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Niwako Yamawaki, professor of psychology, delivered Tuesday’s devotional address. She told her story of discovering God and using her faith to understand, endure and even appreciate pain. However, reaching this realization took decades. Her journey toward God was not an easy one.

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Read about the study published by Chad Jensen, professor of psychology, that has caught the attention of Fast Company and USA Today. Maybe blue light isn't what's keeping you up at night after all.
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Setema Gali (BS Sociology ‘01, MPA ‘14) was the speaker for the 2021 college convocation. The former NFL player and best-selling author told students that he never could have imagined coming back to his alma mater and speaking to over 1,500 graduates.
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Padilla-Walker currently serves as a professor in the School of Family Life and an associate dean in the College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences at BYU. She will start as dean on July 1.
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Other Stories
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George is a first-generation college student whose passion for learning was ignited when he discovered the point of college wasn’t just to take in existing knowledge but to create new knowledge. He chose economics because it's “a beautiful framework to take resources and do the ‘most good.’”
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From Quiché to English and from Guatemala to Utah, Pedro Torres worked hard to be the first college graduate in his family. Growing up in a country with a difficult political climate, lack of higher education and high crime was not easy for Torres or his family.
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As a mother of six, Beth O’Brien has a particular passion for new motherhood and postpartum care. She found that social work would give her the tools to pursue this passion while supporting her own family.
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Four graduating seniors from the Anthropology Department are moving forward to serve the world. Read more about what they studied and what they learned from their BYU experience.
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Janna Pickett, a recent BYU graduate majoring in human development, wants to do things that make a real impact for kids, and through helping those kids help families. Pickett said, “I’m driven by knowing that there are simple things that we can do that will help so many people.”
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Jordan Etherington, a senior graduating in family life with an emphasis in human development, organized the Springville Food Pantry as part of his civic engagement leadership capstone project.

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Students from across the College gathered virtually for the 17th annual Mary Lou Fulton Mentored Student Research Conference on Thursday, April 8. Read on to discover which posters from each discipline were recognized with awards.
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About 61% of Americans have had at least one Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE). In their study, published in the Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, BYU sociology professors Hayley Pierce and Melissa S. Jones showed that ACEs have a significant effect on teenagers’ criminal behavior — at least for girls.
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Super Bowl Champion Is Keynote Speaker

Congratulations to the graduating seniors! Keep reading for more details you’ll want to know about our virtual graduation exercises. The 2021 FHSS Convocation speaker will be Setema Gali, a BYU alumnus (BS Sociology ‘01, MPA ‘14) and a living example of winning after the game.
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Each year, students in all disciplines of the college pursue their research questions, collect data, and share their findings in poster format. The conference affirms the college’s emphasis on experiential learning.
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Want to see your favorite social science professor become TikTok famous? For this year’s Choose 2 Give campaign, we’ve raised the stakes a bit with a Faculty TikTok Challenge. Check out the contestants online and who they think you should vote for. Then donate, vote, and share to help your fellow students.
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Female students at BYU report feeling underprepared when life after graduation is different than imagined. The Women of FHSS initiative is meant to foster an environment where all women in family, home, and social science majors thrive and are encouraged to identify and pursue educational and career opportunities.
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Kelly Patterson To Speak on Politics of Individualism at Hickman Lecture


The pandemic has caused people to consider the tension between their individual rights on the one hand and the good of society on the other hand. Dr. Patterson will discuss how a new measure of “moral individualism” helps explain various attitudes and behaviors with regard to the pandemic.
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As teens’ use of social media has grown over the past decade, so too has the suicide rate among younger people, with suicide now being the second leading cause of death among those ages 10 to 34. Many have suggested that social media is driving the increased suicide risk...
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President Biden in less than a month has issued 30 executive orders, clearly demonstrating the power of the executive branch. As the 117th United States Congress starts out with mostly new leadership the question on the mind of many Americans is how effective the elected representatives will be...
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Students from the College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences recently participated in an art competition focused on building Zion at BYU through diversity and inclusion. These pieces, done in a variety of mediums, communicate the students’ feelings on fostering a loving environment where all feel welcome...
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In her presentation, Dr. Niwako Yamawaki hopes to use principles of psychology to help others better understand the experience of immigrants, so that everyone can be empathetic toward them. Dr. Yamawaki says, “As a Christian, it is my responsibility...
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“Family characteristics are virtually always more powerful than school characteristics in affecting adolescents’ cognitive and social outcomes,” says Dr. Parcel. She also finds that bonds between parents and children predict college enrollment and completion and are longer lasting than bonds at school.
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Happy February! Here are the events we have going on in our college, including many that celebrate Black History Month.

