The Utah Statesman, January 24, 2022

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Utah State University, Logan, Utah

Week of January 24, 2022

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Disability and destiny: Nick Vujicic By Michael Popa II SENIOR NEWS WRITER


ick Vujicic has tetra-amelia syndrome, a rare medical phenomenon where an individual is born without arms or legs. Although researchers still don’t know much about his condition, his story is a well-known one. As shared in his book, “Life Without Limits: Inspiration for a Ridiculously Good Life,” Vujicic was born to Serbian immigrant parents in Australia in 1982 and has lived his whole life without arms or legs. The only semblance of limbs he has are two partially developed feet, one of which — his so-called “chicken drumstick” — has two toes that he uses to grab things and complete daily tasks. While videos online of Vujicic show him saying he trusts in God’s plan, Vujicic didn’t always know what he was meant to do with his life. In fact, he often considered and even attempted suicide as a child. The first born in his family, even his parents initially struggled to accept Vujicic as their son, a story shared by Vujicic in his interview with 60 Minutes. Immediately upon his birth, his condition was the first thing doctors noticed, but his parents didn’t immediately see him — only the looks on the medical staff members’ faces. When a nurse finally held up Vujicic to his mother, she refused to hold him. This attitude soon changed though as Vujicic’s parents, Dušanka and Borislav, realized that he was still their son and were given the opportunity to be his parents for a reason. In his early years, his parents’ love for their son and Vujicic’s “imagination and sheer will” saw an immense growth in his capabilities and independence, despite having a lack of mobility and typical functionality. This period of unstoppable will was short-lived, though. According to IMBd, a then-Victoria law prohibited Vujicic from entering public schools, despite no lack of

Nick Vujicic on the beach with his family.

brain development and cognition. In spite of this law, Vujicic was admitted into school and said he was the first handicapped student in the education system of Australia to be integrated into the mainstream school system. This then opened up the gateway for a “great trailblazing integration for everyone else with special needs.” Vujicic, however, also said he was met with significant hardships including bullying and exclusion as well as severe problems with his self-image. “Obviously, bullying is rampant. Having no arms and legs and actually also not having any medical reason — it was difficult to be the center of attention so quickly,” Vujicic said. “Wherever I went, everyone looked at me and I started wondering, ‘Why me?’ And it didn’t seem like many people could really understand what I was going through.” Vujicic knew he wasn’t normal and quickly learned what type of future was inevitably in store for him. “That to me gave me quite a fear about my future and this drive to try to find my place in this world but not knowing if I’d ever find it,” Vujicic said. On top of the incessant bullying and targeting at school, Vujicic said he frequently prayed that God would give him his arms and legs. “I have a pair of shoes in my closet in case he gives me arms and legs. In fact, it was just last week that I showed those shoes to my oldest son,” Vujicic shared. “He thought it was cool that daddy still sometimes prays for arms and legs.” Even with the immense faith Vujicic held, his depression pushed him to pursue suicide as early as eight years old. “I saw a picture in my mind of my mom, my dad and my brother crying at my grave wishing they could have done something more. And that alone stopped me,” Vujicic told PBS’s Lucky Severson in an interview. While many of these struggles lasted throughout the rest of his childhood, it wasn’t long before Vujicic realized what he was destined to do. Vujicic said he always grown up faithful and said when he was 15 he began realizing he needed a change in his life. “I needed my soul restored, saved and my mind rescued,” he said. “That was when I started my faith journey with Jesus and never looked back since.” Later, when he was 17, his mother showed him a newspaper clipping of a man dealing with a disability. This inspired Vujicic to begin his philanthropic work by sharing his faith, giving talks to his prayer group, and being invited by his high school counselor to speak about his faith and how the challenges he’s faced have built him. According to the Sarajevo Times, after graduating from Macgregor State School, Vujicic pursued a bachelor’s in finance, graduating at 21 years old. Vujicic realized soon after it would be


his faith-based work which would make his career. Two years after graduating, Vujicic founded his non-profit organization and ministry Life Without Limbs, which aims to spread the faith teachings. “It’s not about how many years or how many people at the end. It’s all about ‘am I in love with Jesus? Do I know him? Do I trust him? And am I doing what he wants me to do?’” Vujicic said. “It’s all about God. What is (his) will for my life and (will he) help me to live every day in humility, in holiness and righteousness, knowing that none of us are perfect, but we must hunger and strive for it?” Since launching his ministry efforts, Vujicic has preached to more than 733 million people and aims to reach one billion by 2028. Through his efforts, Vujicic said he has helped convert more than a million individuals to Christianity. “It’s humbling,” he said. “More than words can say it feels like a completely separate lifetime. I’m 39 and I’ve got maybe a good 20 plus years left in me to do what we’re doing.” Read more of this story at Michael Popa II is a sophomore studying human biology, statistics and mathematics. He also serves as a combat medic for the U.S. Army and has a podcast on Aggie Radio. —



t Utah State University Logan campus, people complaining about how cold they are is a common occurrence. However, according to experts, women are much more likely to be the ones who seem to never warm up. USU junior Maddi Aardema has noticed the difference between her reaction to cold temperatures and the reactions of her male friends and family members. “My uncle keeps the house at icy temperatures,” Aardema said. “And my dad tries to keep our house at icy temperatures and all of us freeze to death.” Tyson Chappell, an associate professor in the biology department at USU Eastern, explained men’s seemingly stronger tolerance to the cold is no coincidence. Although not all women react the same to the cold, there are scientific reasons behind it. According to Chappell, there are several factors for why women typically get colder faster and the majority of it comes down to hormones. Since men have more testosterone, they will often have more muscle mass, which results in a higher metabolism and more heat generation. In fact, Chappell said on average men have a metabolism 23 times higher than women. “Muscle mass is so important because muscle produces heat,” Chappell said. “It’s like having little furnaces that are burning coal. But for our bodies — its glucose.” The effect of hormones on the body’s

temperature doesn’t end there, the warmer the body is, the faster the blood flows to the peripheral parts of the body. Because women typically don’t generate as much heat, their blood flow is slower, taking heat longer to get to those parts of their bodies. On top of that, women typically have a higher fluctuation of hormones in their bodies which causes their internal temperature to fluctuate and they end up having a harder time adapting to changing environmental temperatures. Another reason, as Chappell explained, is due to men generally having a larger frame. “In general men will be larger, so they are going to have more insulation,” Chappell said. “And a bigger body doesn’t dissipate or lose heat as quickly as a smaller body.” To help his students apply this concept in class, Chappell describes the scene in the movie “Twilight” when the main character, Bella, cuddles with the werewolf, Jacob, instead of the vampire, Edward, because Jacob generated more heat. This concept can also be seen in everyday life. While Aardema prefers her apartment to be 72 degrees Fahrenheit, Hunter Hudson, another junior at USU, prefers his apartment to be 68 degrees. Both students disagree with the other and claim the temperatures to be too hot or too cold. Although, women’s cores are normally warmer than men, the contrast between the warm core and the cold peripheral parts of

