed “wildcard,” Memmott shows up at 5 a.m. every morning and works on whatever is necessary for that day. He likes the variey of tasks the job comes with.

“When I started I was working on the floors, which was fun. You get to drive the machine around and stuff,” he said. “That was fun for a while but it gets old doing the same thing over and over.”

While he said he was grateful to be nominated, Memmott said there are plenty of other people who deserve to be recognized.

“Making sure you show up on time, working hard throughout your shift, showing up consistently … that’s what I’ve done for the past year and a half, and I think that’s what’s gonna work for anyone,” he said.

Barton works as a law clerk in the Abraham O. Smoot Administration Building and was the third-place finalist. She received her undergraduate in English Education from BYU-I and is currently enrolled in school at BYU.

She said she has gained friendships and great role models in her two years in her current position.

Adri Barton was the third-place finalist for this year’s award. As a student in BYU’s law school, she works at the Abraham O. Smoot Administration Building and focuses on compliance law. (Andrew Osborn)

“I feel very touched and grateful and honored,” Barton said, “I just, I really appreciate it. I really liked the people that I work with and it makes me happy that they also think I do good work. I feel a lot of love in my heart.”

As a law clerk, Barton works with compliance law. She said they collaborate with other offices throughout campus to ensure organizations are following the laws and regulations that apply to them.

“I really like compliance because of how collaborative it is,” she said. “It’s not just lawyers against lawyers and more lawyers. It’s the law practically applied to real people doing real things with real outcomes.”

The finalists will be recognized throughout BYU’s Student Employee Appreciation Week which takes place March 11-15. Hall, the first place winner, will be nominated for the National Student Employment Association’s nationwide competition.

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