The Education in Zion Blog
One of the things I love most about Education in Zion is the quotes found throughout the gallery. To me, the quotes are more than just nice stories. Even though the people quoted may have lived a hundred years before us, we can learn from what they have said. I wanted to share a few of my favorite quotes and some of the meaning they have to me.
“Knowledge is not power unless sustained be character.” Karl G. Maeser
I love this one because it changed my perspective on what my knowledge can be! It can change you and help you become your best self. Knowledge in spiritual and secular matters contribute to who we will become, yet it is our responsibility to do something with it.
“I tell you, my young brothers and sisters, [once] you have been caught up in the spirit of
Brigham Young University you will never be the same.... Each of you has a spark inside you
which the Lord will someday kindle and make of you an instrument in His hands to bring the
world not only sorely needed secular excellence of the University, but the spirit of the Church,
the spirit of BYU, and the spirit of the gospel, which I testify to you to be one and the same.”
Albert Swensen, class of 1938
The Education in Zion Gallery focuses on an “Education for Eternity.” This quote helps to illustrate the role Heavenly Father plays in my education. BYU offers such a unique experience, and, knowing this, I am better able to take advantage of the opportunities it presents me.
Rebecca Soelberg, gallery educator
During these cold January days, we often look forward to summertime.
For many, summer is a time of relaxation and traveling. During the summer months, many BYU students participate in university-sponsored study abroad programs. During spring term, students in the College of Nursing participate in a global health course to learn more about other cultures. Students recently traveled to India, Ghana, Tonga, Taiwan, Russia, and Finland to learn more about healthcare in other countries and to be immersed in the culture of those countries. Students also had opportunities to learn more about US veterans, the Navajo Nation, and other local at-risk populations.
With a growing influx of immigrants coming to the United States, it is increasingly essential for nurses to provide culturally competent care. Understanding how people from other cultures perceive and respond to various aspects of healthcare is central in providing quality care. Through this nursing course, students have amazing opportunities to be immersed in the culture of another country and learn concepts in providing culturally appropriate care.
The Healer’s Art: A Celebration of the College of Nursing is on display at the Education in Zion Gallery. One of the focal points is an exhibit of nursing students’ experiences during this global health course. On display are memorabilia exhibiting pictures and writings from students working with orphans in Finland, cleaning leprosy wounds in India, building homes in Ecuador, and serving in remote areas of Tonga. What interesting and inspiring stories!
In addition to the experiences of nursing students, there are other accounts of BYU College of Nursing graduates involved in humanitarian and international activities. These accounts include displays of nurses who have served tours of duty on the hospital ship the USS Mercy and nurses who have been involved in neonatal resuscitation efforts with LDS Humanitarian Services.
During this semester, I encourage you to come and see for yourself some of the ways that nurses are making a difference in the lives of others—both locally and in various locations around the globe.
Cheryl Corbett, BYU College of Nursing
The time had arrived to begin my new clinical rotation. With trepidation, I made the drive from Idaho State University to the State Mental Hospital in Blackfoot, Idaho. I left the environment of a college campus with its purpose and promise and entered the stark, locked confines of a mental hospital.
In the 1970s, state mental hospitals were still large facilities warehousing patients whose lives had been decimated by mental illness. Medications like Thorazine and Haldol were available to treat severe mental illnesses, but the side effects were often severe, such as uncontrollable contorted muscular movements. It was disconcerting to see patients rocking back and forth and talking to themselves.
I entered the adult male ward and felt nervous when I met my patient, a Native American male in his late twenties. He suffered from schizophrenia. My instructor had told me that the most important skills I would be using in the psychiatric rotation were my “presence” and “communication.”
My patient showed me drawings of mystical women with magic powers, drawn with colored pencils. I wondered why he was fascinated with these depictions, and I found myself drawn into trying to comprehend his world. Each week we looked at his pictures and talked. Over the course of my clinical rotation, I began to see him as a person—not a delusional, mentally ill man. I found it hard to say goodbye to him when the 14 weeks ended.
Now I am a Brigham Young University professor and psychiatric mental health clinical specialist. I know the students feel frightened and apprehensive as they begin their psychiatric rotation, but I encourage them to use their “presence” and “communication” skills in addition to all of the nursing knowledge they have gained in school. I tell them to listen to their patients and try to understand the person experiencing psychiatric illness. Through their experiences, they learn, as I did, of the amazing strength and courage of individuals who are a part of this vulnerable population.
Linda Mabey, BYU College of Nursing Faculty
Editor’s note: For more stories of nurses working with underserved populations, visit The Healer’s Art: A Celebration of the College of Nursing on the third floor of the gallery.
