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Alumni Spotlight: Steve Beatty

Graduation Year: 1976
Major: Journalism
Current Position: Editor-in-Chief, CIO division of IBM (retired)
City and State: Lake Saint Louis, MO

Tell us about your career and what you do now.
I had a career involving all types of writing and editing. After graduation from Evangel, I worked as a newspaper reporter and then as a sports editor. In 1981, I entered the corporate world as a technical writer in the aerospace industry. I joined IBM in the early ’90s and worked in a myriad of communication roles, eventually becoming an executive communication specialist and strategist. I ended my career as the editor-in-chief for the CIO division of IBM. Though I am retired, I am still contacted by my former colleagues for my input on how to address some of the issues that can sometimes perplex those trying to communicate an important idea or concept.

What is your favorite memory from Evangel?
Aside from meeting my wife (Paula Suey), my favorite memory would be the exposure I was given to students from all over the world. I enjoyed learning about their homeland and the differences in our upbringing and even our churches. It had an impact on me when it came to my own worldview.

How did Evangel help you identify/develop your calling?
I knew from an early age that I had the ability to write things people enjoyed reading, however I did not understand the power that ability held. I did not truly comprehend how to communicate objectively and without bias.I was blessed to have learned under two individuals at Evangel (Dr. Eugene Elser and Neil Eskeline) that not only helped me hone that skill, but also personally guided me on how to successfully apply my Christ-centered values in the workplace.

How did your experience at Evangel prepare you for life after graduation?
At the end of the first semester of my sophomore year, Dr. Elser approached me with an offer. Would I consider serving as the editor of the Lance? To my knowledge, no sophomore had ever served as editor of the student newspaper in the past. It was a pivotal moment in my life. I thoroughly enjoyed it and the students that served on the staff with me. Writing was something that came easy to me, but now I was placed in a position where I had to manage other people and develop a product that warranted attention. I firmly believe in that old adage that you learn more from your mistakes than you do from your successes. I learned so much from that opportunity and some of the mistakes I made. The experience was invaluable and the people I worked with helped me understand the value of working together for a common goal. I also learned how to meet strict deadlines, a skill that served me well over the years. Evangel also played an integral part in formulating my thoughts about and commitment to Christian service. In the more than 46 years that I have attended First Assembly Church in St. Charles, MO, I have had the honor and privilege to serve in a number of ministries, as both a leader and a participant.

What advice would you give a current student preparing for the workforce?
First and foremost, include God in any job-related decision and do not be discouraged when the door to a job closes. Remember, thank God for the doors He closes as much as for the doors He opens. When you do land a job, always remember that you are building a reputation for excellence. No matter how large or small the task, your effort reflects on you and the God you serve. There will undoubtedly be some disappointments during your career. How you handle those disappointments will reveal a great deal about you. And when success comes your way, remember to practice humility and acknowledge the part others played in your achievement.

What would you look for if you were in a position to hire new graduates from Evangel? I would look for integrity, a strong work ethic, an inquisitive mind, and a commitment to values that cannot be shaken. I would also look for attributes like compassion, kindness, and a willingness to be available when a need arises.