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Dixie State College: Choose an Appropriate Name for the University
  • Petitioned Dixie State College Trustees

This petition was delivered to:

c/o Brody Mikesell
Dixie State College Trustees
Utah Board of Regents
Southern Utah Anti-Discrimination Coalition

Dixie State College: Choose an Appropriate Name for the University

    1. Dannelle Larsen-Rife
    2. Petition by

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife

      St. George, UT

The name Dixie was used by some of the original settlers who were former slave owners. The college has identified with the Confederate South for over 100 years, including regularly flying the Confederate flag, holding mock slave auctions (as recently as the 1990s), students appearing in black face (as recently as October, 2012), and there is a statue of Confederate Soldiers with a Confederate flag currently on campus. As the college becomes a university early next year, it is time to cut all ties with the identity of the Confederate South to promote and support diversity on campus.

Recent signatures

    News

    1. More Support from the University of Utah

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Dixie State's offensive name needs revision | The Daily Utah Chronicle

      From faithful playgoers at Pioneer Theatre to the hordes of fans squeezing themselves into Rice-Eccles Stadium, students at the U are more than familiar with school pride. We might recognize there's more to the U than its name, but for the students and alumni at Dixie State College, what their school's name connotes is precisely the problem.

    2. Support from the University of Utah

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Dixie State's offensive name needs revision | The Daily Utah Chronicle

      From faithful playgoers at Pioneer Theatre to the hordes of fans squeezing themselves into Rice-Eccles Stadium, students at the U are more than familiar with school pride. We might recognize there's more to the U than its name, but for the students and alumni at Dixie State College, what their school's name connotes is precisely the problem.

    3. Keeping "Dixie" Despite "history steeped in racism"

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      College: We're Keeping 'Dixie' in Our Name

      (Newser) - A college in Utah will keep the word "Dixie" in its name despite signs that the school's history is steeped in racism, reports. Following an impassioned debate, trustees at Dixie State College voted unanimously yesterday to use the name Dixie State University if the state approves its bid to become a university.

    4. The Proposed Name is Dixie State University

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Dixie State College keeping its name amid controversy

      St. George * Dixie State College trustees voted Friday to keep the school's name as the institution becomes a university despite controversial connections to the Southern Confederacy. "In the end, the board chose to unite as one body. We unanimously stand behind the university name," said Dixie State Board of Trustees Chair Steven Caplin.

    5. A Letter to Sorenson Advertising

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer

      Sorenson Advertising:
      We, the undersigned, have all been trained in graduate level research and statistical methodology. Moreover, most of us are teaching research and statistical methods courses this semester, or have done so in the recent past. We are extremely disappointed with the methodologies you utilized in your research regarding the branding of the institution as Dixie State College becomes a university. Please allow us to articulate the core concerns we have.
      1. This was a popularity contest. Although you repeatedly claimed this research would not be a popularity contest, the primary focus of your argument that “Dixie” should remain a major component of the institution’s new name was based on quantitative data consisting of the opinion of local stakeholders. In essence, this asked which name option was more popular. Although you qualified this recommendation based on qualitative data, in your summary you repeatedly focused on the strength of the quantitative opinions of

    6. Is an Apology Enough to Keep "Dixie" Name?

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Dixie may apologize for past Confederate, blackface imagery

      Dixie State College leaders are weighing an apology for the school's decades-long use of Confederate regalia and other controversial imagery, as some professors question a study that found overwhelming support for keeping its name as it becomes a university.

    7. Yearbook Pictures Making it to the News

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Dixie State College

      It is not at all unusual for a family, a community, a club or group of friends to use words, phrases and nicknames that have a special meaning within that circle but that might not be fully understood by outsiders. Words that, if heard by people who don't belong to that group, could be embarrassing or even offensive.

    8. Time for a New Name?

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Dixie State College

      It is not at all unusual for a family, a community, a club or group of friends to use words, phrases and nicknames that have a special meaning within that circle but that might not be fully understood by outsiders. Words that, if heard by people who don't belong to that group, could be embarrassing or even offensive.

    9. "Dixie" Supporters Claim the Name and History is Not Associated with Racism

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Dixie State College contemplates apology for past racism on campus

      ST. GEORGE, Utah - FOX 13 News has learned Dixie State College officials are contemplating issuing an apology next week for decades of racist incidents on campus. It comes as the college is embroiled in a heated debate over whether to include the name "Dixie" when the school becomes a university at the end of the month.

    10. First an Apology, Next a Name Without Dixie

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer

      It is a step in the right direction, but not enough. They will acknowledge that Dixie State College has been linked with racist behavior, strong association with the Confederate South and perhaps celebrating slavery (the parade floats). They are not recognizing this was documented through 1993. They also will not acknowledge that students appeared in blackface in fall, 2012. The name "Dixie" here is not just associated with growing cotton. It must go.

      http://fox13now.com/2013/01/10/dixie-state-college-contemplates-apology-for-past-racism-on-campus/

      Dixie State College contemplates apology for past racism on campus

      ST. GEORGE, Utah - FOX 13 News has learned Dixie State College officials are contemplating issuing an apology next week for decades of racist incidents on campus. It comes as the college is embroiled in a heated debate over whether to include the name "Dixie" when the school becomes a university at the end of the month.

    11. A Well-Written Article

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Name can be obstacle as college evolves

      Full disclosure: I'm a newcomer. A newbie. Absolutely no history with the area, no tradition, no attachments.

    12. The Mayor has (too) Much to Say About the Dixie Name

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Mayor, city council voice support for 'Dixie' name

      ST. GEORGE - The St. George City Council voted unanimously to support the word "Dixie" Thursday, passing a resolution recommending that the word be included in whatever name is given to Dixie State College once it attains university status. The officials who oversee Utah's system of colleges and universities are scheduled to meet in St.

    13. The Mayor Has (too) Much to Say About the Dixie Name

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer

      Now, the Mayor says, "The ‘Dixie Spirit’ is one of helping. It’s one of inviting, it’s welcoming, it’s friendly — it always has been."

      But what about all of the Dixie supporters who say if you don't like it, leave??? Also, the Mayor said, "I’m tired of people coming from outside the area and bringing their prejudice and hates and dislikes and trying to throw it on us,” ”because that’s never been what Dixie’s all about.”

      http://www.thespectrum.com/article/20130103/NEWS/301030027

      What's in a name? Left, right or Dixie?

      My Utah friends say that America is a center-right country, socially and politically, so they were shocked when we re-elected President Obama. The shock comes from failure to see that most of America is actually center-left.

    14. Interesting Opinion

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      What's in a name? Left, right or Dixie?

      My Utah friends say that America is a center-right country, socially and politically, so they were shocked when we re-elected President Obama. The shock comes from failure to see that most of America is actually center-left.

    15. The Name Change Is on the Way

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      What's next for Dixie?

      When Sorenson Advertising unveils the results of its study into Dixie State College's brand Jan.

    16. Sorenson Holds an Unpublicized Meeting with "Dixie" Supporters!

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Dixie-ites dead set on name retention at Sorenson forum; STGnews VideocastSt. George News | STGnews.com

      ST. GEORGE - In what was originally meant to be a closed focus group with a handful of participants, over 90 people showed up at Dixie State College of Utah to tell representatives of Sorenson Advertising what the name "Dixie" meant to them. This, as the college considers a name change suitable for its anticipated university status.

    17. Somebody is Addressing the Sculptor's Racist Remarks

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      ON Kilter: Dixie State; there's more at stake than a name | St. George News | STGnews.comSt. George News | STGnews.com

      OPINION - The debate for the name of Dixie State College of Utah, as it ascends to university status, wages on. Proponents for keeping the traditional name of "Dixie" argue that those drawing associations between the name and the slave-owning people of the actual South of history past do so without foundation, that the associations are fabricated.

    18. A Local Article

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      ON Kilter: Dixie State; there's more at stake than a name | St. George News | STGnews.comSt. George News | STGnews.com

      OPINION - The debate for the name of Dixie State College of Utah, as it ascends to university status, wages on. Proponents for keeping the traditional name of "Dixie" argue that those drawing associations between the name and the slave-owning people of the actual South of history past do so without foundation, that the associations are fabricated.

    19. Silent Vigil

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Silent vigil focues on Dixie State name changeSt. George News | STGnews.com

      ST. GEORGE - A small group of community members and college students gathered across the street from the former location of the Confederate statue at Dixie State College for a silent vigil Thursday night. In a prepared statement, Susan Ertel, a professor at DSC and the organizer of the vigil, said: "...

    20. Op-Ed in Support of Keeping Dixie

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Confederate statue

      Just more than a week ago, Dixie State College removed what was perhaps one of the biggest points of visible contention in the debate over the name the school will possess after it achieves university status in 2013.

    21. A New Home for the Confederate Statue?

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      Confederate statue

      Just more than a week ago, Dixie State College removed what was perhaps one of the biggest points of visible contention in the debate over the name the school will possess after it achieves university status in 2013.

    22. Editorial in Support of the Name Change

      Dannelle Larsen-Rife
      Petition Organizer
      On the EDge: Be a 'real' Rebel, accept Dixie name change | St. George News | STGnews.comSt. George News | STGnews.com

      OPINION - On the world stage, the term Dixie does not generate the affection afforded it in Southern Utah. It raises the specter of the antebellum South, a real time in the nation's history that resulted in the Civil War.

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Rose Jones SALT LAKE CITY, UT
      • over 1 year ago

      The name "Dixie" represents racism, especially since this institution flies a Confederate flag and named it's dorms after slave plantations.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • David Pettit SPRINGDALE, UT
      • over 1 year ago

      I don't think it is in the school's best interests long-term to keep Dixie in the name.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Trent Billups STAFFORD, VA
      • over 1 year ago

      I support people willing to take a stand against the status quo. They have a tough fight.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Rebecca Long ST. GEORGE, UT
      • over 1 year ago

      Rebecca Long ST. GEORGE, UT

      I believe that the Trustees and connections in the community had made the decision regarding the name, which included "Dixie" before they ever put it to outside voters, namely the student body. "Dixie" was not in ANY of the popular suggestions for the new name, and yet the popular vote did NOT win out. I think the Trustees just want to save some money by just tacking on the "University" at the end of the old name. The whole voting process was just a farce to let the students think they had an actual say in the naming of their school. Yes, we were that naive.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Valerie Carlson SAINT GEORGE, UT
      • over 1 year ago

      The name Dixie has an association with the confederacy that is offensive to both me and to my peers from other regions of the country.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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