"My brother is too kind. He was eminent when my eminence was only imminent." -Niles Crane
Question #67012 posted on 04/25/2012 8:38 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

What are the majors of all of the players on the men's basketball team? I think Noah Hartsock is psychology, but that is about it. Their profiles are not very helpful.

-Just Curious

A:

Dear just curious,

I sent an email to the guy who's responsible for trying to help said players to actually graduate, and he didn't answer, so after a good delay I went to his office. He wasn't there, but his secretary said she'd talk to him and someone would be in touch with me. After another good delay, I went to his office again. Turned out he had received got my original email and actually did forward it to another guy to get permission to release the information. Guy #2 didn't get back to him. So I went to that guy #2's office to follow up and he wasn't there, but I talked to a secretary who said she'd have him get in touch with me. And...in the end, after a third hefty delay, guy #2 still has not replied to me. If he ever does, I'll post a comment. Anyone else who has information is welcome to comment as well. 

~Professor Kirke

Question #67371 posted on 04/25/2012 8:14 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Okay, so I have been attending Idaho State University for a year. I live off campus in my own apartment with my cat, and my hamster. Lately I have been having the feeling and hearing "whisperings" of me needing to attend B.Y.U. I am going to take Summer classes, and Fall classes at I.S.U. in order to earn enough B.Y.U transferable credits, and am hoping to be accepted to and attend B.Y.U. in the winter/spring semester. I am having trouble finding a place to live. Is there any on/off campus B.Y.U. approved housing that allows cats? (and of course small caged animals?)

-Thank you for your help,
Can't get rid of my kitty-cat.

A:

Dear Sam,

Short answer: no. Sorry. Welcome to the club. Longer answer: try talking to Off-Campus housing. I make you no promises. You will hear of and maybe witness some people trying to go around the rules (at one time, I was one of these people with a fish), but the contract does state no pets.

-Azriel

posted on 04/30/2012 2:31 p.m.
Beesley Apartments on the corner of 800 E and 700 N allows cats and will probably allow hamsters. Even though the contract says no pets, he will let you know when you sign the contract that he allows cats, since he has cats of his own. The housing is mostly for married students, but he occasionally contracts to single students if you have roommates willing to go with you already. Wayne, the owner, is best reached by phone his number is 801-636-7178.
Question #67370 posted on 04/25/2012 4:56 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I recently read the Bone series by Jeff Smith, and for someone who's not well-acquainted with graphic novels, I was very impressed.

In the third issue ("Eyes of the Storm") there is a super surreal full-page panel about four or five pages in that shows the Red Dragon's gigantic face rising out of the sea. When I saw that picture, I thought, "I need to get a poster of that."

Alas, there are no posters available of that, as far as I could tell--or are there? Most esteemed Board members, can you succeed where I have failed? I couldn't even find an electronic copy of that panel online. I'd like to get the image (or rights to use it) through legal channels, but I can't even start addressing that if I can't find the image anywhere.

Hopefully,

-Hoping to spruce up the digs

A:

Dear Hopeful,

Jeff Smith self-published the Bone series, so presumably he owns the copyright on your desired poster image. Your best bet is to contact him personally and ask if he would sell you a poster of the image. However, I find it unlikely that he'd go to the effort, and if he did, I'd be ready to shell out a couple hundred bucks, considering what he sells his other merchandise for. So... yeah. Good luck with that.

What I'd do is pay someone with artistic talent a couple bucks to draw a poster-sized image of that for me. Fan art! It's legal.

–Concealocanth

Question #67364 posted on 04/25/2012 4:20 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Can I still get a discounted monthly UTA student pass from BYU if I'm not actually taking classes during the spring and summer? I will be working in SLC and am looking for cheaper options than driving. I guess I'm not sure what qualifies me as a "student." Is being signed up for classes in the fall enough? Thanks a bunch.

-poor "student?"

A:

Dear "Student",

Yes, you should be able to. However, if you want to confirm this, I would recommend calling BYU Student Services and having them look you up on the UTAPASS screen to verify your eligibility. Their phone number is (801)422-4104.

-Watts

Question #67366 posted on 04/25/2012 3:08 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board

Why does Star Trek: Enterprise receive such a bad rap? It is a decent show...

