Friday, October 31, 2014

PSU-AAUP Coffee Hour

Join the Executive Council to talk about the effects of summer session departmental budget cuts!
Coffee and tea provided by PSU-AAUP.
RSVP to Emily by November 14th.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

ASPSU senate meeting discusses public safety

PSU Vanguard
October 29th, 2014

The Associated Students of Portland State University met last Monday for a senate meeting that included a presentation on the possibility of the university transitioning to a sworn and armed police force.
Kevin Reynolds, the newly appointed vice president for Finance and Administration, led the presentation, with substantial comments from Phil Zerzan, chief of Campus Public Safety, and Michelle Toppe, dean of Student Life. Forty-five minutes were reserved for questions and comments from ASPSU and the public.
Reynolds presented the findings of the 2013 Task Force on Campus Safety. He focused on comparing the policing model of PSU to peer institutions.
In regards to the Urban 21, a set of universities similar to PSU set in urban centers, Reynolds said, “PSU is an outlier, it’s the only one that doesn’t have a fully sworn police force.”
Reynolds compared the financial implications of transition to a campus police department to different policing options mentioned in the task force, including contracting with the Portland Police Bureau, contracting with the Oregon State Police or collaboration with OHSU. He said that having a campus police department was most likely the most cost-effective choice.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Kevin Reynolds appointed new VP of Finance and Administration

PSU Vanguard
October 27th, 2014

Kevin Reynolds has been appointed the new vice president of Finance and Administration for Portland State by President Wim Wiewel. Former Vice President Monica Rimai left PSU to work at Willamette University in June.
Reynolds’ new role follows a three-month term serving as interim vice president. Reynolds came to PSU in 2005 and has since served as a chemistry professor, chairman of the chemistry department, interim dean of the School of Extended Studies and vice provost for Budget, Planning and Internationalization in the Office of Academic Affairs.
Scott Gallagher, director of communications at PSU, believes Reynolds’ extensive involvement with the university is beneficial for his new role.

American Indian Teaching Program receives $1.2 million grant

PSU Vanguard
October 27th, 2014

The Graduate School of Education at Portland State received a $1.2 million grant in late September for its American Indian Teaching Program by the Office of Indian Education, a part of the U.S. Department of Education.
The AITP aids American Indian students in obtaining their teaching licenses and master’s degrees.
“Through our professional development seminars, we make sure to emphasize culturally responsive teaching. We provide them more methodology about how to create a culturally responsive classroom for Native and non-Native children,” said Micki Caskey, associate dean and principal grant investigator for the AITP.
The grant is similar to one the AITP received in 2010 from the Office of Indian Education to kick-start the program. Maria Tenorio, project director for the program, said it successfully produced 12 American Indian teachers over the course of four years.
“Our focus will continue to be the same, but we’ll tweak it a bit. We were just getting started during our first grant cycle. We prioritize community based education,” Tenorio said.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Sworn Armed Police Department Poll Results

Nearly 70% of faculty responding to poll oppose Sworm Armed Police Department at PSU PSU-AAUP conducted an informal poll of its members about the Administration's proposal for a sworn armed police department proposed to the PSU Board of Trustees at their September meeting. The poll was open for three days. In addition to the tally, over 100 comments were submitted and a few will be presented to the Board on Monday October 27, 2014 3:00 to 6:00 by PSU-AAUP President Pam Miller during invited testimony before the Board of Trustees Special Committee on Campus Public Safety.

Here are the results:

Ballots Cast  404 of 971 - 41.6%

Do you support a sworn armed police department on PSU Campus as proposed by the administration?
        Yes: 119 - 31.7%
        No: 256 - 68.3%
        Abstained: 29

Should this decision be made by a campus wide vote?
        Yes: 264 - 72.7%
        No: 99 - 27.3%
        Abstained: 41

Will you attend the committee meeting to show that faculty care about this proposal on Monday October 27 from 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM at University Place Hotel?
        Yes: 75 - 18.8%
        No: 324 - 81.2%
Please come to the meeting if you can to show that faculty care about this issue. If members wish to speak to the Board directly, the special committee will take public comment after invited testimony.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Portland State University wins its largest research grant yet, $24 million to help train diverse science and health researchers

