BYU-Hawaii fall graduates were counseled by Elder Carlos E. Asay of the Presidency of the Seventy to keep alive the quest for knowledge by study and by faith.
Elder Asay, a member of the BYU Board of Trustees, was the keynote speaker at BYU-Hawaii's 52nd Fall Commencement Exercises, held in the Cannon Activities Center Dec. 16.Speaking to the 135 graduates representing 23 countries, Elder Asay quoted poet and writer Henry Van Dyke by saying there are "four things a man must do to make his record true: to think without confusion clearly; to love his fellow men sincerely; to act from honest motives purely; to trust in God in Heaven securely."
Elder Asay further explained that these things are not necessarily found in a class syllabus, but are "a vital part of the unwritten curriculum of BYU-Hawaii." He went on to say that the qualities of tolerance, respect and love for others need to be developed, regardless of race, color or creed.
"This university is unique in many ways," Elder Asay said. "But the one unique feature that gives it its strength and being is that it brings young people together from many countries. Such an amalgamation of cultures creates a laboratory which students may readily learn love for their fellow men sincerely."
Elder Asay admonished the graduates to develop the art of clear thinking, through meditation, as it is the "well spring of inspirational and creative thoughts." He urged the students to retire to their own sacred groves on a regular basis that they may ponder on things of a spiritual nature and not become overly concerned with the temporal things of life.
"Don't allow the gloom of disappointment, the red of anger, the green of envy, and the black of sin to contaminate your mind," cautioned Elder Asay, who warned against the things of the world that can bind and enslave people.
"You must plan ahead, you must plan thoroughly, you must go forth with confidence one step at a time. Yet you must realize that there is a loving and kind God, even your Father in Heaven," said Elder Asay. "He will lead and guide you in the uncharted waters that lie ahead if you trust in Him securely."
During the commencement exercises, Pres. Eric B. Shumway and Vice Pres. Olani Durrant presented the 1995 Presidential Citation to Alton L. Wade, vice president for student life at BYU. Brother Wade, a past president of BYU-Hawaii, and "one of the university's best friends," received the honor for his tireless efforts in the education system throughout the Pacific, and "his reluctance to give anything less than his very best."
Aaron Merrill Shumway, an English major from Laie, Oahu, was the valedictorian of the 1995 fall class.