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New Face: Becky Murphy

This budget analyst was surprised and pleased to discover that at UNLV it's not only the students who have Rebel pride.

People  |  Jun 12, 2017  |  By Diane Russell
Becky Murphy

Becky Murphy, budget analyst (Josh Hawkins/UNLV Creative Services) 

As someone who always has loved numbers and who as a child dreamed of being an actuary some day, Becky Murphy, who works in the campus budget office, said she's found working with budgets to be an excellent fit.


The tasks are similar in most budget offices, but the work environment can make or break a job. You can’t tell very much during the interview process, but I really enjoyed the people I interviewed with at UNLV, and was lucky I was right. That, and my 10-minute commute, are wonderful.

What about UNLV strikes you as different from other places you have worked or where you went to school?

During my time working in the private sector, I often found a more competitive atmosphere, with focus on individual goals rather than the overall mission of the organization. Here, even the employees have Rebel pride.

Where did you grow up and what was that like?

I grew up in what was then a small town called Layton, Utah. My father worked at Hill Air Force Base, so I enjoyed playing with my friends on base. Sometimes they would block off a road to move a stealth bomber, which was a big deal at the time and very exciting to watch.

What inspired you to get into your field?

I’ve always been good with numbers and this area seemed like a good way for me to remain employable while working on projects that were interesting to me.

What is the biggest challenge in your field?

Communicating with the departments. I am not an expert in their field and don’t expect them to be experts in budgeting. Normally, a quick email or phone call can clear up most matters. I am here to help, so please don’t be afraid to contact me.

Is there something people on campus can do to make your job easier?

The large volume of accounts is the toughest part for me. If you have accounts you don’t use, let’s save us both future time and effort and get those accounts closed!

Tell us about a time in your life when you have been daring.

In my 20s, I knew Tampa (Florida) wasn’t the right city for me. My husband and I put a map of the U.S. on the living room wall and decided to pick any city we wanted to move to. We quit our jobs and moved to Las Vegas. We were so naïve and lucky, and thankfully we both got jobs right away. I’m glad we took that risk; I love living in Las Vegas.

Finish this sentence. “If I couldn’t work in my current field, I would like to…”

…be an actuary.” My childhood dream was honestly to grow up and be an actuary. I later received advice from a teacher here at UNLV that there were limited job opportunities in that field here in Las Vegas. He was right and I’m so thankful for that advice and that I switched to finance.

What is something people would be surprised to learn about you?

Darth Maul (think Star Wars) is my all-time favorite fictional character. 

Tell us about someone you admire and why.

I’ve learned to appreciate and try to emulate traits of many people. For example, I admire the communication skills of my coworkers, my friend’s fashion sense, and the unconditional love from my mom and husband.

Any tips for success?

  1. Be kind and do your best work for everyone you meet. Las Vegas is surprisingly small and you will meet those people again, or someone will ask that person about you. 
  2. Learn how to type with all 10 fingers — even those of you who think you can type almost as fast with two fingers.
  3. Learn all you can about Microsoft Excel; it can do so much more than you know.

Pastimes or hobbies?

I am currently spending my nights playing the game Dominion.