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March 5, 2004 Highlights

Leading The Way In Air Quality Control: Emissions Testing At Utah State University

Terrel MurryUnder the direction of Utah State University President Kermit L. Hall, the university has already made progress in an effort to take the lead in achieving better air quality. Utah State created a long-term plan to keep its vehicles from contributing to the below-average air quality in Cache Valley.

"This is a two-phase program," said John Pappas, director of the Utah State University Motor Pool. "First we will test the vehicles, and second, decide what we want to do for those vehicles that have failed."

Emissions testing for university cars began Feb. 19 at the Utah State Motor Pool and Feb. 23 at the Bridgerland Technology Center.

The plan developed as a result of a partnership with Bridgerland Technology and provides test vehicles to students in Mike Nield's automotive class, where emissions' testing is part of the curriculum. "This technology will help students gain marketable skills to take with them into the job force," said Nield.

Kevin Taylor running diagnostic testPreventative maintenance, as Pappas calls the endeavor, is required by the state every six months. Motor Pool plans to employ the emissions tests at these regular "check-ups" at no extra cost to university departments. Records are kept for each of the vehicles, and departments will make the decision to repair or retire vehicles that don't pass testing.

After extensive research on different types of testing equipment, Motor Pool decided to purchase its own equipment to test vehicle emissions on Utah State's 692 vehicles. The equipment, an ESP 4 Gas Analyzer, was chosen because it won the 1999 bid from Utah counties requiring emissions testing.

The analyzer works through a series of tests measuring carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, carbon dioxide and oxygen levels and compares them to national standards set by the EPA. A test is administered to check the gas cap for pressure and vacuum to ensure there are no fume leaks. Gasses are measured at both idle and full RPMs.

"In newer vehicles an on-board diagnostic test is given, but our concern is for older vehicles," said Pappas. "We have to test them by looking at tailpipe emissions. So far, of the vehicles we've tested, only one has failed — an '84 Ford."

Emissions parameters are tailored to each car and Utah State Motor Pool shop supervisor Terrel Murray uses a special computer that evaluates the vehicle's performance and prints a readout.

Current measures mean that Utah State will be ahead of schedule if the EPA mandate for emissions testing in Cache County is implemented, a possible case due to the above-average particulate count.



Five To Be Recognized During Utah State Founders Day Event

Distinguished award recipients share the spotlight with their alma mater during Utah State University's Founders Day festivities March 6 in Salt Lake City. Utah State's Alumni Association will recognize five people with distinguished alumnus and service awards during the banquet at the Little America Hotel.

Receiving the Distinguished Alumnus awards are LaDell Andersen and Jim Laub. Jean C. Christensen, Nadine F. Gillmor and Jed H. Pitcher will take home Distinguished Service awards.

LaDell AndersenA familiar name in the Utah sports world, LaDell Andersen, will receive the Distinguished Alumnus Award. A native of Malad, Idaho, Andersen graduated from Utah State in 1951 and began his career the same year at Sandia Base in Albuquerque, N. M. In 1956, he was appointed assistant basketball coach at the University of Utah and in 1961, came to Utah State as head basketball coach. He became the winningest coach in school history, taking his team to six post-season tournaments and was voted Coach of the Year six times. He later left Utah State to accept a position with the Utah Stars in 1971, but would soon return to Utah State, this time as athletic director, a position he held for 10 years. Again he left Utah State, this time to become head basketball coach at Brigham Young University for six years. He currently is semi-retired, still acting as a scout and consultant for the Utah Jazz.

Jim LaubUtah State's second distinguished alumnus award recipient, 1974 graduate Jim Laub, is president and CEO of Cache Valley Electric Company. Under Laub's direction, Cache Valley Electric has grown into one of the top 50 electrical contractors in the nation. In 1999, Laub was honored by Ernst & Young with its Entrepreneur of the Year award. Then, in 2003, Cache Valley Electric was honored by the Intermountain Electrical Association as the Outstanding Large Electrical Contractor of the Year, the tenth time in 14 years the company has received the award. Luab's interests are not only in business as he has served as president of the Big Blue Club, is a member of the Rotary Club and is a trustee for Logan's Presbyterian Church. He has also served as a member of Utah State's board of trustees and has been a long-time supporter of the university and its mission.

