“After Valley” highlights select Valley Christian alumni of all ages, from our first graduating class of 1986 to our most recent graduates.
Dwight Nield ’11
This “After Valley” profile was originally posted in May 2017.
After Valley, I went to Arizona State University to double major in Supply Chain Management and Business Legal Studies. At the end of my Sophomore year, I moved to Dallas, TX for the Summer to intern for Southwest Airlines as a Technology Supply Chain Intern. I returned to ASU to finish school and took on a few more internships with Arizona Governor, Doug Ducey, on his campaign trail and later joined the Goldwater Institute as a Public Policy Intern. As much as I enjoyed my time in Arizona, I took a second internship at Southwest Airlines which led to a full time position after graduation knowing it’s where I really wanted and needed to be. During the end of my Senior year at ASU, I was called to go into ministry and am now attending Dallas Theological Seminary to obtain a Master of Theology. I’m studying to ultimately be a bi-vocational pastor working a secular job while spiritually supporting a church or organization and also bringing my knowledge from the business world to serve in an administrative aspect as well.
Tell us a little about your daily work:
At Southwest Airlines, I work at the main headquarters located in Dallas, Texas in the Supply Chain Management Department on the Technology Team as a Senior Associate. My position is very project oriented focusing on telecommunications and mobility. To sum it up, if you see a Southwest Airlines pilot, flight attendant, customer service agent, mechanic or any other employee holding an Apple iPad device, I was on a project that got them in their hands. I work on the project planning and negotiating with multiple suppliers to orchestrate the purchase/lease of tens of thousands of devices and deploying them across the country (and now world) to allow employees to be more efficient and flexible to better serve our customers. Airlines have a long way to go in catching up when it comes to technology but I’m excited to play a role in that effort.
During college and after returning from my first internship at Southwest, I worked a graveyard shift job working 8PM-2AM at Home Depot as a freight team member stocking shelves and doing inventory asset tracking so that I could learn how they manage their inventory and what methods and processes they use being an organization that does it so well. Even though I knew I would probably be working at a corporate office, I wanted to experience ground level supply chain as a reminder that I’m never above it, have the ability to empathize and relate to successes and failures out in the field, and most importantly offer solutions from experience.
While you were at VCHS, which teachers, coaches or classmates had the biggest impact on you?
There are too many to list. Many of them still remember when I was severely sick from a spinal fusion surgery that was almost fatal. The countless instances of support I received from everyone were motivating and inspiring. I’m thankful for Mr. Timmer, though highly cautious of my physical limits at that time, still pushed me to perform in his health class and weight training reminding me that stage in my life was temporary. Indeed, it was temporary. Ms. Jackson was always there for tutoring from 6:30AM to 6:30PM helping me keep up with chemistry for the time I had missed recovering taught me to have a mentality that as difficult as things can be, those things must still be completed. As said before, there are countless more people who played significant roles in my time at Valley and they should know they are not overlooked.
How do you stay connected with your friends from Valley and with VCHS?
I still have a few close friends that I text and call. Social media has been great to see where and what everyone is doing. I come to Phoenix often and see people as well including go out to dinner with a few teachers. Every other year, I drop by Valley to visit as well to see what’s new and how everyone is doing.
What’s one lasting memory you have of VCHS?
Greg Tonkinson’s classroom during lunch. Possibly the greatest classroom environment on Earth.
Do you have any advice for current students?
Don’t take this time for granted. These are some of the most formative years of your life. Invest in knowing the people around you and it’s never too late. My best friends now from high school were those I didn’t really even talk to until my Senior year. I wish I had started talking to them sooner.
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