Sorenson Legacy Foundation Center for Hope Opens

Published: September 11, 2020 | Author: David Bishop | Read Time: 2 minutes

Sorenson Legacy Foundation Center for HopeSouthern Utah University students who are also parents now have an on-campus facility that provides child care for their young children. SUU officially opened the Sorenson Legacy Foundation Center for Hope during a Friday, September 11 ceremony. The ribbon-cutting culminated five years of planning and renovations to the facility that formerly served as the residence of SUU’s president.

“What was once a residence for a few will now be a place of learning for many,” said SUU First Lady Kathy Wyatt, who spearheaded the development of the facility. “This new center eases the burden for student-parents who were struggling with the expense of providing care for their children. Thanks to the vision and help from many people, this new center has come to fruition.”

Both university funding and generous private donations allowed for the concept of a child and family development center to become a reality.

Private donations were made by Sorenson Legacy Foundation, Emma Eccles Jones Foundation, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Foundation, Dixie and Anne Leavitt Family Foundation, Eric and Melissa Leavitt, Mark and Jana Leavitt, Dr. Robert and Sydney Nakken, and scores of other donors including campus employees. The Cedar City Rotary Club also donated books and bookshelves.

“We sincerely hope that the Sorenson Legacy Foundation gift will enrich the lives of thousands of mothers and their children, and empower them to realize their dreams for both themselves and their families,” said Ann Crocker of the Sorenson Legacy Foundation. “We are grateful to be a part of this team effort that will generate lives of dignity and purpose for so many.”

The transformation from private home to child and family development center was significant. The 11,369 square foot facility has six classrooms for child care and one large classroom for preschool children. Each classroom is designated for age-specific children.

The facility also includes:

  • A Mother’s Room on each floor that also serves as an observation/lab space for students.
  • The largest classroom is the Anne O. Leavitt classroom. The room has the flexibility to support different age groups as needed, as well as to be space for family and/or community training.
  • 20,000 square feet of playground space, three individual activity spaces to meet age-specific needs.

The facility is licensed for 81 children at a time in the child care program and 39 for the preschool program.

In addition, the new facility will provide jobs for 23 SUU student workers and provide practicum opportunities for SUU students majoring in education.

“In total, this new center will help hundreds of students every single year,” said SUU President Scott L Wyatt. “Cumulatively over time, thousands of students will be able to complete their degree and build lives of independence. For that, we are so proud.”

The child care center is for the exclusive benefit of the young children of students from SUU and Southwest Technical College. Additional opportunities are available to support low-income graduate student-parents, low-income international student-parents, and second degree-seeking student-parents.

Tags: Child Care Center

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