OSU Portland Center opens

Jaycee Kalama, News Contributor

In late September of 2018, the OSU Portland Center launched operations, with a focus on hybrid-learning, aiming to create a hub of innovative education in the Portland area.

OSU is expanding its well-established services to Portland, Ore. to give students more flexibility in their learning options. The OSU Portland Center occupies the entire second floor of the historic Meier & Frank Building and houses state of the art classrooms, conference rooms, project rooms, an IT helpdesk and printing stations, as well as touchdown desks for faculty and staff.

The OSU Portland Center has four large classrooms and settings that were especially designed for student discussion and collaboration with faculty and peers. Students that are enrolled in hybrid courses engage in both online and scheduled classroom sessions with professors at the OSU Portland Center. 

This fall term, the center began offering undergraduate hybrid academic programs. Those programs include B.A./B.S. in psychology and business administration and a B.S. in Human development and family sciences.

“As we continue to deliver innovative and forward-thinking business education for our undergraduate students in Austin Hall, we are committed to providing access to an excellent business education for students outside of Corvallis, too,” said Mitzi Montoya, dean of the College of Business, who has led the university’s academic effort in Portland. “The new hybrid program at the Portland center is doing just that – providing Portland-area students who prefer to live and learn in the city convenient access to our business degree. The hybrid program is a 50/50 blend of online learning and face-to-face sessions built for transfer students who start out at a community college.”

The OSU Portland Center near Pioneer Square offers a hybrid learning experience, meaning that students take part in both online and face-to-face education. 

“Students taking hybrid learning at our new OSU Portland Center or any other Oregon State courses can expect the same high quality education and student support as we offer in Corvallis and in Bend,” said Steve Clark, the vice president of university relations and marketing at OSU.

You can also find Public Health & Human Sciences and the College of Liberal Arts which also offers classes in psychology in lieu of there being no Psychology department offered through OSU. Furthermore, the center holds OSU Outreach and Engagement, student affairs, Beaver Sports Properties, the OSU Alumni Association, the OSU Foundation and the College of Business in the new Portland location. The college of Engineering will also be offering courses there sometime in the future. 

 Clark said that while the OSU Portland Center is important, is not an exclusive part of Oregon State’s service in the Portland area. 

“For example, OSU pharmacy students complete their course work at the Collaborative Life Sciences Building in the South Waterfront, which is shared by OSU, Portland State University and OHSU,” said Clark. “That facility has dedicated labs and classrooms used by our pharmacy professors and students.”

Oregon State has been involved with the Portland region for many decades. This engagement includes research partnerships with universities, businesses and health care providers. Students in the Portland area have access to OSU Extension and 4-H services throughout the region. 

In fact, for approximately 30 years the College of Business has offered Masters, Bachelors and Associates courses in Portland. Pharmacy students can complete their third and fourth year studies at the Oregon Health & Science University. In partnership with the Beaverton School District and Portland Public Schools, the College of Education offers a Masters of Arts in teaching.

“With more than 1,000 OSU distance students already in the Portland area, Ecampus has a long history of delivering innovative educational pathways that meet the needs of adult learners in the region,” said Lisa L. Templeton, associate provost for OSU Ecampus. “Our expanded presence at the OSU Portland Center allows us to serve even more people with hybrid programming and in-person access to student services.”

As OSU’s presence in the Portland region grows, Oregon State students already involved in education in Portland, will have even more members of Beaver Nation to engage with, through volunteer service, meetings and learning at the OSU Portland Center. 

According to Strategic Plan 4.0, Oregon State’s new and on-going services in Portland, Corvallis, Bend and throughout Oregon, are part of the university’s roadmap for the next five years.

“Our strategic plans affirms that the education OSU provides is and will be accessible to all learners,” Clark said. “By this plan, we seek success for all people regardless of their race, gender, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or identity, or economic circumstances.”

The OSU Portland Center is different from the Corvallis and Bend locations in that it is not a true campus, but instead is a hub for multiple OSU programs. 

Students are in a large academic medical center, in Portland, with all kinds of other healthcare students, including medical, dental, nursing and more. It is a completely different learning experience than what can be found on the Corvallis and Bend campuses.

“I hope that the Center evolves to be a hub of innovative education in the Portland area,” said Mark Leid, interim dean of pharmacy, whose college has extensive academic programs and research in Portland. “Our goal is to provide students with the best possible clinical experience.”

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