“The first and fundamental principle of our holy religion is that we believe that we have a right to embrace all and every item of truth, without limitation or without being circumscribed by the creeds or superstitious notions of men.”
—Joseph Smith, 1839
In the 1830s the idea of having the freedom of mind to be able to make a statement like this makes it all the more remarkable. We slip into the mistake of believing that this thought would have been accepted among everyday society, but it was not. This auspicious statement was a revelation about our first and fundamental right as people who believe in Christ and who choose to worship without the notions of men limiting us in our pursuit of divine truth.
“The mind must not only possess a knowledge of truth, but the soul must revere it,cherish it, love it as a priceless gem; and this human life must be guided and shaped by it in order to fulfill its destiny .”
—Joseph F. Smith, First Presidency, 1895
We are counseled here how to hold truth in its proper and exalted position within our own lives, and that to do so will be the only way we can fulfill our God-given destiny. What a bright promise! Each a son or daughter of our Father in Heaven has a unique destiny that can be revealed to us only by our choice to follow divine truth.
Reggie Voyce, Gallery Educator
The theme of the November Family Home Evenings was “Like a Prayer unto Thee: Our LDS Hymn Tradition.” In order to prepare to host FHE last week, I spent time reading about various influential contributors to the LDS hymn book. Although we chose to focus largely on W.W. Phelps during our FHE, I also spent time reading about Eliza R. Snow. She wrote the lyrics of 10 hymns, some of the most well-known being “Oh My Father” and “How Great the Wisdom and the Love.”
From her youth, Eliza grew up in a highly religious family, but the family decided none of the churches on the earth followed the pattern of Christ’s original church. Eliza and her family would later join The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and gather in Kirtland.
Following the death of the Prophet Joseph, Eliza traveled to Utah with the Saints. In Utah, she would go on to serve as the second General Relief Society President of the Church. Throughout Eliza’s presidency, the Primary and the Young Women’s Mutual Improvement Association were organized, the Woman’s Exponent was created, and welfare program was introduced. Also, she was well known for her beautiful poetry, and wrote over 500 poems throughout the course of her life. Additionally, her younger brother, Lorenzo Snow, would later become the fifth president of the Church .
In an 1887 Relief Society Conference, Eliza said, “To be able to do Father’s will is what I wish to live for” . I was touched by her testimony and realized the great power that one individual can have on many generations. Sister Snow understood her mission as a Daughter of God, and I look to her as a stalwart example of a Latter-day Saint woman. As we sing Eliza R. Snow’s hymns and hear her name from time to time, may we be forever grateful for her great faith and dignified leadership.
Melinda Clark, Gallery Educator
This fall, Education in Zion opened a photo exhibit at the bottom of the JFSB spiral staircase. The exhibit links Cosmo to the Four Aims of a BYU Education. It was a wonderful experience to reflect on the opportunities and benefits we are given as we are educated at BYU, but also to view fun photos of Cosmo living the aims!
How blessed we are to attend a university whose mission is to “assist individuals in their quest for perfection and eternal life.” BYU is not just focused on its students’ temporal knowledge and well-being, but their eternal education and welfare. This focus is clearly seen in the BYU aims. According to the BYU website (aims.byu.edu), “A BYU education should be: spiritually strengthening, intellectually enlarging, character building, and leading to lifelong learning and service”.
We had a lot of fun putting together photos of Cosmo that related to each aim, including him leading hymns, studying, dancing, cleaning, and swimming. We even got to have a photo shoot with Cosmo in the gallery!
I am grateful for those who have sacrificed to make BYU an institution that provides such a wonderful eternal education for us. After checking out the Cosmo photo exhibit, come up the spiral stairs to the gallery and learn more about the people who dedicated their lives to BYU! Go cougars!
I’ve been working at the Education in Zion Gallery for almost three months and I can barely believe it’s been that long. One reason I feel so at home here is because of the people. The staff are knowledgeable and always willing to help. But it is not only the people who work here who have welcomed me, but also the people in the gallery who I get to learn about every day: their stories and examples have shaped me into a new person with a new perspective.
I knew about some of the people mentioned in the labels before I started working in the gallery, but I didn’t understand who they were. For example, I knew Brigham Young was the second president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He led the Saints west and started Brigham Young Academy (known now as Brigham Young University). But now after learning more about him, he has become one of my heroes! Coming from a poor family and receiving only 11 days of formal education, he was inspired by Joseph Smith’s teaching of eternal progression and became a man who sought education wherever he could. Brigham Young not only encouraged the Saints to seek learning, but he was also a living example of actively seeking and doing. He “became a student of theology, literature, architecture, theater, science, business, gymnastics, agriculture, and everything else that could help him elevate himself or anyone around him.” He stated,
“I shall not cease learning while I live, nor when I arrive in the
spirit-world[,]… and when I again receive my body, I shall … still
continue my researches.” 
