Helping people is Keyara Sowell’s passion. “I’ve always been a people person,” she says. “I know that sounds generic, but it’s true.” Her propensity for helping others succeed led Keyara to a career in Human Resources Management and the Rowland School of Business Bachelor of Science Human Resource Management program at Point Park University.

Keyara epitomizes the drive and motivation of a working adult student. In addition to her studies at Point Park University, Keyara is a mother and works part-time for United States Steel Corporation as a benefits associate. “My team in US Steel’s Total Rewards leads the strategy and administration of North American employee benefits and payroll,” she says.

Keyara’s goal is to leverage her education and experience to help redefine the role of human resource management.

The Evolution of HR

Point Park University Student Keyara SowellKeyera is part of a new generation of professionals looking to the future of business and the evolving role of HR. “I enjoy that HR has moved into a more strategic position within modern companies, and I can build leadership skills that historically, were not always guaranteed,” she says.

The profession allows Keyara to “advocate for others” and help ensure a safe, inclusive, equitable–and enjoyable–workplace. “I think the ability to influence diversity, equity, and inclusion within a company is a big driver for me,” she says. “As a biracial woman, I have not always had positive experiences in my academic and professional environments.”

Keyara’s experience inspires her to “help drive change within corporations struggling with  DE&I efforts,” she says, “building on those efforts to the benefit of the company and its employees.”

Developing Leadership Skills, Growing Networks, Building Careers

As Vice-President of Point Park’s Student Human Resources Association, Keyara works with her student colleagues to take their learning outside the classroom. The human resource management curriculum is rigorous, relevant, and hands-on, but SHRA allows students valuable teamwork, real-world experience, and network-building opportunities.

“SHRA’s mission is to provide support, development, awareness, and promotion of human resources as a profession,” Keyara says. “We aim to develop strong professional networks, increase personal and professional growth, and improve the academic and career paths of all SHRA members.”

Thanks to the hard work and leadership of Keyara and her cohort, Point Park University’s Student Human Resources Association received the 2022 Superior Merit Award from the Society for Human Resources Management. The professional organization recognized SHRA’s outstanding growth and career development for its members. Activities include internships, mentorships, company visits, and human resources job shadowing opportunities.

“We continuously promote job openings to all our members, participate in campus career fairs, and implement projects that positively impact our local community,” says Keyara. All SHRM students are prepared to sit for the SHRM-CP certification exam immediately following graduation.

“We are extremely thankful and proud that SHRM recognized all of the hard work we have accomplished so far!”

Point Park University

Point Park University is proud to attract students of Keyara’s caliber. It is an honor not taken lightly. Point Park’s online degree programs meet the rigorous requirements of students motivated to become their best selves.

“Point Park University has always supported my goals and provided me with ample resources to make those goals attainable,” Keyara says.

She is especially grateful for the Rowland School of Business faculty, who “make it clear that they are truly invested in my success and never hesitate to extend a helping hand when needed.”

Among the excellent faculty at Point Park, Professor Sandy Mervosh stands out. “She has by far made the biggest impact on my academic career,” says Keyara. “I have learned so much and thoroughly enjoyed every class of hers that I have taken, especially my Human Capital course. She cares about her students in a profound way and really pushes them to think outside of the box.”

A Full Life

The best life is a balanced life. “I’m a mother before anything else,” says Keyara. When not pursuing her professional goals, she loves taking her children to museums, spending the day in the park, or swimming. Keyara also enjoys exploring new restaurants (she’s a confirmed foodie) and traveling to new places with her husband. She indulges in TLC reality TV shows when she can find the time.

Between raising a family, enjoying time with her husband, and becoming a leader in the new era of human resources management, Keyara’s future is bright. Point Park University would have it no other way.