Highlights from BYU Colleges: New BYU study finds going cashless to prevent COVID-19 was useless, news anchor BYU alum dies at 80

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College of Life Sciences

BYU scientists decided to study this subject and found out that the COVID-19 virus is almost immediately nonviable if deposited on a cash banknote. In fact, the virus showed greater viability on plastic money cards. (BYU Photo)

Businesses across the globe stopped accepting cash payments when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, in an effort to reduce the spread of the virus.

Although neither the CDC nor the WHO ever banned the use of paper money, numerous businesses still only accept card payments up to this day.

BYU scientists decided to study this subject and found out that the COVID-19 virus is almost immediately nonviable if deposited on a cash banknote. In fact, the virus showed greater viability on plastic money cards.

“Early in the pandemic, we had this massive outcry for businesses to stop using cash; all these businesses just followed this advice and said OK we are credit card only,” BYU microbiology professor Richard Robison said. “I thought, ‘Wait a minute, where are the data to support that?’ And there simply wasn’t any. We decided to see if it was rational or not, and turns out it was not.”

Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering

BYU honors student and computer engineering major Emily Quan was selected as a 2022 Truman Scholarship finalist.

The Truman Scholarship $30,000 toward graduate school to each of approximately 50 junior across the country who excel in academics, leadership and service. The scholarship is the premier graduate fellowship in the United States for those pursuing careers as public service leaders.

“BYU requires its Truman applicants to start the process early, which, as a chronic procrastinator, was helpful for me,” Quan said. “Then, throughout the process, constant revision, and feedback from the Office of Prestigious Scholarships advisors was valuable for putting together an application that said what I wanted it to say.”

Quan’s background in computer networking and her experiences growing up in Beijing and Hong Kong, as well as other experiences at BYU prepared her for the Truman Scholarship and a life of public service.

College of Fine Arts and Communications

Phoenix TV anchor and BYU alumnus Kent Dana passed away on April 19, 2022. (Photo courtesy of the Dana family)

Phoenix TV anchor and BYU alumnus Kent Dana died on April 19, 2022 after three decades of being the face of the evening news in the Valley.

According to an article by 12 News, Dana, who suffered from complications after a hip surgery which took place on January 2022, passed away three months after, surrounded by his family.

He left behind his wife of 42 years and their two children, and four children from his first marriage.

“To the younger generation of the broadcast community, I want to tell you this. We all know that TV newsrooms are changing,” Dana said to an audience in 2018. “Despite the changes, some things have never, ever changed. The ability to find a good story and to tell a good story. And that hasn’t changed at all.”

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