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Alumni Report

Finals Survival Kits: A Spell of Relief

A boy and a girl admire at their finals survival kit.

Finals Survival Kits can brighten students’ stressful days at the end of a semester. Photo by Bradley Slade.

For the stressed-out student, it’s a given—every semester brings final exams. Relief is available through Finals Survival Kits, a BYU Student Alumni Association (SAA) program now in its 20th year. In 2004 a team of volunteers assembled and delivered more than 400 kits. “Those who received the kits were always surprised,” says Troy M. Simpson (’06), program administrator.

“The kits serve as a poignant reminder that someone loves and supports you from back home. It provides a little lift to get you to the end,” says Julianna Redd (’07), a Student Alumni Association vice president. The kits are packed with gifts and treats, including a BYU fleece blanket, a mug, fruit, mints, popcorn, Pop-Tarts, cookies, cheese and crackers, granola bars, and more. Those who order the kits have the option of writing a personal message. “I received my kit two years ago, and I can’t bring myself to throw the box away,” Redd says.

“It was nice to know that someone cared during a stressful time,” says Kasie Rae Simonds (’08), a prenursing major, who received a kit in 2004.

web: Finals Survival Kits can be ordered for $30 at

info: Troy Simpson, 801-422-7621 or

Blue and Red Compete in Food Drive

BYU and Utah might fight it out each year on the football field, but that is merely one battle for bragging rights between the two universities. Students and alumni from both the red and the blue also compete annually in the fall food fight, an annual drive that culminates at the football game.

From Nov. 5 to 19, students, alumni, and friends of both universities will be able to contribute food and money to the needy through the school of their choice. Monetary donations are especially appreciated because, according to the Utah County United Way, a $5 donation translates into about $130 of food (to cover transportation costs for already-donated food). BYU fans will be able to make $1 donations by buying Y-cards at the BYU Bookstore. Food bins will also be set up across campus and at any Utah County Del Taco.

“This friendly rivalry is really a win-win for all of us,” says Troy M. Simpson (’06), program administrator. “Our efforts make a real difference for the region’s food banks.”

info: Troy Simpson, 801-422-7621 or