Campus Life

Uintah Basin Ute Tribe Students Visit USU, Discover College Opportunities

Ute Tribe students from Union and Uintah River high schools pose with USU President and First Gentleman Noelle and John Cockett and Vice Provost Rich Etchberger at USU's Maverik Stadium.

Utah State University’s (USU) Logan campus hosted 30 Ute Tribe students from Union and Uintah River high schools to give them a better understanding of the college experience and see the college opportunities available to them. The students arrived in Logan Friday, September 29, and returned to the Uintah Basin Saturday, September 30.

After checking in at the University Inn and receiving game-day shirts, the students tailgated with USU President Noelle Cockett and Vice Provost Rich Etchberger for the USU versus BYU football game. “Many of these kids have never experienced a live USU football game. It was a lot of fun to spend time with them and President Cockett in such a low-key setting,” said Etchberger. “USU has a great academic reputation, but also a very rich campus life, and these students were able to live it for two days.”

The next morning, the students were welcomed to the animal science farm by students from the College of Agriculture and Applied Sciences. They discussed careers in agriculture, science, natural resources, aviation, and teaching, and then toured the barns to learn about how goats, sheep, cows, pigs, and horses are helping USU solve problems in healthcare, military, and providing enough food for the world’s growing population.

According to Ja’nik Murray, a Uintah River High School student, visiting USU’s Logan campus helped her realize how USU can help her realize her potential. “I know I can be and do anything I want, and USU is a good place to explore different possibilities.”

President Cockett spoke to the students about her personal path in higher education and encouraged students to take advantage of every opportunity. “Life as an Aggie is different for everyone, and these students were able to see what USU could do for them,” said Cockett. “USU is designed for all students to experience learning on a personal level, setting them up for current and future success.”

As one of the nation’s oldest undergraduate research institutions, the students were impressed to learn the amount of hands-on learning opportunities available at USU. “It was impressive to see how many fields of study are available,” said Talking Wolf Avila, a Union High School student. “There are many opportunities to learn more about yourself and the areas of study you want to pursue.”

“USU’s statewide system gives students options, whether it be going to Logan for a traditional college experience or staying in the Uintah Basin and retaining support from their family unit,” said Cameron Cuch, USU-Uintah Basin’s associate director and director of students. “This was a great opportunity for our local students to see what’s available.”

The students spent the rest of the day at USU’s rope course, developing leadership and team-building skills before returning to the Uintah Basin.

Contact: Dana M. Rhoades, Assistant Marketing Director, Student Marketing & Communications, Utah State University, 435.722.1788,

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