Andree Ashby warming up next to the fire after a particularly chilly day.

the body makes those parts feel even colder than they actually are. Further connections between hormones and temperature are due to the thyroid since 1902 gland. Women have a 10 times higher rate of having thyroid problems than men. STUDENT MEDIA If the thyroid gland isn’t producing the thyroid hormone — which tells all the cells Student-run newspaper for Utah in the body to burn more energy — then the State University since 1902. cells aren’t being told to make more heat. Reporting online 24/7. Printed Additionally, there have been studies that weekly during the school year. show women’s hands to be colder. “Women’s hands are about 2.8 degrees FREE SINGLE COPY colder than men’s,” Chappell said. “That’s showing physical evidence that women aren’t just complaining.” Although women seem to have the short end of the stick, there are ways to remedy this situation. Muscle mass and metabolism are the main Darcy Ritchie reasons women tend to be colder, so the managing editor more muscle mass one builds, the warmer a person will be. In other words, hitting the 435-797-1742 gym won’t hurt. ——————


Brielle Carr is a first year student studying journalism. Brielle loves to read and spend a lot of her time at the gym. —

PHOTO BY Paige Johnson

Jacee Caldwell news manager —————— Jacob Nielson sports manager —————— Emily White lifestyles manager —————— William Bultez opinion manager —————— Bailey Rigby photo manager ­­— ————— Now Hiring design manager —————— For advertising inquiries —————— Student Media Office TSC 118 435.797.1775 Cover art by Kate Smith

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Cold girl winter is here

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Aggies share their favorite recipes By Maggie Erekson NEWS STAFF WRITER


ne of the hardest parts of college and living on your own is finding time to cook. Boxed mac and cheese is always an option but if your New Year’s resolution is to eat healthier, the best first step is cooking your own meals. Don’t know where to start? Here are some of your fellow Aggies’ favorite recipes. 1. ROASTED VEGGIES AND SAUSAGE - Malia Mabray Roasting vegetables and meat is a great option for a filling dinner without too much work. Try experimenting with different vegetables, meats and seasonings. •Veggies chopped into bite-sized pieces (cherry tomatoes, zucchini, squash, bell peppers, mushrooms, etc.) •Polish sausage •Olive oil •Seasoning (garlic, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper, rosemary, etc.) Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, place chopped veggies and sausage onto a sheet pan and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with desired seasonings and roast for 25-30 minutes until cooked, stirring occasionally. This recipe is good on its own, or over noodles or rice.

•Half of a stick of melted butter or softened •1 cup of instant potato flakes •1/2-3/4 cup of grated parmesan cheese •Salt and pepper to taste •Rice (cooked) Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Mix together potato flakes, parmesan cheese and seasonings in a bowl, dip sliced chicken into melted butter and then into potato mixture and place about 1/4 inch apart in a glass pan. Cook at 375 for 20-25 mins or until chicken is completely cooked (165 degrees inside).

Waffles with bananas, blueberries, strawberries and whipped cream.

cooked noodles, soy sauce, seasonings and flavor pack to skillet and cook until vegetables are soft, stirring often. 6. EASY MAC AND CHEESE - Maggie Erekson •Noodles (any kind but macaroni or cavatappi is best) •Milk (enough to cover noodles) •Shredded cheese •Seasoning (garlic, nutmeg, salt and pepper) Place noodles and milk in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Boil on medium heat for 8-10 minutes until noodles are tender, stirring occasionally. Add cheese and simmer until the sauce is thickened, season to taste. Garlic shrimp lettuce wraps.

Homemade pizza.

2. POTATO WEDGES - Amanda Anderson •Four potatoes (any type besides Yukon will work •Olive oil •Seasoning (paprika, onion powder, garlic salt) Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Wash potatoes and cut into long wedges, but do not peel. Place oil, seasonings, and potatoes in a bag and shake to coat. Place on a foil-covered sheet pan and bake for 25-30 minutes. 3. POTATO CHICKEN AND RICE - Malia Mabray Chicken is one of the least expensive meats. Try buying a pack and freezing them until you are ready to use them. Putting them in the fridge in the morning means they will be thawed by dinner. •1 chicken breast (thawed and sliced into nugget sized pieces)


4. BARBECUE CHICKEN DINNER - Abby Mclinn •Vegetable oil •2 chicken breasts •Salt •1 cup frozen green beans •1 cup red potato wedges •6 oz. chicken gravy •1/4 cup barbeque sauce In a 12-inch non-stick skillet, heat oil over medium high heat. Add chicken and sprinkle with salt. Cook for 4 minutes, turning once, until browned. Add beans, potatoes, gravy and barbeque sauce, stir to coat and mix. Cover and cook for 5-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until beans and potatoes are tender and chicken is fully cooked. 5. INSTANT RAMEN STIR FRY - Maggie Erekson Sometimes it is fun to elevate common college meals and make them a little tastier. Adding spices or using different instructions can take ramen or mac and cheese to the next level. •Instant ramen pack •Stir fry vegetables (carrots, white or green onions, peppers) •Olive oil •Soy sauce •Seasonings (garlic, ginger, red pepper flakes, etc.) Cook ramen according to package directions and drain. Set aside the flavor pack. While the ramen is cooking, heat oil in a skillet and add chopped vegetables. Add

