Four days out of the week, Kaleb Capps, a freshman studying psychology, can be found heading out to work at 2 a.m. most mornings.
Along with a team of BYU-Idaho groundkeepers, Capps gives his time and effort to help beautify the university’s landscape. They work in locations both on and off campus, usually, in spots others might not notice right away.
“We mostly work in the areas around University Village and Centre Square,” Capps said. “We do the lawns and stuff over there, dig up these old flower beds, move the dirt, and put them in holes that are marked down.”
Capps described the mulching process as “annoying.”
“It’s so dry and every time you work on it, it shoots up dust and gets in your eyes,” Capps said. “Smells good, though.”
Alissa Henrie, a freshman majoring in general studies, described some of the work Capps does.
“He definitely pays attention to the details,” Henrie said. “He takes his jobs seriously and cares about the people he works with. They will go and dig these trenches around the trees, and they make it easier for the residents to mow the lawn.”
Henrie is from the same town as Capps and is a family friend. She recounted how he used to work at a Dairy Queen before he started at BYU-I.
“Whenever I would hear him talk about his job at Dairy Queen, it usually was never anything good,” Henrie said with a laugh. “But whenever he talks about his current job, he really seems to really enjoy it.”
Capps’ favorite part of his current job is lawn care.
“I enjoy the lawn care jobs because you see the most change come from it,” Capps said. “It gives you that instant gratification.”
Capps and his colleagues work on the trees, shrubs and grass around campus, and even shovel the snow that tends to pile up on the sidewalks during winter. And because the fruits of their labors will draw the attention of onlookers, Kaleb Capps is proud of the work he and his team are doing.
“I’ve always enjoyed working,” Capps said. “So doing something outdoors and doing something with my hands tends to give me a challenge. We always try to put in as much effort as we can so the people who live in the apartment complexes we work at are happy to be there.”
Because there is a purpose to the work he does, Capps finds great happiness in the work he does. But he also believes that having a good attitude makes up for it.
“If you go in with a bad attitude, your day is just going to drone on, then you’re not going to get as much done,” Capps said. “And then, it’s just going to come back to kick you in the butt later on.”