-LLAP

A:

Dear Llama,

In an alternate universe, there exists a question-and-answer forum much like this one, except it's specifically for all of your Star Trek questions, like why Enterprise got such a bad rap. Oh wait! That's THIS universe.

–Concealocanth

Question #67365 posted on 04/25/2012 3:08 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

A while back I was at the chemistry stockroom in the Nicholes Building. They had round-bottom glassware that they were selling for really cheap because they were trying to get rid of it. But they warned that it was only being sold for laboratory use. To have round-bottom glassware in your home is a federal offense (I presume because it can be used to make meth). So I wonder, besides round-bottom glassware, are there any other laboratory supplies (for any type of lab, not just chemistry) that are illegal to have in your home?

—Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble

A:

Dear Macbeth,

According to Title 21 United States Code: Controlled Substances Act Section 843. Prohibited Acts C, it is a federal offense:

"(6) to possess any three-neck round-bottom flask, tableting machine, encapsulating machine, or gelatin capsule, or any equipment, chemical, product, or material which may be used to manufacture a controlled substance or listed chemical, knowing, intending, or having reasonable cause to believe, that it will be used to manufacture a controlled substance or listed chemical in violation of this subchapter or subchapter II of this chapter"

The law specifically mentions three-neck round-bottom flasks, tableting machines, encapsulating machines, and gelatin capsules, but it also includes anything that could be used to manufacture illegal substances. For an idea of what this might reasonably include, Texas law specifically prohibits private ownership of "condensers, distilling apparatus, vacuum dryers, single, two-and three-necked flasks, distilling flasks, Florence flasks, filter funnels, Buchner funnels, separator funnels, Erlenmeyer flasks, round-bottom flasks, thermometer flasks, filtering flasks, Soxhlet extractors, and adapter tubes made of glass."

–Concealocanth

A:

Dear Bubble,

I'm no lawyer, but Concealocanth's excerpt up there actually makes me think that owning any of the items mentioned just because they're fun or pretty or whatever wouldn't be illegal. Unless there's a stricter state or federal law out there, as long as you're not planning on letting your glassware be used to make controlled substances, then it looks like just having them in your home would be perfectly legal.

- Eirene

Question #67361 posted on 04/25/2012 3:08 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

A few years ago I heard someone speak and an important part of the talk was about the significance of Nephi telling us (more than once) that his father dwelt in a tent. I remember it was an LDS scholar, and that he/she really knew their stuff - but I can't remember any more and I want to hear or read the talk again. Can you help me find it?

-Comin' Up Empty

A:

Dear Empty,

Hugh Nibley wrote a lot of academic stuff about Lehi's tent, and the Book of Mormon Groupies blog wrote about Lehi's tent. Those two sources would probably make a lot of the same points as whoever spoke to you.

Additionally (Google search bonus round time!), if you want you can buy a "And my father dwelt in a tent" t-shirt, sweatshirt, mug, or teddy bear, among other merchandise. And an ex/anti-Mormon site came up with this gem: "'And my father dwelt in a tent'...and yet we hardly ever got to go camping! [...] bunch of hypocrites... practice what you preach!" 

If anyone knows something more specific, feel free to comment. 

~Professor Kirke

Question #67356 posted on 04/25/2012 3:08 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I'm getting married soon, and we're considering not getting cable to save on money since there are lots of other, cheaper ways to watch shows. My husband-to-be has a Playstation 3, so we could get Netflix or Hulu Plus and watch it on our TV. What are the similarities and differences between the two? Pros and cons? Your preference?

Some cable shows that I watch regularly, if that makes a difference either way: Psych, Covert Affairs, Suits (USA Network), and Melissa & Joey (ABC Family). Everything else I watch is on local channels. My fiance doesn't care about any cable shows that much, so he'll be just fine with what we're getting. Thanks!

-Future Mrs. Bartowski

A:

Dear Future Mrs. B,

Netflix is preferable if you want to watch movies; Hulu Plus is preferable if you want to watch TV shows, though both have both movies and shows. However, being a cheapskate, I'd get neither and watch Psych on regular Hulu, Covert Affairs and Suits on USA network's website, and Melissa & Joey on ABC's website.

