- Annual Campus Report
- University Committees, Task Forces, and Issue Groups
The university and college metrics are posted at http://leadership.oregonstate.edu/strategic-plan/.
Before providing a review of the 2011-12 agenda, I would like to provide a synopsis of the growth and change that we have experienced since the 2009 update of the Strategic Plan. During that time, we faced one of the worst economic downturns in the nation and in Oregon. In fact, in fall 2009, we started planning for a 20-30 percent budget reduction in the Education and General Fund and Statewide Public Service Programs budget, and spent the rest of the academic year aligning our expenditures with those projections.
Fast forward to fall 2012. Compared to FY08, which was used for baseline performance in the 2009 Strategic Plan:
To enable OSU’s growth we have focused on generating new resources through non-resident tuition revenue, research growth and private fundraising. While continuing to ensure that OSU provides education to all qualified Oregon resident students, we have effectively executed strategies to increase non-resident enrollment, including an innovative new public-private partnership that has led to a substantial increase in international enrollment. At the same time, we have focused on internal cost containment, ensuring that resources are first directed to our core mission. Taken together these activities have helped place the University in a sound fiscal position.
Over the past two years, the University has provided new funds to hire 90 new tenure track faculty positions, invested about $8 million on a recurring basis for student and academic services and support units, and invested an additional $25 million in one-time investments in faculty startup funds, in teaching and research equipment, and in improving our physical and information infrastructure, including addressing ADA issues. We have also targeted a recurring investment of $3 million to support course access in the lower division curriculum. Additionally, we have provided $2 million to support Statewide Public Service Programs, which are constrained to generate alternative revenue in the short term. To support growth in education and research, a number of new or remodeled buildings have opened during this time period, including the Linus Pauling Science Center, Hallie Ford Center for Healthy Children and Families, Joyce Collin Furman Hall (formerly Education Hall), International Living and Learning Center, and Student Success Center. A new facility, the Graduate and Research Center, opened in 2011-12 at OSU-Cascades to house growing graduate programs at OSU’s branch campus in Bend, Oregon.
A study completed in January 2012, through ECONorthwest, shows that OSU’s annual economic footprint now totals $2.06 billion, making it the largest recorded impact by any four-year university in the state. The total impact is $500 million more than the economic impact estimate developed in 2006. More than $1.9 billion of the impact is in Oregon, with a local footprint of about $950 million in the Willamette Valley.
Rapid growth has produced challenges. We have not made progress in increasing the first-year retention rates and six-year graduation rates, and in eliminating the gap for those measures among the different student cohorts. These have been further impacted by rapid increase in the student body and the time lag in revenue realization and execution of strategies to hire faculty and staff. Even with a number of new buildings and renovations of existing classrooms, the University faces significant space issues in the short term, a situation that is compounded by lack of state resources for deferred maintenance.
We continue to wrestle with declining revenues in Statewide Public Service Programs, both from the State and the federal government. The SWPS programs have responded by reducing costs, increasing research revenues, and generating new revenues through work with external stakeholders. The University increased its support for SWPS programs over the last couple of years, but continuing increases in the face of enrollment growth may not be possible. Additional focus and work will be required to bring SWPS revenues and expenditures in balance.
Finally, OSU faculty, staff and administrators are fully extended as the University has grown in all its dimensions. The OSU community has been resilient in difficult times and exemplary in advancing an ambitious agenda of growth and diversification that has positioned the University for the future. As we look to the next five years, we will focus on all dimensions of our culture, especially those that have been challenged during times of intense change. The University will work to provide an opportunity for success and growth for every member of its community.
In my 2010-11 Annual Campus Report, I outlined a number of activities related to faculty recruitment and retention. These included hiring new faculty as part of the 60-faculty initiative started last year and to address enrollment growth and targeted areas of distinction; initiating a spousal/partner hire program; implementing a compensation increase program; and expanding faculty development programs. The agenda included continuing work to assess and expand activities for student engagement and success, establishing a lead position and associated structure for university-industry collaborations, completing changes associated with academic realignment, completing the self-study and assessment for Equity and Inclusion, and continuing to work on improving the effectiveness of the business centers.
