BYU-Idaho students, Ricks College Alumni and community members celebrated the 125th anniversary of BYU-Idaho and Ricks College Nov. 9 with a gro photo taken in the Spori quad and a free potato bar.
The event was hosted by the BYU-Idaho Alumni Association with help from the Student Alumni Association. Kent Jolley and his wife Jill Jolley came to the event because they both went to Ricks College.
Jill Jolley said they first met on the third floor of the Spori building in 1957.
Kent Jolley said they were taking a U.S. Government class from Professor Claude Burtenshaw.
Jill Jolley said a lot has changed since she went to school. “It’s interesting to see what’s going on in this not so little ‘Burg,’” Jill Jolley said.
William Hulet said he graduated from Ricks College in 1941.
He said he studied music while at Ricks, where he sang tenor in the choir and played trumpet in the pep band.
He took German classes while at Ricks College and used the language while serving in the military during World War II.
“Of all the schools that I attended, I enjoyed the people at Ricks College,” Hulet said. “It wasn’t so big and we got to know each other. … It was friendly.”
Sarah Schwieder of Idaho Falls brought her family to the event, including her mother, Susan Dicus. Scwieder said she met her husband while attending Ricks College.
She said they were in the same apartment complex and ward. Dicus attended Ricks College for a year.
“Ricks College was the perfect thing for me,” Dicus said. “It felt like a very secure place for me to be in, and that was important for me.”
She said she loves that people at BYU-I are so kind.
“That’s one thing I love about this place,” Dicus said. “You see people say, ‘Do you need help?’… You see people open the doors and there’s just still a spirit of charity and friendship.”
Scwider’s daughter, who is in fifth grade, said she wants to come to BYU-Idaho because people are willing to help and it seems like a friendly place.
Bryan Maughn of Rexburg said he went to Ricks College. “I studied girls, I studied football, and occasionally I did homework,” Maughn said.
Maughn said his English professor, Dorla Jenkins, changed his life while he was at Ricks College.
Maughn said he would turn in poorly-written papers, but Jenkins would praise his work. “She showed more belief in me than I’d ever had in my life,” Maughn said, “It just kept making me write better and better and better.”
Channing Merrell, a freshman majoring in general studies, said her grandfather Glad Merrel taught at Ricks college for 38 years.
The BYU-I Alumni Association hosted an emeritus breakfast in the morning, on behalf of Rexburg native and former student at Ricks College Don Heinz and his wife Marsha Heinz.
The activities of the day also included a potato bar and gro photo in front of the Spori.
“What we wanted to do was bring students, alumni, faculty, staff and community all together, because they are the ones that have made BYU-Idaho what it is today,” said BYU-I alumni relations coordinator Val Carpenter. “If you combine all those threads, that’s what makes the fabric of BYU-Idaho and helps preserve and enhance the Spirit of Ricks.”
Carpenter said 30 people put the event together, with help from the Student Alumni Association.
“Hopefully people are able to be a part of the legacy, the 125th anniversary,” said Matt Kolar, president of the Student Alumni Association and a senior studying communication. “Thirty or forty years from now [people] can look back and say, ‘Hey, I was a part of that legacy at the 125th anniversary.’”