In two days, ASPSU registers 985 students to vote.On Jan. 9, ASPSU, with support from the Oregon Students Association, The Bus Project and Basic Rights Oregon, coordinated a two-day voter-registration drive with a goal of registering 700 students at Portland State University. By their deadline, Jan. 10, ASPSU had registered 985 students. ASPSU and their supporters wanted to ensure a student voice in the special election taking place for Congressional District 1. District 1’s voter registration deadline was Jan. 10.
Finding help 6 months after the closure of Ombuds OfficeConflict resolution is rarely an easy task. Prior to June 2011, if students had an academic issue, a difficulty with a colleague or supervisor or a more serious problem, they would have been able to walk into the Ombuds Office for help. Since the office’s closure, access to resources has been rerouted. Student-related issues are now handled by the Office of the Dean of Student Life. Issues involving faculty and employees have been channeled to Human Resources and Academic Affairs.
A week of events celebrates Dr. King’s dreamThis week, Portland State’s Multicultural Center, along with the help of various PSU organizations, is hosting a series of events commemorating the work of Martin Luther King Jr. All events are free and open to PSU students. Jon Joiner, director of the MCC and chairman of the MLK planning committee, said the events are designed to “take stock of how far we, as a society, have come since his death.” Joiner said that the MLK Tribute Week is about reflection and commitment, and a way for “taking a mirror to ourselves and asking what would King think of our progress and the challenges ahead.”
Fresh and local produce, cheese available through the end of FebruaryAfter a grand opening on Saturday, Jan. 7 that drew more than 2,000 shoppers, the first-ever Portland Farmers’ Market winter outlet appears likely to enjoy a successful debut season. The winter market—held at Shemanski Park, just five blocks north of the regular-season PSU market, on the park blocks between Southwest Main and Salmon Streets—is scheduled to run for eight consecutive Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The market’s final day will be Feb. 25, leaving a three-week gap before the PSU market starts up again on March 17.
Community markets receive state and federal grantsThe state of Oregon is working to eliminate “food deserts”—areas of Portland that lack access to supermarkets and quality food products. Various grants awarded by both state and federal governments have allowed independently run markets to open up in these populated food deserts.
OUS ‘normalizing rates’ for academic yearThere is a significant increase in tuition rates for Portland State’s 2012 summer term. The increase, up 9 percent from last year’s summer rates, is commensurate with rates that were approved for the full academic year of 2012–13. The tuition review process is conducted every year and involves students, faculty and university administrators of the Tuition Review Advisory Committee. Robin Michell, the manager of budget planning and analysis at PSU, is heavily involved in the process.
Office of International Affairs Vice Provost Gil Latz retiresGil Latz, former vice provost of the Office of International Affairs, retired from his position of 10 years to pursue alternate employment. Professor Patricia Wetzel was appointed as interim vice provost on Dec. 20, 2011. In the fall of 2010, Roy Koch, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, created the International Program Review Committee to oversee an internal review of international academic programs at Portland State, including the OIA. The review, conducted by an external panel, was completed in August 2011.
Deadline for applications is Jan. 20The Institute for Sustainable Solution encourages sustainable research and development at Portland State University through its 2012 Solutions Generator student grant program. The program, which began in 2010 and is now in its third year, challenges groups of Portland State students to design and carry out proposals that would make the campus and nearby areas more sustainable—anything from organizing an event to raise awareness about sustainability to creating a green space on campus to conducting an audit to find areas of ecological waste and suggest potential improvements.
Youth across Portland honor Dr. King’s dream by volunteering at local high schoolAn army of 1,200 student volunteers from nine colleges throughout the Portland area is convening at Roosevelt High School on Monday, Jan. 16. For many college students, Martin Luther King Jr. Day is considered a day off. Those who honor the civil rights leader’s birthday by performing volunteer service consider it “a day on.” According to a press release by Oregon Campus Compacts, together, the volunteers at Roosevelt will contribute 4,800 hours of service with an estimated impact of $70,000. The OCC press release states that Roosevelt is one of Oregon’s most ethnically diverse high schools. As recently as 2009, it was also one of the state’s poorest performing schools. A three-year federal grant of $7.7 million was awarded to Roosevelt in 2010 to rescue the school from closure and help turn it around. The grant money seems to have addressed many of the school’s needs.
Susan Beatty finds her place in a diverse collegeAt the beginning of 2012, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences welcomed its new dean, Susan Beatty. Beatty, who hails from Atlanta and taught at universities in California and Colorado, was originally concerned if Portland State would be the right fit. But during her first visit, when she met with students, faculty and people in the Portland community, she knew it was where she was meant to be. Beatty began her undergraduate studies at Emory College in Atlanta then migrated north to upstate New York for her graduate degree at Cornell University. After receiving her degree, she headed west to teach history at the University of California, Los Angeles.
New peer-to-peer car sharing company to offer students more transportation optionsThis month PSU will give students the opportunity to connect with Getaround, new car-sharing company. Getaround offers students a more sustainable way to get to and from class while giving students a way to make some cash in the process. A peer-to-peer car sharing company, Getaround focuses on short-term rentals at hourly rates. Unlike Zipcar and other competitors, Getaround does not maintain a proprietary fleet of rental cars. Instead, users rent out their personal cars to one another.