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Andrew B. Christenson became principal in 1914. The next year, the academy made the transition to higher education under his direction. He oversaw the laying of the cornerstone for a new gymnasium building that stood for many years near the site where the Eliza R. Snow Center for the Performing Arts currently stands. In 1917 the academy received state certification so that its graduates could teach in Idaho. The same year, Principal Christenson was replaced by George S. Romney.