Readers’ Forum Jan. 31


Lines too long at testing center

Have you ever been stuck in one of these long testing center lines? Have you ever felt that you are going to fail the exam you are going to take because there are over 60 students standing in front of you? Join the club! One of the biggest problems BYU students face, especially during finals, are the testing center lines. During finals week, there are more than 900 students that visit the testing center to take a test(s). When I asked some of the BYU students about what was the longest period of time they had to wait in these lines, a couple of them said it exceeded three hours.

There are more than 35 academic facilities at BYU, and I believe that some of these buildings can be used during finals week to cause these long lines to be shorter or even nonexistent.

Imagine yourself walking into an urgent care clinic with a broken arm and finding out that there are huge amounts of people waiting to be checked, and you are the last person on the list. That is what most BYU students feel and face during finals week. Therefore, I ask the administration offices to find a solution in order to make this problem that BYU students face regularly vanishes.

Hamdi Malhees

Jerusalem, Palestine

Billboards ruin Utah’s landscape

Freeze your belly fat now! No? Then buy a new car at a great price, and while you’re at it refinance your mortgage!

If that sounds familiar then you’ve probably driven between Salt Lake and Provo at least once. Like fish unaware of the water they swim in, many Utahns are desensitized to the ridiculous amount of billboard advertisements that visually pollute our beautiful landscape. If you’ve ever visited Hawaii, Alaska, Vermont, or Maine you were probably struck by the breathtaking views; views unobstructed by billboards because those states banned them.

Why hasn’t Utah also taken the initiative to reclaim our vistas from outdoor advertisers? The answer to that question is best answered by looking at financial donations made to Utah politicians. Utah’s biggest billboard company gives our politicians more money than any other corporation besides one. Billboard companies have to pay politicians because there are federal laws, such as the Highway Beautification Act, that they don’t want the state to enforce.

I’m sick of all the billboards, and I want them gone. We can fight the big political donors by letting our politicians know that we are aware of the money they are receiving and that we won’t tolerate them giving special treatment to the highest bidder. I have created a petition that with enough support will help me work with our state congress to control the big billboard companies. You can help simply by signing and sharing my petition.

Cade Dopp

North Salt Lake, Utah

BYU reaches its aims

When we google “Best school in the world,” Harvard University comes up. I decided to look at what their school aim was. The university as a whole institution did not have a formal mission statement. Nonetheless, Harvard College did: “To educate the citizens and citizen-leaders for our society. We do this through our commitment to the transformative power of a liberal arts and sciences education.” I am proud to say — and I hope others would agree— that BYU offers more.
In the first floor of the Wilkinson Center, there is a mural representing the qualities of a BYU education: spiritually strengthening, intellectually enlarging, character building and lifelong learning and service.
As the BYU aim quotes President David O. McKay’s words, “True education … seeks to make men and women not only good mathematicians, proficient linguists, profound scientists, or brilliant literary lights, but also hone men with virtue, temperance and brotherly love.”
The students here reflect his words. I have been touched by how kind the people are. From a stranger giving me an umbrella on a rainy cold day from having other students — even professors! — opening or keeping doors open for me to exit. People at BYU are generally service oriented. The American Heritage class — a required class to graduate from BYU — is a great example of how the school aim is implemented into the curriculum. It teaches us to balance not just seeking our rights, but being a responsible citizen, with lots of reading and quizzes every week — it is spiritual, intellectual, character building, and service focused.
Reina Dorff
Saitama, Japan
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