The Built Environment: 130 Years of Growth, Development, and Change on the USU Campus: Educating Utah: The Extension Campus
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Educating Utah: The Extension Campus
In addition to educating students on campus, USU “extended” its land-grant mission by providing educational opportunities throughout the state since 1896. While creation of the Cooperative Extension Service in 1914 had particular significance for rural farm families, USU, throughout its history, built a variety of camps, buildings, and educational centers pursuant to making higher education available to Utah’s citizens.
The Experiment Station looking northeast, c. 1940s
(Utah State University, Merrill-Cazier Library, Special Collections and Archives, Harry Reuben Reynolds Photograph Collection, P0004 027:05)
Distance Education Building looking southwest, c. 2012
Rural Arts Building looking east, c. 1940s
(Utah State University, Merrill-Cazier Library, Special Collections & Archives, Harry Reuben Reynolds Photograph Collection, P0004 025:02)
Experiment Station Building (1890–)
Built in 1890, the Experiment Station is one of the oldest extant buildings on campus. From 1890 to 1956, the Utah Agricultural Experiment Station served as the clearinghouse for all institutional research. As researchers developed new agricultural methods, the Extension Service disseminated them to the state’s practitioners. Experiment Station administration moved to the E. G. Peterson Agricultural Science Building in 1957. The renovated ES building is presently home to the Information News Services and Public Relations Department.
Rural Arts Building (1941–2003)
Completed in 1941, National Youth Administration laborers (130 students) constructed the Rural Arts Building at the close of the Great Depression. It served as housing for rural people attending conferences and workshops offered by Extension Services, replacing the Farmer Encampment “tent city” formerly staged on the Quad. Razed in 2003, the Merrill-Cazier Library now sits on the site.
Distance Education Building (2012–)
In 2005, USU renewed its commitment to extension education by creating Regional Campuses and adopting a Distance Education Program. As a result of this, the Distance Education Building opened as a “nerve center” for the program in 2012. Today, USU offers more than forty degrees through online education and hosts over twenty-five different campus extension locations throughout Utah.