BYU TODAY | What to Believe? Recent world events—including the Russia-Ukraine crisis and the persistence of fake news—cause us to wonder

BYU TODAY | What to Believe? Recent world events—including the Russia-Ukraine crisis and the persistence of fake news—cause us to wonder

taylor tour
A man holds his hands to the sides of his head next to a sea of news articles with text like bacon reserves hitting a 50-year low, melting sea is actually helping sea animals, misleading website, and president signs executive order concerning the pledge of allegiance..

Recent world events—including the Russia-Ukraine war and the accompanying battle for information—have raised awareness of the importance of media literacy and critical thinking. In the fight over facts and fakes, insights and hot takes, learn how you can become a savvier consumer of information.

A young woman in white lab clothes, goggles, and gloves pours liquid from a glass container into a beaker while an older female labworker assists.

Art venues, science museums, and zoos have all reported decreases in yellow buses in their parking lots. Indeed, as schools focus on academic improvement, there’s been a subtle shift from school-sponsored trips to more in-class time, particularly for minority students in academically low-performing schools. But a new study from BYU, Johns Hopkins, and the Heritage Foundation found that students who take field trips during the school year perform better in class, score higher on tests, and develop cultural conscientiousness over time.

taylor tour
Portrait of a smiling Natalia Benjamin.

“It’s important that students know I have their back,” says Natalia Benjamin, the 2021 Minnesota Teacher of the Year. For two refugee brothers in Rochester, Minnesota, high school was not easy as they had to take on adult responsibilities—rent, food, and insurance—while also applying to college and for citizenship. Fortunately, their ESL and ethnic-studies teacher, herself an immigrant, was there to support them.

Cosmo does a one armed handstand next to the words True Blue Chapters 2021 and BYU alumni.

Congrats to the 66 chapters that achieved True Blue status in 2021 by having a full leadership team and hosting four or more activities to help alumni stay connected. From Anchorage to Austin and from Boston to Birmingham, BYU Alumni chapters are hosting student send-offs, game watch parties, tailgates, 5Ks, performing-arts groups, golf tournaments, and more. All of this effort is to help students and build the BYU community. Chapter volunteers bleed BYU blue and devote their time and energy to stay “Connected for Good.” Find out more about your local BYU Alumni chapter and how you can connect with other alumni in your area.


A screenshot from a BYU SIngers performance video. A group of men in black ties perform and the subtitle reads Contre la gent fausse et cruelle or against an ungodly people.

Need a music break? Enjoy “Pseaume 43” by 15th-century Dutch composer Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck as performed by the BYU Singers, conducted by Andrew Crane.

A BYU women's basketball player is about to throw the basketball to a teammate.

“Receiving is an action word”—and that applies to the basketball court as well as to our spiritual lives, says Liz Darger, a BYU associate athletic director. Watch a recent inspiring short from BYU Speeches, in which Darger draws parallels between receiving a pass on the court and being open to all that Heavenly Father wants to send us. Then check the WCC tournament schedule to see when both the women’s and men’s teams play in Las Vegas.

A small green sea monster is getting a ride on the back of a surprised pirate.

As related in this Deseret News story, without some divine intervention, BYU animation student Ethan Briscoe never would have earned a student Emmy nomination at the upcoming College Television Awards for the humorous student-produced short film Stowaway.

Wilford Woodruff’s journals, housed at the Church History Library, shed light and provide details on the events of the Restoration. Wilford Woodruff Papers volunteers are transcribing each word to share online.

Among Wilford Woodruff’s records are 30,000 letters, 31 daybooks and journals, 11 autobiographies, and 3,500 speeches. The Woodruff Papers project, founded by BYU grads Jennifer Mackley and Donald Parry, aims to transcribe and publish these documents online over the next 10 years. “Without his records, there’s an enormous amount of information we simply don’t know, including a lot of what Joseph Smith taught about the temple,” says Steven Harper, BYU professor and executive editor of the project.

At left Cosmo jumps through a ring of fire. At right Cosmo is on a ladder in the stadium bleachers about to bellyflop into a rectangular blue pool.

Celebrate the start of spring football practices with these throwback videos of Cosmo braving the elements and wowing the crowd last season. Choose a ring of fire or a pool of water—there’s no wrong answer.

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