In 1941, the nation was slowly recovering from the Great Depression. The shadow of war was creeping closer, and the need for arms and ammunition by the Allied forces demanded skilled craftsmen. Many citizens had benefited from the federal work programs during the Depression but needed more training to qualify for better jobs. Vocational classes were taught at various shops and businesses throughout Utah and Heber valleys under the direction of the State Vocational Office. In fall 1941, under the direction of Hyrum E. Johnson, those vocational training courses were moved to a central location in south Provo and named Central Utah Vocational School.