–Concealocanth

Question #67355 posted on 04/25/2012 3:08 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I'm having a bit of an issue with the course of my life right now. I've always been very passionate and driven and enjoy pursuing a lot of hobbies and interests. However, as I approach graduation and consider my future plans, I'm realizing that my ambition may outstrip my abilities. I am not particularly talented or intelligent in any way and at 21, I'm having to take a hard look at my life and decide where to focus my ambitions.

With that background, here is my actual question:
My parents seem to think that this period of indecision is a sure sign that it's time to get married [even though I'm not dating anyone]. Each time my plans and hopes for the future fall through [leaving me devastated and confused], they try to console me with things like "Well, maybe this will help you get your priorities in order." and "Look at your friend So-and-So, she pursued her passion and now she's twenty-SEVEN and still single!" I know that they mean well, and I concede that I need to try to be humble about the Lord's plans for me. But the things they say really hurt me. I know they love me, but they have never been supportive or encouraging of my goals and aspirations. And this is all starting to make me frustrated with my family and the church. Is it really the "right thing" to just give up all of my hopes and pursue marriage instead? I'm not anti-marriage, but I honestly don't see how marriage in my late twenties would be worse than marriage at 21.
When I try to research the church's perspective on the issue, I can see support for both sides. My question for you is this: Is it really wrong to desire a career and opportunities while I'm still young? I believe that I might get married some day, but it is honestly not at the top of my list at this time in my life. How much if this Early Marriage stuff is cultural and how much is doctrine? I'm afraid that this might create some serious issues between me and the church, and I'm really hoping it's all just a misunderstanding.

-I am my own Support System

A:

Dear Support System,

OK, fun background story. I had a big career decision moment shortly after getting back from my mission. I had a big crazy dream career (sounds like you can sympathize) about being a theoretical physicist and trying to redefine cosmology. The odds did not look good. Even if it worked out, I'd have to spend a long time in the grad school grind, having sharply limited time and money for the family I'd want to have anyways. If it didn't work out, I could end up being no better off a decade from now than I am at this very moment. But it was the dream, and it seemed like I could really do some good in the world if I could help it have more understanding of the truths of eternity through my work. 

I pondered this a lot, and I eventually figured out that I was confused about God's plan for me. I'm not really cut out to be a theoretical physicist - I have too much of an engineering mindset. Realistically, my dream probably wouldn't make that much of a difference to society, either. And I got the sense that God didn't plan for my career to be the main way I'll do good in the world. I felt like the most important thing in my life plan ought to be having and raising a family. I'll need to have a career, and I hope to work on enjoyable, worthwhile engineering projects that make the world a better place, but exactly what field I work in and what I do or do not achieve professionally are secondary concerns. When I really convinced myself of this, it felt really good, and it's been tremendously liberating. I feel certain that I'll have the career I need to fulfill my just desire to raise and provide for a family and I'm doing what's necessary for that to happen, and beyond that I don't have to worry much about it. To the degree that my focus was off, I felt stressed out and even worried my parents a bit (to a degree, I know of what you speak), but after I realized how important having a family is to long-term happiness, the fulfillment of my role in my future family became my priority and everything got easier.

Almost everything I just said apply to both men and women. For both, family is God's priority, and for both, specific career achievements are unlikely to be central to God's plan. 

In my opinion, you ought to cultivate a desire to have a family and be open to the idea of getting married. Go on dates, have serious relationships, and make prayerful decisions about how to let them progress, and you're doing about all your parents can expect and probably enjoying yourself. The importance of starting an eternal family early on is emphasized because it makes both men and women happy in a way that career goals never could, so make that your priority. Then, while remembering it is not that important in the eternal scheme of things, have fun with your career for however long it lasts.

~Professor Kirke

PS I don't want to get into the "what is doctrine" debate or throw quotes at you (I get the feeling you probably get enough of that already), but if you want some reading on this topic, here's a few options. This piece from President Benson quotes and affirms what several other prophets have taught and is pretty directly stated. The Proclamation on the Family, Elder Andersen's recent conference talk "Children," and President Monson's recent remarks (example, which though directed to young men bears on the question of postponing marriage in general) also seem relevant. 