Following the addition of 35 new tenure track faculty positions in 2010-11, we authorized an additional 55 new positions for 2011-12. These positions included the 30 positions needed to complete the 60-faculty initiative completed started last year (30 positions in the Division of Arts and Sciences, and 10 positions each in the Divisions of Earth Systems Science, Health Sciences, and Business and Engineering). Additional positions were provided for enrollment growth to the Colleges of Engineering, Liberal Arts, Science and Public Health and Human Sciences. The University provided $2 million to Statewide Public Service Programs to offset funding for faculty FTE devoted to teaching but paid from other funds and to hire faculty in enrollment growth areas in the Colleges of Agricultural Sciences and Forestry. Additionally, we started investment in targeted interdisciplinary areas of inquiry drawn from earlier proposals and strengths identified by faculty in biological information and genomics and geospatial intelligence and planning, an activity that we would like to continue over the next several years as new revenues become available.
Student growth at OSU-Cascades remains on target and we have successfully introduced degree programs in Psychology and Social Science that were previously delivered by the University of Oregon, as well as a new program in Energy Systems Engineering. To meet increased program and student growth, the OSU-Cascades hired four new faculty in key areas – counseling, math/science teacher education, energy systems education, and chemistry – as well as a librarian.
The Provost’s Faculty Match Program, in collaboration with the OSU Foundation, was extended through the end of December 2012. The first phase of the program in 2011-12 leveraged a $5 million University investment over five years with over $21 million in faculty endowments and 22 new or expanded endowed positions. To date, the extension of this program has created eight new endowed positions and 25 additional conversations are in progress.
We initiated a spousal/partner dual hire program with an initial outlay of $300,000 that will be leveraged 3:1 with hiring units. In January 2012 the University provided a faculty raise package of 5.25 percent that included 4 percent across the board for satisfactory performance, 1 percent equity adjustment, and an additional merit increase of $2,500 each for an estimated 5 percent of the eligible faculty population.
We have expanded and enhanced the Leadership Academy, a program offered through Academic Affairs that is designed to enhance the skills of existing leaders and foster the next generation of academic leaders at OSU. Topics included in the 2011-12 Leadership Academy included conflict management, best hiring practices, and leadership for an international research university. Various academic colleges are offering mentoring programs for new faculty to ensure their success at OSU.
We continue to expand academic success and engagement activities. Highlights include:
A key focus in the 2012-13 academic year will be an assessment of several activities that we have initiated over the past few years and their impact on student retention and success.
Through a university-wide engagement effort, the Graduate School completed the development of a student-centered graduate education plan to advance the quality and effectiveness of graduate education while aligning the focus of the Graduate School with the strategic directions of the University. The overarching goals of the 5-year agenda include recruiting, retaining and supporting graduate students; ensuring program excellence; and growing opportunities for financial support. The Graduate School is in the process of prioritizing an action agenda for implementation. The Graduate School hired Dr. Barbara Bond to serve as Director of Postdoctoral Programs, enhanced its workshops and orientation efforts to prepare graduate students for success; developed a familial/medical leave policy; and implemented a pilot to allow ECampus courses to count toward full load with tuition remission for graduate assistants.
The Research Office realigned its operations to establish the Office of Commercialization and Corporate Development (OCCD). Dr. Ron Adams stepped down as dean of engineering to lead OCCD. Through an industry-partnering steering committee, efforts have focused on identifying key companies for corporate-to-corporate partnership, advance a “full service” approach for private companies (from “access to talent” to “R&D investment”), and better inventorying and accounting of sponsored industry contracts. In addition to continuing to grow industry-based support for OSU research, goals for 2012-13 include launching/nurturing 3-4 new companies and identifying one game changing opportunity for licensing.
We were successful in filling dean positions that were open at the start of the academic year or where there were transitions early in the academic year: Dan Arp in Agricultural Sciences, Sandy Woods in Engineering, Thomas Manness in Forestry, and Toni Doolen in the University Honors College. New appointments were also made for the positions of Registrar (Rebecca Mathers), Assistant Vice President of Human Resources (Dave Blake), and University Ombuds (Sue Theiss). Ron Adams transitioned from Engineering to lead commercialization and corporate development in the Research Office and Sherm Bloomer transitioned from Science to lead the Office of Budget and Fiscal Planning in Finance and Administration; both have been positive changes for the University.
Other than a couple of ongoing initiatives in the Colleges of Agricultural Sciences and Science, we have completed the academic realignment process that was initiated in 2009-10 with much of the work occurring during the last academic year. Of particular note are the alignment of the Department of Geosciences with oceanography to create the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences; the alignment of Math and Science Education with the College of Education; and the realignment of departments and programs in the College of Liberal Arts to create six schools.
