Utah Valley University was established in 1941 as Central Utah Vocational School (CUVS) with the primary function of providing war production training. Throughout its history, UVU has responded to its service regions (Utah, Wasatch, and Summit counties) population changes and business/industry needs. This responsiveness is evidenced in its integrated dual mission, program offerings, degree levels, and enrollment changes.
In 1941, the nation was slowly recovering from the Great Depression. The shadow of war was creeping closer, and the need for arms and ammunition by the Allied forces demanded skilled craftsmen. Many citizens had benefited from the federal work programs during the Depression but needed more training to qualify for better jobs. Vocational classes were taught at various shops and businesses throughout Utah and Heber valleys under the direction of the State Vocational Office. In fall 1941, under the direction of Hyrum E. Johnson, those vocational training courses were moved to a central location in south Provo and named Central Utah Vocational School.
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