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|Sunday, October 01, 2006|
An investment lesson
Look to Colorado to see what impact Measure 48 could have on Oregon’s higher education.
By Marvin Kaiser
Over the past decade I have watched public higher education, a key ingredient to the successful future of our state, fall victim to disinvestment. And now Oregon faces yet another crossroads — the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR), on the ballot in November as Measure 48. It seeks to limit state spending to the percentage increase of population growth, plus inflation. As we enter the political debate over TABOR, an understanding of its implications for higher education is our shared responsibility.
Let me begin with a picture of higher education in Oregon. One view is of hope and accomplishment. In 2006 alone, Oregon University System (OUS) institutions served nearly 80,000 students. This is in addition to the nearly 86,000 students served in community colleges and another 33,000 in Oregon’s private colleges. In 2005, OUS institutions received more than $280 million in grants and contracts, mostly from federal agencies, for cutting-edge research, creative work and outreach, an amount nearly equal to what OUS annually gets in state support. OUS universities, with an annual payroll of more than $746 million, is one of the state’s major business enterprises. Oregon universities have entered into partnered initiatives in support of economic development through Manufacturing 21, ONAMI, ETIC, and the PSU Business Accelerator, among others. At an institutional level, OHSU continues to be among Portland’s largest employers. In 2005, Portland State University’s economic impact on the region was estimated at more than $1 billion.
Why should we care what happened in Colorado? One might argue that times are tight and we cannot afford the luxury of adequate support for most public services, including higher education. But the evidence raises questions about this conclusion. Seattle and the Silicon Valley make explicit the connection between a region’s economic health and a vital higher education system that produces an educated and creative citizenry.
Oregon has a proud heritage of taking on challenges and opportunities. This heritage has set us apart. Being 46th in state support, having an “F” in affordability and being last in faculty salaries is an affront to that heritage.
Thursday, September 25, 2014
BY HANNAH WALLACE
Well-financed outsiders from France and California are buying up vineyards and wineries in the Willamette Valley.
Monday, September 29, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR
Wehby disappears, Kitzhaber fails to disclose and Seattle gets bike share before Portland.
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
BY JONATHAN FROCHTZWAJG
A flare-up in the Elliott Forest raises questions about détente in Oregon’s timber wars.
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
BY DEBRA RINGOLD | OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR
Why has six years become an acceptable investment in public undergraduate education that over-promises and underperforms?
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
BY JENNIFER MARGULIS
As schools implement more rigorous academic standards, holistic and flexible approaches to K-12 education flourish.
Friday, September 19, 2014
BY TOM COX | OB BLOGGER
How can you tell if you, a peer, a subordinate or a job candidate has the emotional intelligence needed to do well?
Sunday, October 12, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER
Cylvia Hayes, tabloid vs. watchdog journalism and the looming threat of a Cascadia earthquake.
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