Continuous monitoring and service improvement for business centers remain a work in progress. The focus during 2011-12 was on streamlining and improving various human resource systems, particularly those associated with faculty hiring. We plan to provide clarity on roles and responsibilities between business centers and the central Human Resources unit, and to develop a more comprehensive set of metrics for business services by end of fall 2012.
The creation of the Office of Equity and Inclusion consolidated the University’s efforts to advance equity, diversity, and inclusion. The Office led the completion of a self-study and assessment of our equity, diversity and inclusion activities. An on-site external review visit occurred in October 2012. Feedback from the visit and the internal assessment documented in the self-study will be used to develop an action agenda over the next term related to key issues including: ensuring student success for all student groups, expanding faculty profile, and developing a culture in support of student and faculty recruitment, retention and success.
The University continued work to address ADA compliance issues, and has established standards for accessible websites and web-based context. The SZS Consulting Group helped us to complete accessibility needs assessment of the external environment. A similar assessment of internal spaces is being planned while we address key issues identified in the external assessment report.
The university received AAALAC Accreditation from the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care, recognized world-wide as the “gold standard” for animal research programs. Of the 854 accredited organizations world-wide, OSU is among the 60 largest institutions.
Effective September 1, 2012, OSU became a smoke free campus. The process started with a 2009 task force of students, staff and faculty to gauge campus readiness to become smoke free and culminated with a year-long implementation effort that included significant outreach and education activities.
Overall, the financial state of the University remains very strong. The total fiscal enterprise for OSU, including SWPS and auxiliaries, now exceeds $800 million. We finished FY12 with a fund balance in the Education and General Fund of approximately $41 million, or 11.6 percent, and in Statewide Public Service Programs of about $.5 million, or 9.4 percent. These were both within the 5-15 percent range established by the State Board of Higher Education.
We are projecting a budget of approximately $830 million for 2012-13 with a distribution as follows: Education and General Fund – 46%, Statewide Public Service Programs – 9%, Research funds – 25%, Auxiliary Enterprises – 15%, and other operations, including gift funds – 5%.
While the Oregon University System gained the status of a statewide education system with the passage of Senate Bill 242 that took effect on January 1, 2012, there remain considerable uncertainties in terms of the new budget process and institutional governance issues.
The City of Corvallis and Oregon State have undertaken a collaboration project to enhance the livability of both the community and the University, and maintain Corvallis’ unique sense of place. The project seeks to manage the impacts of growth at the University and in the City, recognize the challenges and opportunities associated with growth, engage community and campus stakeholders, and create effective solutions for all. The process builds on longstanding and essential partnerships between the city of Corvallis, community members and OSU faculty, staff and students. The project will generate recommendations to the City Council and the University around the topics of traffic, transit and parking; neighborhood planning and neighborhood livability.
At the state level, we will seek legislative approval during the 2013-15 session of three capital projects for OSU: a Classroom Building and an Energy and Materials Innovation Center on the main campus, and expansion of facilities at OSU-Cascades. In addition, supporting the Oregon University System request for the Education and General Fund request, we will seek legislative support for line items that support the Statewide Public Service Programs—OSU Extension Service, Agricultural Experiment Station, and Forestry Research Laboratory. To this end, we have committed to provide the State Board of Higher Education with a strategic agenda for the SWPS Programs that articulates the critical importance of the programs to the state, the integrated nature of the programs to advance OSU’s mission, changes that have occurred in SWPS programs as a result of budget reductions, and further steps that we will be taking to focus the programs on key institutional priorities and balance revenues and expenditures. Finally, we will monitor and advocate as needed on legislation to establish or authorize local governance boards at OUS institutions.
We will initiate the process of updating the University’s Strategic Plan early in 2013. The update will engage the campus community and relevant external constituents, with an expectation to complete the plan by the end of the calendar year. The update will define our focus for the next five years, including our drive to climb the excellence ladder and our aspiration to build and sustain an inclusive and supportive community culture that leads to the success of all students, faculty and staff. As part of this process, we will validate our enrollment and budget plans for the OSU main campus and the OSU-Cascades campus, and initiate a process to assess the potential of offering educational programs at the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon. As part of the strategic plan update, we will also use the Equity and Inclusion self-study and external review to develop targeted goals, and accompanying strategies, to address the needs of our diverse student and faculty populations.
We will continue to expand the scope and effectiveness of our work related to commercialization and corporate development, improve the performance and service of our business centers, and ensure continued success in our $1 billion capital campaign. Other major activities for 2012-13 include the following: