Two of the fastest growing universities in the state are asking for additional funding from the legislature this year. Both Weber and Dixie State University are planning major construction projects to accommodate rising student numbers.
In Ogden, Weber is looking at a potential 25 percent increase in students over the next ten years, from 13,000 to nearly 17,000. To prepare, the school is looking to offer additional degrees including a nursing program which will be its first doctoral degree.
Weber also wants to demolish its current technical education building to make room for the Noorda Engineering and Applied Science Building. A project that will require an additional $40 million from the state legislature.
“In order to meet the workforce needs we have at Hill Air Force Base and in northern Utah we really need to expand the pipeline of graduates and to do that we need a new facility," says Brad Mortensen, Weber's Vice President for University Advancement.
Mortensen says the state board of regents has made the project a top priority, but it hinges on how the budget shapes up at the end of the session.
Meanwhile, Dixie State University in St. George is also looking to add a new STEM building. The price tag is $50 million and on Tuesday students and university employees set up shop in the capitol rotunda to make their case to lawmakers.