Maintenance Pro Views BVU Degrees as Investments in Himself, His Family, His Company

Dhaval Bhatt, who earned his bachelor's in management from BVU, now resides in California where he works fulltime as a maintenance specialist while pursuing his master's.

Dhaval Bhatt earned A grades consistently as a young man growing up in India. He went on to earn an associate degree in mechanical engineering, then spent nearly 15 years in that trade before moving with his wife to the U.S.

“It was a journey to a new culture, and I struggled,” Bhatt says. “I realized that going to college here would be a way to get more into the U.S. culture. Having a degree would also help me get closer to a career in management.”

Bhatt, who resided at Fort Dodge, enrolled in Buena Vista University’s online program in 2017 and eventually earned a bachelor’s in management. It wasn’t easy at first.

“With my degree in management, I now apply lots of theories I learned about management in my day-to-day work. I love my job.”

Dhaval Bhatt

“I took two classes in my first term and thought about dropping,” he remembers. “The English class required lots of writing, and I had never had to write that much.”

His grade teetered at a very average level, a grade to which he wasn’t accustomed, and put him at the brink. That’s when his instructor, Betsy Goetz, reached out, sensing this new BVU student needed assistance and encouragement.

“She knew I’d come from a different culture,” Bhatt says. “She boosted me up. She asked me to focus on the learning, not on the grade. I followed her advice, kept trying, and earned a B in the class. It was a moment I’ll never forget.”

Bhatt, 37, committed himself to learning as much as he could, and the grades would take care of themselves. He finished his bachelor’s degree with a 3.87 grade-point average.

Bhatt, who worked fulltime in Fort Dodge while earning his degree, has since moved to California, where he resides with his wife and their young daughter. He now finds professional happiness as a maintenance specialist who helps direct some 25 maintenance contractors.

“I help maintain the plant reliability and reduce its downtime,” he says. “With my degree in management, I now apply lots of theories I learned about management in my day-to-day work. I love my job.”

And while Bhatt misses the openness of the Iowa prairie and the state’s changing seasons, he maintains a connection with BVU and views his degrees as investments he makes in himself and his family.

“I’m doing my master’s in organizational leadership,” he says. “I started in January and I’ll complete it in August of 2021. All of my learning comes back to me to benefit me, my family, and the company I serve. I’m having the same experience I did as an undergraduate through BVU: I continue to work at my job while getting the support I need from all my BVU instructors. It is so easy to email, text, or call my professors as I continue to learn. I’ve moved half a country away, and nothing has stopped.”