The George Q. Morris Center held events, meals, and classes which helped to shape the experience of thousands of BYU students.

As part of new development to accommodate for the swell of incoming students, Deseret Towers was constructed in 1964 as additional housing. Shortly thereafter in 1965, the George Q. Morris Center, named after an apostle of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, was opened to provide dining services and a common area to students living in the Towers. 

The Center served as an epicenter of social life for students. In 1973, a cultural experience of France and Germany, which featured a yodeling performance, was held. In 1974, events held at the Morris Center included a winter formal, college bowl, and the play, “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.” In 1976, a charity dance was one of the main events at the center. Voting booths were placed in the Morris Center for student presidential elections. Elections were taken seriously by students and the university had strict regulations regarding campaigns. In 1983, Tom and Don Mullen were penalized when they violated campaign rules by handing out flyers at the Morris Center. Their punishment was one less day of campaigning. Students played pool, had religion classes, and ate their meals at the Morris Center. It was a place where “friendships were formed, [and] romances blossomed.” And, in 1986, when a fire started by an appliance short circuited closed the center, the center quickly opened five months later to resume activities and services.

By 2007, structural concerns with Deseret Towers resulted in its demolition. Since no students were to be staying in the Deseret Towers, the Morris Center’s purpose shifted to accommodate the university’s other needs.  The building’s kitchens were used to assist on-campus catering services. Other parts of the building were used to house BYU’s Independent Study. However, in 2018, to the heartache of those who had enjoyed the Morris Center’s plentiful offerings, the building was closed and demolished. Today, Heritage Halls building 13 occupies the space where the Morris Center once stood.

Images

The Morris Center in the 21st century
The Morris Center in the 21st century Source: “BYU MORC.” GreenwoodKL (pseud.), August 14, 2010. Via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0). https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:BYU_MORC.jpg.
The Morris Center in 1965
The Morris Center in 1965 Pictured on the left. Source: “[Deseret Towers, ca. 1965].” 1965. UAP 2 Folder 245. Courtesy University Archives, L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University. https://contentdm.lib.byu.edu/digital/collection/BYUPhotos/id/701
George Q. Morris
George Q. Morris The building's namesake, George Q. Morris served as an apostle for The Church of Jesus Christ in the Latter-day Saints. Source: “George Q Morris (1874 - 1962) Profile.” In “George Quayle Morris,” Church History Biographical Database, accessed July 1, 2022. https://history.churchofjesuschrist.org/chd/individual/george-q-morris-1874.

Location

Metadata

Lindsey Meza, Brigham Young University and Makoto Hunter, Brigham Young University, “George Q. Morris Center (MORC),” Intermountain Histories, accessed May 20, 2024, https://www.intermountainhistories.org/items/show/698.