7. FRENCH TOAST CASSEROLE - Brianna Enright Meal prep is an easy way to have delicious meals throughout the week. Casseroles are a great option because it is easy to make a lot at once and save the leftovers. •6-8 slices of bread •10 eggs •3 cups milk •1/2 cup sugar •2 tsp. Vanilla extract •2 tsp. Cinnamon Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Tear bread into pieces and put in a greased nine-inch pan. Mix the rest of the ingredients together and pour over the bread. Bake for 30 minutes. 8. TACO SALAD - Kylie Hanson •Ground beef or turkey •Taco seasoning •Taco ingredients like salsa, black beans, avocado, cheese, and sour cream •Shredded lettuce Cook the meat with the taco seasoning and drain the fat. Top shredded lettuce with meat and desired toppings. Maggie Erekson is a freshman and first year writer for the Statesman. Other than school and writing, Maggie finds time to watch her favorite TV shows, go outside and eat lots of ice cream. —

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Declare Your Candidacy For Student Body Elections Declare by January 31

Learn more at


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Sticker activism at Utah State By Clarissa Casper LIFESTYLES STAFF WRITER


tudents at Utah State University have found a new way to communicate with one another — without speaking at all. Stickers have become a hot commodity at USU. Just one walk through the Hub in the Taggart Student Center would show many students with them on their personal items, such as their water bottles, laptops and notebooks. USU sophomore Lauren Payne places stickers on her water bottle from events she attends or local artists as a way of self-expression. Looking at them reminds her daily of what she loves and is passionate about. “It’s a way to always carry a small piece of me,” Payne said. Payne enjoys looking at the different stickers she sees around campus. She said it’s a way to get to know somebody before you even start a conversation. “It’s also a great conversation starter,” Payne said. “I have one from a band that I was a part of in high school. And it is one of the things that people ask about the most, which is something I don’t usually get to talk about.” More than anything, Payne describes decorating her water bottle with stickers as simply a fun thing to do. “It’s just such cute little happy way to express yourself,” Payne said. Hope Quick, a USU sophomore, started putting stickers on many of her belongings starting in high school as a way to personalize them. “It makes my things look cool,” Quick said. “I enjoy showing off the things that I like.” Quick believes students at USU who use stickers are using them to express themselves. The art of collecting is also a huge part of USU student’s interest in stickers. Maya Mackinnon — a USU junior with a minor in art — has always loved collecting affordable and unique pieces of art from places that she visits or local businesses. Mackinnon finds creating and selling stickers is one of the easiest ways an artist can get their work out there. The accessibility of art through stickers inspired Mackinnon to start making her own. “Once I realized that my art is sellable, I could see that there was no reason why I couldn’t sell stickers just like the ones I have always admired,” Mackinnon said. Mackinnon said she feels stickers — just like clothing — are used to communicate. She loves the many ways one can express themselves. She is drawn to simplistic, communicative stickers. “Personally, my stickers communicate travel I have done, activities I enjoy, and occasionally my political opinions,”

PHOTO BY Kate Smith

Stickers from various brands and organizations on student water bottles and laptops.

Mackinnon said. Mackinnon wanted her stickers to appeal to a lot of people, so many of her designs represent the state of Utah and general outdoor activities. She adds her own style, but tries to stick to simplistic designs that can communicate to anybody. Mackinnon first will sketch her stickers and then digitize them using Adobe Illustrator. She always uses vinyl for her stickers as it is weatherproof and the stickers can be used anywhere. You can check out her stickers at her Etsy shop, ArtShopMM. Stickers are particularly popular within USU’s College of Natural Resources. Jena Austin, a senior in NR, said outdoorsy people have a certain affinity to stickers. “They want to catalogue where they’ve visited,” Austin said. Austin collects stickers to show her artistic expression. “I’ll collect stickers for years, and then when I get a new water bottle I’ll take a few hours and arrange them according to the color and shapes that I like,” Austin said. “Like a collage. It appeals to the designer in me.”

Austin’s love for stickers started when she was little. She used to spend her birthday money on the 3D scrapbooking stickers that they sell at craft stores. “I would put them on cards, drawings, anything that I could hang on the wall,” Austin said. That love blossomed into making stickers of her own. Now Austin’s belongings — such as her water bottles, laptop, skateboard decks, the back of her phone, her mirror and even her field notebook — are covered in these unique and original stickers. Austin obtains her stickers from everywhere. “To be honest, I can’t walk into a coffee shop without buying one,” Austin said. “But I’ll also buy stickers from other artists, or at places I visit, like museums and visitor centers.” One time Austin was gifted a sticker by a local artist in Salt Lake City while she was playing her guitar on the street. Read the rest of this story at



the inversion is so bad in logan because of all the cars idling in the dutch bros line

Imagine lying to a statesman reporter… you know who you are



he Bold Foundation and has been working to end student debt since 2019. “The goal of our work is to eliminate student debt in the U.S.,” said Alex Salsberry, search engine optimization manager said. “It’s pretty obvious that student debt is a big issue and before being a company, finding that is a big need.” “The foundation awarded more than 300 scholarships in 2021 and is on track to award more than 1,000 scholarships in 2022,” said Dror Liebenthal, the co-founder and CEO. “Working with donors ranging from individuals to public companies, we’re the largest independent scholarship provider in the country.” is completely free for both students and donors to use. “The reason Bold is so cool and unique is that it’s 100% free for students to use. So, in terms of creating a profile and finding scholarships — it’s all free,” Salsberry said. “And they work really hard to keep it free.”


Students can sign up and match with scholarships they qualify for by answering some questions and displaying their academic, extracurricular, career and demographic background. “It was super easy to sign up, they just ask you questions about yourself. Along the way, you can answer questions and they tell you what scholarships you can apply for,” said Attie Mellman, a student at Utah State University. Once students navigate to the non-profit website and continue as an applicant to sign up, the algorithm matches students to scholarships they are more likely to qualify for based on the information they provided. “We look at the eligibility criteria and application volume for each one of 500-plus scholarships currently hosted and awarded exclusively on the platform, helping students pinpoint the opportunities best suited to them,” Liebenthal said. All of the scholarship goes directly from the donor to the student it is awarded to. There are no fees withheld. Donors, just like students, create a profile and then they pitch their scholarship idea. Within a few days later, a call will be set up with the donor as a pitch meeting. “It’s kind of hands off from the donor site because from there, the team will put together the landing page and everything else for the donor,” Salsberry said. “Then at that point, once the landing page is done and the scholarship is funded by the donor, it goes live.” Many other scholarship websites charge the donors a fee to publish their scholarships. The companies have many things they need to pay for, but at the cost of charging donors fees. The foundation has found a way to not have to do this. This is possible because of their partnering companies that they work closely with. This allows the non-profit to make money to continue helping students fight debt. Students can find a list of scholarships at scholarships. Keianah Weakland is a freshman considering studying journalism. Outside of writing for The Statesman, she enjoys traveling and hanging out with friends.


