The School


Fall image of campus looking toward Timpanogos, Tuesday October 20, 2015. (Nathaniel Ray Edwards, UVU Marketing)
Shots of UVU on the Utah Valley University Campus in Orem, Utah on Friday November 25, 2015. (Jay Drowns/UVU Marketing)

School History

Utah Valley University was established in 1941 as Central Utah Vocational School (CUVS) with the primary function of providing war production training. CUVS was part of the Provo School District located in south Provo. The institution received a state appropriation in March 1945 of $50,000 to operate for the 1945-1947 biennium. In 1947, the school received funding as a permanent state institution.

A new site for the school was acquired on University Avenue in Provo in 1948; in the 1952, the state appropriated funding for the first construction on that site. As enrollments grew, the state acquired over 185 acres in southwest Orem and the first building was completed in 1977. Today, the University’s facilities consist of a combined total of 412 acres with 50 buildings with campuses in Orem, Provo, and Heber City and property in Vineyard and at Thanksgiving Point in Lehi.

In 1963, the school’s name changed to Utah Trade Technical Institute to reflect its growing role in technical training. The name again changed in 1967 to Utah Technical College at Provo. The institution was approved in 1966 to grant Associate of Applied Science degrees, in 1967 to offer general education courses, in 1971 to grant Associate of Science degrees (discontinued in 1974 and reinstated in 1981), and in 1987 to grant Associate of Arts degrees. With its expanded degree offerings, the institution’s name changed again to Utah Valley Community College in 1987. In 1993, the institution’s name changed to Utah Valley State College and the mission was expanded to include the offering of bachelor’s degrees. On July 1, 2008, the institution underwent another mission and name change to Utah Valley University and began offering master degree programs.

Throughout its history, UVU has responded to its service region’s (Utah, Wasatch and Summit counties) population changes and business/industry needs. This responsiveness is evidenced in its mission, program offering, degree level, and enrollment changes.

Sources: A Miracle in Utah Valley—The Story of Utah Technical College 1941-1982, Wilson W. Sorensen
Utah Valley University Self-study Report, 2010