SPRING SUMMIT 2003 - News Of Note


Stephen McGary

Glenn Embree

Troy Spratling

Michael Groesbeck

Linda Miller

Greg Cameron

Adrian Baird

Brian Tonks

Larry Thurgood

Brent Strong

Volunteers from BYU–Idaho helped assemble a cast of the nation’s largest and most complete Tyrannosaurus rex. The Museum of Idaho located in Idaho Falls is showcasing the T-rex, dubbed “Sue,” for a limited exhibition from February through May. The museum’s request for assistance in assembling the exhibit came through the Department of Geology at BYU–Idaho to Forest Gahn, a new geology instructor. Geology students were willing to sacrifice their schedules to help assemble the dinosaur. Gahn says, “It is the only chance many of these students will ever have to be able to put together a dinosaur, and there is no dinosaur more famous than Sue.” The project improves understanding. Gahn expects students to have future chances to work with the museum and even anticipates that some may have internship opportunities.

Changes in leadership took place in January 2003. Stephen McGary is serving as the dean in the College of Agricultural Sciences. McGary has been teaching at BYU–Idaho since 1994. The associate dean will continue to be Lynn Perkes, who teaches health sciences.
      In the College of Physical Sciences and Engineering, Glenn Embree is the new dean, and Troy Spratling is the associate dean. Embree has taught geology at BYU–Idaho since 1969. Spratling has taught in the automotive area at BYU–Idaho since 1999.
      Changes have also been made in several department chairs. Michael Groesbeck is the new Department of Biology chair. Groesbeck has been teaching at BYU–Idaho for 11 years. The chair of the Department of Home and Family Education has been changed to Linda Miller. Miller started teaching at BYU–Idaho in 1978.
      The Department of Computer Engineering and Technology has combined with the Department of Computer Science to create the new Department of Computer Science and Engineering. Greg Cameron, a math and computer science instructor since 1993, seves as chair.
      Adrian Baird is the new chair of the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Technology. Baird has been teaching at BYU–Idaho for 13 years. The new chair of the Department of Physics is Brian Tonks. Tonks graduated from Ricks College in 1979 and has been teaching at BYU–Idaho since 1993. The new Department of Religious Education chair is Larry Thurgood, who has been at BYU–Idaho since 1998. Brent Strong is the new chair of the Department of Foreign Language. Strong has taught German at BYU–Idaho since 1989.

Allen Hackworth, Norman Gage, William Barnhill, David Allen, and Jerry Glenn retired as of December 31, 2002. Steve Hansen and Gary Pearson will both retire after the first summer term 2003.

As a student at Ricks College in 1973, Leon Parson painted a portrait of President Harold B. Lee that was later used on the cover of a devotional talk President Lee delivered at the college. Years later, Parson, now a member of the Department of Art faculty at BYU–Idaho, was asked to paint a portrait of President Ezra Taft Benson. Then last summer, President David A. Bednar asked Parson to paint a portrait of President Gordon B. Hinckley, is now in the main foyer of the building named in his honor.
      The 30- by 42-inch portrait was unveiled at the devotional luncheon held Oct. 22, the same day of the dedication of the new Gordon B. Hinckley Building. “It is a tremendous honor to have been asked to paint the Prophet. It’s definitely a matter of prayer, and I was quite conscious in the process of painting it of additional help—of unseen hands—as well as in securing things and ideas,” Parson says. “On top of that, to have the privilege, honor, and blessing of being in the middle of this unfolding has been a truly humbling and, at the same time, exhilarating, experience.”

BYU–Idaho students who have polished their skills in the performing arts will soon be on tour. Folk Dance USA will travel April 29-May 15 to Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, and Nebraska. Sound Alliance & Vocal Union will be in northern Idaho, British Columbia, Alberta, and Montana April 28-May 10. Chamber Orchestra will tour April 29-May 8 in Montana, Washington, and Idaho. Performance tours are approved by area presidencies and support the Church’s missionary efforts. Tours are subject to change due to world conditions. Dance Alliance’s tour to Scotland and England has been canceled. For details and the latest updates on tour schedules, please visit www.byui.edu/pr/performinggroups.

In January EDS, a global services company, gave BYU–Idaho a gift that was recorded as the largest in the school’s history. EDS, headquartered in Plano, Texas, will add 200 seats of Solid Edge® software and 200 seats of Unigraphics® software from its product life cycle management line, which will provide enhanced design programs to the university.
      Adrian Baird, chairman of the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Technology, said, “The use of EDS products will greatly benefit our graduates as well as their future employers. This will be of great benefit to the entire campus, not just the engineering and technology areas.”

For details on above stories and other news highlights, please visit the Web site: www.byui.edu/news.