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New University of Phoenix campus to open

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If you're a university looking to double your student population, it helps if you cater to the working adult.

It's what University of Phoenix has done, doubling its enrollment since 1995 to 3,350 students last May.

Now school officials are inviting the public to the grand opening of their new Murray campus, located off I-15 at 5373 S. Green St.

The celebration begins at 4 p.m. Tuesday, with Jon M. Huntsman Jr., Fred Ball, Pamela Atkinson and Bill Orton taking part in a candle-lighting ceremony.

In both poor and favorable economic times, the private University of Phoenix attracts students either in need of more skills or those getting some sort of tuition reimbursement from employers.

"We've really experienced the best of both worlds," said Darris Howe, vice president and director of Utah campuses.

Classes are held from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. in Murray, Taylorsville, Salt Lake City, Ogden, Provo and now at a new learning center in St. George.

The more popular programs are for business, education and mental health counseling. The average age of University of Phoenix students is around 34.

Another convenience that adds to the growth of Utah's University of Phoenix is that the school offers classes online. And the school's library has been online since 1995, with students downloading more than 600,000 articles a month.

Because of the school's growth, the original 1984 Murray campus was vacated in favor of a larger building that still has room for more growth.

Other highlights at the grand opening include:

Washington, Dee and Provost elementary schools will receive $3,000 each from donations made by students and teachers at the university.

Discover Financial Services will get the Champion of Education award from the university for its support of employees who go back to school.

E-MAIL: sspeckman@desnews.com