Attending Eduacation Week sometimes no walk in the park


    By Bettijo B. Hirschi

    Before thousands of church members can enjoy Education Week, dozens of church education employees work and plan for almost a full year.

    The planning for the next year begins as soon as Education Week ends, said Neil Carlile, director of Church Educational Systems continuing education programs.

    “After the program takes place in August, we read through the suggestions so we can decide what to incorporate into the next year’s program,” Carlile said.

    Carlile then begins looking for teachers for the classes, he said.

    The faculty for Education Week are not just BYU professors, Carlile said.

    The teachers are selected based on their abilities and specialties, he said.

    Carlile said he receives proposals from prospective teachers who have ideas for classes they would like to teach.

    These proposals are reviewed and compared to the ideas received from participants, Carlile said.

    Education Week planners try to offer a wide-range of topics, not necessarily exclusive to Church topics, said Duane Hiatt, CES director of editorial and media production.

    “The topics range from how to golf to how to run your family history,” he said.

    Hiatt will teach a series on Abraham Lincoln, Porter Rockwell, J. Golden Kimball and Joseph Smith at Education Week this year.

    Hiatt is one of approximately 200 faculty teaching this year, Carlile said.

    He also said this will be the first Education Week for 20 of the teachers.

    Everyone who teaches at Education Week must be cleared by the Board of Trustees, Carlile said.

    All the class topics must also be approved by Church Correlations of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he said.

    In November and December, Carlile sets the program and gets all the clearances, he said.

    After the holidays and once Carlile receives the necessary clearances, he invites the faculty to teach at education week.

    He said they continue this invitation process until they get 180 to 200 faculty to teach about 1,000 classes offered during Education Week.

    Carlile said he then starts putting together the class schedule, and in February and March, he begins scheduling rooms, Carlile said.

    Once the class schedule and rooms are set, Carlile said, he sends out contracts to the faculty to confirm arrangements.

    The faculty are paid for teaching at Education Week, Carlile said.

    But it is just a “modest honorarium,” he said. “It is very modest compared with business standards.”

    Of the almost 25,000 people who attend Education Week, only about 3,000 can stay in on-campus housing, said Diane Adams, manager of conference services for student auxiliary services.

    Adams said people stay in all three of the housing areas – Deseret Towers, Helamen Halls and Heritage Halls.

    The on-campus housing, which goes for only $69 per person for the entire week, goes on sale in February or March and the spots are usually sold out by May, Adams said.

    Education Week is different from most CES programs because it is not funded by the Church or by BYU, Carlile said.

    The program is paid for by tuition from participants, he said.

    Carlile noted that although the funding may not come from the campus, Education Week is a campus-wide effort.

    The program involves many campus departments including food service, housing, security, campus scheduling and technical support, he said.

    “The campus as a whole is probably affected the most as a physical structure during Education Week,” Carlile said.

    Dean Wright, director of Food Services, said 24,000 ice cream cones are served to hungry participants during Education Week.

    Along with ice cream, the visitors will eat 15,000 box lunches and drink 65,000 drinks, Wright said.

    “The biggest seller is our mint-chocolate brownies,” Wright said.

    The Education Week crowd will consume 45,000 brownies, he said.

    Summer is the busiest time for Education Week planning and it intensifies as the week approaches, he said.

    Even with all the stress the week brings, Carlile said, he enjoys that time because he gets to see so many people enjoying themselves.

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