campus life

OSU enrollment up 2.4 percent; Corvallis campus about same size

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University’s overall 2015 fall term enrollment grew 2.4 percent over last year, with stable enrollment on the Corvallis campus and continued growth in online learning through OSU’s nationally ranked Ecampus distance degree program.

Oregon State’s overall enrollment is 30,592 students, making OSU the largest university in the state of Oregon for the second year in a row.

OSU officials say there are 24,466 students at the university’s main campus in Corvallis, an increase of 3/10ths of one percent, or 83 students, from fall 2014. Oregon State has enrolled 5,110 students in Ecampus this term, an increase of 607 students or 13.5 percent over last year. At OSU-Cascades, where this fall Oregon State offers four-year academic classes for the first time, 1,016 students are enrolled – a 3.7 percent increase over last year.

“This is right in line with Oregon State’s strategic plan to serve as Oregon’s university, as well as with our enrollment management plan,” said OSU President Edward J. Ray. “Three out of four degree-seeking undergraduate students on our Corvallis campus are Oregon residents, and we continue to attract high-achieving students. Among first-time college students from Oregon high schools, 41.6 percent are considered high-achievers (with a grade point of 3.75 or higher).”

Ray said he was particularly pleased in the continued growth in enrollment of U.S. minority students, an increase of 6.9 percent from 6,320 students in 2014 to 6,754 this fall.

The university also enrolled 5,803 undergraduates who are first-generation students – an increase of 4.5 percent over 2014. “As a first-generation college student myself, that trend is near-and-dear to my heart,” Ray said. “Nearly one out of four of our undergraduates (23.6 percent) is a first-generation student.”

“Oregon State’s mission is to bring higher education to all people within Oregon and we are doing just that by increasingly enrolling people of diversity, students from low-income families, and first-generation students,” Ray said. “Expanded access to an excellent higher education and college degree is essential for all Oregonians, as well as the future of our state and the nation.”

International student enrollment at Oregon State also grew this fall, but by a slower rate than in the past. OSU enrolled 3,328 international students this fall – up 3.9 percent over 2014. The international student enrollment had grown by 21 percent in 2013 and by 12 percent in 2014 and now represents 11.3 percent of Oregon State’s overall enrollment.

Steve Clark, OSU’s vice president for University Relations and Marketing, said OSU’s strategic enrollment growth is sustainable. While demographic patterns in Oregon suggest that the number of high school graduates will remain relatively flat for the foreseeable future, Clark said Oregon State is poised to continue attracting Oregonians, but also a mix of out-of-state and international students, and non-traditionally aged students (25 and over).

“OSU will remain focused on being Oregon’s statewide university,” Clark said. “It takes a balancing act to meet the needs of the state; manage growth in a strategic way; serve as a great community partner where our campuses are located; and operate the university in a financially sustainable way.”

“As promised, we have slowed the growth on our Corvallis campus, but while doing so, we are taking higher education to where students are by continuing to enroll more distance online students through Ecampus, by expanding OSU-Cascades to a four-year campus in Bend; and by opening a marine studies campus in Newport over the next few years.”

More students are studying engineering than any other discipline at OSU – the College of Engineering has a total of 8,265 undergraduate and graduate students enrolled this fall. The next largest programs are the College of Liberal Arts, 3,905 students; the College of Science, 3,526; the College of Business, 3,487; the College of Public Health and Human Sciences, 3,200; and the College of Agricultural Sciences, 2,610.

Enrollment in other colleges and programs includes: University Exploratory Studies, 1,106; College of Forestry, 1,024; Graduate School, 797; College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, 725; College of Pharmacy, 384; College of Education, 317; and College of Veterinary Medicine, 230.

The most popular major at OSU is computer science, followed by business administration, mechanical engineering, kinesiology, and human development and family sciences.

Media Contact: 

Steve Clark, 541-737-3808, steve.clark@oregonstate.edu

League of American Bicyclists names OSU a Gold-level Bicycle Friendly University

CORVALLIS, Ore. – The League of American Bicyclists has recognized Oregon State University as a Gold-level Bicycle Friendly University, one of only 12 universities in the United States that has achieved this level.

Gold level indicates that the university has implemented bicycle projects, policies and programs to connect transportation and recreation throughout the community and that a strong commitment to cycling is demonstrated. Only Platinum level is higher; as of 2015 only five universities had achieved Platinum status.

