Students, community members organize protest on campus to reinstate professors

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A crowd of over 30 students and members of the St. George community gathered for a protest regarding termination of the tenured professors March 30.

Within less than 24 hours of her Facebook post, Lizzy Peterson, wife of Ken Peterson, managed to recruit a crowd to protest the re-hiring of Glenn Webb and Ken Peterson.

Hand-made signs with messages including “Stop the abuse of power” and “Down with Biff” were held up in front of the Jeffrey R. Holland Cenntennial Commons Building as the state board of regents walked to and from Gardner Center.

The state board of regents met on campus Friday to discuss the tuition and fee increase. Upon getting word of their presence on campus, Lizzy Peterson saw it as an opportunity to get their attention.

Lizzy Peterson said she has been trying to reach out to the board of regents for several weeks and has gotten nowhere. 

She said, “When I found out they were meeting on campus today, I saw it as the perfect opportunity to try to bring awareness to them.”

Alongside Lizzy Peterson was alumna Jalee Scott who said the reason they were protesting was because they are tired of seeing policies violated.

“Policies are continually violated, and professors are scared for their jobs,” Scott said. “There were professors who wanted to show their support by being here today, but were afraid of losing their jobs — it’s not going to end unless someone above DSU admin steps in and stops it.”

Scott was seen holding a hand-made sign with the policies she believes DSU is violating. Among those included 304.4.5304., and Utah code 67-21-3-2, these policies can be found on https://dixie.edu/policylibrary/.

Scott said, “I’ve followed policy really closely, and what DSU is claiming were not terminal offenses.”

Gwyn Gable, a senior music major from Ivins, agrees with Scott in that the administration has wrongly terminated the professors.

“Due process was not taken, and they have violated numerous policies and rights,” Gable said. “We want them to be held accountable for such things.”

The protest lasted for an hour and a half and though campus police reported to the scene, officer Josh Sweetwood, from the St. George Police Department, allowed them to express their freedom of speech.

“I hope we open some eyes of the board members — that they will see our signs, that they will want to seek out the truths for themselves and that they will,”  Scott said.

An online petition to reinstate Webb and Ken Peterson has almost reach its goal of 1,500 signatures.

To learn more about the group and ways you can get involved, visit stgtruth.com.