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College Buzz


TESOL Required: The elementary education program has been restructured to prepare students for K–6 licensure rather than grades 1–8. In addition, elementary ed majors must now complete the Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) minor.

Engineering and Technology

4718Musical Engineers: A class of electrical engineering (EE) students built a laser transmitter to beam songs like “Party Rock Anthem” to speakers up to 20 feet away.EE professors Aaron Hawkins and Stephen M. Schultz (BS ’92) cotaught the class.

Family, Home, and Social Sciences

Moms and Blogs: For new moms, the blogosphere is a good place to be. A BYU study based on research with 157 first-time mothers found that blogging contributed to increased feelings of support, which spilled over into lower parenting stress and lower marital conflict. Former student Brandon T. McDaniel (BS ’10) was the lead author of the study, which was published in the Maternal and Child Health Journal.

Fine Arts and Communications

Showing Off: The BYU AdLab held its first recruiting fair at Sundance Resort in January, showcasing 60 students’ skills for 
visitors from Wieden+Kennedy, the Richards Group, and other top U.S. advertising agencies.


Shalom, Students: The BYU Jerusalem Center has reinstated its Intensive Hebrew Study program—now with all Hebrew classes taught by native-Israeli faculty. The program was last offered in 2000, the year the center halted all of its study abroad offerings.

Kennedy Center

4719Model Ministers: In February BYU’s Model European Union (MEU) team claimed two Outstanding Minister of Agriculture awards—and four honorable mentions—at the 2012 MEU conference held at the University of Washington.

Law School

Supreme Court TV: Should video cameras be allowed in the Supreme Court? BYU invited prominent Supreme Court journalists from outlets like the New York Times and the National Law Review to a symposium to weigh in. The court will hear arguments on national health care this year, and many say the public should be able to listen. “This is a First Amendment issue, in my mind,” says SCOTUSblog journalist Lyle Denniston.

Life Sciences

4720Bean Changes: Biology professor Leigh A. Johnson (BS ’91) is now associate director for research and collections at the Monte L. Bean Life Science Museum. The museum is also growing, beginning construction this summer to add 30,000 square feet. The new space will feature an exhibit of birds and bird art from the collection of President Boyd K. Packer.

Marriott School

Avatars in Love: Online role-playing games have a positive effect on a marriage when both husband and wife play—even more so when interacting with each other’s online avatars—according to a new BYU study published in the Journal of Leisure Research. However, when only one spouse is a gamer, marital satisfaction decreases. Recreation management grad student Michelle Elton Ahlstrom (BS ’01) was the study’s lead author.


472160-Year Streak: The College of Nursing celebrated its 60th anniversary with a daylong conference and a new book, Learning the Healer’s Art, a 242-page history of nursing at BYU written by former dean Elaine Sorenson Marshall. For more information on or to purchase the book, visit

Physical and Mathematical Sciences

Moving Animation: BYU’s Center for Animation is moving to the Talmage Building to be closer to the Computer Science Department. It’s a move BYU’s mentors at Pixar and DreamWorks are excited about, as computer science is integral to the industry. A new animation lab and theater will also be constructed in the Talmage Building.

Religious Education

New Director: Come spring term 2012, ancient scripture professor Dana M. Pike (BS ’78), a former editor on the internationally acclaimed Dead Sea Scrolls project, will take over as Religious Studies Center publications director.