River Jarman is a senior studying sociology at USU. River enjoys going on road trips andwatching hockey. His undying dedication to all things new wave served as his inspiration for his show, Destination Unknown, which airs every Friday at 6 p.m. on Aggie Radio.

Destination Unknown Missing Persons

Love will Tear Us Apart Joy Division

The Perfect Kiss New Order

Work for Love Ministry

A Letter To Both Sides The Fixx





Slack should not be allowed to use the slack noise in commercials

just want to remind everyone that there is a Chili’s in Salt Lake City that is so good it convinced Tan France from Queer Eye to move to Utah

i will pass away if i don’t buy myself a treat every single day. boba tea… a tiny pastry… i need it to survive

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Ending student debt through scholarships on

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Virtual rally to save the GSL held just before 20 By Clarissa Casper LIFESTYLES STAFF WRITER


ore than 400 people joined a virtual rally Saturday afternoon to speak about the shrinking Great Salt Lake just before the 2022 legislative session. The event was originally planned to take place in person at the Utah State Capitol but, due to the rising numbers in coronavirus cases, the organizers of Save Our Great Salt Lake moved the proceedings to Zoom. The co-founder and executive director of Save Our Great Salt Lake, Denise Cartwright, said the Great Salt Lake hit a historic low this past summer. “It is drying up and leaving behind a toxic lake bed that’s on its way to becoming one of the largest dust emission sources in North America,” Cartwright said. According to Cartwright, ecosystem collapse at the Great Salt Lake is preventable, but so far Utah legislators have failed to take meaningful action. “We’re here to demand our elected officials prioritize water conservation,” Cartwright said.

A view of the Great Salt Lake in the spring of 2020.

Cartwright said she would be sending the recording of the Zoom to the legislators in the following week. Plans to flood elected officials’ mailboxes were made — and attendees of the rally were asked to fill out a Google form with their information and messages. The vice chairman of the Northwestern Band of the Shoshone Nation, Brad Parry, spoke about the importance of keeping balance with mother nature. “We need to become more climate adaptive,” Parry said. “We need to use less water in the population for things we don’t need.” The Shoshone Tribe has come to depend on what the Great Salt Lake provides for the ecosystem for over a thousand years and, according to Parry, if the lake continues to dry up it will drastically affect these communities. Working and lower class people will also face challenges as the lake continues to shrink. USU sophomore Cristina Chirvasa spoke about the loss of recreational opportunities and tourism. “The loss of these actually leads to job loss for those working in those industries,” Chirvasa said. Other industries — such as the brine, mineral and

ski industries — will lose jobs because of these losses, according to Chirvasa. “Without the lake, the quality of our snow will go down, and the ski and tourism industries will take a major hit,” Chirvasa said, “as will Utah’s economy.” According to Chirvasa, those of a lower socioeconomic status are also going to be disproportionately affected by the effects of air pollution, as the water retreats and exposes more sediment to the air. “The wind is going to carry it to the surrounding communities,” Chirvasa said, “potentially even as far as Cache Valley.” The lake holds toxic particles like arsenic and lead in its sediments and, according to Chirvasa, when these particles become airborne, they pose health risks to humans — such as cancer, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. “These conditions are going to be felt more seriously for those of lower socioeconomic status since their access to quality healthcare is limited,” Chirvasa said. Zach Frankel, the executive director of the Utah Rivers Council, mentioned dozens of bills have been introduced over the last two decades to the Utah

legislature to sav ter lobbyists. “They kill good they work for wa ing water.” Frankel is hope will have the et water lobbyists will be legislator Lake this legislat “It is our job to of our Utah legi as Utahns want t said. Many artists ha ing artwork feat Instagram page. Artist Nick Carp eared grebe, as that has the mos “Over half of Great Salt Lake on brine shrimp, here, they molt t

ve water, only to be defeated by wa-

d legislation,” Frankel said. “Because ater suppliers that make money sell-

eful there are some legislators who thical courage to stand up to these — though he acknowledged there rs who will not help the Great Salt tive session. o sort out that difference to demand islators the ethical courage that we to save the Great Salt Lake,” Frankel

ave contributed to this cause, creattured on Save Our Great Salt Lake’s . penter made a graphic design of an they are one of the species of bird st to lose from the lake receding. their population migrates to the every summer to gorge themselves ,” Carpenter said. “And once they’re their flight feathers.”

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022 legislative session

If conditions at the lake decline after these birds have arrived for the season, there could be a huge die off since they won’t be able to fly anywhere else, according to Carpenter. Carpenter finds humans have a similar relationship to the lake. “We are also grounded and can’t easily move our cities and infrastructure if the lake were to dry up and become a dust bowl,” Carpenter said. Author and activist Terry Tempest Williams attended and spoke at the rally. Williams wrote about the lake when it was at a record high, and continues her work when it has reached the opposite. “This is more than an ecological or political crisis,” Williams said. “It’s a spiritual one. The earth will survive us. We are the ones being baptized by fire.” Clarissa Casper is a sophomore studying journalism and aquatic science at Utah State University. She loves to hike, write poetry and watch whales. —


PHOTO BY Bailey Rigby

Page 10 - The Utah Statesman, January 24, 202

Get to know up and coming guard S Sean Bairstow has stepped into a starting role in the absence of Brock Miller

