BYU encourages participation in Bike to Work Day

Brigham Young University faculty and students are encouraged to participate in the 2009 UTA Bike to Work Day on Tuesday from 7:30 to 9 a.m. on the west side of the County Courthouse in downtown Provo.

The 3-mile bike ride with Mayor Lewis Billings will begin at 8 a.m. The event, celebrating National Bike Month, will include free food and drinks, bike gear and complimentary bike tune-ups.

"I try to ride my bike to work a couple of times a week, especially when the weather is nice," said Ken Plowman, BYU associate professor of communications. "I ride for exercise, parking availability, enjoyment and economy of gas. By riding to work, I kill two birds with one stone -- getting to work and getting exercise."

For more information, visit, or call UTA at (801) 227-8958.

Brett G. Scharffs featured at devotional

Brett G. Scharffs, a professor of law at the J. Reuben Clark Law School, will present a BYU devotional, "The Most Important Three Things in the World," Tuesday at 11:05 a.m. in the Joseph Smith Building Auditorium.

The devotional will be broadcast live on the BYU Broadcasting channels. Visit or for rebroadcast and archive information.

Scharffs is the associate director of the International Center for Law and Religion Studies at BYU. His teaching interests include law and religion, philosophy of law and international business law.

Scharffs worked as a law clerk on the U.S. Court of Appeals, Washington, D.C., Circuit and as a legal assistant at the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal in The Hague. Before teaching at BYU, he worked as an attorney for the New York law firm Sullivan & Cromwell. He has taught at Yale University and the George Washington University Law School and is a recurring visiting professor each year at Central European University in Budapest, Hungary.

He received his bachelor's and master's degrees from Georgetown University. He was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University, and he received his Juris Doctorate degree at Yale University, where he served as senior editor of the Yale Law Journal.

Professor named editor for new edition of Hebrew Old Testament

BYU professor of Hebrew Donald W. Parry has been appointed as an editor for a new edition of Biblia Hebraica Quinta, the Hebrew Old Testament.

Parry will work on the updated translation of Isaiah along with scholars of the United Bible Society and the German Bible Society. Biblia Hebraica Quinta will be used by 140 worldwide Bible organizations and translated into 140 different languages, including Spanish, Japanese, Korean, Finnish, Portuguese, Chinese, Italian and German.

"This will benefit the entire world community of believers in the Old Testament, which includes Christians and Jews," Parry said.

Parry was invited to serve as an editor of Biblia Hebraica Quinta, the fifth edition of the Hebrew Bible. He is one of about two dozen editors from the worldwide community and one of only a few from the United States. He hopes to provide a unique perspective to the project as he works with this interconfessional group.

He will compare the Hebrew Bible, also known as the traditional Old Testament, with the Dead Sea Scrolls books of Isaiah. In addition, he will compare the two Hebrew texts with the Greek translation, the Septuaginta.

By using all three variations of the Bible, he and others working on Biblia Hebraica Quinta will create the most accurate edition of the Hebrew Bible to be used by people all over the world. Parry will specifically contribute to the book of Isaiah in the collection.

Roman plates moved to Special Collections

Visitors who missed "Two Ancient Roman Plates: Bronze Military Diplomas and Other Sealed Documents," when it was displayed on the third floor of the Harold B. Lee Library at BYU can still view the two ancient plates in the L. Tom Perry Special Collections on the library's first level during the summer.

The set of Roman plates were issued by imperial decree on Oct. 14, AD 109 during the rule of Emperor Trajan. Called a military diploma, these plates conferred citizenship and military honors to a retiring Roman soldier in Dacia, and outlined that he was allowed to freely travel throughout the empire and wear a toga as a Roman citizen.

The library's acquisition of these 2,000-year-old bronze plates was made possible by a group of donors brought together by John W. Welch, a BYU law professor and editor-in-chief of BYU Studies. Interested parties who cannot visit Special Collections in person can view images, explanations and videos about the exhibit at


Russian economic development professionals visit Utah

Five government leaders from various parts of the Russian Federation participating in the Open World Program will spend May 8-16 in Utah examining economic development. Utah Valley University's Office of International Affairs & Diplomacy is hosting the delegation for Open World.

Managed by the independent Open World Leadership Center at the Library of Congress, Open World enables emerging Eurasian political and civic leaders to work with their U.S. counterparts and experience American-style democracy at the local level.

