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August 6, 2021
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Utah Polytechnic State University? Maybe not. Proposed Dixie State name change in question

Dixie State University in St. George is pictured on Friday, April 9, 2021. It’s looking like the new proposed name of Utah Polytechnic State University for Dixie State University won’t stick. (Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

ST. GEORGE — It’s looking like the new proposed name of Utah Polytechnic State University for Dixie State University won’t stick.

In a statement released Friday, the school’s Board of Trustees said it may consider alternative names. The move comes amid strong community feedback on the proposed change.

“The Trustees have been receiving community feedback on the Name Recommendation Committee’s recommendation of Utah Polytechnic State University, and based on what they have learned, will likely look at alternative names to consider,” the statement reads.

The Board of Trustees will meet Tuesday, June 29, at noon to vote on a potential new name.

After the vote, the Utah Board of Higher Education will vote on the trustees’ suggestion. Then, it would go to the Utah State Legislature.

Online petition against Utah Polytechnic State

Student Jordan Kirby recently launched an online petition a day after the committee’s vote, hoping to catch the attention of the committee or the board of trustees. His petition received significant traction almost immediately.

Kirby, a junior studying business, thought the proposed name stripped any identity of the university’s home region.

It garnered over 10,000 signatures in less than two days and earlier this week neared 15,000 signatures. It was “way more” than what Kirby expected.

There was also lots of feedback prior to the committee’s name recommendation.

About one-third of people in the 47 focus group studies conducted in the rename process don’t support the idea of renaming Dixie State University.

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