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Many BYU students think deeply about how they will navigate educational and professional opportunities while also prioritizing commitments to family relationships and caregiving. If that’s you, don’t miss this “pre-lecture” specifically for university students ...
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There is growing evidence in the medical field that a community of gut microbiota is associated with anxiety and depressive disorders. Psychology professor Dr. Rebecca Lundwall and her team of researchers are conducting a study to identify the influence of gut microbiota on the development of autism symptoms...
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This year the BYU School of Social Work will establish a new scholarship named after Jini Roby, who retired in 2019 after serving as a beloved professor and colleague for 20 years. “She left an incredible legacy,” writes Charlene Clark...
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According to the CDC, 1 in 5 children are affected by obesity in the United States today. Kelsey Zaugg, PhD student in the BYU Clinical Psychology Program, has committed her research to ensure that children are psychologically, physically and spiritually healthy...
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The College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences’ Diversity, Collaboration, and Inclusion Committee is sponsoring an art contest as part of their campaign to nurture a Zion community, one that is based on unity, respect, and charity towards all, at BYU...
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At a program anniversary event, faculty from BYU’s Marriage and Family Therapy program took time to ask themselves “What have we done?” In academia, impact is measured by publications, performance ratings, and research achievements...
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How has a devastating pandemic, social unrest, and political turmoil affected American families? Though most might assume family life has become more stressful, strained, and shaky in recent months, the 2020 American Family Survey results showed despite “pockets of trouble” in family life, there is still strong evidence of “resilience in the face of adversity”...
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BYU’s Dr. Olga Stoddard, Dr. Lars Lefgren, and Dr. John Stovall had their paper accepted into the Journal of Health Economics.
Their paper, “Rationalizing self-defeating behaviors: theory and evidence”, seeks to answer why individuals engage in self-harm.
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BYU professor & chair of the Department of Political Science, Sven Wilson recently published a paper in the journal Armed Forces & Society showing that military service has historically predicted greater civic involvement later in life.
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If you missed the 2020 Constitution Day Lecture "President Trump's Immigration Policies: Are They Constitutional?" by Dr. Anna O. Law, you can read a recap and watch a recording on our blog. Read More
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How frequently have families protested and discussed Black Lives Matter? Are Americans satisfied with local, state, and federal responses to the pandemic? The answers to these and several other questions from The American Family Survey, designed by the Deseret News and the BYU Center for the Study of Elections and Democracy, will be released on Tuesday, September 22nd. Read More
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Political Science professor Michael Barber recently co-authored an article on a study showing that although vote-by-mail did increase overall voter turnout by about 2 to 3 percentage points, it did not change the outcome of races. Read More
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After two years waiting, the Department of Economics is preparing to transition to the new West View Building after being housed in the long-standing Faculty Office Building (FOB), which was demolished in winter 2019. 
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Read the 2020 edition of the neuroscience newsletter SYNAPSE to learn about what has been happening in the Neuroscience Center this year. Read more
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The College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences has developed a virtual convocation website to recognize 2020 graduates during the COVID-19 outbreak.
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Ready to start your career, but unsure about how to find a job in the time of COVID-19? Check out BYU Connect. Read more
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The Fulton Mentored Research Poster Conference winners have been announced, and you can view them along with each of the posters submitted to learn about the important research that has taken place in the college this year.
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Psychology professor Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad discussed how to feel connected while social distancing with Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg on Facebook Live.
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Meet each of the nine valedictorians from the college of Family, Home, and Social Sciences and learn about their hard work and excellence in their fields of study.
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The BYU Neuroscience Center recently held their 3rd Annual Neuroscience Art Contest. Learn more about the contest and view all the entries and winners.
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BYU's Career Services office is still available to help FHSS students! Find more information on how to set up Zoom sessions and tap into their various online career resources.
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BYU College of Family, Home and Social Sciences alumnus, Ryan Leavitt, served as the lead staffer to create the bill requiring The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to designate a new suicide prevention lifeline number.
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Celebrating Diversity in December
This Christmas season join BYU in a celebration of our differences by attending a performances, lectures, and discussions. Learn about Christmas traditions from around the world and hear voices from individuals from diverse backgrounds and faiths. Read more
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Learn More About International Relations in the Fall Edition of the Political Science Post
Check out the new Fall 2019 edition of the BYU Political Science Post and their story "San Marino and the Concept of Trust Between Nations" Read more
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Been Through a Difficult Break-Up? A Family Life Student Created a Group to Help
Student Laura Waters Black has used her challenging break-up to help others heal by creating connections with the Difficult Break-Up Support Group. Read More
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Study Finds Many Veterans Are Stronger After Military Service
