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Bennion Center Celebrates 30th Anniversary


Contact:  Jennifer Jones, 801-682-2315,

The Lowell Bennion Community Service Center at the University of Utah marks its 30th anniversary in 2017. Founded in 1987, the center connects University of Utah students, staff and faculty with service opportunities throughout Utah, the western United States and even internationally.

Lowell Bennion is known as a respected theologian, philosopher and humanitarian. For almost three decades he served as the director of the LDS Institute of Religion at the University of Utah. He left the Institute to become Associate Dean of Students and professor of sociology at the University of Utah from 1962 until 1972. After that he served for 18 years as the director of the Community Services Council in Salt Lake City. That council was instrumental in the growth and development of the Utah Food Bank, which, under Lowell’s leadership, modified its mission to focus on providing direct service to seniors and others in need.

University president Chase Peterson proposed establishing a community service center named in Bennion’s honor “to advocate the ideas, skills and satisfactions of community service.” Today the Bennion Center’s mission reads:

“The Bennion Center fosters lifelong service and civic participation by engaging the university with the greater community in action, change, and learning.”

From its beginnings 30 years ago, the Bennion Center has provided space for thousands of students to engage in millions of hours of community service in programs students themselves lead. Whether they are assisting homeless individuals, tutoring gradeschoolers, mentoring refugees or assisting in health related programs, Bennion Center students echo the question Lowell Bennion asked, “How can I help?”

Last Updated: 5/29/19