In unveiling a new vision for Oregon State University, President Ed Ray told the OSU Faculty Senate on Thursday that the university will grow substantially by the year 2025, with OSU-Cascades Campus expanding to an enrollment of 3,000 – 4,000 students – about six times its present size.
The state’s first public university branch campus, OSU-Cascades currently serves about 600 students and has produced more than 1,400 graduates over the past eight years.
In introducing what is being called “OSU 2025,” Ray described a series of academic changes, enhancements to research and overall growth necessary to achieve OSU’s goal of becoming one of the nation’s top land grant universities. Over the same period of time, OSU’s main campus enrollment is projected to expand to 30,000-35,000, a growth arc similar to that outlined for Bend.
“That level of success [for OSU-Cascades] will require us to help colleagues there build signature programs that will make the Cascades Campus a destination of choice for students and faculty,” said Ray. “We must also promote effective fund raising for the Cascades Campus and develop local university-industry partnerships in research.”
With record growth expected this fall, OSU-Cascades is in the process of adding more programs and course offerings. Degree programs in energy engineering management, hospitality management and sustainability, for instance, will begin over the next two years.
“We appreciate the strong and positive vision for OSU-Cascades that President Ray has put forward,” said Becky Johnson, vice president of OSU-Cascades Campus. “We believe that we can build upon the momentum of this year’s strong enrollment growth at both Central Oregon Community College and OSU-Cascades. The new programs that will be added over the next few years will also help to grow the campus.”
In recent weeks, a possible move of the OSU College of Education to OSU-Cascades has been under public discussion. After careful review, OSU leaders have elected instead to plan for increased growth of education programs at OSU-Cascades, while maintaining the administrative home in Corvallis. Over the next few months, representatives from the College of Education will work with OSU-Cascades and local education leaders to identify priority programs that meet local needs.