PHOTO BY Joseph F Myers Top: Sean Bairstow and his teammates celebrate a big play against Wyoming on Jan. 15; Right: Bairstow shoots the ball in a Dec. 2 game against Saint Mary’s. By Mark Greenwood SPORTS STAFF WRITER


unior guard Sean Bairstow is quickly making his impact felt for Utah State basketball in a starting role with the absence of Brock Miller over the last several games. In four starts this season, Bairstow is averaging 15.3 points per game, 4.8 rebounds per game and shooting 51% from the floor. The 6’ 8” 190-pound guard has a unique skillset that others on the team can’t replicate. Bairstow has a big enough frame to force his way into the paint for a basket and the quickness and length to beat opposing guards off the dribble. “Sean provides something a little bit different than Brock provides,” head coach Ryan Odom said. “He’s got size, he’s got physicality, he’s a strong driver, he’s an athlete in transition, and he’s become a much better shooter. You can’t just focus on the other guys and leave him open, he’s a good player.” Bairstow’s teammate and roommate, Max Shulga, thinks highly of the junior’s abilities. “I think that a lot of people think he’s just a typical athletic kid that just lives off of that, but he sees the court well, he’s a very big

guard, high IQ, and makes the right play almost every time,” Shulga said. “You can just rely on him when the ball is in his hands.” Hailing from Brisbane, Australia, Bairstow is one of six foreign basketball players for Utah State. The list includes Bairstow, Shulga, Zee Hamoda, Norbert Thelissen, Szymon Zapala and RJ Etyle-Rock. Bairstow, Zapala and Shulga live together in the same apartment along with junior center Trevin Dorius. Shulga, a sophomore guard from Kiev, Ukraine, and Bairstow have become quite close in their time living and playing together. “(Sean’s)funny, goofy, just a good person,” Shulga said. “He’s the only guy in our house that has a car, too, so he’ll give us a ride or give us the car to use whenever we need it. Just a positive person, a good guy.” Bairstow is close with all his roommates and spends time doing activities with them beyond basketball. “Playing Mario Kart, FIFA, anything where you’re kinda competitive, talking a bit of crap to each other,” Bairstow said. Video games and trash talk are a staple at the

see “Bairstow” PAGE 11

Ashley Cardozo, USU’s all-time assist leader, inks in deal with FC Nantes



ne of the most decorated athletes in USU Soccer history is going pro. Midfielder Ashley Cardozo, who finished her Aggie career with a school record 32 assists, announced last week she’s joining the French club FC Nantes. Signed until the end of the 2021-22 season, Cardozo will begin playing for the club immediately. In a conversation with FC Nantes, Cardozo shared her feelings about the move. “For me, it’s a dream come true,” she said in an interview translated from French to English. “I’ve always dreamed since I was young of being a professional footballer one day. To see it come true today, in this very good club that is FC Nantes , it’s fantastic. I’m already ready to get to work!” Cardozo earned All-Mountain West accolades all four years in Logan, while playing in 84 total matches. In the fall of 2021, under first year head coach Manny Martins, she led her team to a 13-6-3 record, including a 2-1 win over NCAA National runner-up BYU. Cardozo had a knack for showing up in the clutch, scoring a sixth-best 23 goals and a school record 13

game-winning goals for her career. Purhaps her biggest goal came in the 2021 Mountain West Quarterfinals, when scored from outside the box to beat Colorado State 1-0. Now, Cardozo turns her attention to the profession level. FC Nantes is currently the second-best team in the D2 Féminine level, and has an opportunity of getting promoted the the French top flight women’s league. “I really received a very warm welcome from my new teammates, the technical staff and in particular the coach, Mathieu Ricoul,” Cardozo said in the interview. “Everyone is very attentive to me. It’s the first time I’ve discovered France and even Europe. I already feel that my adaptation will go very well! “I think I can bring my style of play, my good mentality also to the team,” Cardozo added. “I want to be able to help them by being as decisive as possible, by scoring or delivering the last pass. What is also important, it’s being a good teammate, someone you can always rely on.” In the interview, Cardozo was also asked about the “I Believe” chant, that was popularized by USU. “Of course I know this song! It was obviously very present in my university, in all the disciplines represented. Everyone sings it and I am also very attached to it.” @jacobnielson12

Photo courtesy of FC Nantes USU standout midfielder Ashley Cardozo is now a professional in Europe.

“Bairstow” FROM PAGE 11 apartment. Bairstow claims to be the biggest trash talker and is the self-declared best gamer. “It’s not even a competition,” he said. Where Bairstow excels the most, though, is on the court. He played in 32 games his freshman year and 25 games his sophomore year, averaging 3.3 points per. Entering the season he was expected play in most games coming off the bench as an important role player. But then he had a setback. Suffering a pre-season wrist injury pushed back the start of his season by over three weeks and six games. “He’s a good player, we’ve always known that he’s a good player, and that’s why it was so unfortunate when he got injured early in the season in that closed scrimmage,” Odom says. “It was really right one of the last plays, he goes in for one of those dunks we’ve seen him make and gets tangled up and falls on his wrist.” Fortunately, Bairstow is back to 100%. “I feel like I’ve done the right things to put myself in a position to get and be healthy and coach has put me in a good position as well so kind of just rolling with it,” he said. In his first game back from the wrist injury, he scored eight points on 50% shooting in a 93-53 win over Carroll College. In his first six games of the year, he averaged just over seven points per game with a season high 11 points in two games. In the four games since he’s been starting, he’s had over 11 points in all four contests. No one close to Bairstow seems to be surprised by his recent success. According to Shulga, Bairstow is constantly looking for PHOTO BY Joseph F Myers guys to go work out and get extra shots despite having Bairstow is averaging 15.3 points per game since becoming a starter.

team practice for several hours every day. Bairstow’s hard work along with basketball ability and IQ has easily translated to recent success on the court. “I know I’ve put in the work and the hours to have this success and you know it started a long time ago so it’s really just coming to fruition,” Bairstow said. Miller is anticipated to be sidelined through the rest of January with a back injury, and Bairstow is expected to continue starting in his place. When Miller does return, what does that mean for Bairstow? In 13 games and 13 starts, Miller is averaging 8.8 points per game and 2.9 rebounds per game. During the time Bairstow has been starting both numbers are higher, but there’s one category Miller has a significant leg up on him: 3-point shooting. Bairstow is shooting just 8% from beyond the arc this year while Miller is shooting over 34% from. While Bairstow’s recent success makes the argument he should still start when Miller returns, the Aggies recent threepoint shooting woes immediately makes the counter argument for Miller to return to his previous role. “We’re not worried about that at this point. Right now, our focus is on the team and our next opponent,” Odom says about the two. “Our main focus is let’s get Brock [Miller] healthy and get him back out there. We’re not focused on who starts, who comes off the bench, it’s all about Utah State and us doing our best to win.” @md_greenwood

