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JUNE 2014

Remodel of Student Records and Registration office complete » By Brock Allen

After seven years of planning and preparation, Student Records and Registration has finished its office renovations.

goal is to serve those who need our service here in the office better,” said Martin.

The changes serve a two-fold purpose: to provide an area where students can privately discuss questions, concerns, and issues of a more sensitive nature, and to offer a larger workspace to accommodate an increase in student employees.

The students who do need to come into the office often have more in-depth concerns or questions, which the openness of the transaction windows was not conducive to. Now there are offices where students can come and discuss in privacy. continued on page 4

This was accomplished by walling off the transaction windows, enlarging the workspace, and adding new offices for student meetings and employees. “We recognized a number of years ago that with the advent of the Internet and all of our web applications that our service model through transaction windows was becoming quickly outdated. The things students used to do through transaction windows they do on the Internet now,” said Kyle Martin, university registrar. Serving the needs of the students virtually has always been a goal for the department, and the Internet has allowed the Student Records and Registration to deal with students primarily online, and behind the scenes. “Our office serves every student every semester. Our goal is not necessarily to serve more students in our office, but our

McKay Library renovations provide space for a growing tutoring program » By Paul Morgan

Renovations have begun in the David O. McKay Library to provide space for the ever-growing tutoring program, and to prepare for a future remodel. The tutoring center will soon completely cover the east wing of the second floor, standing as a testament to the culture of teaching and learning from one another at BYU-Idaho and the great service it provides to the students. Plans have been underway since 2013 and the project is expected to be finished before fall semester. continued on page 5 J U N E 2 014


Student Leadership Model: Providing students opportunities to grow » By Austin Cary

At any given moment BYU-Idaho students participating in Service Activities can be found serving in a wide range of settings. From the elderly in Adopt-a-Grandparent and the youth in afterschool programs to struggling families in the Family Crisis Center and the hungry who come to the Mobile Food Truck, this inspiring influence in the community is made possible through the Student Leadership Model. The last issue of News & Notes explored the principles of the leadership model, which include helping students to elevate their vision, build confidence, strengthen testimonies, hone skills, and open opportunities for carriers and higher education. John Ochs, a biology major and the area director of Service Activities, is one of many students who has been able to realize his personal goals by applying the principles of the Student Leadership Model.

When Ochs arrived at BYU-Idaho three semesters ago he wanted to overcome his fear of leading. His initial love for service and the confidence other student leaders expressed in his capacity to learn and lead helped him muster the courage to accept a leadership position in Service Activities. “It was intimidating for me,” said Ochs. “I didn’t have much experience in leading. It took much help from the Lord and from my peers in Service Activities for me to learn how to lead.” He started out being in charge of a few projects. Now, three semesters later, he leads over 70 student leaders and oversees all the service projects in Service Activities. It is impossible to measure the impact this experience will have in Ochs’ life. Even more impressive is that his experience is common among the hundreds of other students involved in the Student Leadership Model each semester.

“The success of the Student Leadership Model is not based on numbers. It is “The growth I have seen within based on the growth of the students,” said myself has been really important Ochs. “As students participate they learn Adopt-a-Grandparent is just one of the ways BYU-Idaho students are able to serve in the Student Activities Program. to me,” said Ochs. “My college how to become Christ-like leaders. You experience would definitely not have can see this change in the students. They been the same if I didn’t get involved with Service Activities.” become better people, which affects how they will contribute in their communities, in the church, at work, and in their families.”

Economics faculty establish micro-enterprise and nutrition project in Ghana » By Brock Allen

Stephen McGary and Jeremy Slade, both faculty members in the Department of Economics, after months of research and preparation are traveling to Ghana to help establish a microenterprise and nutrition project. McGary and Slade have been working with the Ghanaian Golden Sunbeam School, which is owned by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The school has been in operation for 25 years, but until three years ago was only an elementary school. The addition of the high school came after the owners, Mr. and Mrs. Ohene Opare, noticed an unsettling trend. “They found that these kids were reverting back to what they had before, back into poverty, they didn’t have skills to help them gain the money to provide for food or nutrition,” said McGary.


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Seeing this happen, the Opares decided they would have to create a place where these children could learn the vocational skills necessary to provide for themselves, and their family. They decided to build high school where they could teach their students “some type of enterprise, or entrepreneurial opportunities for them to be employed, or improve their living standard, and be more self-sufficient rather than just receiving food-aid,” said McGary. In accordance with this vision, and through much research, McGary and Slade have found a machine called the SoyCow, which will bring nutrition to the school, as well as teach the students vocational skills. With raw soybeans and water the SoyCow can make milk, soya cheese (tofu), and even yogurt. It is a perfect machine for continued on page 6


Faculty member applies Learning Model during semester leave in Japan » By Paul Morgan

In his pursuit of further education, Eric Walz, faculty member in the Department of History, Geography and Political Science traveled to Japan to teach at the University of the Ryukyus in Okinawa. The opportunity to teach university students in Japan came as a result of the Fulbright Scholar program, administered by the U.S. State Department, which awarded Walz a scholarship to teach abroad. Walz was able to utilize the program during a faculty semester leave that granted him the opportunity to apply for the scholarship and reconnect with his interest and fascination with Japan. “I have had research interests in Japan for a long time, but I’ve never really had the opportunity to have an extended period of time there. So when I received the Fulbright scholarship I was granted the opportunity to work and live there. I am very appreciative of the opportunity BYU-Idaho gave me to take a semester off from my teaching responsibilities and increase my education,” said Walz.

Walz, with the aid of his wife, looked for opportunities to meet with students outside of class. They received assistance from the American Consulate and Consulate General, who invited the students to activities that were connected to the United States. Students were invited to an American West-style evening where they were able to enjoy hamburgers, hot dogs, smores, and John Wayne movies.

Everything that I was able to experience while in Japan allowed me to come back to campus and improve the classes I teach. ERIC WALZ

“It was great fun, and a real help to me to be able to meet with students outside of class and have a chance to communicate with them in a more relaxed environment,” said Walz. “My Japanese students were just like my students here at BYU-Idaho. The culture is very different, but the personalities, worries and aspirations were very much the same from Japan to the United States, and found that both interesting and comforting.” With the support of the College of Language and Letters, and the Department of History, Geography and Political Science, and through funds provided by a Thomas E. Ricks Grant, Walz was also able to travel to several different locations around the country, visiting shrines, temples, and various historical sites.

His faculty leave lasted for a total of five and a half months, and gave Walz the unique experience of teaching Japanese students about American history and culture. Walz Faculty member Eric Walz together with students at the University of the Ryukyus in Okinawa, Japan. taught two courses, American History and Culture, and “I was able to American Culture Studies and approximately 60 students. gain a much clearer understanding of Japanese culture, and tried to spend as much time as I could out among the people. My wife “In Japanese culture, it is deemed impolite to ask questions and I walked a lot so that we could meet people and interact during class as it suggests that the teacher made a mistake or was with them. Everything that I was able to do and experience while unclear in their explanation,” said Walz. “Having come schooled in Japan allowed me to come back to campus and improve and from the BYU-Idaho Learning Model, I had to start immediately reinvigorate the classes I teach,” said Walz. trying to figure out ways to get the students involved.” J U N E 2 014


Students lead out in recent production of The Importance of Being Earnest » By Paul Morgan

Infatuation, naïve romance and a doublecase of mistaken identity make Oscar Wilde’s classic comedy The Importance of Being Earnest a must see. The script is considered Wilde’s most well-known and best-loved play. It is set in 1890s England and provides a tongue-in-cheek look at courtship, and the firm societal conventions that governed 19th century England.

a total of nine student performers were visible to the audience, the production involved of over 45 students who helped with creating costumes, set construction lighting implementation, and operating technical elements of the show. “As a department we give students opportunities to work on different productions from all dramatic literature genres. Although these productions are in no way exclusive to theatre majors, they do act as a kind of lab, where students can craft their skills and implement techniques learned in the classroom,” said Conrad.

Wilde’s captivating play was recently brought to life at BYU-Idaho. A group of students present the production under the direction of Hyrum Conrad, faculty member in the Department of Theatre and Dance. Students were able to entertain audiences with performances that ran from May 28 until June 7. The performances were held in the Black Box Theatre, and were open to both campus and the community. The production consisted entirely of students both on and off the stage, and while only

The Department of Theatre and Dance showcases a wide variety of productions each season in an effort to inspire and entertain all who attend. “I envision this particular play as more of a farce than a comedy of manners,” said Conrad. “I hope the people who attend the production have a light-hearted, enjoyable entertainment experience,” Conrad said.

Student Records and Registration: continued from page 1 “We wanted to make sure it was a positive experience for those who came in. They know they can come in and be served well, and our space has allowed us to do that. It’s designed to serve our students,” said Martin. Over the last few years, a student employment model has been implemented in Student Records and Registration that has caused its student work force to grow exponentially. When Martin became the registrar in 2006, he had three student employees. That number is now at 60, and Martin loves this new direction. “In my estimation it gives them the work experience they would normally get in their first two to three years after they graduate from college. When they walk through the door they’re employees, they’re not students. Without them we


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don’t accomplish what we need to,” said Martin. The full-time employees spend a lot of time training the students. Through this on-the-job training, the students are able to work and learn in safe environments where they can make mistakes, learn from them, and continue to grow into great workers for the future. But with this growth, many logistical and space issues arose. The office was no longer able to comfortably hold all of the workers. Now, with the renovations the employees have plenty of space to work, and be more productive. “We’re incredibly grateful to the university for investing in Student Records and Registration. We know it’s a significant investment, and we think it’s worth it, because it helps to serve the students better,” said Martin.

Art majors benefit from attending national conference in Baltimore » By Paul Morgan

A group of BYU-Idaho art majors recently had the opportunity to interact with other students and gain insights into the prospects offered at graduate schools at a national photography conference in Baltimore. The annual conference held in March, was organized by The Society for Photographic Education and was attended by students, educators and photographers from across the country. “The conference is specifically for photography education and offers students and educators an opportunity to see what’s happening in the world of academic photography,” said Darren Clark, chair of the Department of Art.

opportunity to help them become more acquainted with the benefits and dynamics of graduate programs. “We specifically took these three students as they were interested in going to grad school. While at the conference they were able to network with students, faculty and administrators from graduate schools from across the country,” said Clark. The trip, organized by the Department of Art, aimed to offer students a great opportunity to familiarize themselves with graduate programs. The three students were also able to share their individual portfolios with professionals and world-renowned artists, and receive feedback concerning their work.

The group of students, along with Clark, was able to attend the conference that showcased a variety of photographers and their work. They L to R: BYU-Idaho art majors Ariel Lafontaine, Taylor Grayson and Erica Rascon were also able to “This experience enjoy an exhibit fair helped the students that displayed products for faculty to help them stay current get a feel for grad school. It educated them on what grad school is, in their field. With most university graduate schools across the and if it’s something they wish to pursue,” said Clark. U.S. represented at the conference, students received a valuable

McKay Library: continued from page 1 All books and shelving will be moved from the east wing of the second floor, and depending on the circulation of the books, will be moved to either the basement or the first floor. Those moved to the basement will still be in circulation, and with the help of a librarian be available to all students. All of this will be in preparation for the future remodel that will take place in the library in the next couple years. Eventually, with this remodel, the entire collection will be on the first floor in collapsible shelving. This convenience will make the library collection more assessable to all. The tutoring program has steadily grown since it started, and is up to serving around 12,000 students per year. With this increase, many space issues have arisen. “Just finding the space to sit down and have a tutoring session was becoming increasingly difficult as our student body has grown,” said Shane Cole, Assistant University Librarian. “With the growth the students always comment on the noise factor. Space has always been an issue for tutoring. The

university has been fantastic in seeing the need we have for space, and has allowed us to do these renovations,” added Greg Hazard, Directory of Academic Support. Hazard attributes much of this growth to the faculty and the students themselves. On average when students come in to the tutoring center, they say they have been referred by a teacher or student. Through this, a stigma has been eradicated, and a culture started. “There’s been a stigma with getting a tutor. The stigma that people who can’t do it get tutors. That stigma has been erased. Everyone gets tutors, and if they don’t, they put themselves at a disadvantage. Because it has become part of the culture of the place, more students are comfortable coming and using it,” said Hazard. The renovations will allow more students to come and take part of the services provided by the university, and further cultivate the culture of students helping each other to learn, grow, and prepare for the future. J U N E 2 014


BYU-Idaho employees receive their Professional Practices Doctorate from University of Idaho

Back L-R: Mitch Williams, Nate Williams, Josh Wilson, Brett Yadon Middle L-R: Rachel Huber, James Williams, Elaine Wagner, Michael Gentry, Siri Pennock, Heather Carter, Julie Buck, Trina Caudle, Cheryl Empey Front L-R: Lee Barney, DJ Teichert, Tom Anderson, Nathan Relken, Jeff Hochstrasser, Shane Wasden

Economics faculty in Ghana: continued from page 2 developing countries, because it not only provides nutrition for hundreds, it also supplies jobs for 3-6 people per machine. Golden Sunbeam School will begin growing soybeans on their land, so they may become completely self-sufficient in providing for their students. They are expecting to make much more than what is needed for their students, so they will begin selling all of the excess on the market. Students in the Economics Department have run studies on the success of SoyCow, and have found it to be a very profitable enterprise for the school. This project has

been especially beneficial to the students involved. “This has been a great experience for the students, because they get to see, from not only the cost benefit analysis of this school, but also importing equipment and some of the steps that they had to go through to do that. It was good for the students to see some of the challenges involved in a process like this,” said Slade. Four of the students involved with the project will additionally be travelling with Slade to Cape Town, South Africa to present this project at the annual International Food and Agribusiness

They will not only gain the experience of being able to present research, but they will also be able to network with these people from around the world. McGary left with one student on June 2 and will return August 7. Slade and the four students left for Ghana on June 9 and spent a week there before continuing on to South Africa for the conference.


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To President and Sister Clark, Fenton Broadhead, BYUIdaho, Department of Home and Family, and the Family and Consumer Sciences Student Society: Thank you for the letters, cards, flowers, and expressions of sympathy for the passing of my mother. I’m so grateful to be associated with each of you. Sincerely, Janiel Nelson

News & Notes A monthly publication of University Relations A D V I S O R Marc Stevens W R I T E R S Brock Allen, Austin Cary, Paul Morgan P H O T O G R A P H E R S Michael Lewis, Ryan Chase, Leanna Davidson, Tyler Rickenbach If you have any ideas for future issues, please e-mail


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June 2014 News & Notes  
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