While in Utah, the delegates will discuss economic development issues with numerous state entities such as the Small Business Development Center (SBDC), Salt Lake City Chamber of Commerce, Governor's Office of Economic Development (GOED), Commission for Economic Development in Orem (CEDO), Economic Development Corporation of Utah and other organizations. Delegates will also tour successful local companies, meet with the local as well as state government officials and get acquainted with some of the State's attractions. In addition, homestays with local residents will allow the delegates to experience Utah family life.

"As the local host, UVU is thrilled to facilitate the creation of meaningful partnerships among local organizations and Open World delegations," said Maryna Storrs, program coordinator for the UVU Office of International Affairs & Diplomacy. "Our goal is to provide educational as well as networking opportunities that the delegates will surely utilize upon return to their home countries."

The Open World Leadership Center has awarded a grant to Utah Valley University's Office of International Affairs & Diplomacy to administer this and other similar exchanges in 2009.

The Open World Program is a unique, nonpartisan initiative of the U.S. Congress designed to build mutual understanding between the United States and Eurasia. More than 12,000 Open World participants have been hosted in all 50 U.S. states since the program's inception in 1999. Delegates range from members of parliament to mayors, from innovative nonprofit directors to experienced journalists, and from political party activists to regional administrators. For more information on Open World, please visit

UVU, Provo High join to study earthquakes

UVU's Department of Earth Science, in conjunction with the geology program at Provo High School and the Utah Geological Survey, will be looking for signs of prehistoric earthquakes in the heavily populated Wasatch Front urban corridor of Utah County in a study beginning later this month.

On May 19, the group will dig a trench 6 feet wide, 5 feet deep and 150 feet long through the Wasatch fault just south of Spring Lake in southern Utah County with the purpose of exposing possible evidence of the sizes and times of prehistoric earthquakes.

Daniel Horns, chair of UVU's Department of Earth Science, and Provo High geology teacher Ty Robinson are bringing students together for this unique venture.

"This will be a tremendous opportunity to have my students do some on-site research with a university professor -- especially one that is so energetic, knowledgeable and excited about his research," said Robinson, who received a $1,000 grant from the Department of Public Safety to help get his students involved in earthquake research.

The Wasatch fault runs from Malad City, Idaho, southward to near Fayette, Utah. The fault appears to be divided into eleven segments, and each segment is thought to be capable of producing earthquakes with magnitudes as high as 7.0 to 7.5.

The two segments closest to the Orem/Provo area are the Provo segment, which runs along the western foot of the Wasatch Range from Traverse Ridge south to Payson Canyon, and the Nephi segment, which runs from just west of Payson to just south of Nephi.

"We are undertaking this study to better constrain the history of earthquakes on the Nephi segment," Horns said. "This will allow us to better anticipate the types of earthquakes to expect in the future."

After excavation, students will examine soils exposed in the wall of the trench. Horns said they will know almost immediately if there is evidence of prehistoric earthquakes. However, it may take months to find out the ages of the quakes with continuing analysis.

"Students will apply knowledge they learned in class to address the real-world issue of earthquake hazards," Horns said. "The methods we will use are the same methods used by consulting geologist, so students will gain marketable skills and experience."

Student to attend philosophy seminar

Jorgen Hansen, a junior philosophy major at UVU, understands the magnitude of his acceptance into the 10th annual Colorado Summer Seminar in Philosophy at the University of Colorado-Boulder, and plans to take full advantage of it.

"I expect to learn a lot, not only in philosophy study -- since the course is highly intensive and provides a graduate level of study -- but also in experience," he said.

Hansen, from American Fork, is the first UVU philosophy student to attend the prestigious event, which will be July 13-31. He will receive three credit hours at the graduate level for his participation.

The seminar is intended for undergraduates who are considering graduate school in philosophy. They will be introduced to the atmosphere of a graduate-level seminar, giving them a chance to explore and sharpen their philosophical abilities before they commit to a graduate program.

"Admission was very competitive," said UVU's Chris Weigel, an associate professor of philosophy.

Hansen, who maintains a 4.0 GPA, was one of 20 applicants selected to participate from 70 who applied.

"Being accepted to the Boulder program was a huge surprise for me," Hansen said. "I am very excited for the opportunity to represent not only myself, but UVU and its faculty as well."