Oregon State is one of 127 Bike Friendly Universities across the United States. The bike-friendly nature of Oregon State and the surrounding Corvallis community has helped contribute to a healthy, sustainable and safe community while lowering demand for parking on campus. Oregon State encourages bicycling as an easy, healthy transportation option and provides amenities such as covered and uncovered bike parking, bike lockers, bike fix-it stands, and an on-campus bike shop, as well as a bike loan program, bicycle safety training, and bicycle registration services.

Meredith Williams, director of Transportation Services at OSU, said completing the BFU application gave Oregon State staff the opportunity to appreciate all of the ways the university supports bicyclists.

“It also sparked new ideas for how we can continue to improve the bicyclist’s experience on campus, such as plans to create a bike ambassador program and participate in the National Bike Challenge,” Williams said. “We appreciate the recognition from the league, and we want to thank the many students and employees who ride to campus rain or shine. Their participation is the primary reason we received this award.”

This award grants OSU access to a variety of free tools and technical assistance from the organization to become even more bicycle-friendly. By investing in bicycling, universities can decrease their carbon footprint, see mental and physical health benefits for staff and students, reduce parking demands, create positive connections with the local community, and foster a healthy campus culture.

“We applaud this round of BFUs for raising the standard of what a bicycle-friendly campus looks like,” said Amelia Neptune, the league’s Bicycle Friendly University program manager.

To learn more about the free BFU program, visit the league online at www.bikeleague.org/university.


Media Contact: 

Meredith Williams, 541-737-0673; meredith.williams@oregonstate.edu

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Kelley North and Bike Lockers

Presidential historian Michael Beschloss gives Provost’s Lecture at OSU

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Historian Michael Beschloss will deliver the 2015 Provost’s Lecture at Oregon State University in the Austin Auditorium of The LaSells Stewart Center on Tuesday, Nov. 10, beginning at 7:30 p.m.

 Beschloss will speak on “Leadership Under Pressure: A Historian’s Close-up Look at Presidential Decision-Making.” It is free and open to the public.

 A preeminent presidential historian, Beschloss is the author of eight books and frequently serves as an analyst on Meet the Press, The Daily Show, The PBS NewsHour and other shows. He is the author of a regular column in the New York Times, and is the first presidential historian ever appointed by NBC News.

Since he was 10 years old, poring over history books, Beschloss knew he wanted to become a historian.

 “I loved to read history books about presidents and also felt I was living through a period in American history in which whoever happened to be president had a big influence on how Americans lived,” he said.

 Beschloss arrives at OSU in the midst of a heated and divisive presidential primary season, but said the current animosity is less about a rift in the general population and more about the nature of modern American politics.

 “The antagonisms are great, but if you compare the political differences of our time to earlier periods, there have been other times when the differences were much greater – such as the debates over slavery in the 1850s, economics and whether to fight Hitler in the 1930s,” Beschloss said.

 “The point is that hostility between the two parties is now built into our modern political process, no matter how deep the actual divisions in the country.”

 That said, the more divisive candidates, while attracting a certain demographic in the primaries, are unlikely to move forward if history is any predictor.

 “Unifiers tend to have an easier time getting elected president than dividers,” Beschloss said. “It’s hard to think of anyone in recent times who succeeded in winning the presidency on a platform that preeminently pitted groups against one another.”

 An interesting facet of the current presidential race is that the field is appears open to more than just white males, Beschloss noted. With the first African-American president serving his second term, and both women and a non-Christian vying for a spot in the coming primaries, the presidency is looking like a possibility for a broader group of people.

 “One of the glories of America is that the gates to the White House are always opening wider, and that process is likely to speed up as demographic changes make the composition of American society look very different from the way it did even 20 years ago,” Beschloss said.

 Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for the lecture, which will be followed by a book signing.  





Media Contact: 

Shelly Signs, 541-737-0724; shelly.signs@oregonstate.edu

OSU Board of Trustees to meet Oct. 14-16

NEWPORT, Ore. – The Oregon State University Board of Trustees will hold a retreat on Wednesday, Oct. 14, to discuss the 10-year outlook for the university.  The retreat is open to the public and will run from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Guin Library Seminar Room of Hatfield Marine Science Center (HMSC), 2030 S.E. Marine Science Drive in Newport. 

Each of the board’s three standing committees will meet on Thursday, Oct. 15, in the Guin Library Seminar Room at HMSC. These meetings are open to the public:

  • The Executive and Audit Committee will meet from 8 to 10:15 a.m. to review the quarterly audit report; hear a presentation on the university’s compliance and ethics program; and consider the 2016 committee work plan, a trustee recommendation policy, the FY2015 presidential assessment, and revised standards for foundations.
  • The Academic Strategies Committee will meet from 10:30 a.m. to noon to consider new graduate degree programs in psychology, athletic training, and environmental arts and humanities; and the committee’s work plan for 2016.
  • The Finance and Administration Committee will meet from 12:45 to 2:45 p.m. to consider quarterly reports, changes to the public university funds investment policy, and the committee’s work plan for the fiscal year ahead. The committee will also hear pro forma results for an information technology systems infrastructure project and an OSU-Cascades residence hall and dining/academic center.

Following the committee meetings, the board will meet at 3 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 15, to hear a presentation on the university’s Marine Studies Initiative and to participate in a tour of HMSC. 

The board will meet again on Friday, Oct. 16, in Corvallis. The meeting will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Willamette Room of the CH2M Hill Alumni Center, 725 S.W. 26th St. in Corvallis. It is open to the public. The board will consider adoption of a trustee recommendation policy and new graduate degree programs in psychology, athletic training, and environmental arts and humanities. 

The board will also act on the FY2015 presidential assessment, changes to the public university fund investment policy, and revisions to the standards for foundations.  In addition, the OSU board will receive a legislative update and discuss results from the annual board assessment survey.

The board will meet in executive session on Friday, Oct. 16, at approximately 11:30 a.m. (pursuant to ORS 192.660(2)(h) ) for the purpose of consulting with legal counsel in regard to current litigation or litigation likely to be filed.

A public comment period is provided at each board meeting. Commenters are allowed up to five minutes and may register by e-mail before the meeting by contacting Marcia Stuart at marcia.stuart@oregonstate.edu; or they may register at the meeting itself. Commenters must sign up prior to the public comment period of the meeting.

More information on the meetings is available online at: http://leadership.oregonstate.edu/trustees. If special accommodation is required, contact Stuart at 541-737-3449 or marcia.stuart@oregonstate.edu at least 72 hours in advance.

Media Contact: 

Steve Clark, 541-737-3808, steve.clark@oregonstate.edu

OSU Libraries forms sister relationship with Nigerian university library

CORVALLIS, Ore. -  Oregon State University Libraries has forged a connection with a university library in Nigeria that will make it one of only a small group of existing “sister” university library relationships.

The collaboration will take place with the Federal University of Agriculture’s Nimbe Adedipe Library, in Abeokuta, Nigeria. It will establish an ongoing collaboration between librarians and staff at both universities, including exchange of library staff, joint research activities, participation in virtual seminars and academic meetings, and the exchange of library materials and other information.

“There are many benefits for OSU Libraries to seek out an international sister library relationship,” said OSU librarian Laurie Bridges, the coordinator of the OSU side of the project. “It helps raise awareness of issues and needs facing libraries internationally, it helps us share techniques and technologies to solve problems, and it increases the information, resources, and expertise between both libraries. It also increases the diversity of interaction between professionals.”

Bridges said the initiative also meets one of Oregon State’s strategic goals, which is promoting international education, research and engagement.

The Federal University of Agriculture is a public university in Nigeria consisting of nine colleges, with about 60 percent of majors focused on agriculture. It has about 19,000 students.

"Myself and my colleagues are most excited about networking with our new friends and colleagues from Oregon State University Libraries," said Fehintola Nike Onifade, a librarian from Nigeria. "This will help us to track trends and keep up with changes in librarianship and information science. In fact we are hoping that the relationship will lead us to best practices in library and information science service delivery."

OSU officials have signed a formal letter of understanding with FUA, formalizing the relationship between the two universities. A small group will be formed within the library to start working on outreach and exchange possibilities with FUA. 

Media Contact: 

Laurie Bridges, 541-737-8821

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OSU Orange & Black Rally on Wednesday will include fireworks

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University will hold an Orange & Black Rally on campus for new students on Wednesday, Sept. 23, beginning at about 5:15 p.m. in Reser Stadium.

The rally, which follows OSU’s annual new student convocation, is designed “to get incoming students excited about joining Beaver Nation and the OSU student body,” according to Natalie Rooney, orientation coordinator for New Student Programs and Family Outreach.

The rally will feature appearances and brief talks by some of the head coaches in the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics and a class photo. A catered dinner is available for new and returning students beginning at approximately 6:15 p.m. on 26th Street, which will be closed to traffic. Tickets, priced at $8, are available online at http://connect.oregonstate.edu/OBR and should be purchased by midnight Saturday. Tickets will be sold to students next week at a handful of campus locations.

There will be games, contests and music in Parker Plaza outside of Reser Stadium during and after dinner.

