BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) – The 2021 Oregon legislature last Saturday approved $ 13.8 million in state-guaranteed bonds for a student success center at OSU-Cascades which officials said school, will help students progress to graduation and careers.
the Student Success Center support student services such as career counseling, internship coordination, academic counseling, tutoring, disability access services, veterans support, student health services and health counseling mental. It will also include a multicultural center, student organizations and clubs, and space to support student recreation programs, as well as offices, meeting rooms and gathering areas.
“The Student Success Center will provide essential services that will contribute to the life, learning and success of students during their college studies and beyond,” said OSU Interim President Becky Johnson.
“I am very grateful for the support of Governor Kate Brown and central Oregon lawmakers. Senator Tim Knopp and Rep. Jack Zika have championed the Student Success Center for several sessions, and Rep. Jason Kropf has made this project a priority during his first year in the legislature, ”Johnson said. “Community members also strongly called on lawmakers to support the rapprochement for the Student Success Center. They recognize the role student success services play in advancing graduation and developing qualified and engaged employees for the region and state.
OSU-Cascades students played an important role in securing funding for the new building, voting in 2017 to increase tuition fees in response to the need for additional space and improved success services. The increase in fees will raise $ 5 million for the project.
“This student investment in a building that most of us will never get the chance to use is a testament to the shared commitment of our campus and the Central Oregon community to supporting success for all. students, ”said Taha Elwefati, president of the Associated Students of the Cascades Campus. “We are committed to creating a better future for future generations of OSU-Cascades students. “
Andrew Ketsdever, Interim Vice-President of OSU-Cascades, said: “The Student Success Center would not have been possible without the partnership of student leaders with student associates of Campus Cascades.
Construction on the 22,500 square foot center will begin in 2022. The building will be located west of Edward J. Ray Hall and will be the second building on campus to take advantage of geothermal energy for heating and cooling, helping thus to the net zero energy objectives. for the campus.
The center will also meet an ongoing need for on-campus facilities and services to keep pace with student enrollment. In fall 2020, OSU-Cascades led enrollment growth at Oregon’s public universities, with a 27% increase in freshmen and a 16% increase in transfer students, but lacked space. student support, according to a study by the Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission. .
“The Student Success Center is especially critical for underrepresented, first generation, low income and rural students who benefit from support, networking and counseling services that help them progress towards graduation,” said said Ketsdever.
Enrollment last year included 19% students of color, 35% eligible for the Pell Scholarship, indicating financial need, and 28% first-generation students. Almost 60% came from central Oregon.