A:

Dear Support,

Is it really the "right thing" to just give up all of my hopes and pursue marriage instead?

That is a false dichotomy. It sounds like you think marriage is a place where you'll be compelled to give up everything you care about to focus on your family. Maybe that assumption is even supported by your observation of other people's sacrifices. I'd like to point out that unless that's what you and your future husband choose for yourselves, that doesn't have to be the way things go when you get married. Now, don't get me wrong; everyone has limitations of time and ability, and those limitations will mean that you'll probably find yourself making some sacrifices to various areas of your life. But a good man will help you pursue your dreams, whatever they may be, even while you're in a serious and/or eternal relationship. Keeping your marriage and family strong should be your absolute top priority whenever you do get married (by the way, twenty-seven is really not such an outlandish age at all), and that definitely requires sacrifices in other areas of your life. However, with a good husband, you don't have to give up everything that matters to you.

Ladies: You're looking for a man who will let you and help you fulfill your goals. There are lots of good, unselfish men out there who won't ask you to give up everything.

Gentlemen: When you find someone you love, don't ask or expect her to drop the things she loves—help her fulfill her goals.

Seriously, marriage shouldn't have to be the end of goals, or independence of thought, or involvement (occupational or social) outside the home. Marriage is an awesome opportunity to grow really close to someone, to spend as much time as you want with your favorite person ever, to have a constant source of love and support, and to get to be a constant source of love and support. If you're thinking about it that way instead, I don't know why anyone would want to intentionally delay marriage.

So, just remember: it's not an either/or situation. You shouldn't drop everything you're doing to pursue a husband, but thinking that getting married means giving up on things you love is just not correct, and is therefore not a good reason at all to avoid situations that could lead to marriage or relationships.

- Eirene

P.S. I said a lot about the wife being supported and encouraged by the husband, but that's just an artifact of my female experience. Reverse the genders for any part of this answer and it's just as true.

A:

Dear friend,

First of all, did you read Eirene's answer? It's great. She hit upon a great truth, which is that relationships are largely about supporting each other. I know I could never be happy if Mr. Mico wasn't as supportive of me as he is.

Now, here's the thing about pursuing marriage: you can pursue it all you want, but that doesn't mean it will happen right away, if ever. If you are open to dating people and working at a relationship, then you are doing all you can to pursue marriage. It sounds like the biggest source of stress for you is your parents putting pressure on you. Tell your parents how you feel. Even just an email will help, or sending along your question as it is here. Explain to them that you are doing what you can, but you have other things you are pursuing as well. It's your life and you shouldn't feel guilty for being 21 and unmarried; that's not old at all. And 27? Also not old.

There isn't one right time to get married. If you don't feel ready for marriage at this time in your life, or if you feel like you have other things you want to be sure to do before marriage, then don't get married right away. Don't turn down dates because being in a relationship would hinder other things; a good relationship will help both of you achieve your goals. Honestly, it sounds to me like you want to live your life to the fullest, and that's great. Good luck!

-Mico

Question #67354 posted on 04/25/2012 3:02 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

How do you make friends with guys? This might sound like a stupid question but I have always been the type of girl who only hangs with her girlfriends and I just don't know how to get out of this habit. Perhaps my real question is how can I establish a casual relationship with guys (especially a group of guys) and be seen as a platonic friend because that's really what I'm going for.

-PJ

A:

Dear PJ! I like that!,

Thinking about my friendships with guys, I realize I made friends with them just like I made friends with my female friends... there's really nothing else to it. You establish common interests and casually spend time together. Really, unless you're baking them cookies, writing them love notes, flirting with them, and asking them on dates, I don't think many men would mistake your intentions for friendship for something else. So chillax and go make some guy friends.

–Concealocanth

Question #67327 posted on 04/25/2012 3:02 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

My boyfriend and I are getting married in August. Wahoo! Unfortunately this means we have to leave our lovely current complex and find some housing that is available mid-August within our price range (less than $600/month). We've done tons of research (not joking) but still find ourselves in need of basic information.

