Focus shifts toward performance-based allotmentsOn Jan. 19, Portland State unveiled the new university-wide budget model that will affect the 2012–13 academic year and will be fully implemented in the 2013–14 academic year. According to a press release issued by PSU, the change will “help the campus meet its academic and financial goals despite declining state funding.”
Winter 2012 blood drive exceeds expectations with high donor turnoutLast week, Portland State, in collaboration with the Red Cross, held its first week-long blood drive. Organizers aimed to collect 741 units of blood from all blood types (a unit of blood is roughly one pint). Housed in the third-floor ballroom of Smith Memorial Student Union, the week-long event saw a steady stream of donors. By the end of the drive, the initial goal of 741 units had been far surpassed and organizers projected a final donation total of 813 units—nearly 110 percent of the goal.
Before end of 2012 academic year, redesign plans will be presented for student feedbackThe Smith Memorial Student Union Feasibility Study—charged with determining how to maximize the student union’s usefulness to current and future Portland State students and with presenting options for renovations and rebuilding of Smith—will culminate before the end of winter term in an open house, during which students and staff can view the SMSU redesign proposals and provide feedback.
Films and panel-audience dialogue spotlight local and global success storiesOne of the richest countries in the world is falling behind in the classroom. This has been the mindset behind educational reform proposals which hope to curb the downward trends — trends that suggest the American education system is in need of significant investments, both monetarily and intellectually, if students are to have equal footing in an increasingly competitive global community.
A who’s who of the candidates vying for City HallOn May 15, Portland will vote to determine who will replace Sam Adams as mayor. Adams, who assumed office in January of 2009, made the surprising announcement in July 2011 that he would not be seeking re-election. Speculation has been rife ever since as to who will succeed him at the end of his term.
Middle East Studies Center lecture series continues Feb. 9Baher Butti—refugee advocate, community activist and founder of the Iraqi Society of Oregon—will speak Thursday, Feb. 9 at Portland State as part of a lecture series hosted by the Middle East Studies Center. Butti’s presentation will address the role history and archetypes play in shaping the collective personality of Iraqis and how this personality comes to bear on the Iraqi refugee experience.
Democratic party takes major victorySuzanne Bonamici has won the Oregon special election and will take David Wu’s place in Congress. Bonamici collected 54 percent of the vote, easily winning the majority vote over her main challenger, Rob Cornilles, who received 40 percent. She will now serve out the remainder of Wu’s term, which lasts until the Nov. 6 general election, at which point she will need to run for re-election if she wishes to remain in Congress. She earned the distinction of being Oregon’s only current female legislator.
Portland State relies on fixed-term faculty to meet needs of studentsPortland State is growing, tuition is on the rise and state funding is declining. In response to this reality, the university is increasingly relying on part-time and full-time fixed-term faculty positions in order to meet the instructional needs of students. According to Roy Koch, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, PSU is “leading what will be a national trend—this shift of faculty mix, because the issue of state funding is becoming more and more widespread across the country.
Partnership redefined to allow increased use of PSU resourcesOn Jan. 18, Portland State President Wim Wiewel and Portland Community College President Preston Pulliams met to sign an agreement that will alter the nature of the schools’ co-enrollment program. The changes will allow students concurrently enrolled at both PSU and PCC improved access to Portland State housing, among other benefits.
Group proposes Multnomah County tax on sugary beveragesThe Portland citizens group Yes for a Stronger Multnomah County is working to instigate a sugar tax that would place a one-cent-per-ounce tax on all sugar-added beverages including soda, energy drinks and some juices. According to the group, the purpose of the sugar tax is to improve children’s health and create jobs.
SFC recommends structural changes for multicutural centers on campusDuring the initial allocations period that ended in early January, the Student Fee Committee, the Cultural Centers Committee and the Diversity and Multicultural Student Services deliberated on a new financial and administrative arrangement for PSU’s multicultural centers in the 2012–13 academic year.