Navigating life as a Mormon youth

Published: Thursday, Aug. 22 2013 1:00 p.m. MDT

Said Hull: “For me, the experience changes every time, so you come with a different question each year. And each time you go in with a question, you pick up new stuff and it helps fill in the cracks. So it’s important that teachers are teaching with the Spirit because people are coming and looking for answers. … Education Week is kind of like recharging an iPhone or something and getting different apps.”

Teen sisters Caree and Erin Campbell are at Education Week for the first time and agree the program is a good way to recharge.

“It’s just a great way to refresh before school starts, just to be with other people who are trying to learn more about the gospel,” Erin Campbell said.

“It’s cool to see all the youth gather together, and that people really want to be here," Caree Campbell said.

While learning is an important part of the program, another component is application.

“You learn so much that it’s like, ‘Where do I start?’" Caree Campbell said. “But I guess I would say a couple things I want to do are to make goals, try to grow closer to the Savior and cherish and gain a testimony — just good things.”

Her sister added, “I think I’m probably going to study a lot more about anything I have questions about. This is good because it gives you a kick-start to learning and being more motivated to figure things out.”

Instructors also understand their teaching can only go so far.

“(Book of Mormon prophet) Alma talks about planting,” Schmidt said. “We plant a seed and let it grow. There’s a lot of experiences happening in families and wards, you know, on a very individual level, that are kind of nourishing experiences.

“I’ve always seen youth conferences and (Especially for Youth programs) and Education Weeks as kind of a planting," he continued. "We plant some seeds and then let them be nourished. And I think that all avenues are helpful and effective in their own way. They can allow that seed to go deeper.

“But if they leave it at that and don’t go back and act on the things that they’ve learned and felt, and parents and leaders don’t facilitate, it’s too bad. We’re really all in it together. We all help exalt each other. … It’s a great thing that BYU opens campus up to just take care of another little avenue that can be a benefit to these kids as they grow up and become amazing.”

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