I know ya'll have answered these questions before, but most are from years ago, so I figured it was time for an update on the married housing situation. Like reviews and how best to go about getting a contract starting in mid-August. Is it best to search for a contract now or wait for more people to notify their landlords they are leaving? It seems most housing for married couples is run through management groups such as Continental Properties, TPM rentals, Legend real estate, etc. Are any of these horrible management? Is it easier to come by furnished or unfurnished places? How have you found your married living?

With much thanks,
Excited for our own place

A:

Dear excited,

What we did was, a month and a half before we got married we started looking for a place. And a month before we got married, Mr. Mico moved into that new place. It was wonderful not to worry about housing the few weeks leading up to the wedding. We looked for a place a little bit away from campus (since my husband is not a student and we are not into the "student lifestyle" (whatever that means)). The nice thing about such places is that they are generally month-to-month rentals, rather than by semester. We used Craigslist and KSL, which are updated pretty much daily with new openings. I guess my advice to you is to look at places that are not right next to campus. But, if you are both students then that might not be the best advice after all. 

I think the best way to find out if any of those are horribly managed would be to stealthily ask around. Do you know any married couples? Better yet, do you have a free afternoon that you could go by the area or the ward and ask current residents? At the last place I lived, just before moving out a number of girls came by and asked me questions about living there. They contacted me ahead of time to make sure I had some time to spare and then came with questions. It was very informative, and I'd recommend you do that if you are really concerned. 

Sorry we couldn't be of more help, but really this is the sort of thing you'll just have to go out and do on your own. If you are looking for places that are on or close to campus, then you should definitely start looking today and asking around. But if you don't mind living a little off campus, then you will have more flexibility in the timing of your move. Also, if you find a good place a month before you get married, all the better! One of you can move in early and start setting things up. Good luck!

-Mico

Question #67250 posted on 04/25/2012 3:02 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Say I want to go to graduate school (PhD or Masters) to study chemistry. What is a GRE (general and subject) score and GPA that will get me into a decent school (nothing too crazy, I'm thinking like ASU, U of A, BYU, the U, any of the UCs or CSUs)?

Also, I would prefer to stay here in the West where everything is best.


Thanks,

Niels Bohr Fan

PS I understand this is a broad and possibly difficult question to answer so any help would be much appreciated

A:
Dear Bohr Fan,
 
I sent this off to a friend who we shall call Chronicler. Here is what she said:
 
I compiled a table of admission requirements for most of the schools that were mentioned:
 
School GPA   GRE Score Subject Test Score Website
ASU 3.0 Minimum   Required; no specific cutoff score Recommended but not required http://chemistry.asu.edu/graduate/
University of Arizona 3.0 Minimum   Required ? http://grad.arizona.edu/live/programs/description/36#PhD
BYU 3.0 Minimum   ~1200 (that's on the old scale)* Not required http://www.chem.byu.edu/
U of U 3.0 Minimum       Required Not required http://www.chem.utah.edu/grad_program/index.html
UCSD 3.0 Minimum   Required; no specific cutoff score Required for PhD only; no specific cutoff score http://www-chem.ucsd.edu/graduate-program/admissions/index.html
UC Berkeley 3.0 Minimum   Required; no specific cutoff score Required; no specific cutoff score http://chem.berkeley.edu/grad_info/graduate_admissions.php
CSU ?   Required ? http://www.chem.colostate.edu/graduates/

I also talked to my dad, who was the graduate committee chair in a chemistry department for many years.  He said that if you wanted to get into what he called a mid-level chemistry graduate program, then a GPA of ~3.5 and GRE score of 1200/1600 to 1300/1600 (in the old scoring system they used until August 2011) would most likely be good enough.  In the new scoring system, that's roughly 160/170 on the Verbal Reasoning section and 148/170 on the Quantitative Reasoning section.  
 
As for the subject test, most schools do not require it, so I'd only recommend taking it if a) it's required for your school of choice, or b) you're confident that you can do well on it and thereby enhance your application.  Otherwise it's not worth the stress or the money.  A good score on the subject test is about the 75th percentile and above.  
 
Last, you can greatly increase your chances of being accepted if you've done research as an undergraduate, especially if your application is weak in some area.
 
Best of luck to Niels Bohr Fan!  The world needs more chemists.
 
