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ISU business students' book 'Images of America: A History of Garrett Freightlines' publishes week of July 11

July 7, 2016

The Idaho State University student-written book “Images of America: A History of Garrett Freightlines” will officially publish the week of July 11 by Arcadia Publishing.

According to Alex Bolinger, management professor and advisor for the project, Arcadia is the leading publishing house for local and regional popular press histories in the United States.

After submitting a formal book proposal to the Charleston, South Carolina company a year ago, Bolinger and his class embarked on the journey to research, collaborate and write a full book on the 1913 Pocatello company. Participating in the class were 16 students from various university colleges. These students included Lisa Cecil, Michael Cellan, Doug Chambers, Jodi Diaz, Andrea Jardine, Chelsea Kavanaugh, Jenna Larson, McKenzie Thomas, Melissa Myers, Somelina Obiechina, Travis Pattengale, Brooke Rammell, Evette Reay, Daniel Spicer, Lauren Wagner and Jordan Withers.

The students worked in groups of four to research and collaborate on writing two chapters each. The project was geared toward helping the students build skills and get experience in managing and working in teams. It also gave them experience writing and conducting research with an emphasis on synthesis. In addition, they learned about how the company they were writing about was able to become so successful, especially through maintaining a strong internal culture.

In addition to students in Bolinger’s Management 4499/5599 class writing the book, the project also served as a secondary assignment for students in marketing Professor John Ney’s personal selling class where students developed a marketing plan to sell the book. Bolinger said Ney’s class sold between 130-150 books even before officially publishing.

According to Bolinger, the book covers a full history of the company from the first idea of creating a 24-hour luggage transfer service in Pocatello in 1913 to becoming the fifth-largest freight carrier in the United States by the 1970s.

“Chapters in the book focus on the company’s unique, family-like culture, as well as its many innovations in equipment and operations and its eventual demise after being sold to American Natural Resources,” Bolinger said.

In fall 2016, Bolinger’s class will write a second book in honor of the Idaho State University’s 115-year anniversary. The book is scheduled to publish by Arcadia in May 2017 and will be included in the publisher’s “Campus Collection” series.

Anyone interested in purchasing either book or contributing photos or resources to the new publication is encouraged to contact Bolinger at

More information about the class project will also be published in the upcoming issue of the College of Business’ Business Bulletin magazine to be released in late July.