Brigham Young is one of many people who have inspired me! Some others are J. Wyley Sessions, Brigham Thomas Higgs, Karl G. Maesar; the list goes on.
Visit the gallery to see how these people’s lives are more than just nice stories—they are examples from which to learn and to move forward with their faith and strength, edifying us along the way.
Rebecca Soelberg, Gallery Educator
I have always been inspired by the amazing quotes sprinkled throughout the Education in Zion Gallery. The recent general conference reminded me again of the great words of our leaders that uplift us if we pay attention. Quotes from those who have gone before are moving reminders of the sacrifices they have made and what we, as their beneficiaries, need to live up to. The following is a list of some of my favorites.
Inspiring quotes found in the Education in Zion Gallery:
“The surest way to express love for God is by doing good to God’s children.”
— Jesse Knight
“[Brigham Young came to me and told me] that the school being taught by Brother Maeser was accepted in the heavens and was a part of the great plan of life and salvation and that Christ Himself was directing, and had a care over this school.”
— John Taylor
“Precisely as you partake of the Spirit, so will you progress in your studies.”
— Karl G. Maeser
“Keep busy in the face of discouragement.”
— Susan Young Gates
“This church is always only one generation away from extinction. All we would have to do to destroy this work is stop teaching our children for one generation.”
—Jeffrey R. Holland
“You have it in your power to set in motion waves of action, love and kindness that will reach the shores of eternity.”
—Edwin S. Hinckley
Go find more for yourselves! The gallery is full of them to make your everyday brighter.
Marie Bates, Gallery Educator
I really enjoy the videos we have here in the gallery. I especially appreciate the inclusion of contemporary teachers from BYU in our last video “Gathering Strength”. In this video, teachers share meaningful lessons they’ve learned here at BYU or hope the students learn.
Brian Lemon, a chemistry teacher from BYU Idaho, shared the story of Dmitri Mendeleev organizing the periodic table. This story is actually quite moving and it resonated with him and infused his teaching (if you skip to 1:15 in the video, his story is really short).
What impresses me is that Mendeleev was someone without knowledge of the Gospel. He didn’t pray for inspiration. Yet he was still rewarded for his work. This fact adds to the principle that the Lord delivers truth in diverse places, in various ways and we seek that knowledge, wherever it may be found. How exciting it is to think that there have been and are Mendeleev experiences happening around the world!
In 1854, President John Taylor told the Deseret News, “If there is any truth in heaven, earth, or hell, I want to embrace it; I care not what shape it comes in to me, who brings it, or who believes in it; whether it is popular or unpopular, truth, eternal truth, I wish to float in and enjoy.”
I had the chance of attending Beauty and Belief in the Museum of Art. I was indeed overwhelmed by the beauty and touched by the belief. The culture was quite different, yet the heart of it didn’t seem foreign at all.
Camlyn Giddins, Gallery Educator
The Book of Mormon is filled with passages concerning the mountains. Nephi was directed by the Liahona to go into the mountains when he broke his bow in the wilderness. When faced against the Gadianton robbers, the Nephites went into the mountains to pray to the Lord. As the brother of Jared contemplated bringing his family across the sea in barges, he climbed the mount to converse with the Savior. In every instance given, each was faced with a trial, ascended to the privacy of the mountains and, thus showing faith and determination for answers, the Lord lifted them up in their burdens.
As Disciples of Christ today, we can take this council to “arise, and get thee unto the mountain” literally or symbolically. Ascending into the peaceful solitude of nature and leaving the world behind allows the still small voice to pierce through the bubble of Babylon we fight against every day. Although we may not speak to the Lord face to face, the still small voice can whisper to us if we are still enough to grasp it. Climbing the mountain can also mean to rise above the wavering standards of the world. As we control our natural man and act, think and feel as the Savior would, we are symbolically arising above “the cunning plan of the evil one” and striving to draw closer to Jesus Christ.
During my time at the Education in Zion gallery, I have had ample time to look to the mountains. I have seen them in their majesty and glory and have often thought of the majesty and glory of the Lord and how he looks over all of us in love. Elevated above campus, the gallery allows one a grander view at the landscape and into his or her life. When we show the Lord we are willing to listen make His teachings priority, we find peace and make room for ourselves in His heavenly home. It is my hope that we all take time to steadily climb our mountain, physically or spiritually, and put heavenly matters first.
Tiana Birrell, Gallery Educator