News Story

Mormon Students Approach Lifelong Learning

Adam Ruri, the newly elected student body president at Brigham Young University, tried to keep a straight face as he poured a jug of water onto the head of the eighth-grade volunteer standing in front of his peers.

The boy, Josh, was holding an empty glass above his head, but very little of the water Ruri was pouring was falling into it. Most of the water was drenching the confused teen.

“What does this have to do with learning?” Ruri asked the class.

Don’t raise your hand when a 6 foot New Zealand-born junior from BYU is holding a jug of water and is asking for a volunteer? That’s one lesson.

“Lifelong learning,” Ruri suggests to the youngsters, “is all about knowing what you are trying to achieve and identifying your steps. Set little goals and make small steps with the greater goals in sight.”

According to Ruri, trying to learn everything at once (like putting your head under a waterfall) just doesn’t work. Hence the funnel he brought out so he could show the youth how to pour water, slowly but surely, into an empty glass being held over a moist head.

“Aaaah,” the eighth-graders collectively get it.

Ruri is studying business at Brigham Young University. He hopes to study law after that, and then pursue a career in business. 

“It is taking a lot of work, but it’s worth it,” he says. “The small things matter in life, and the same applies to education. Big goals take a lot of little steps to reach them.”

Education is a high priority for many members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Elder David A. Bednar, a senior leader in the Church, recently invited Mormon students to become lifelong learners so they can successfully participate in a rapidly changing world.

“Learning to love learning equips us for an ever-changing and unpredictable future,” he said at the spring commencement exercises at Brigham Young University, which were attended by over 6,000 graduates and guests.

Elder Bednar, a member of the Church’s Quorum of Twelve Apostles and former university president at Brigham Young University Idaho, said that Church leaders for many years have encouraged members of the faith to obtain as much education as they can throughout their lives.

Quoting the second president of the Church, Brigham Young, Elder Bednar said: “We might ask, when shall we cease to learn? I will give you my opinion about it: never, never.”

“As we press forward in life, spiritually, interpersonally and professionally,” he added, “no book of answers is readily available with guidelines and solutions to the great challenges of life. All we have is our capacity to learn and our love of and for learning.”

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