The community is invited to join the event at 7:30 p.m. inside Reser, when the OSU marching band performs. A fireworks program will begin at approximately 8:30 p.m.

Media Contact: 

Natalie Rooney, 541-737-0526, Natalie.rooney@oregonstate.edu

Oregon State University trustee Orcilia Forbes passes away

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Orcilia Zúñiga Forbes, a member of the Oregon State University Board of Trustees and former OSU vice president, died on Friday, Aug. 28. She was 77.

Forbes began her service on the OSU Board of Trustees on July 1, 2013, having served as a member of the Oregon State Board of Higher Education. She had a long and distinguished career in higher education, health care and grant administration. She was a noted community leader and was active on many boards, including serving as a trustee of the Meyer Memorial Trust since 1999.

She retired from Oregon State in 2004 having served since 1998 as vice president of university advancement.

“Orcilia has been a dear friend since I arrived at Oregon State,” OSU President Ed Ray said Sunday morning. “I will miss her greatly.

“Her service as OSU vice president for advancement and on the Oregon University System and Oregon State boards was exemplary,” Ray said. “In my career, I have found that at any important meeting, there are people who you will always hear from. And then there are the few people like Orcilia, who you want to hear from. She made people around her better leaders and people.”

While at OSU, Forbes led the university’s alumni relations, development, communications, marketing, and community and government relations. She was also the executive liaison to the OSU Alumni Association and the OSU Foundation and served as interim president of the OSU Foundation from 2002-03. Prior to coming to Oregon State in 1998, she served as vice president of student affairs and institutional advancement at the University of New Mexico and the dean of students and vice president of student affairs at Portland State University.

Forbes served as vice chair of the Academic Strategies Committee of the Oregon State Board of Trustees.

“Orcilia’s quiet wisdom was a guiding presence for our board,” said Pat Reser, chair of the OSU Board of Trustees.

"Orcilia was a great friend of Oregon State University and she contributed in many ways as a trustee,” said Darry Callahan, vice chair of the board. “We will miss her greatly as a friend and as a trustee.”

Forbes served as a trustee for the Meyer Memorial Trust since 1999. She also served on the boards of the Chalkboard Project and the University of New Mexico Foundation. In addition, Forbes served on the boards of many community organizations, including the Albuquerque and Portland Hispanic Chambers of Commerce, Providence Health and Services System, National Hispanic Cultural Center Foundation, and the Spanish Colonial Arts Society. In 2009, the University of New Mexico’s Alumni Association honored her for her contributions as an alumna.

Forbes earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of New Mexico in 1960. She went on to receive her master’s degree in nursing from Oregon Health and Science University; an M.P.H. in health administration and planning from University of California, Berkeley; and a Ph.D. in educational policy and management from the University of Oregon.

Forbes was married to the late Richard Bryan Forbes, former department head of biology at Portland State University, and had two children, daughter Eryn and son Bryan.

Media Contact: 

Steve Clark, 541-737-3808 or 503-502-8217, steve.clark@oregonstate.edu


Debbie Colbert, OSU Board of Trustees Secretary, 541-737-8115, Debbie.colbert@oregonstate.edu

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Orcilia Zuniga Forbes

OSU names Hoffman vice provost for international programs

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Mark Hoffman, associate dean in the College of Public Health and Human Sciences, has been named vice provost for international programs at Oregon State University. He will begin his new duties July 15.

Hoffman, an Exercise and Sport Science faculty member since 2000, has provided leadership for the college’s international education and student services efforts, including collaborations on campus-wide student success initiatives.

The vice provost for international programs plays a key role in the development and implementation of programs that further the university’s internationalization goals, according to Sabah Randhawa, OSU provost and executive vice president.

“Mark has been an active leader for the college and university in our internationalization efforts, and he will be able to focus on and expand those efforts in his new role,” Randhawa said. “We want to provide the best possible experience for international students who come to Oregon State and for OSU students who study in other countries.”

As vice provost, Hoffman will provide strategic direction for OSU’s internationalization efforts, coordinate relevant campus activities, facilitate integration of international students and scholars into OSU, support and expand education abroad opportunities for students and faculty, and oversee INTO Oregon State University academic programs and the OSU Office of International Admissions.

Hoffman is a certified athletic trainer with expertise in the human sensory and motor systems, and has focused his scholarship on understanding and preventing injuries of the lower extremity in active individuals. He has a Ph.D. in motor control with a minor in neuroscience from Indiana University, where he also earned a bachelor’s degree. He has a master’s from San Jose State University.

