Going to Salt Lake Community College is about to get easier for students who live in or near West Valley City.
SLCC will open the West Valley Center (WVC) this fall to give students on the west side the ability to attend classes closer to home.
“The WVC was built to give more students the chance to go to college,” says assistant provost Nate Southerland. “We wanted a campus in the northwest region of Salt Lake because there is nothing currently in that area.”
According to Southerland, the four high schools in the West Valley area – Kearns, Hunter, Granger and Cyprus – have lower numbers of students attending college after graduation.
“One reason for the WVC is to give students at the surrounding high schools an easier way to attend college,” says Southerland.
The WVC will host concurrent enrollment classes to allow these students to take classes for high school and college credit.
“I’m so excited for this campus to open,” says student Rachelle Fernandez. “I’ll just skateboard down the road to my classes.”
More than 50 general education courses and several community-learning courses will be taught at the WVC. Registration opened June 1 to let students take these classes in the fall.
“Enrollment began late in the registration process, so not many students have signed up for classes at the WVC,” says Southerland. “We’re hoping to see greater numbers of students registering over the next two years.”
New campus eases commuting burden
UTA bus routes on 3500 South and 5600 West make the WVC accessible to students who use public transit.
“The major bus routes are one of the main reasons we chose this location for the WVC,” says Student Success Initiatives coordinator Claudia Gutierrez. “There were many locations that we looked at, but this location had several food vendors nearby, and had great proximity to the UTA.”
Gutierrez says the campus shuttle, the B-Line, will not stop at the WVC at this time.
Parking will not be an issue for students who drive to the WVC.
“Since we have the availability of the entire strip mall parking lot, there will be plenty of space for students to park,” says Southerland.
The WVC opening is also part of an improvement plan by West Valley City. According to Southerland, the city plans to renovate several areas for the Mountain View Corridor highway project.
Construction on the WVC is almost done and the building will be ready for fall semester.
“The area where the WVC is opening has been empty for years. It will be nice to finally see something there,” says Fernandez.