Southern Utah University

Southern Utah University
Southern Utah University
SUU Academic Logo.png
Motto Learning Lives Forever
Established 1897
Type Public
President Dr. Michael T. Benson
Academic staff 223
Undergraduates 7,236 (spring 2011)
Postgraduates 788 (spring 2011)
Location Cedar City, Utah, USA
Campus 129 acres (0.52 km²)
Mascot Thunderbirds
Colors Red & White (Black Accent)            

Southern Utah University, or SUU, is located in Cedar City, Utah. It was founded in 1897 as an extension of the Agricultural College of Utah, by the citizens of Cedar City.

During its history, the school has been known as:

  • Branch Normal School (1897–1913)
  • Branch Agricultural College (1913–1953)
  • College of Southern Utah (1953–1969)
  • Southern Utah State College (1969–1990)
  • Southern Utah University (1991–present)

Southern Utah University hosts the Tony Award-winning Utah Shakespearean Festival as well as the Utah Summer Games which is held in the Eccles Coliseum.



The university's enrollment is 8,024 students as of Spring semester 2011[1] , with approximately 223 faculty members teaching in four colleges and three schools:

  • College of Education & Human Development
  • College of Humanities & Social Sciences
  • College of Performing & Visual Arts
  • College of Science & Engineering
    • School of Computing & Technology (part of the College of Science & Engineering)
  • School of Business
  • School of Continuing & Professional Studies


  • Consumer's Digest: Top Ten Best Value in America (2004, 2007 and 2009) [2][3]
  • National Research Center for College & University Admissions: Ninth best admissions website in nation [4]
  • Princeton Review: America’s Best Value Colleges (2007, 2008, 2009) [5]
  • U.S. News and World Report: America’s Best Colleges [6]
  • Princeton Review: Best in the West (2004, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2011) [7][8]


Southern Utah University currently draws students from 45 states, 25 foreign countries, and all of Utah's 29 counties. Of the total enrollment, 58 percent are women and 42 percent are men, a 1.4 to 1 ratio. 11% are of other than caucasian background. About 70 percent of all students live on campus or near the campus. The student-faculty ratio is 22 to 1. The university awards Associate Degrees, Bachelor's Degrees, and Master's Degrees.

Student Involvement & Activities

Students have many opportunities to get involved in a number of activities and organizations while attending Southern Utah University. Ranging from the typical collegiate involvement of Student Government and Clubs & Organizations to the uniquiness of the Entertainment Bureau, Leavitt Center, and Outdoor Rec Center.

Southern Utah University Student Association

The Southern Utah University Student Association(SUUSA) is governed by the four Executive Council members (Student Body President, Academic Vice President, Clubs & Student Leadership Vice President, and Activities Vice President) which each have their own branch under them. These positions are voted into office each March, along with one representative per college to the Student Senate, by the general student body. Event Directors, members of the President's Cabinet, and Club Directors are appointed by the Executive Council through an application and interview process. They are then investigated and ratified by the Academic Senate. All SUUSA student leaders' term of office lasts for one year.

Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service

The Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service (typically referred to as simply the 'Leavitt Center')the name sake of the center is after famous alum Michael O. Leavitt (Former Utah Governor and George W. Bush Cabinet member). Student leaders in the Leavitt Center engage the student body through voter registration drives, public policy awareness, and public service. The mission of the center is to provide a foundation for student to prepare themselves in a life of public service, regardless of profession and career. Students can receive funding from the Leavitt Center to spend a semester participating in a Washington, DC internship. Internships include positions in the offices of either of Utah senators, Orrin Hatch and Bob Bennett, in Nevada Senator Harry Reid's office (Reid graduated from SUU in 1959), with the Smithsonian Institution, and with local sports teams.

SUU Presidential Ambassadors

The Presidential Ambassadors at SUU are the students many see on the front lines of recruiting High School seniors, transfer students, and others. Ambassadors give tours of the campus to prospective students, host overnight weekends for prospective students, and provide service to the campus community. The typical Ambassador generally is in their Freshmen and Sophomore years, have served in leadership capacities while in High School, and love to talk. Ambassadors can be found in many organizations around campus as they typically get involved.

