Gov. Cox kicks off ‘Connecting Utah’ tour at Tooele High School

Mar 20, 2023, 2:53 PM

TOOELE, Utah — Gov. Spencer Cox was in Tooele City Monday, the first stop in a tour that will take him across the state hearing from local leaders, families and students.

Hundreds of students crowded into the Tooele High School auditorium for the event. It started the way many political appearances begin, with Cox touting recent accomplishments like funding for education, water conservation and housing.

“I don’t think we give our students enough credit,” he said after the event. “They’re smarter than we think. They’re paying attention.”

Then Cox sat down with students, to ask and answer questions on everything from the mental health crisis and suicide to arts and agriculture. It’s part of his “Connecting Utah” tour to all 29 counties.

“At first it was a little nerve-racking because it’s the Utah governor, so I was a little stressed at first,” said Doug Seals, the student government diversity vice president at Tooele High School. “Letting everybody have a say and kind of getting a wide variety of input from all sorts of people is kind of what I took away.”

Cox asked Seals and four other students to describe the state of the country using one word. Seals said, “amazing.” Other students weren’t so positive. They said “broken,” “stressed,” “progressive” and “divided.”

Cox emphasized that last one. He pointed to data that showed many students around the country see that division.

“I think it changes our mindset a little bit. We get stuck in our own echo chambers and we forget to get out and talk and listen,” Cox said.

“So, it doesn’t surprise me that kids are feeling that. In fact, they may be feeling it more acutely than the adults. And I don’t know that we know the impact that’s having on our kids.”

Cox urged the young audience of students to rise above the division and disagree better.

“Unfortunately we have adults today that are setting a bad example about how we should disagree and work on possible solutions. And I really do think they are the future. They’re going to figure this out, reminding us how to disagree better.”

The governor’s office said the plan is to visit all 29 counties in the state during the 2023 calendar year. Next up is Iron and Washington counties next month.

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

James Kimose, Farr West, celebrates his 101st birthday in Ogden on Sunday. Kimose is a WWII marine ...

Gabrielle Shiozawa

Utahn — perhaps the last Air Force Iwo Jima veteran — turns 101 on Memorial Day

Every day. That's how often Jim Kimose thinks about his time at Iwo Jima — including witnessing the historic raising of the American flag — and his service in the United States Air Force during World War II.

13 hours ago

FILE: A flag is placed at Margery Johnson Clapton’s grave at Larkin Sunset Gardens Cemetery in Sa...

Don Brinkerhoff, KSL NewsRadio

Many ways in Utah to honor those who served this Memorial Day weekend

Many cities across northern Utah are offering ways to honor veterans for Memorial Day.

13 hours ago

Wildlife officials are warning hikers about rattlesnakes since they are appearing later than usual....

Lauren Steinbrecher

Rattlesnakes are appearing on Utah trails, around homes later than normal

A local rattlesnake expert is seeing a rise in reports of rattlesnake sightings on Utah trails, and she's got some helpful tips to keep you and your pets safe.

2 days ago

The aftermath of the small plane crash in Washington County. (Enterprise Fire and EMS)...

Michael Houck

Pilot uninjured after crashing small plane in southern Utah, officials say

Officials are trying to piece together a bizarre plane crash after a man bought a plane and crashed it in southern Utah Sunday afternoon

2 days ago

The water bursting into the air on Wasatch Boulevard and Eastwood Drive. (Courtesy: Amy Edwards)...

Michael Houck

Water bursts out of Millcreek road due to broken water line

A water line break caused water to gush out of a Millcreek road Saturday afternoon. 

2 days ago

(National Park Service Photo/Neal Herbert)...

Michael Houck

Utah’s national parks caution visitors of high waters, large crowds for Memorial Day

Memorial Day weekend is one of the busiest times for Utah's national parks, meaning many are already at capacity or require a reservation.

2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Asian little girl playing arcade game on the computer machines at the shopping mall outlets...

Get Out Pass

Family Fun Activities in Utah You Have to Try This Summer

These family fun activities will entertain you all summer, so if you ever feel stuck in a rut wondering what to do, refer to this guide!

Woman IT specialist in elegant suit working on notebook computer in data center next to server rack...

Les Olson

Your Complete Guide to Outsourcing IT Services

This guide covers everything you need to know about the different benefits of outsourcing IT services to meet your small business needs.

diverse group of friends dance outside under string lights...

Lighting Design

5 Frequently Asked Questions About Outdoor Lighting

Read for the most frequently asked questions about outdoor lighting to help narrow the search for your home.

Stack of old laptops with dark background...

PC Laptops

Old Laptop Upgrades You Need to Try Before Throwing it Away

Get the most out of your investment. Try these old laptop upgrades before throwing it out to keep it running fast and efficient.

Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...

BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.

Close up of an offset printing machine during production...

Les Olson IT

Top 7 Reasons to Add a Production Printer to Your Business

Learn about the different digital production printers and how they can help your company save time and money.

Gov. Cox kicks off ‘Connecting Utah’ tour at Tooele High School