-Chronicler, c/o Professor Kirke
Question #66779 posted on 04/25/2012 2:56 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I am a BYU grad and currently an active duty member of the United States Air Force. I have about 2 years left on my commitment, and I am leaning towards separating in 2014 so my kids will have a chance to settle down. I recently got a job offer in Utah Valley, but I'm not sure I want my kids to grow up in Utah for one reason . . . I think they might have an easier time getting into BYU if they are from a location further away from Provo. During my career, we have lived in many excellent wards, but I have a hard time believing that some of the youth that have been accepted to BYU would have been so lucky had they applied with a Utah zip code on their application.

I believe that the further one lives from BYU, the better chances that individual has at being accepted. I know that the Church's mission is to the spread the gospel, and therefore accepting people from all corners of the earth definitely helps the cause. Any truth to my theory? If so, how far away should we move? Utah seems to have the worst odds, with AZ, ID, CA, and NV close behind.

Making a move for the future -

Master Nelson

A:

Dear Master Nelson,

I think there is a some truth to your theory, but not enough that I think you should move your family across the world. It's true that 84% of BYU's students come from only 10 states, but I believe that number to be somewhat proportional to the number of viable applicants produced by those states. There are obviously a lot of factors that go into determining who's a viable candidate and who isn't (SAT/ACT scores, GPA, Church service), but for the purposes of this discussion I've chosen to focus on the number of seminary students a state/country produces in relation to how many students from that place attend BYU.

Using BYU admission numbers and CES enrollment statistics from 2010 I've put together a chart so you can compare enrollment and seminary involvement by location. However, keep in mind that I am not in any way a statistician, so my use of the word "significant" is not to be interpreted to mean that something is "statistically significant." I'll tell you the conclusions I draw from the numbers, but they're just my opinions and speculations (any real statisticians in our readership will undoubtedly wince a lot while reading my analysis).

 location table.jpg

A large chunk of BYU's student population comes from Utah. This is not surprising, seeing as how Utah has more LDS members and seminary enrollees than most countries. However, you will notice that despite producing 22.58% of the world's seminary students, only 12.7% of Utah's seminary students go on to study at BYU. Now look at the stats for California, which makes up the next highest portion of BYU's student body. It produces 4.78% of the world's seminary students (compared to Utah's 22.58%), but 23.22% of their seminary students go on to study at BYU (as compared to Utah's 12.70%). This tells us that there are some states where the number of seminary students (i.e. viable candidates) is not proportional to the number of students admitted to BYU from that state. Utah, Idaho, Arizona, and Nevada (four of the five states you believe to have the worst odds) all have less than 15% of their enrolled seminary students going on to attend BYU.

Now, I'm not going to pretend that I know the reason why that's the case, because there are any number of factors that are not accounted for here. It could be that those states have high LDS populations, making attending in-state universities an attractive alternative to attending BYU, whereas students from states with small LDS populations might welcome the (to them) unique opportunity of living in a dominantly LDS environment. It could also be that candidates from those states do not stand out enough from their competitors in terms of extra-curriculars and Church service.

I initially wanted to put together something comparing admission rates for U.S. residents vs. international applicants, but BYU's International Admissions Office never got back to me despite repeated assurances that they would both call and email me. I got the impression that they were hesitant to release any numbers to me, probably for fear that I would unearth some sort of discrepancy proving that they are somehow prejudiced against Albanian applicants, which would cause all Hell to break loose. All I know is that when you tell someone you'll email them back you had darn well better do it (that's right Patricia Ware, I'm talking about you). Suffice it to say, the only stats I gleaned from BYU's site are that international students make up 6% of BYU's student body, with 1,944 enrolled in the Fall of 2010. At least 1,483 (or 76%) of those students are LDS.

BYU does list the number of international students attending BYU, but they group it by region, and as I don't know BYU's definition of "Europe" vs. "Eastern Europe," nor which countries fit into the (slightly racist-sounding) category "Far East," I was only able to crunch the numbers for "Mexico & Central America" and "South America," as those are more easily defined. As you can see, the percentage of international seminary students who go on to attend BYU is quite low, as in, less than 1% from the listed regions. You could take that to mean that your children would have less competition, or it could indicate the difficulty of being accepted to BYU as an international student. 