Jean C. ChristensenThe first of three distinguished service awards will be given to Jean C. Christensen of Salt Lake City. Christensen graduated from Utah State in 1946 with a degree in clothing and textiles. For 30 years she taught interior design, tailoring and creative home sewing. She served on the board of directors for the North Shore Senior Center in Winnetka, Ill., and as an advisory board member for the Utah State University's Festival of the American West. She organized and was first president of the Utah Quilt Guild with a current membership of 1,000 and 60 chapters throughout the Utah and in southern Idaho. Christensen served the Logan community as president of the Alliance for the Varied Arts, then served the state as a member of the Utah Arts Festival Advisory Council. She, along with her husband, W. Boyd Christensen, planned, organized and funded the recently completed Deseret Hospital & Quilt Museum located at This Is The Place State Park.

Nadine F. GillmorDistinguished service award recipient Nadine F. Gillmor of Oakley, Utah, learned the value of hard work early in her life. Growing up in the Uintah Basin, she cared for 2,000 chickens and 17 milk cows before boarding the bus for school each morning following the death of her father. This experience instilled in her a love of the outdoors that continues today. Gillmor currently operates the Lone Pine Ranch, located on thousands of acres on pristine land in Summit County. She has also been a vocal political activist, challenging local, state and federal officials in the protection of land owner's rights ranging from water, access, grazing and development issues, as well as the preservation of open space. Gillmor generously established a scholarship fund that is used for descendants of Summit County alumni and 4-H students attending Utah State University.

Jed H. PitcherSince graduating from Utah State University in 1961, Jed H. Pitcher has been involved in both business and community arenas. Starting as a cost accountant at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Utah in 1967, Pitcher quickly learned and advanced in the company, becoming president and CEO in 1981. In 1994, he was given the additional responsibility of chairman of the board. Due to Pitcher's direction, the corporation became Regence Blue Cross Blue Shield of Utah, joining with other plans in Oregon, Washington and Idaho. He also served on Utah State's board of trustees, where he served a term as chairman. He has served as chairman of the National Advisory Council for Utah Opera Company and was actively involved with the Salt Lake Area Chamber of Commerce. He was a member of the Bountiful Light and Power Commission Board as well as the Davis District Foundation Board, while still having time to serve as president of the Bountiful High School PTSA. Pitcher also holds positions on many national boards and is currently a member of the board of regents for the State of Utah.

For more information about Utah State Founders Day or about any award recipients contact Scott Olson, (435) 797-0931.



Department Of Special Education And Rehabilitation Addresses State Legislature

Utah House of Representatives logoApproximately 25 students from the Department of Special Education and Rehabilitation at Utah State University visited the Utah House of Representatives Friday, Feb. 27, to address the shortage of licensed special education teachers.

The students developed a citation that was read to the representatives. The citation described the dramatic shortage of licensed special education teachers and called upon legislators to allocate more scholarship funding to help train critically needed teachers.

"There has been a chronic shortage of licensed special education teachers for more than 15 years," said department head Ben Lignugaris/Kraft. "We need resources to prepare more teachers, and it's hard to have sufficient staff to do that."

The Department of Special Education and Rehabilitation at Utah State University has been actively involved in remedying the shortage of licensed teachers in the state. In a speech to Utah State special education students last semester, Rep. Jim Dunnigan encouraged them to become involved in the legislative process to help meet the current shortage. Utah State remains proactive in solving this shortage by not only incorporating the Legislature into the problem-solving, but also producing licensed teachers as well.

"Utah State University produces more licensed special educators than all other programs in the state combined," said Lignugaris/Kraft. "We place 100 percent of our graduates nation-wide."

The need for licensed special educators in Utah is dramatic. On a need scale from one to five, (five being the most needful), Utah is between 4.3 and 4.7, said Lignugaris/Kraft.


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