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Rexburg native returns to fulfill dream

Greg Klingler grew up only knowing how to be a farmer. He thought it was the only thing a kid born and raised in Idaho could grow up to be one day.

He said his mother worked on campus for 30 years, so BYU-Idaho was always a big part of his life.

“Ricks College and BYU-Idaho are in my blood,” Klingler said.

Klingler said he grew up planning on, one day, becoming a farmer or a teacher.

“That’s as far as I thought my horizons could take me,” Klingler said.

Klingler said he enrolled at Ricks College in 1998 as an education major. He then left for his mission to Tennessee in 1999.

Klingler said he returned to BYU-I and took an anatomy class that would lead to him change his entire career path.

“I can still walk into that classroom and feel some of those feelings that I felt 15 years ago,” Klingler said. “That is where I fell in love with the human body and its divine nature.”

Klingler said he ended up changing his major from education to pursue a degree in medicine.

Upon graduating from BYU-I, he enrolled at the University of St. Francis to further his education as a physician’s assistant.

Klingler said that once he finished his education, he went to work at a community health center in Washington for two years that catered to an economically disadvantaged population.

Klingler said that one day during a lunch break, he acted on a small prompting to check the BYU-I employment Web page. He said at the time, they happened to be hiring in the health science department for someone to teach a human disease course.

He said he could see how the Lord was blessing him as he went through the application process.

Klinger said he got the position and began teaching at BYU-I in 2009. During his time at BYU-I, Klingler contributed to the making of the foundations class, “American Epidemic” along with Jason Shaw and Michael Groesbeck.

“Brother Klingler was very invested in the course and its success,” said Jason Shaw, a faculty member in the biology department. “He was very passionate about creating a course that could help a student avoid the devastating effects of diabetes.”

Klingler said his background as a physician’s assistant assisted in creating the course and making it more personal when teaching students.

“The FDSCI 204 course that Greg helped create has truly been a blessing to thousands of students who now know how to better avoid the terrible destructive pathology of diabetes,” Shaw said.

Klingler said he has felt incredibly blessed throughout his life, and it is a dream come true to be able to come back to the place he loves so much.

“If a humble son of a dairy farmer could live a dream-come-true type life, then anything that our students can imagine is possible to them,” Klingler said. “I am living evidence of that.”

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