Welcome back to school

Oregon State University President Emeritus Ed Ray smiles in his office. Ray became the 19th president of OSU in 2003. 

Ed Ray, OSU President

Welcome to the 2017–18 academic year.

We are proud to serve you—and Oregon, the nation and the world—with an unwavering commitment to inclusive academic excellence, cutting-edge research and outreach and engagement.

For us, excellence is not just an abstract concept. We understand that the more outstanding we are and the more exceptional our graduates prove to be, the more positive and powerful impact we can have on the lives of those we serve.

I am most proud of OSU’s greatest contribution to society: our graduates. And we only achieve this contribution through the dedication and efforts of world-class faculty and staff.

Oregon State University is an authentic community, where getting things done and serving others define us.

Throughout the coming year, Oregon State will celebrate its 150th anniversary as a land grant university and will provide a spotlight on what this university has accomplished—and what its students, faculty, staff and alumni will achieve going forward. Our students will be a major part of this OSU150 celebration.

This fall, Oregon State also will evaluate the names and namesakes of four buildings on the Corvallis campus. These buildings are Avery Lodge, Arnold Dining Center, Benton Hall and Gill Coliseum. Concerns have been raised that the namesakes may have held or espoused views that were exclusionary or inconsistent with our university’s values. Participation by our students will be an important part of this process.

This year’s incoming class of approximately 8,800 new students represents diversity, excellence and the prospect for incredible success.

Here is an early scan of our new students, as of September 1:

•Approximately 7,130 are undergraduates and 1,670 are graduate students.

•25% are students of color.

•Almost 1,600 are first generation students.

•Approximately 4,735 students are Oregonians from every county of this state.

•2,850 come from the remaining 49 states and military bases worldwide.

•253 incoming students are veterans.

•Nearly 1,220 are international students from 80 different countries.

•25 new students had perfect SAT math scores, and 10 had perfect SAT verbal scores.

The university’s future success will always be defined by its students.

Looking ahead, I recognize that we have much to do to achieve our aspirations. We will improve our retention and graduation rates without any achievement gaps for underrepresented, first-generation or Pell-eligible students. Every OSU student will have at least one experiential learning opportunity. These internships, undergraduate research appointments, study abroad programs, club and leadership activities will prepare every student for success in a global community and economy.

We will take additional steps to ensure that Oregon State is a community committed to inclusiveness and social justice, and a place that celebrates diversity.

We can achieve all of these things. And I am confident that, working together, the best is yet to come at Oregon State University.

Go Beavs!

Ed Ray


Oregon State University