Child Care Facility Becomes a RealityMarch 29, 2017
Author: Abigail Wyatt
Southern Utah University is excited to announce the creation of an on-campus daycare and preschool center. Receiving a generous donation from the Sorenson Legacy Foundation, SUU is finally able to move forward on the long-awaited project.
The Sorenson Legacy Foundation Child & Family Development Center will be committed to the retention and graduation of SUU students by providing a high quality facility offering on-campus childcare, a preschool lab, and parent and family support.
With flexible care hours and an on-campus location, the new center will be convenient, affordable and a safe option for SUU students. The facility will offer drop-off care instead of all-day care, which will significantly lower the cost for parents. Having the preschool and daycare in the same place will decrease operation and maintenance costs making it more efficient.
The parent and family support center will also have non-credit courses on parenting, marital preparation, financial literacy, marriage enrichment and offer tutoring for children k-12. It’s estimated that over 400 education undergraduates and other university students will complete their practicums, observations and research at the facility.
Kathy Wyatt, wife of President Scott L Wyatt, heads the committee for the center. “I was researching female graduation rates at SUU and was shocked at the huge decline after the age of 25,” she said. “When I was told much of that drop was due to having children and the lack of funds for child care, I knew something needed to be done.”
Child care can cost anywhere between $250 - $700 per month per child. Add tuition and this amount is daunting for many students like Alayna Johnson. Mother of four, she is an accounting major at SUU who was overwhelmed by the cost of child care.
“Having children should not mean the end of your education, and for so many women that’s exactly what it means,” said Johnson.
The estimated cost of the project is $2.5 million and half of the funding has already been raised. A location has been secured and the center will be built south of the Multipurpose Building on the corner of 700 West. The child care facility will be able to serve roughly 80 to 100 students and their children each year. The goal is to have the facility completed by fall of 2019.
Wyatt teared up as she shared her excitement for the progress of this project. “This was a dream a year ago and now it’s more of a reality,” she said. “Seeing how many people are willing to help is exciting for me because I know it will change lives.”To learn more about the The Sorenson Legacy Foundation Child & Family Development Center or to donate to the cause visit www.suu.edu/childcenter.
Nikki Koontz, assistant director of marketing