The Best and the Brightest
OSU awarded nearly 800 merit scholarships this year, including 46 Presidential Scholarships, given to the highest achieving Oregon high school students. Scholarships continue to be among the highest fund-raising priorities of the university..
Above is President Risser with Presidential Scholar Josh Noda, a junior from Klamath Falls majoring in business.
What now? Can OSU sustain the momentum it has generated in student interest and access, academic success, research and scholarly achievements, service to the region, financial stability, and all-around excitement? President Paul Risser, emphatically, says yes.
When the university leadership scans the horizon to match OSU's resources with the needs of the region, four initiatives come into focus:
- Natural resources
In the future, technology will revolutionize all that we do, and Oregon's high technology industry will continue to grow and develop. With the state's premier engineering school and long-established industry partnerships, Oregon State University will be more involved with high tech companies. OSU researchers in the biological and life sciences will be closely linked to the region's emerging biotechnology and biomedical companies.
The role of education and the university in society is changing, and the OSU of the future will be an engaged leader of change. High achieving and high potential 18- to 22-year-olds will learn with and from students of all ages, in new ways, from across the country and the world. Traditional thinking about K12 is outdated, and OSU will work hard to develop integrated programs for students in elementary and secondary schools, and improve teacher preparation and professional retooling, especially in math and science.
Health is a high priority among Oregonians. OSU's national prominence in studying human health and development throughout the life span guides policy-makers and medical systems. Robust research in osteoporosis, immunology, vitamins, micronutrients, physical activity for the disabled, gerontology, individual fitness, drug delivery and environmental health and safety will help to improve the quality of life for people of all ages.
The 21st century will be marked by increasingly limited natural resources, and more extremes in our public debate of practical solutions. Population growth and relentless advances in science and technology will combine to tax our food, water, energy, transportation and waste systems. So, OSU's scientific horsepower in natural resources will result in new products, production systems and markets.
In each of these four areas, OSU's faculty will continue to conduct excellent science, seek solutions to real life problems, and help state and regional leaders make informed decisions. And these are the hallmarks of a responsive and accountable land grant university.
Three Major Goals
Three majors goals are the driving force behind everything that Oregon State University is trying to accomplish:
- Create a compelling learning environment
- Be recognized as a top tier university by all appropriate measures
- Make the state of Oregon OSU's campus
"Those goals really summarize what Oregon State University is trying to accomplish in such a way that every faculty and staff member can feel ownership in what wešre doing," Risser said. "They are simple, yet we feel they speak volumes."
Two Heads Are Better...
Oregon State University is involved in literally hundreds of partnerships. And the success of those ventures has led to even more collaboration.
OSU faculty have been involved for years in two science education programs -- the Science and Math Investigative Learning Experience
and Saturday Academy
. Success in those two enterprises led OSU faculty to create SEPS
, the Science Education Partnership, in which OSU "scientist-parents" go into local K12 classrooms to help teachers and improve science instruction.
Another program, Science Connections
, is a collaboration between OSU and Portland public schools to improve science instruction. This year, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry signed an agreement with OSU to collaborate on future educational activities and outreach.
And, the National Science Foundation is giving the university a three-year, $1.5 million grant for an innovative science outreach program that will train graduate students to become "adopted scientists" for students K12.
Many diverse parts. Research. The Extension Service. The OSU Foundation. The OSU Beavers. The state climatologist. 4-H. The Hatfield Marine Science Center. The Seafood Laboratory. The Minority Education Offices. The Food Innovation Center. Distance and Continuing Education. A research ship. A working ranch. McDonald Forest. The list goes on and on.
"We've had an extraordinary year," Risser said. "Students are genuinely excited about coming to Oregon State University, the achievements of our faculty and staff are truly first-rate, and our newest facilities -- The Valley Library and forestry's Richardson Hall -- are without parallel. I truly believe that all of the people around the state who make up Oregon State University are committed to the same goals and have the same high expectations."