As a Man Thinketh: BYU–Hawaii Education Week
Emily Sinkovic | University Relations | 21 June 2011
"Completion is not about checking a goal off a list; it's about enduring to the end," said Joy Monahan, the 2008 ASP Women's World Longboard Surfing Champion. Monahan, along with nearly 50 others, spoke at the recent Hawaii Education Week, hosted at the campus of BYU–Hawaii in Laie, Hawaii.
"The Education Week sessions provided such a great opportunity to listen, learn, and interact with some outstanding presenters on timely topics," commented Assistant to the President Bill Neal. Some of these timely topics included family, repentance, overcoming trials, and many more.
The opening general session featured keynote speaker Arnold Wunder, president of the Kahului Hawaii Stake. In his address, President Wunder discussed the theme of the conference found in Proverbs 23:7, "As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he." President Wunder said that "to recognize the light of the Lord in our lives is very important." He discussed blindness, physical and spiritual, that keeps us from seeing the light of the Lord, and encouraged audience members to recognize the Lord's hand in their lives and allow it to change their thoughts and hearts.
Other highlights from the event include sessions regarding family relationships. Judy Olson, a full-time missionary at BYU–Hawaii, taught a session about motivating children to work. "Our family was a team," she recalled, and though it was often much easier to accomplish the tasks themselves, the Olsons knew the importance of teaching their children to work. She explained her motivation for teaching her children to work; "Without work, we are more prone to discouragement and temptation." Olson shared some of the tactics she and her husband had used to motivate their children. The ideas included themed job charts, a gunny sack that "ate" toys left around the house, puzzles with incentives written on the back that children piece together as they complete daily tasks. Her advice to all audience members was, "Go to the Lord because before they were your children, they were his, and he knows what will bring the most joy."
The event also featured a youth track for participants ages 14 through 18. Joy Monahan, professional surfer, was among the youth speakers and delighted youth and adults alike with her stories of personal challenges and successes. She talked with youth about accomplishing goals by relating her journey to become a world champion surfer to the concepts of “Position, Possession, and Completion.” Beverley Louw, a volunteer at BYU–Hawaii, spoke to youth about recognizing and obeying the warning lights the Spirit gives them in their lives. Holding up a red circle Louw said, "This is not a warning light! This is a danger zone!" She then showed a yellow circle and said, "This is a warning light...and with a warning light comes responsibility."
Participants from across Hawaii and the U.S. Mainland came to take part in the conference. Edna Owan, department manager of Educational Outreach said of the conference, “We definitely think this program can be expanded and we hope that more people from the islands and the mainland learn about it and look forward to it coming. Our task is to educate everyone about Education Week. … We plan to expand the youth program so [Education Week] can become a family event for parents and youth to enjoy together.”
Hawaii Education Week will be held every other year on rotation with Hawaii Women’s Conference. For more information about the upcoming Hawaii Women’s Conference 2012, visit outreach.byuh.edu.
Photos by Roger Brown