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Where have all the junior colleges gone?

Published: Thursday, Jan. 17 2013 6:36 p.m. MST

"We would not abandon our community college mission," he said. "We would be the open enrollment institution for the southern part of the state."

Johnson said Dixie began offering four-year degrees in 2000 and now has 40 baccalaureate degrees in 24 content areas. As the school continues to develop, it will provide more opportunities for students to complete their education in St. George and will continue to be an economic driver for the community and region, he said.

Snow College began a four-year commercial music degree last year, but Wyatt responded with a simple "no" when asked if Utahns would be discussing a new name for Snow University in 2025.

He said he could see Snow offering one or two more four-year programs that are particularly suited to the school, but anything beyond that won't be happening on his watch.

Unlike the booming population of Washington County that is in need of extended education services, Wyatt said Snow is in a comfortable position to continue offering its niche experience to students.

In a prepared statement, University of Utah President David Pershing said his administration has a strong partnership with Dixie that will continue as the school grows into its new role.

"The word is spreading nationwide about the tremendous value and educational opportunities offered here in Utah," Pershing said. "We continue to attract new students and excellent faculty and staff to the outstanding institutions that comprise the state of Utah's system of higher education."

Officials at Dixie held a survey asking the public for help in selecting a new name for the university. Participants were asked to rate specific words like "Dixie" and "southwestern" on whether they should be included in the name.

The results of that survey were released last week, with "Dixie," "State" and "Utah" receiving the highest level of support. Based on those findings, research firm Sorenson Advertising suggested four naming possibilities: Dixie State University, St. George University or University of St. George, Utah Dixie State University and Utah Dixie University.

E-mail: benwood@desnews.com

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