July 17, 2017
Writer: Phillip Price
President Henry J. Eyring and Sister Kelly Eyring's first student Q&A forum on July 6 brought the students and newly called president and his wife together in an informal setting to address common student concerns.
Following the meeting, students interviewed, said the Eyrings created an atmosphere where they felt comfortable because of the couple's ability to connect so well with the students.
"It is interesting to see President and Sister Eyring-when they think about their responses and how they're going to answer those questions-how well they can relate to the students because they've gone through the same stuff," said Benjamin Craig, student curator of the event. "I think that's what has made them very approachable, very warm and friendly. They have really meaningful and helpful insight because they've been in our shoes before, which I think is something you wouldn't expect typically from a university president."
The president addressed one student who asked if her educational path was one he would consider to bring her success.
"What is success?" the president responded. "Success is getting your errand from the Lord and pursuing it. And if that errand leads you to graduate school and you go with the intent of serving the Lord in that way, you will be successful. But the world's definition of success has got to be looked at very carefully."
"Most of the education you'll get in your life," he continued, "even if you go to graduate school, will occur in your daily work. You will learn as much as a mother or a father or as a home teacher or as a Sunday school teacher, over the course of your life, as you'll learn in institutions of higher education." This response comforted student attendees at the Q&A and gave them novel insight on where their focus should be in their educational and career pursuits, according to student Matthew Hale.
"I liked what he said about success," Hale said. "The world defines success by more money, more power. He said success is really getting your errand from the Lord and executing it effectively. That's one reason why I love BYU-Idaho, because the emphasis is on serving the Lord and what His plan is for you, not just how you can become the best in whatever field you choose."
According to Craig, the questions asked by students were maturely developed and contributed to the inspirational experience for student attendees.
"I was impressed with the questions. It was refreshing to see how many students are thinking ahead. Honestly, that's heartwarming that the spirit here on this campus has helped students to guide them to seek who they want to be in their lives," Craig said.
In his concluding remarks, the president shared how important it is to stay close to Heavenly Father.
"Know that Heavenly Father is near you, don't ever doubt that. Reach out and rely upon Him and He will guide your footsteps," Eyring said.
Student Johnny Iverson expressed his gratitude for the thoughts the president and his wife shared with students.
"The responses were not only satisfying for the question, but they were spiritually surrounded," Iverson said. "They were very focused on the gospel, where true joy actually comes from and where our true power is, and that's with the Lord."