Utah ranks second in the nation in the percentage of adults who have completed high school. Plus, 24 percent of Utahns have four-year college degrees and higher. In Utah's public school system, average class size is large when compared to other states, yet excellent results are achieved. In fact, nearly half of the state's budget is spent on public education. Every year, Utah adds to its excellent list of private and parochial schools
More than ten years ago, Utah implemented the Core Curriculum Program, which played a major role in improving the state's education system and in raising student ACT scores. The Class of 1998 continued an upward scoring trend in the ACT with the state exceeding the national average for a decade now. Utah has 40 public school districts, 55 private/parochial schools, nine public colleges and universities and ten private institutions of higher education. Of these, three are major research universities and two have law schools.
The University of Utah, which encompasses a medical school, is the state's flagship institution and is recognized as one of the premier institutions in the country. The school (enrollment 28,933) is known nationally for its "technology transfer" program, which moves state-of-the-art research into practical applications in the business world. External funding jumped to almost $196 million last year, much of which was designated for research.
Brigham Young University (enrollment 32,202) is a private school located in Provo. The university is well known for its computer science program. WordPerfect, Novell and other software firms have been founded by researchers with BYU and University of Utah connections. BYU brought in just under $17 million in outside research grants in 1997.
Utah State University in Logan is best known nationally for space-related research. The university (enrollment 23,908) secured a record $107 million in research grants last year, which made it first among U.S. universities in research dollars per faculty member.
Nearby in Provo is Utah Valley State College (enrollment 23,803), a four-year institution. Westminster College (enrollment 2,300) is Utah's only private nondenominational college, which offers both undergraduate and graduate degrees. U.S. News & World Report has named Westminster in the top tier of colleges and universities in the western region for five consecutive years. Salt Lake Community College (enrollment 20,583) has been named one of the top 100, two-year colleges in various fields including engineering, computer and information sciences, business management and administrative services. To the north of Salt Lake in Ogden is Weber State University (enrollment 14,000), a four-year institution.
For a directory of the state's schools, including public, private, parochial and higher education, contact the State Office of Education (801) 538-7500.