Page 11 - The Utah Statesman, January 24, 2022

Soccer star signs with French club

Page 12 - The Utah Statesman, January 24, 202


Struggling with school is normal and so is getting help

GRAPHIC BY Keith Wilson

A long time ago, a couple states away in a kindergarten classroom, I struggled with basic school tasks. I remember it vividly. Addition and subtraction was confusing. When I was spelling, it was hard to remember what letters to use or how to arrange them properly. Sitting still or waiting in line made me anxious. A lot of those struggles I experienced as a child in kindergarten are extremely similar to the struggles I experience at college now as an adult. Kindergarten me and adult me both have ADHD. For that reason, my relationship with school has always been a bit complicated. The reason it’s complicated is because my attention not only fizzles on and off, like a light bulb struggling to stay alive, but my ability to focus and even process information doesn’t always work. Many times, even though I’m actively trying to focus, things people say to me won’t “stick.” I have to constantly ask questions before I can understand basic concepts. Oftentimes people become frustrated with me or judge my ability to perform tasks simply because I want to make sure I’m doing something correctly. So you can understand why going to college has been quite challenging. However, it’s also been really healthy for me, and the reason it’s been so healthy is because USU has something called the Disability Resource Center, or the DRC. It’s where I was officially diagnosed with ADHD, something I had been wondering about for years, but couldn’t pursue until I found resources here on campus through the center.

The staff there work as advocates and mediators for students with mental and physical disabilities. They can arrange a variety of accommodations so that Aggies can access their learning material and classes more fully. The consultant who I work with there is named Karma Black and she agreed to do an interview with me over email. One of the first things I asked her is what sort of accommodations the center can provide students. She explained how consultants meet with students one on one and how accommodations are individualized depending on what obstacles are preventing students from participating in their classes. “They may ask for documentation to understand the student’s limitations. Accommodations are directly related to the limitations and provide students with equal access to participation in USU courses,” Black said. She said some common examples are exam accommodations, such as extra time or distraction reduced space and classroom accommodations, such as captioning, accessible furniture or permission to record lectures. Not sure whether you have a disability but want to find out? They can also help with that, but you have to make the decision to come in and meet with them first. “The DRC is a good place to start if you are struggling in a class,” Black said. “You may not need accommodations, but you may learn about other services and resources on campus that can help.” The DRC works closely with several specialists on

campus from both the Counseling and Psychological Services and the Student Health Center. Whether you’re navigating challenges you’ve had for a long time or are now just starting to explore, the center wants to be a resource for you, as well as connect you to other resources that can help you move forward with your education and wellbeing. Wellbeing, by the way, isn’t something we should feel ashamed about. Neither should our health or our personal development be cause for embarrassment. Black said some common reasons students decided not to come is they often thought their diagnoses wouldn’t count as a disability. She also said students didn’t want others to think that they were getting any special privileges or unfair advantages. The last one she told me was particularly saddening: “I didn’t want my classmates to know I have a disability.” We need to do a better job, as members of our friend groups and families, to normalize struggling with school, identifying what those struggles are and utilizing resources to overcome challenges. We can normalize resources like the DRC by listening to others’ stories, validating their experiences and encouraging them to take advantage of all the help that’s available to them. The DRC shouldn’t be something we resign ourselves to, like a sentencing after we’ve broken a law. We should all scream from the that everyone goes through hard things and everyone needs help with them. Getting and giving help is a basic — and wonderful — function of communities we should practice together. So if someone you know is having difficulties with school, let them know about the DRC. Not only is it good to include people with disabilities in academia, we desperately need them because of their perspectives and unique experiences. We can gain so much from people of all backgrounds and abilities and we can make our university more inclusive by ending the stigma surrounding students accessing school resources. Read the rest of this story at Natalie Hawes was born in Eugene, OR and found her way through the mountains to attend USU. She’s a liberal arts senior and hopes to become a published poet and film critic someday. —

As modern America becomes more adamant on censoring media with any vulgar language, casual stereotypes (Apu on the Simpsons) and anything containing controversial opinions (YouTube demonetization), comedy has been losing its charm and impact. Film has become more progressive in the past decade about the removal of negative depictions and stereotypes in their products. For instance, according to the Hollywood Reporter, certain episodes of “The Muppet Show” now have disclaimers cautioning views about “negative depictions and/or mistreatment of people or cultures.” The show was produced in a time where such depictions were appropriate. Now, awareness on the discrimination has increased, making it inappropriate in our modern day. However, it remains available for streaming with precautionary messages. Other films such as “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” are also under scrutiny from a 21st century perspective because of the racial slurs towards Japanese culture made for comedic purposes. Precautionary messages should be added, but the film should not be banned or removed. This is an approach that should be taken to past and previous films, including that of works of comedy. The type of comedy I am talking about is standup comedians and movie/television productions. Comedy should not be removed or purged for what is interpreted as but instead include cautionaries as to not offend those that do not wish to watch such material. When asked if censorship was socially progressive or retroactive, sophomore Brynn Francis had much to say. As an acting major at Utah State University, she sees what is considered appropriate or not throughout her history in theater. “Pure censorship is retroactive,” she said, “What is progressive is awareness. Human nature, history and issues that are currently happening are acknowledge in comedy. Material that could be considered traumatic should be given trigger warnings like we do for dark comedies in plays.” Sydney Lehenbauer, a junior history major at USU, when asked the same question, answered with historical context. Lehenbauer said in famous Shakespeare plays, he would make jokes about higher wealthy individuals and real-life political figures, in his community in this play. He would change the names of course, but everyone watching knew who he was talking about. This in and of itself is a political stance, looking at those who believe there are superior and taking them down. We wouldn’t rid the world of Shakespeare for

its use comedy as commentary on the upper class. Lehenbauer also said comedy “releases the tension on certain aspects of life not openly talked about: race, the economy, current events. Take the 2020 elections for instance. Jokes made about either candidate are found funny by both sides of the political spectrum. Your stance doesn’t matter for it to be funny. Comedy is the stuff you’re not supposed to laugh at.” In 2017, a documentary film titled “The Problem is Apu” by Hari Kondabolu discussed the negative and racial stereotypes about the Simpsons character Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, an Indian grocery store worker. He made several good points about how Apu was one

