ST. GEORGE, Utah — If a Dixie State University committee has its way, the school's new name will be Utah Polytechnic State University, or Utah Tech for short.
In a meeting Monday, the name recommendation committee voted 11-3-2 on the new name to be forwarded to the school's Board of Trustees, which will then hold their own vote on whether to accept the committee's recommendation.
The committee believes this name will be approved by the board as it fulfills the requirements laid out by the state, allowing students to compete nationally and highlighting the school's academic mission.
“The name distinguishes the university on a statewide scale, offers it the prestigious status it deserves and emphasizes the university’s comprehensive polytechnic mission," said Julie Beck, board member and chair of the committee. "The Utah Polytechnic State University name will serve our students and alumni well as they enter into the careers and graduate programs of their dreams.”
Before the meeting began, three committee members who support keeping the Dixie name read a letter out loud stating their disappointment in the change and then walked out of the room. A suggestion that the campus go by Utah Polytechnic University's Dixie Campus was voted down by the committee Monday.
Back in March, the Utah State Legislature approved a bill that began the process to change the name Dixie State University due to complaints over the name's ties to the Civil War South and the Confederacy.
Based on a survey answered by nearly 14,500 people, the committee identified six themes it would study when considering a new name for the school. The committee decided last week to focus on academic and Utah-centric themes, while rejecting names like "Deseret" or "Red Rock" from consideration, as well as any names using St. George.