Dr. David Wood, professor in the School of Social Work, says "Contrary to popular belief, most veterans who return home do not experience PTSD or similar conditions...veterans who served in the latest wars are, as a whole, quite resilient and do quite well." Read more.
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Hear Stories of the American West on the Writing Westward Podcast
With topics ranging from Native Studies to rural America to race and ethnicity, the Redd Center's Writing Westward Podcast features conversations between Brenden Rensink and writers who focus on stories from the American West. Read More
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Is Social Media As Bad As We Think? Dr. Sarah Coyne's Research Finds Out
Studies show that moderating social media use can greatly reduce its negative effects. Read more.
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Anxious? Stressed? Overwhelmed? The Comprehensive Clinic Can Help
If you are feeling overwhelmed and need a listening ear, be sure to visit the Comprehensive Clinic for free mental health services.Read more
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Alumni Achievement Award Recipient R. Clayton Brough Will Share 5 Things He's Learned in 50 Years
Geography Alumni R. Clayton Brough shared insights he's gained as a climatologist, teacher, and Guinness World Record breaker.Read more
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Economics study finds simple ways to create workplace diversity
Economics professor Olga Stoddard found building workplace diversity is easier than we think through new research. Read More
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Gerontology students learn to care for the aging generation
Students from the college's Gerontology program put their learning into practice while interning at Miami Jewish Health. Read more.
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BYU-Jordanian team make exciting discoveries in Petra Field School
Archeology professor Cynthia Finlayson shares the new discoveries of this year's BYU-Jordanian team working with the Petra Field School. Read more
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Is college getting easier? Economics professors led research to find out
Economics professors Eric Eide and Jeff Denning had their research on higher education published in The Atlantic Monthly magazine. Read more
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Dr. Brian Cannon appointed department chair of History
Dr. Brian Cannon has been appointed as the new department chair in History, effective July 1, 2019. Dr. Cannon replaces Dr. Eric Dursteler, who has served as department chair since 2016. Read More
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Study shows that immigrant students raise classroom performance
A group of sociology researchers recently tested claim that immigrant students drain resources from native-born students -- but they found just the opposite to be true. Read more.
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Norwegian newspaper features family history intern Annie Smith
Norwegian newspaper Hamar Dagblad interviewed family history intern Annie Smith along with the managing director of the Norwegian Emigrant Museum, Ola Aas. Read more
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Research finds home size does not equal family happiness
Researchers in the School of Family Life recently found that how families perceive their homes has more of an effect on family happiness than the size of the house or number of bedrooms. Read more
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Compassion Focused Therapy teaches students balance
Psychology professors Kara Cattani and Gary Burlingame’s research into Compassion Focused Therapy shows students how being vulnerable and compassionate can change the way they see themselves and their world. Read more
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Utah Colleges Exit Poll Retired after 36 Years
The Utah Colleges Exit Poll has been an Election Day fixture since 1982. BYU political science professor and poll director David Magelby said this year's midterms is the first election in 36 years without the student-run poll. According to Magleby, the Utah Colleges Exit Poll was unique because it was conducted by undergraduate students and included a conglomerate of schools, majors, professors and students across the state.
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12 takeaways from FHSS Alumni Achievement lecturer Jack Zenger
Like most students on campus, College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences 2018 Alumni Achievement lecturer Jack Zenger also struggled with deciding what to major in and what to pursue after graduation. Now a successful CEO and world-renown thought leader in leadership development, Zenger shared several pieces of advice on how to utilize psychology in the business world
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"I was never the girly-girl": At BYU visit, Colbie Caillat talks body image and BYU Research
"Forever, women have been expected to be a certain way, look a certain way. I know for me...I was never the girly-girl. When I first started touring, I didn't even wear makeup - I wore jeans...And then I started being told I needed to look differently because I was going to be on TV...All of that starts getting put in your head and if you don't have...Read More
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The Family that Prays Together Feels Unified and Bonded with less Relational Tension
In a recently-published study in the Journal of Family Psychology, BYU researchers explored how family prayer influences family relationships, finding a connection between prayer and a number of benefits for families.
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BYU Family History and Genealogy Students Connect Missing Soldiers to their Families
A group of BYU students has answered the Army's call for genealogical reinforcements. With more than 82,000 Americans still missing from conflicts dating back to World War II, students at the BYU Center for Family History and Genealogy have been working with the Army and the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency to return the remains of missing soldiers to their family members.
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Talking commitment: Upcoming Hinckley Lecture on cohabitation, commitment and marriage
Cohabitation is not an issue at BYU. In fact, as well-educated, religious and generally economically-sound individuals, students at BYU are among the least likely to cohabitate before marriage. But BYU students and couples are just as susceptible as anyone to
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Hickman lecture 2018: How passion can change your life and relationships
Relationships aren't only meant to be enjoyed in the next life. They are conditions of salvation itself. This is why passion is so significant in our journey through life. In the 13th Annual Martin B. Hickman lecture, Professor of Family Life, Dean Busby highlights the ways in which passion is crucial and beautiful in our lives and relationships.
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Have a great story? Let us know by emailing it to us at fhsswriters@byu.edu