it, but you can’t take the comedians right away to say those jokes. It’s your choice to be offended, even your right. But it also their right to offend you. If you start to remove certain aspects of comedy, start to interpret what should and should not be aired you come to a controlling aspect of media. Who gets to decide was is appropriate or not? YouTube’s demonetization believes it can. YouTube decides what is advertiser-friendly content — that is content that the creator on YouTube can make a profit off. Sensitive events (such as negative traumatic events) and controversial issues fall into the no category. While it is ultimately YouTube right as a private organization to make that decision, it is the fact that swearing and jokes in certain topics gain profit. Only certain comedy is deemed appropriate now, as this was not always YouTube’s stance on the matter. Comedy is subjective. Comedy is full of quips towards strategies in the economy and coronavirus, to making jokes about different types of ethnicities, gender, sexuality and life trauma. Comedy is also complicated. What is said needs to be contextualized, both to the time and current pollical climate. Comedy is not meant to be censored — by censoring it loses its charm. Making jokes about the negative traumatic events is a way for comedians to relate to their audience and relieve the tension. Jo Koy making jokes about Filipino stereotypes as a Filipino makes the jokes relatable in the audience of the same ethnicity, makes the stereotypes GRAPHIC BY Keith Wilson more like common ground. The charm of his comedy, the relatability, would be lost of the only Indian characters on television when he if it were censored. was young, but was constantly being stereotyped by Chris Rock said he will not perform at colleges behis actions, family and other characteristics. cause of political correctness in modern undergraduIn the film, Kondabolu quoted his mother saying, ate culture. “You can criticize something you love because you ex“This is not as much fun as it used to be,” Rock said. pect more from it.” Jerry Seinfeld said he wouldn’t either. Shows like the Simpson should not be canceled, The sensitive nature towards comedy is acceptable nor should previous episode be removed from the air. and, in many ways, even welcomed but not to the The shows depiction does not incite violence (which effect of removing the comedic piece altogether. is grounds for removal or cancelation), but it does The Huffpost said it best: “You cannot cater to everyincite narrowmindedness and discrimination against one, and everyone is offended by something.” Indian heritage. Sara Prettyman is a MarylandIt is the station’s right for the show to go on as is born-and-raised sophomore majust as much of a right as it is for Kondabolu, a viewjoring in applied mathematics. She er, to create this documentary and voice is concerns loves drawing, running against it. and reading. Freedom of speech works both ways in the world of censorship. It means if you believe the material — should be censored you can say you don’t agree with

Page 13 - The Utah Statesman, January 24, 2022

Opinion: Comedy is losing its charm with censorship

Page 14 - The Utah Statesman, January 24, 202

Michael Steven Sweeney 1958–2022

Michael Steven “Mike” Sweeney, emeritus professor of journalism at Ohio University and author of 25 academic and popular books, died on January 15, 2022, at his home in Athens, Ohio. He was 63. Mike was a cross between a Renaissance man and, in his own considered opinion, a Labrador retriever. The Renaissance man was an inevitability, the natural maturation of a boy who collected coins, worked crossword puzzles, loved Impressionist painting, and read everything from The Guinness Book of Records and agate sports type to Sherlock Holmes mysteries and Civil War histories. The Labrador gene might explain why Mike’s one sporting endeavor in high school required a neon yellow ball and a doubles partner, not to mention why his favorite trivia team name, “I am Smartacus,” sounds like something Astro Jetson might say. Mike’s dog-like enthusiasm, curiosity, loyalty, and determination not only proved invaluable in his career as journalist, historian, author, and educator, but made him a lifelong friend to just about everyone he met. Mike was born November 6, 1958 in Madison, Wis., to Donnis and Betty Jean (Billings) Sweeney. He was the youngest of four sons, each of whom would top out one inch taller than the last. Like his brothers, Mike received the distinctive Billings nose, the dimpled Sweeney chin, and his high school’s valedictorian award, fulfilling Betty’s desire for a complete set. In the Sweeney home, hard work and self-reliance were expected and encouraged by Don and Betty’s support and Betty’s all-American cooking. This upbringing instilled confidence and an optimism that would lead Mike to take several “leaps of faith” throughout his life. Inspired by Watergate and his experiences delivering the Washington Star on the University of Maryland campus during the Vietnam War, Mike zeroed in on a career in journalism while still in junior high. At Lincoln Northeast (NE) High School, he edited the school newspaper. Later, while majoring in journalism at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, he worked for the Sports Information Department and took photos for the Nebraska Press Association, in addition to writing and editing for the Daily Nebraskan. It was also at UN-L, in a freshman English class, that Mike met Carolyn Neal, an advertising and English major. Even at dating, Mike was smart. He picked the last week of spring semester to invite Carolyn to a performance of “The Merry Wives of Windsor,” figuring that if the date didn’t go well, at least he wouldn’t be forced to see her in class any time soon. It went well. In 1980, Mike and Carolyn survived the Communications Law class taught by Carolyn’s father, Jim Neal, and subsequently were graduated, married in Lincoln, Neb., and moved to Missouri, where Mike reported for the Springfield Daily News, at which he’d interned the year before. While Carolyn wrote copy for a local ad agency and radio station, Mike honed his reporting and writing skills. He also learned to steer clear of riverbanks when canoeing. Snakes in Trees: 1. Husband and Wife in Water: 0. A year later, despite Springfield’s having the best fast-food cashew chicken in America and great bar nights listening to The Morells, Mike had wearied of covering 23 Southwest Missouri counties in an unreliable, black Dodge Dart Swing-