October 23rd, 2014

Hundreds of promising young people in the Portland area and elsewhere will have the opportunity to get college scholarships, stipends, paid research gigs and mentoring by research professors, beginning next fall.
The National Institutes of Health selected Portland State University for a $24 million grant, the largest in PSU history, designed to help grow the number of biomedical and health researchers who are Latino, Pacific Islander, Alaska native, African-American, Native American, low-income, raised in foster care or have a disability.
The hope is that with researchers from diverse backgrounds with fresh ways of approaching problems will help create breakthroughs in preventative health promotion, bioscience and other critical health research, said Carlos Crespo, director of PSU's school of public health.
The NIH millions will fund a new program at PSU, called Enhancing Cross-disciplinary Infrastructure Training at Oregon, or EXITO. Students will be chosen based on their grades, letters of recommendation and statement of why becoming a scientist beckons them, said Crespo, who conceived of and will run EXITO.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Tenure Related Faculty Caucus TOMORROW

Greetings PSU-AAUP Tenure Related Faculty,
TOMORROW, 10/21/2014, at Noon-1:00pm PSU-AAUP will be hosting a Fall Caucus meeting for all Tenure Related Faculty in Smith 238.

Come join your friends and colleagues for lunch provided by AAUP!

Take care,
Pam Miller
PSU-AAUP President

Friday, October 17, 2014

Portland State community discusses deputization at safety forum

PSU Vanguard
October 14th, 2014

Officials from the administration and Campus Public Safety Office held an open forum on Oct. 7 to make a presentation on campus safety and gather input from members of the Portland State community regarding a current proposal to transition CPSO to a sworn police force. Over 160 people attended.
PSU President Wim Wiewel introduced the forum by stating that “without safety, nothing else really matters…There’s no dispute about the goal that we share, which is to have a safe work and learning environment for everybody, even as there might be different opinions about how to achieve that.”
President Wiewel noted that the final decision will be made by PSU’s governing body, the Board of Trustees, and that there is still time to deliberate on the issue.

Armed PSU Police? No thanks.

PSU Vanguard
October 13th, 2014

The current issue before the Board of Trustees regarding whether or not to arm our campus security makes me a bit nervous.
It doesn’t take a skilled political analyst to understand why this Portland State student is a little hesitant to embrace having sworn police officers packing heat all over campus. With violence happening all over the nation due to police misconduct and abuse of power, it’s a wonder there isn’t more obstinacy toward such an idea.
I’m not one who often gets in trouble with the campus security here on campus, so I know that overall my life will not be affected by such a change (assuming the university was being honest when they said that the $1.5 million it will take to upgrade security won’t result in higher tuition).

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

AP Fall Caucus TODAY!

Let us know what is going on TODAY! Academic Professional's Fall Caucus is today at noon-1pm in Smith 238.
Lunch is provided.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Black students worry about Portland State University's proposal to create an armed police force

October 10th, 2014

Before Patrick Kindred walks the quarter-mile to class on chilly days, he considers what could be an important question: To wear a hoodie, or not to wear a hoodie?
It's not because the temperature is unpredictable. It's because he's black, and there are now armed police officers patrolling the University of Oregon's Eugene campus.
Kindred said he's terrified of police, and housemates at his predominantly black fraternity share his concerns.
"We talk about it. If we're in a group, how many of us will there be? What are we wearing?" said Kindred,  a 22-year-old native of Portland.

Online education leaves much to be desired: Guest opinion

October 11th, 2014

By Ramin Farahmandpur

Some believe online education is the future of public higher education. But is it? As Oregon colleges and universities brace themselves for the next wave of budget cuts, a growing number are betting that online courses will increase enrollments and lower costs.
The passage of two bills by the 2013 Legislature paved the way for the Higher Education Coordinating Commission to expand online programs, supposedly to reach the state's degree-attainment goals.
House Bill 4018 allows Oregon to join the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA). This compact permits out-of-state students to pay in-state tuition for online courses offered by universities in another member state.
House Bill 4059 allows Oregon to partner with Western Governors University, a private nonprofit online university with about 47,000 students. This institution, which caters to adult "nontraditional" students, has the lowest graduation rate in the country, according to a 2012 CBS Money Watch report.
University and college administrators generally do not focus on quality concerns, however. They see opportunity to cut costs, offer a range of courses and bring in new enrollees that their brick-and-mortar classrooms would not. They claim that online education better serves nontraditional and first-generation college students, most of whom are working adults with families and children.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Is creating an armed police force the best way to address sexual assaults at Portland State?

