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Students and Faculty Honor Dr. Archibald’s Tenure at BYU


As June 2020 draws to a close, so does Professor Jim Archibald’s tenure of almost thirty-three years at BYU. On the last day of June 2020, Dr. Archibald officially retired.

Plans for a traditional retirement party went face-to-face with 2020 and lost, so Dr. Archibald’s acquaintances - including current students, department colleagues, and former students - decided to celebrate this beloved professor remotely. They sent in videos in all genres and sizes, from heartfelt words of appreciation to a mock talk show featuring two former students reminiscing about their experiences with him. Praise and gratitude abounded.

“I can honestly say [Dr. Archibald] had the largest effect on me while I was at BYU,” said one former student. Said another, “I feel like [he] really believed in us and pushed us to do our best.”

Many former and current students recalled specific classes he taught and how much those classes have assisted them in their jobs and internships. “I use 425 (or Real-Time Operating Systems) on a daily basis in my role at L3Harris. It is honestly one of the most helpful classes I ever took at BYU,” another former student said in her message. Still others praised his unique ability to make challenging concepts ‘click,’ his willingness to answer questions, his kindness, and his mind-enlarging lectures.

The faculty also had plenty of praise and well-wishes for their colleague, especially those who took classes from him when they were students at BYU. Dr. Mike Wirthlin credited Dr. Archibald’s Computer Architecture class as the setting where he, as an undergraduate student, knew he wanted to work in some field related to computer architecture and described his recent collaboration with Dr. Archibald as one of the highlights of his career. The rest of the faculty will remember Dr. Archibald as a refreshingly honest, deeply caring and well-spoken colleague, mentor, sounding board and friend.

As they concluded their messages, those enriched by Dr. Archibald’s decades of service at BYU wished him all the best and many wonderful rounds of golf in the decades to come.