“I strongly share OSU’s aspiration to be a top international research university,” Hoffman said. “Comprehensive campus internationalization is critical for the development of globally-minded students. It’s not just about increasing our international enrollment, but we need to strengthen our education abroad opportunities and promote global learning and appreciation for global diversity among all students and create strategic international partnership opportunities for our faculty.”

Media Contact: 

Sabah Randhawa, 541-737-2111, Sabah.randhawa@oregonstate.edu;

Mark Hoffman, 541-737-6787, mark.hoffman@oregonstate.edu

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Mark Hoffman

                  Mark Hoffman

Under federal law, marijuana will remain illegal on OSU campus

CORVALLIS, Ore. – The recreational possession and use of marijuana in Oregon becomes legal as of July 1, but it will remain illegal on the Oregon State University campus – and other OSU-owned property – under federal law.

Because OSU receives federal funds – including student financial aid and research grants – the university must abide by federal laws regardless of the change in Oregon laws, according to Steve Clark, vice president for University Relations and Marketing.

"Marijuana remains illegal according to federal laws and because of that the university will continue to prohibit the possession, use or distribution of marijuana and other federally illegal drugs on all university properties, or as part of university activities,” Clark said. “This also means that no exceptions will be made for medicinal marijuana.”

OSU has established a website with more information about the university’s marijuana policies. It is at: http://main.oregonstate.edu/university-policies-regarding-marijuana

Media Contact: 

Steve Clark, 541-737-3808, steve.clark@oregonstate.edu

OSU to hold 146th commencement on Saturday in Reser Stadium

CORVALLIS, Ore. – The Oregon State University Class of 2015 will top 6,000 graduates for the first time in the university’s history – and many of the newest members of Beaver Nation will be on hand this Saturday, June 13, when OSU holds its 146th commencement.

The ceremony will begin at 10:30 a.m. in Reser Stadium on campus. No tickets are required for the event, which also will be shown on Oregon Public Broadcasting.

A total of 6,038 graduates will receive 6,317 degrees this year, according to OSU Registrar Rebecca Mathern. They will add to the ranks of Oregon State alumni, which have earned a total of 230,136 degrees over the university’s history.

Howard K. Koh, director of the Leading Change Studio at Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, will deliver the commencement address. Koh also will receive an honorary doctorate from Oregon State. He is a former member of the Obama Administration, serving as the nation’s 14th Assistant Secretary for Health for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Some facts and figures about OSU’s Class of 2015:

  • Of the 6,317 degrees that will be awarded, 4,981 will go to students receiving baccalaureate degrees; 960, master’s degrees; 232, doctor of philosophy degrees; 83, doctor of pharmacy degrees; and 61, doctor of veterinary medicine degrees.
  • A total of 590 graduates earned degrees in distance education in 33 different degree programs.
  • OSU’s 2015 graduates come from all 36 Oregon counties, 49 of the 50 states, four U.S. territories or commonwealths, and 63 nations around the world.
  • The oldest graduate is 70 years of age; the youngest is 20.
  • The graduating class includes 121 veterans of U.S. military service.

Each of the 6,038 OSU graduates has a compelling story. Take, for instance, Claire Ostertag-Hill, who moved to Corvallis from Germany so she could be part of the University Honors College at OSU. She pursued three majors simultaneously – biology, psychology and international studies – with support from an OSU Presidential Scholarship. As part of her honors senior thesis, she conducted research on cattle disease and discovered mutations in several genes that may be the cause of Bovine HPV-1 disease.

Now Ostertag-Hill is taking her studies to the prestigious Wake Forest Medical School in North Carolina, where she will pursue her dream of becoming a pediatric surgeon.

Michael Davis, who hails from the tiny farm town of Ramsey, Indiana, joined the U.S. Army in 2001 and served in Iraq, where he sustained injuries. At the age of 28, he retired from the military and began driving trucks for a living. Interested in bettering his career, he discovered OSU’s Ecampus distance learning program and enrolled as an agricultural sciences student.

The flexibility and challenging coursework appealed to the veteran, who sandwiched his studies around 50-hour weeks of driving trucks and vocational rehabilitation sessions at the Veterans Affairs office. Davis and his family are traveling the 2,000 miles to Corvallis to attend commencement.

Mathern said OSU expects about 3,800 students – and more than 23,000 friends and family members – to attend commencement. Oregon State is one of the only universities of its size to hand out actual diplomas to students as they graduate.

Media Contact: 

Steve Clark, 541-737-3808, steve.clark@oregonstate.edu