By Annalisa Purser
The University of Utah celebrates the grand opening of its new Sandy Center Friday, Sept. 25, 12:45-6 p.m., with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and a community open house with tours of the facility, face painting, a photo booth, an appearance by U mascot Swoop, food, prizes and more.
The education center, located at One Sandy Center, 10011 Centennial Parkway, Suite 100, in Sandy, opened on Aug. 24, 2015, the first day of fall semester and currently serves more than 500 students. While the U has had a presence in Sandy for 20 years, it moved to the new location after the previous building was sold to a developer.
“Student success is a top priority at the University of Utah, and we’re excited to implement programs and offer courses at this new facility that will make it easier for students to earn their degrees,” said Sandi Pershing, dean of Continuing Education and Community Engagement.
The Sandy Center offers a wide variety of general education classes, including math, writing, drawing, painting, film, communications, history, political science, biology physiology, economics and more. In addition to classes, the center offers proctoring for UOnline exams, a student lounge, instructor prep space, study areas, two computer labs, an on-site computer lab technician, a courier service to main campus and more.
Plans are in place to also have Student Success Advocates at the location periodically. The SSA program aims to help students take steps known to lead to degree completion, such as setting academic goals, declaring majors, seeking financial resources and meeting with academic and career advisors.
The U operates education centers in communities throughout the state, including Bountiful, Murray, Sandy and St. George. These centers provide traditional and post-traditional students with access to smaller class sizes, classes closer to home and classes offered during evening and weekend hours that work better with their schedules.
Additionally, classes are offered in both traditional and hybrid formats, giving students even more flexibility. For example, some classes meet just once per week and include online components that students can complete from anywhere. Starting in 2016, the center will also offer intensive format classes, where students can complete a three- or four-credit class in one week of in-person class time along with some pre and post work online.
“These centers act as a gateway to the University of Utah for post-traditional students who may work full time, have families or be in other situations that make earning or finishing a degree more complicated,” Pershing said. “These centers specialize in providing evening and weekend classes in several different formats at a location close to where students live and work.”
Annalisa Purser is a communications specialist at University Marketing and Communications. If you have an interesting story idea, email her at email@example.com.