Service & Learning Center

Many students that get involved in the Service & Learning Center do so with in the many student-run organizations operated under the philosophy of the service learning concept. Between 50-100 students per academic year spend their Spring and/or Winter Breaks in Mexico or other locations in the U.S. (recently Colorado, Washington state, and New Orleans) providing service to orphanages, schools, and even Habitat for Humanity. Other programs include Sub for Santa, Make A Difference Day, After School Program, and Adopt a Grandparent program. On location in the center is the HOPE Pantry where students can unanimously donate or receive food as needed, the pantry is typically filled through the center's popular Bread and Soup Nite held in the Sharwan Smith Center's Ballroom on the first Monday of each month. Students can also participate in the Service-Learning Scholar and AmeriCorps programs through the center. In the fall semester of 2011 the Service and Learning Center officially changed its name to the Community Engagement Center.


POWER 91 is a student operated radio station in Cedar City, Utah with the call letters KSUU 91.1. Many of the student DJs change from semester to semester, with some being employed by the station. One of the most popular student ran shows is The Morning Brew, which airs Monday through Friday from 8-10am. POWER 91 is also home to SUU Athletics. Football and Basketball home and road games and Women's Basketball and Gymnastic meets are aired on the station.


SUTV is a cable TV channel operated by Southern Utah University's Department of Communication. It is operated on an Educational-access television channel of the Bresnan Communications Cable TV system in Cedar City, Utah. It is affiliated with the Classic Arts Showcase. Most of the local programs are produced by students enrolled in Communication classes at SUU. Currently airing are programs such as SUTV News, a weekly broadcast of newsworthy local and campus events, and The T-Bird Zone, a showcase of Thunderbird athletics featuring interviews with coaches and players, as well as highlights of games and sports news.

Greek Life

There are five recognized Greek service organizations on campus. Three fraternities, Chi Phi, Sigma Nu and Sigma Chi as well as two sororities, Alpha Phi and local Delta Psi Omega.

Other Notable Student Organizations

  • The University Journal
  • SUTV
  • The POWER 91 Club
  • T-Bird Rugby Club
  • Alpha Sigma Pi, The National Society of Leadership & Success
  • Lambda Pi Eta
  • The Hip Hop Club
  • Miss Southern Utah University Organization (Suspended Indefinitely)
  • Multicultural Center
  • Black Student Alliance (BSA)
  • Queer Straight Alliance (QSA)
  • Native American Student Association
  • Polynesian Club
  • The Buttercream Gang
  • Students for eGrace International
  • FEMS (Feminist Education and Motivation Society)
  • T-Bird Team Karate/ RUFF club
  • Philosophy Club
  • International Club of Pancakes (ICOP)
  • Rodeo Team and Club

Notable Student Traditions

The Howl

The largest event held by the Student Activities Board. The event usually occurs on a Friday within a week of Halloween. Entertainment varies from year to year, but has generally included Bands, Hypnotists, Mentalists, Comics, etc. Additionally a Halloween costume contest is held with prizes. The main focus of the night is the dance held in the Student Rotunda.

True T-Bird

To become a true T-Bird students must kiss their true love near the Old Sorrel statue (located north of the Centrum) at midnight on the night of a Full Moon. The event is also held the night before the Homecoming Football game and is hosted by the SUU Student Alumni Association and POWER 91.

Miss SUU Pageant

The Miss SUU Pageant is a pageant that has been held every February since the early 1950s. The winner of the pageant is crowned as the Homecoming Queen and representative of SUU at the Miss Utah pageant. The top three win gift baskets and scholarship money. Past winner Jill Stevens went on to win the Miss Davis County and Miss Utah pageants to represent the state at the Miss America pageant. The organization has been currently suspended by school administrators because of a lack of funding from budget cuts. The Student Activities Board is planning on resuming the pageant in the 2010-11 school year.


Braithwaite Liberal Arts Center and Old Main

The university's first building, built in 1898, remains part of campus, and is affectionately known as Old Main. The university also boasts the legend of Old' Sorrel, a horse who is said to have assisted the citizens in building the school in record-high snow. A statue of the horse is located in front of the Centrum special events center, on the west side of campus. Consistent with its heritage of educating educators, one in three graduates have an education degree.


