Dixie State ain’t no more, now it’s ‘Utah Tech’

ST. GEORGE, Utah — The university formerly known as “Dixie State” has unveiled its new logo, with campus rebranding beginning immediately.

Utah Tech University’s logo was unveiled on Sunday. It includes some intentional nods to the university’s past and the more inclusive state as a whole. It features a red and blue scheme, designed to represent the blue skies and red rocks of southern Utah. The “U” logo includes the outline of the state of Utah and a “1” is engraved into it to represent those who settled in the state of Dixie.

The university retains the existing bison mascot and “Trailblazers” name.

“Our students have been waiting for this,” said Dr. Richard “Biff” Williams, president of Utah Tech. “Our faculty, our staff, some members of our community. It’s good to have this process behind us and we can move forward.”

New name and logo come after contentious battle in southern Utah and on Capitol Hill to empty “Dixie”. University and student body leaders lobbied for a new name change, arguing that the term “Dixie” was hurting the recruitment and retention of students and faculty. Opponents of the name change argue that “Dixie” has regional significance, relating to the Mormon pioneers who settled in southwestern Utah grow cotton. They decried a ‘cancellation culture’ to strip the area of ​​its historic name.

But proponents of the name change pointed out the term’s ties to the Civil War and the Confederacy which was even on campus in the form of a “Rebel” mascot. There was also a yearbook titled “The Confederate” featuring blackface students and Confederate soldier statutes, even though Utah was never in the Civil War. Public opinion polls showed their support for a name change and the students said they were tired of trying to explain the Utah version of “Dixie”.

The institutional logo saying "Utah" with a red bottom and a blue top

The question reached its climax and the Utah State Legislature voted last year to rename Dixie State University to Utah Tech University as the school focuses more on polytechnic education. But as part of an agreement, the main campus will still be known as the “Dixie Campus”. This will appear on a new sign leading to campus. There will also still be memorials to early pioneer settlers on campus who invoke the term “Dixie” and the university has said there are no plans to remove the “D” on the cliff above St. George.

The name change doesn’t officially happen until July 1, but the university is accelerating the rebranding so that it’s completed by the start of the fall semester and more students return.

Dr. Williams told FOX 13 News he believes the community will eventually unite around Utah Tech.

“This is our sixth or seventh name change and they’ve always come back and always supported us, and it’s really about the students,” he said.

The UT logo with a blue border and red letters

While some alumni have threatened to cut funding for the new “Utah Tech,” Dr. Williams said they’ve more than made up for it with alumni contributions since the new name was announced.

“We haven’t seen any decline. In fact, we’ve seen an increase in donations from our university. We know some won’t donate,” he said.

Dr. Jordon Sharp, the university’s vice president of marketing and communications, told FOX 13 News that the number one question they’re getting on social media now is from former grads who want a reissued degree that says “Utah Tech University”. The college bookstore began selling new merchandise Monday with the “Utah Tech” brand.

“Former students outside of our area didn’t feel comfortable wearing our clothes. It’s really difficult because people love their former student, they’re proud of them, and yet some people felt bad about them. comfortable,” Dr. Sharp said.

The rebranding will cost millions to fully implement, but university leaders believe it is important.

“A new name for a new mission, a new type of student, a new economy and for the fastest growing city in America,” said Dr. Sharp.

This is breaking news. Updates on FOX 13 News and fox13now.com as information becomes available.

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