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18 December 2010 By: Lindsey Bush at the Post Register
Brigham Young University-Idaho’s four-year long construction project finally is complete.
The university showed off more than 675,000 square feet of additions and renovations in a dedication ceremony Friday morning.
BYU-Idaho spokesman Andy Cargal said about 12,000 people attended the unveiling of the new BYU-Idaho Center and the remodeled Hyrum Manwaring Student Center.
President Henry B. Eyring, the First Counselor in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ First Presidency, offered the buildings’ dedicatory prayer.
He expressed gratitude for the BYU-Idaho staff, building architects and “prophetic council” that directed the university’s expansion.
“The reason they dedicate (the buildings) is because they were built with the Lord’s money,” junior Bryan Baker said. “It’s dedicated to him.”
Elders Russell M. Nelson and David A. Bednar, members of the church’s Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, also attended the event.
Bednar encouraged students and community members to express gratitude and humility for their blessings.
“Please have a grateful heart,” he said.
He recounted the advice he gave at the groundbreaking in 2006. Bednar warned students, faculty and community members to avoid arrogance and prideful thinking. He added that through gratitude and obedience the “university will shine forth as a beacon of righteousness.”
BYU-Idaho students and other LDS church members at the event were excited to hear the messages offered by the church’s leaders.
“It’s cool that (the church leaders) care about us and they come to see this campus,” junior Justin Schenk said. “It’s important to know that they care about our education.”
The BYU-Idaho Center provides a multipurpose area for recreation as well as an adequate gathering place for the university’s students and faculty.
“It allows all the students to be in one place at one time,” Schenk said. “It’ll be a lot easier to hold things like devotional and special events.”
Today, BYU-Idaho will hold its first graduation service in the new facility.
Features writer Lindsey Bush can be reached at 542-6762. Comment on this story at Post Talk at www.postregister.com/posttalk.
Source: Andy Cargal, BYU-Idaho spokesman