Utah Valley University is pretty tight for space these days and to better distribute the rapidly growing student body, Utah legislature has approved funding that should put at least 3,000 more available classroom seats on campus.
All that’s left now is a signature from Governor Gary Herbert and what has been two years in the making will finally become a reality for the university. A $54 million building on campus should give the school some much needed breathing room. UVU has seen a 7,000 student increase since gaining university status in 2008 and has the fewest square feet per student of any school in the Utah system of higher education.
“We need the ability to offer more educational opportunities to our students… we have over 31,000 students, one of the things that the state has is a 66% goal that its citizens will have a post secondary education,” said Val Peterson, VP of Administration and Legislative Affairs. “We could use this building today just for the students we have, but definitely for the growth we have projected in the future. We need this facility.”
The new building will connect to the northwest corner of the UVU library and will be home to classrooms, faculty offices, and even a 1,000-seat auditorium. University officials estimate that groundbreaking will take place in mid-June and the project will run for 18 months and not a moment too soon. The university projects 12,000 more students by the year 2020.
President of UVU, Mathew Holland, was pleased with the plans for more space. “The Utah Legislature’s approval of funding for the new classroom building is a crucial win for UVU students, and we’re grateful for lawmakers’ support. I thank all those who have worked so diligently to make it a reality,” President Mathew Holland said.