The Colorado Summer Seminar in Philosophy is highly intensive, meeting three hours a day five times a week for three weeks as well as additional student-led discussion sessions in the evenings.

GEAR UP student to study at Oxford

With high academic aspirations to pursue a college education in anthropology and paleontology, Nia Jamshidi and her parents emigrated from Iran to the United States to increase her chances of accomplishing that goal.

Jamshidi, who currently is a sophomore at East High School in Salt Lake City, overcame the struggles of culture shock and working with a new language and is now excelling in honors and advanced placement classes. She also participates in Utah's statewide federally funded GEAR UP Education Program, sponsored by UVU.

The program is for high school students who are low-income, have good attendance, are motivated to attend post-secondary education or training and are willing to commit to attending GEAR UP activities. The goals of the program are to help students with competency, preparedness and scholarships.

Students must apply with parental permission and support.

Jamshidi and her GEAR UP counselor came across the Oxbridge Academic Program at Oxford and Cambridge, which she applied for and was later accepted. In addition, the Oxbridge Academic Program awarded her a $3,500 scholarship to help pay tuition for this summer's program.

Last year, the program, which has partnerships with the College of Eastern Utah, Salt Lake Community College and Utah State University, served 2,439 students from 14 school districts statewide.

22nd Annual Auto & Motorcycle Expo and Swap Meet

UVU is hosting the 22nd annual Auto & Motorcycle Expo and Swap Meet on Saturday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Thanksgiving Point Electric Park in Lehi.

The event, one the largest car shows in Utah, has more than 600 entries, which are eligible for more than 110 awards.

All proceeds exceeding show costs will be donated for scholarships for automotive technology students at UVU. Proceeds from last year's event allowed the Department of Automotive Technology to award three full-tuition scholarships.

In conjunction with the auto and motorcycle show is the largest automotive swap meet in Utah, which draws people from all over the northwest. Swap meet hours are from noon to 5 p.m. Friday and 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. Admission to the swap meet is free.

Admission to the car show is $5 per person while children eight and under are free. Parking is free. More information about the event and directions to Thanksgiving Point Electric Park can be found at

UVU LICENSE PLATES -- UVU alumni, friends and supporters can sport the new university logo on their license plate. The design, which features the UVU Wolverine, is new and was created for alumni and athletics use only. All proceeds of the license plates, which cost $25 annually, go toward supporting student scholarships at UVU.

For every 200 license plates that are ordered, one full-time scholarship is created for a UVU student. The new UVU license plates are available only to Utah residents and can be ordered online or at a local DMV office. In addition to the $25 scholarship donation, there is also a one-time plate fee of $15. For more information, contact UVU Alumni Affairs or visit the new alumni Web site at

UVU COMMUNITY EDUCATION OFFERING COOKING CLASS -- UVU Community Education is offering a new cooking class this semester, Cooking: Italian, as part of the nonprofit partnership with Alpine School District.

Cooking: Italian will introduce new Italian dishes and provide instruction on how to prepare them. This course will give hands-on learning experience with new recipes to take home and try with your family. The course will be held every Tuesday from 7 to 9 p.m., starting May 19 and running through June 9. Course cost is $69 and is held at Mountain View High School at 665 W. Center in Orem.

For more information or to register, visit or call Sally at (801) 863-8012.

UVU OFFERS PERSONAL TRAINER CERTIFICATION COURSE -- UVU Community Education in partnership with World Instructor Training Schools (WITS) will offer a personal trainer certification. WITS is a national certifying organization that trains people to become personal fitness trainers. This certification allows new trainers to train healthy adults through a fitness program.

The course builds students' knowledge from the ground up, as it is assumed that the students have no previous knowledge in health and fitness. This course is taught over a 6-week period for better retention and skill competency with the National Board of Fitness Examiners test given on the 6th week. Students learn how to assess an individual's level of fitness, design and customize exercise programs for individuals based on their current fitness level, demonstrate proper execution of weightlifting, stretching and isometric exercises, and practice personal training professionally.

The course will be each Saturday from July 11 through Aug. 22 (except Saturday, July 25) from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Room LA 107 on the UVU Orem campus. Fee for the course is $499 (textbook required, not included in cost). Course size is limited to 20, and students are urged to register early. For more information or to register go to or call Sally at (801) 863-8012.


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