er with no AC and no spare tire. Hence, the couple took their first leap of faith. They pointed that car south by southwest and drove it to Fort Worth, Tex., where they welcomed a son, David, in 1984. At the Star-Telegram, Mike soon found his newspaper niche was in editing. From 1981 through 1993, Mike served as features editor, copy editor, and copy desk chief. The Headliners Club of Austin named Mike Texas’s Headline Writer of the Year in 1987. That was the year of this hed gem: “Spies privy to hush-hush flush: New tools of trade don’t leave enough to the imagination” about a new listening device that picked up conversations from vibrations in toilet water. Then, lo and behold, as Mike was wont to say, the teaching bug bit. A few guest lectures at a local community college, and Mike knew beyond doubt he was born to teach. The road to accomplishing that dream was literally the stretch of I-35 connecting Fort Worth to Denton. Starting in 1989, Mike commuted that route two evenings a week after work. In 1991, he received his master’s at the University of North Texas and was named the journalism department’s top graduate student. The summer of 1993 brought the family to the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University for Mike’s PhD work. During his final academic year (1995–1996), Mike served as advisor to The Post, Ohio University’s student-run newspaper. In spring 1996, he received his degree and the school’s outstanding PhD student award. Next stop after the hills of Athens were the mountains of Logan, Utah. At Utah State’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication, Mike taught undergraduates, edited and advised the students’ Hard News Café website for 9 years, and headed the department from 2005 through 2009. And, lo and behold, he launched a second career in his “spare” time. Once again working late nights after long days, Mike wrote numerous books for National Geographic—among them God Grew Tired of Us, for which he spent several days interviewing Lost Boy of Sudan John Bul Dau, and Return to Titanic, for which he spent 11 days aboard the research vessel the Ron Brown with co-author and discoverer of Titanic shipwreck Robert Ballard. Mike’s favorite story from his time in the North Atlantic was when everyone aboard the Ron Brown gathered to watch the first pictures sent up via the expedition’s remotely operated vehicle, Hercules. All was silent. Mike, who believed in having music for every occasion, began humming part of “Ride of the Valkyries.” With that bit of prompting, Mike later recalled, “all these big-brained scientists” together sang, “Kill the Wabbit, Kill the Wabbit, Kill the Wabbit” à la Elmer Fudd in Bugs Bunny’s “What’s Opera, Doc” episode. Mike loved it when people connected with each other like that. In 2007, Mike wrote a personal favorite, Last Unspoiled Place: Utah’s Logan Canyon, a book he himself pitched to the Geographic simply out of love for the 41-mile-long canyon that was now practically his backyard. His book Secrets of Victory: The Office of Censorship and The American Press and Radio in World War II was named 2002 Book of the Year by the American Journalism Historians Association. Mike was an optimistic problem-solver and peacekeeper. As such, he was tapped for leadership positions at church as well as at work. At Logan’s only Presbyterian church, he headed session, the governing body of the church, as well as the committee overseeing a major building renovation. During his time, session was twice tasked with nominating a pastor for approval by the congregation. Participating in such lasting church work brought immense satisfaction to Mike, whose Facebook profile would later proclaim “awed by the wisdom and heart of a certain Jewish carpenter.” Being a religious man did not preclude Mike’s showing off his rapid-fire and sometimes blue or simply question-

able-given-the-audience sense of humor. Case in point: While guest lecturing undergrads at Brigham Young University, Mike wanted the class to fully understand the importance of choosing a research topic you love, because “you’re going to wake up to it day in and day out for a long time.” Pause. Sweeney neurons fire. Devil appears on one shoulder. Angel appears on the other. Angel loses. “It’s almost like having a second wife, a concept I believe you’re all familiar with.” Collective intake of breath. Sweeney thought bubble: “I’m so screwed.” Then, the welcome explosion of student laughter. Score: Luck of the Irish: 1. Latter-Day Saints with Senses of Humor: 1. A total win-win. Despite his many hours at work, Mike managed time for family—occasionally taking one for the team, as when he dislocated a disk while leading a game of “Simon Says” at David’s 7th birthday party. He taught David chess in elementary school and golf in junior high. He loved not only taking the family to see 1993 Texas Rangers in person but bragging that, when young David yelled “Hit a homer, Raffy,” Rafael Palmeiro hit a homer on the next pitch. He introduced David to the music of the Beatles, the B-52’s, Weird Al, Meatloaf, and Jimi Hendrix and got Cake, Phish, and Jason Isbell in return. Upon learning that his grandsons knew all the lyrics to “Love Shack,” he grinned and nodded as if to say, “My work here is done.” Mike introduced David to Tolkien at age 7. When asked which writers David introduced him to, Mike said Dostoevsky, “but it didn’t take.” Mike was especially proud when, as a member of the Utah State Symphony Orchestra, David played the Tuba Mirum trombone solo of Mozart’s Requiem at Abravanel Hall in Salt Lake City. On July 4, 2009, empty nesters Mike and Carolyn returned to Athens. Besides teaching, Mike served as associate director for Graduate Studies at the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism and editor of Journalism History. Mike loved nothing so much as helping grad students succeed, even going so far as to recommend schools other than OU if he thought they better matched a prospect’s interests. In remembrances of Mike, many students have said they chose Scripps because of him. After his cancer diagnosis in 2013, Mike took up painting to take his mind off his illness. He was prolific with pastels and loved giving away paintings to friends and students. Nothing pleased him more than to later see his gifts on their recipients’ Facebook pages. He continued to teach as long as he could and lived his motto of “squeeze the juice out of every day.” In 2018, he received the university’s Outstanding Graduate Faculty Award. As recipient, he had the honor of speaking at the Graduate Commencement ceremony in the spring of 2019. He delighted in leading a call and response in the style of Bob Dylan – “You’re gonna have to serve somebody!” – and affirmed Dylan’s message in his closing remarks. “It’s not the quantity of life that matters,” he said. “All life is too short. It’s the quality! Find a way to make your life count for others and it will count for you.” Mike was predeceased by his parents, Donnis and Betty Sweeney. Survivors include Carolyn (Neal) Sweeney, his wife of 41 years, son David (Angela) Sweeney of Moorhead, MN, grandsons Jack and Milo, brothers Orval (Suzanne) Sweeney of Williamsburg, VA, Ronald Sweeney of Lakewood, CO, and William Richard “Rick” (Elise) Sweeney of Lovettsville, VA, world’s best yorkie-beagle Fiddich, and grand-dog Khaleesi. An online memorial service to celebrate Mike’s life will be announced later. A podcast of several conversations with Mike can be found at In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Journalism Historians Association Graduate Student Convention Travel Fund in honor of Michael S. Sweeney.

Page 15 - The Utah Statesman, January 24, 2022 CARTOON BY Keith Wilson

Last week’s solution:

Sudoku puzzles are provided by

PHOTOS BY Kate Smith

Page 16 - The Utah Statesman, January 24, 202