OSU leadership advises campus on new firearms policy governing state university system


CORVALLIS, Ore. -- Oregon State University leadership is distributing information to students, faculty and staff regarding implementation of a new policy on firearms passed Friday by the Oregon Board of Higher Education.

Vice President for Finance & Administration Mark McCambridge and Public Safety Director Jack T. Rogers are sending memoranda to students and employees outlining the new policy and how it will be enforced at OSU. The text of those messages is as follows:


As you may have learned by now via news media coverage, the Oregon Board of Higher Education last Friday approved a new policy on firearms for the Oregon University System, including Oregon State University.

The new policy, which took effect upon passage, forbids students, employees, individuals with a business interest with the campus (such as vendors and contractors), event attendees, those who rent or lease university property and campus visitors from carrying a firearm on Board-owned or controlled property. Such property includes all OUS campus buildings, sports or performance venues and workplaces, and the prohibition is effective whether or not an individual holds a concealed handgun license.

The policy also authorizes several exceptions to the firearms prohibition, including on-duty law enforcement officers and public safety personnel, military program participants (such as ROTC), and residents of a family housing dwelling. The latter specifically does not include residence halls, where the policy bans firearm possession.

Individuals found in violation of the policy may face punishment through means specific to their relationship to the university. Students will be held accountable under the student conduct code and employees under OSU employment policies.  Contractors, vendors, event attendees, those who rent or lease university property and other visitors to OSU will be subject to exclusion from campus.

The new policy was created following an Oregon Court of Appeals decision last fall ruling that the Board lacked the authority to regulate guns through use of an administrative rule. Yet, at the time, the Court also recognized that the Board has been granted by the Oregon Legislature broad policy control over OUS property. It is pursuant to that principle that the Board created the new policy.

OSU supports this important advance in policy, as well as the Board’s “recognition of its obligation to provide a safe environment to its students, employees, visitors, vendors and patrons,” as the Board’s memorandum on the new policy states. Should you have questions regarding the policy or its enforcement at Oregon State, please contact the OSU Dept. of Public Safety at (541) 737-3010.

For your convenience and further information, links are provided below to the new OUS policy and multiple media accounts of Friday’s Board action.

Mark McCambridge, Vice President, Finance & Administration

Jack T. Rogers, Director, OSU Dept of Public Safety