Now, if you truly wanted to live as far away from Provo as possible, that would put you in the middle of the Indian Ocean, with the closest land mass being part of Antarctica. The last I checked, the Church doesn't have many (which is to say any) wards meeting there. There is a branch in Madagascar, which is next-closest geographically, and the country had 319 seminary students as of 2010. If you really want your children to be stand-out applicants, you'll move to Poland, which had zero seminary students last year, or you could consider Croatia, Turkey, or Curacao, which each had a grand total of one. In terms of low seminary enrollment in the U.S., Vermont is where it's at. No, your children will certainly never want for leadership opportunities, not when there are only 85 seminary students in the whole state. You will want to consider the enormous cost of travel that comes with shipping your kids across the country/world several times a year to visit, but hey, they may resent you enough for moving them to the middle of nowhere that you won't have to worry about it.

Hoping you find a good fit for you and your family,

-Genuine Article

A:

Dear Mr. Nelson,

As an aside, just keep in mind that your kids might not want to go to BYU. Maybe they won't even go to college. You don't know what they will want this far in advance. Rather than planning where you will live for the sake of a mere four years of your children's lives, maybe you should choose to live wherever you feel is the best overall. 

Jekyll/Hyde

A:
Dear Master Nelson,
 
I will let GA take on the probability measurements and leave you with a couple of thoughts from my days working in admissions.  
 
The technical answer (i.e. the one you would get if you called in and asked the admissions office) is that BYU does not need to meet any specific demographics and as such can/will accept people from everywhere (and deny people from everywhere too). This is true, and happens a lot. However, that doesn't necessarily mean that it's any more or less difficult to get into BYU from densely populated LDS area. It is a fair assumption that where there are more LDS students, there are more BYU applicants. However, I don't know that it is safe to assume that it is more difficult to get into BYU solely based on being from Utah, and here's why. 
 
Who gets accepted to BYU? Those with good academics and well rounded backgrounds (mostly). The problem with Utah is not that we have bucket-loads of people from here, but that we have bucket-loads of people who are all LDS, all served on seminary council, and were all in choir and took up juggling and converted the one non-member in their class, etc, etc. There is a lack of originality because everyone and their dog is heavily involved in extracurricular activities. Because they are all from the same state, many of the extracurricular activities available are the same. I can tell you that the kids in the median area that don't make themselves stand out in some way are going to have a difficult time getting into BYU. You have to make yourself memorable, regardless of whether the activity is actually unique or not. Choir for example, is not necessarily a unique extracurricular, but you can make it sound that way if you write a kick-butt essay. 
 
Additionally, even though there are not specific quotas, BYU obviously wants to be perceived as a diverse college. That is why EVERY PR or Ad campaign for BYU has as many different races/ethnicities as possible, despite an overwhelming white majority at BYU. Thus, we are going to try and accept a lot of people from other states/countries, because we want to have a balanced school.  
 
Bottom line: officially, applying from Utah won't make a difference as you are compared to the entire applicant pool. In general (regardless of the state), if you're not making yourself stand out then you're going to end up screwing yourself over. Especially (as you pointed out) if the ACT/GPA is mediocre. 
 
Honestly, BYU is going to have to do something soon if they want to be able to meet the demands that are being made of them. Whether that is another BYU campus with the same prestige and/or national and worldwide recognition or simply expanding enrollment something is going to need to change, or we're going to hit a place where it will be extremely difficult to get into BYU. The official percentage of people who were accepted from the total applicant pool for last year (2011) was 62.7%. This year that number has dropped to a dismal 54%.* We denied nearly as many people as we accepted, and this decrease in accepted percentage is growing every year. 

The best advice I have for concerned parents is take a deep breath, make sure they take the whole application seriously (not just grades), and don't force them to take challenging classes that they don't want/need to take. If they hate AP Bio but you think it will look good/transfer well to BYU, it's not going to be worth the GPA sacrifice when they get a C. Most importantly, remember that there are schools out there that are just as good if not better than BYU. BYU is not the only option.

-Watts
 
*This is not an official number that has been published, just one that has been tossed around the admissions office. I imagine real numbers will be published at the beginning of Fall semester.