October 9th, 2014

Portland State University is in the midst of a campus-wide debate about whether or not to create an armed university police force.
Sexual assault is one concern at the heart of the issue.
Improving sexual assault response is one of the most common goals named by proponents, said Eric Noll, student body president. But not everyone agrees that creating a police force is the best way to address sexual violence.
The university currently has public safety officers, who do not have the authority to perform off-campus investigations. That makes following up on sexual assaults slow and complicated, said Phil Zerzan, chief of campus public safety.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Quality Education Festival

The local associations of the Oregon Education Association from across the Portland Metro region have worked together to create an upcoming event called the “Quality Education Festival.”  The purpose of the Festival is to highlight the impact that diminished programs have on the students in Oregon schools.  The lack of services means that today’s students are in huge classes, often don’t have real access to guidance counselors, and often don’t have the opportunity to experience physical education, art, music, a library with an actual librarian, etc.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

We all know that the reason for the erosion of a full education is because of Oregon’s broken system of funding public education.   The Quality Education Festival will be held on October 19th from 12 o’clock until 3 o’clock.  The entire Portland Metro community is invited to attend for face painting, student musical and drama performances, and games.  Mixed in among those activities will be opportunities to engage with educators from all over the Metro area who will highlight the importance of a full, deep, real education for all of Oregon’s students.

Many of the members of labor unions across the Metro region send their children to public schools.  Please share the attached documents with your members and let them know that together we can fill Pioneer Courthouse Square on October 19th and let the Governor and the legislature know that it is time to work with families across the state to create the Schools Oregon Students Deserve.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Member Message October 6th, 2014

Greetings PSU-AAUP:

I hope the new academic year and fall term are off to a good start!

PSU-AAUP Member Meeting October 2nd, 2014
Thanks for turning out for the membership luncheon last Thursday at the Native American Center. It is important to say that your commitment to our union really shines while volunteering for the numerous Task Forces and Committees that need our representation. There seems to be a bumper crop of committees this year and so thank you very much!

At the luncheon, we heard from Rayleen McMillan, Vice President of the Associated Students of PSU. She walks the talk of "faculty working conditions are student learning conditions," and we appreciate her taking time from her busy life to be such a solid contributor to our community.

Thanks Rayleen!

Patricia Schechter, Executive Council member and Chair of PSU-AAUP's Legislative and Political Action Committee introduced two guests who spoke to us about higher education in the next legislative session: Lew Frederick from House District 43, and Tina Kotek, from House District 44 and Speaker of the House. They both advised that we be active during the upcoming legislative session and that we remain committed to our students and to the academic mission of higher education.
Thanks to Patricia! We also thank both Mr. Frederick and Ms. Kotek for joining us at our fall membership luncheon!

Senator Jeff Merkley's "Fighting for College Affordability Tour"

Senator Jeff Merkley came to PSU as part of his tour of all college campuses in our state to discuss affordability and to offer some solutions to this crisis. I introduced the event with a short speech. More importantly, I announced PSU-AAUP's endorsement for Senator Merkley in his bid for re-election to the U.S. Senate. He shares our values about public education, living wages, and worker's rights. Two PSU students also shared their stories about the cost of higher education, Rayleen McMillan, a senior, and Andrew Davidson, a freshman.

Reminder: 3 Caucuses in October all held at noon and lunch provided!
  •     Academic Professionals' Caucus will be held on Tuesday, October 14 at noon in Smith 238
  •     Non Tenure Track Faculty Caucus will be held at noon on Wednesday, October 15 in Smith 327
  •     Tenure Track Faculty Caucus will be held at noon on Tuesday, October 21 in Smith 238
Take care,
Pam Miller
PSU-AAUP President

Friday, October 3, 2014

Jeff Merkley’s Fighting for College Affordability Tour

Yesterday's Member Meeting and Jeff Merkley's Fighting for College Affordability Tour went great! Thank you to all that joined us at the Native American Center for good food, lively discussion, and Senator Merkley's tour.
Below are some photos of the event.

PSU-AAUP President, Pam Miller
ASPSU Vice-President Rayleen McMillian
Senator Jeff Merkley