The university's sports teams are known as the Thunderbirds. The colors are red, white and black. Teams compete in The NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (FCS, formerly known as division I-AA) in football (Great West Football Conference) and in Division I in other sports (The Summit League and Western Athletic Conference) SUU also competes in The National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association, in the Rocky Mountain Region. The school will become a full member of the Big Sky Conference in 2012.[9]

The Thunderbirds compete in the following sports:

Southern Utah University Alumni Association

SUU Alumni Chapters & Networks


Iron County, UT, Northeast, Northwest, Salt Lake City, UT, Southern Arizona, Southern California, Southern Nevada, Utah County, UT, Washington County, Washington, D.C.[10]


Boston, MA, Central Utah, Chicago, IL, Davis County, UT, Florida, Fresno, CA, Juab County, UT, Lincoln County, NV, Logan, UT, Michigan, North Carolina, Nebraska/Iowa, San Francisco, CA, Texas, Weber County, UT.[11]

Notable Alumni

  • Michael O. Leavitt, the 14th Governor of Utah and former Secretary of Health and Human Services in the George W. Bush presidential administration.
  • Harry Reid, Senate Majority Leader, 110th Congress
  • Jill Stevens, Miss SUU 2006, Miss Davis County 2007, Miss Utah 2007, Miss America 2008 "People's Choice" semifinalist.
  • Nick Miller, NFL wide receiver for the Oakland Raiders, SUU wide receiver from 2007-2008. 2008 Great West Special Teams Player of the Year.
  • DeWayne Lewis, NFL Cornerback, Lewis was a 2 Time Conference Athlete of the Year.
  • Lonnie Mayne, Professional wrestler in the 60's and 70's. NWA United States Heavyweight Champion.
  • Ricardo Dominguez, professor and cyber activist
  • Parley Parker Christensen, Utah and California politician, Esperantist
  • Neil Hjorth


External links

Academic Programs

Student Activities & Involvement

Student Resources

Athletic Conferences

Coordinates: 37°40′32″N 113°04′18″W / 37.675448°N 113.071632°W / 37.675448; -113.071632

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Southern Utah University — Gebäude der Southern Utah University Die Southern Utah University (auch SUU genannt) ist eine staatliche Universität in Cedar City im US Bundesstaat Utah. Die Hochschule wurde 1897 gegründet. Derzeit sind hier 7029 Studenten eingeschrieben.… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • List of Presidents of Southern Utah University — The following people have served as presidents of Southern Utah University throughout its history under the names of Branch Normal School, Branch Agricultural College, College of Southern Utah, Southern Utah State College, and currently Southern… …   Wikipedia

  • Southern Virginia University — Infobox University name = Southern Virginia University motto = Learn that Life is Service established = 1867 type = Private college endowment = US $300,000 [cite web title = The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) publisher =… …   Wikipedia

  • Southern Utah Thunderbirds men's basketball — Infobox CBB Team name = Southern Utah Thunderbirds logo size = 150px university = Southern Utah University conference = The Summit League conference short = Summit League division = city = Cedar City stateabb = UT state = Utah coach = Roger Reid… …   Wikipedia

  • Southern Utah International Documentary Film Festival — (DOCUTAH) Official 2010 poster Location St. George, Utah, United States …   Wikipedia

  • University of Utah — Seal of the University of Utah Established February 28, 1850[1] Type Public …   Wikipedia

  • Utah — (Details) (Details) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Utah — This article is about the U.S. state of Utah. For other uses, see Utah (disambiguation). State of Utah …   Wikipedia

  • Utah Shakespearean Festival — The Utah Shakespearean Festival is a festival of repertory productions of the works of William Shakespeare and other dramatists. The Festival is held during the summer and fall on the campus of Southern Utah University in Cedar City, Utah, within …   Wikipedia

  • Utah Geological Survey — The Utah Geological Survey is based in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. It also has an office in Cedar City, Utah.It is a division of the Utah Department of Natural Resources and is an applied scientific agency, which creates, interprets, and provides… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.