Highlights from BYU Colleges: Elder Rascon passes ABC13 anchoring torch to son, students simulate pandemic spread


College of Fine Arts and Communications

Elder Art Rascon, an Area Seventy and BYU communications alumnus passed the torch to his son Jacob Rascon who debuted as an anchor at ABC13 in Houston. Father and son shared the desk on Jan. 3, and the news team bid farewell and welcomed them, respectively. (College of Fine Arts and Communications)

Elder Art Rascon, Area Seventy and BYU communications alumnus left his anchor position at ABC13 in Houston after 28 years. On that same day, Jan. 3, his son, Jacob Rascon, debuted as a news anchor and took over his father’s position.

Both of them are Emmy and Edward R. Murrow award winners and graduated from the BYU School of Communications.

“The opportunity to succeed my father, who is the consummate journalist and an even better person, makes me immensely proud,” Rascon said.

Marriott School of Business

Two BYU Marriott School of Business students Lilia Brown and Benjamin Richardson presented their innovative ideas in the informational systems field at the 2021 International Conference for Information Systems.

“As far as I am aware, Lilia and Benjamin were the only master-level students who presented during the workshop,” said BYU Marriott information systems professor Degan Kettles.

“Everyone in the audience was extremely impressed with them because this was an activity that would typically be done by a faculty member or a Ph.D. candidate, and they performed as well or better than those who conduct this kind of research in a full-time capacity.”

College of Life Sciences

The pandemic simulation experience Operation Outbreak is back at BYU for the second year in a row. The app tracks who the participants become in close contact with and who they pass the “virus” to. (College of Life Sciences)

BYU students are bringing back the pandemic simulation experience called Operation Outbreak for the second year in a row.

Participants use an app to simulate a pandemic outburst similar to COVID-19 and track who they come into close contact with. The simulated “virus” can be passed to other participants who have the option to wear masks, get vaccinated or tested. The event goes from Feb. 22-27.

“We did this simulation back when the quarantine and the hybrid classes were all implemented,” BYU microbiology student Craig Decker said. “Now we are looking at this again to get a side-by-side comparison of what it looks like with the same simulation now that students are back in class. We’re really interested in seeing the change in this environment.”

Operation Outbreak had 500 participants last year and the app developers are hoping to double that number this second time.

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