UO to replace Hayward Field with bigly 30k seat stadium for IAAF

A teardown seems a bit extreme. I wonder what sort of city approval this will require. Ken Goe has the report in the Oregonian:

An IAAF team has been in Portland and Eugene this week to discuss preparations for the 2021 World Outdoor Track & Field Championships.

The championships are more than three years away. But there are unresolved issues, such as repeated delays to required renovations of Hayward Field, and a reported FBI investigation into how the championships were awarded. …

The IAAF minimum capacity for a stadium hosting the world championships is 30,000.

Original plans called for an extensive renovation to begin immediately after the 2016 U.S. Olympic trials. It was expected to take two years with a pause late in the spring of 2017 to allow Hayward to stage the Prefontaine Classic, the Oregon state high school championships and the NCAA Outdoor Championships.

But the work has been delayed several times and has not yet begun. Sources say the original plan, which preserved the iconic east side of the stadium, has been scrapped.

The stadium project now is expected to be a complete teardown and rebuild under the direction of Howard Slusher, a longtime adviser to Nike co-founder Phil Knight. Knight is said to be a large contributor to the project. Slusher has supervised other building projects for Knight and Nike.

Paul Weinhold, president and CEO of the University of Oregon Foundation, said Wednesday he expects the project to begin this summer, and for the plans to become public early this spring.

“We’re doing it, and it’s going to be ready,” Weinhold said. …

Big-time college sports are the “21st century Jim Crow”

The Chronicle reports on the recent LA Times Op-Ed:

College athletics, wrote Victoria Jackson in an explosive op-ed for the Los Angeles Times  on Thursday, are the “21st century Jim Crow.”

Ms. Jackson, a sports historian at Arizona State University, drew from her scholarly research and from her own experience as a Division I track-and field-athlete at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

She describes a stark divide between two classes of athletes — those who have academic lives outside their sports, and those who must dedicate their time to entirely to athletics, robbed of the opportunity to learn alongside other students. “This divide,” she wrote, “correlates with race.”

“Nonrevenue athletes are mostly white, while revenue-sport athletes are disproportionately black,” Ms. Jackson wrote. “This college sports system contributes to the undervaluing of black lives in American society and our institutions. The predominantly white privilege of playing college sports while earning a quality degree comes at the expense of — is literally paid for by — the educationally unequal experiences of mostly black football and basketball players.” …

Read it all.

UO Senate to meet on articulation, expedition, denunciation

My priors are yes, yes, yes, but I’m open to debate and amendment. Live feed here:


Location: EMU 145 & 146 (Crater Lake Rooms)
3:00 – 5:00 P.M.

3:00 P.M.   Call to Order

  • Introductory Remarks; Senate President Chris Sinclair
  • Update from Johnson Hall

3:30 P.M. Approval of Minutes, November 29, 2017

3:35 P.M.   Business

4:50 P.M.   Open Discussion
4:50 P.M.   Reports
4:50 P.M.   Notice(s) of Motion

  • Committee Clean-up (re-stagger)
  • CORE Ed Council

4:50 P.M.   Other Business
5:00 P.M.   Adjourn

Gov’t Relations Office update on funding, tuition increases, etc.

That would be Oregon State University’s Jock Mills and his ever helpful Government Affairs Office. I have no idea what UO’s lobbyists think. Does anyone?

2018 Short Session Preview

This update provides a brief preview of the 2018 legislative session including appropriations and policy bills.The 2018 legislature will convene on Monday, February 5. Under the state constitution it is scheduled to adjourn no later than Sunday, March 11. The process will run at a rapid pace with little or no time for missteps or opportunities for amendments. Bills must be scheduled for a hearing by the fifth day of the session, and they must be approved by the committee to which they have been referred no later than four working days later – Thursday, February 15. In comparison, during the long sessions, committees have over two months to consider bills before referring them to the floor for consideration. One benefit of the short fuse is that the number of bills that must be tracked quickly becomes manageable.

Legislative Appropriations

Budgetary issues will be addressed in a single omnibus appropriation bill that is not subject to the committee schedule. The contents of the appropriation bill will, however, be subject to the January 23rd special election when voters will determine the fate of Measure 101 which would affirm the legislature’s decision during the 2017 session to enact “temporary assessments to fund health care for low-income individuals and families, and to stabilize health insurance premiums.” If voters reject the measure, the legislature will need to re-balance the state budget to account for a $200-300 million shortfall that would result.

Legislators have yet to fully understand how changes in the federal tax code will affect state revenues since Oregon’s tax structure is connected to federal provisions that have changed. The House and Senate Committees considered that matter last week and remain uncertain about whether the Federal revisions will add to, or reduce, state revenues. A preliminary analysis indicates state corporate and individual tax revenues may fall by about $100 million. Even if fully understood, the legislature will only be able to change the impact of the federal provisions on state revenues for the second year of the biennium, if they can affect the impact at all. More will be known about state revenues when the State Economist issues his quarterly forecast Tuesday, January 16 (today).

OSU is pursuing two provisions for inclusion in the omnibus appropriations bill:

  • Expansion of the OSU-Cascades Campus – In December, Governor Brown issued a letter to legislative leaders seeking a state bonding package that includes $39 million for a second academic building at OSU-Cascades, $40 million for the Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact at the University of Oregon, and $9 million for a new fieldhouse at Eastern Oregon University. The three universities are working together on a unified effort to secure approval of the three projects, each of which will include elements constructed of advanced wood products such as Cross Laminated Timber (CLT). Click here to see the Governor’s letter to the legislature, click here to see a letter of support from the Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC), and click here to see materials presented by all three universities during committee hearings last week. The state’s capacity for capital bonds is not directly affected by what happens with Measure 101, though some legislators have linked the two.
  • Matching funds for a DOE Marine Energy Grant – OSU will be seeking $4.6 million in general fund expenditures to match $35 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Energy which OSU successfully competed for last year. OSU is seeking additional match-funding from industry and philanthropy. For a description of the marine energy initiative, click here.

Policy Bills

Final bill drafts will not be available until later this week, but a number of policy bills affecting OSU and higher education have surfaced, including:

  • Tuition Setting – In response to a contentious tuition-setting process in 2017, Rep. Diego Hernandez (D-Portland) is working with the Oregon Student Association to introduce a bill that seeks to alter both the process and the standards by which public universities consider and approve tuition increases. The draft legislation would require universities to file a report with the Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) justifying any increase above 3% on resident, undergraduate students. It would also prescribe a uniform committee process across all campuses for setting tuition and would codify the criteria Governor Brown used in a letter to the HECC in April of 2017 regarding tuition increases that were over 5% last year. (The Governor wrote this letter after proposing to flat-fund the universities in the budget she recommended to the legislature.) Without considering the level of funding provided by the state, the bill language would require the HECC to reject any tuition increase above 5% that does not meet these criteria.

While the universities agree with students that last year’s process did not work well, the primary reason universities sought tuition increases over 5% last year was Governor Brown’s recommended budget that provided no increases for the current biennium. Fortunately, following joint and active efforts by students and the universities throughout the 2017 session, the legislature provided a $70 million increase over the Governor’s recommended budget, and all but one of the universities that had sought tuition increases over 5% were able reduce their increases below 5%.

The bill does not address the single most important factor that has driven tuition decisions on Oregon’s campuses: legislative appropriations have simply not kept pace with state-mandated costs such as retirement and health benefits. If legislators were truly interested in reigning in tuition increases, they would apply the criteria they are seeking to impose on universities to their own funding decisions.

  • Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) – The seven universities are working with legislators to seek a technical change in statutes to ensure that university-based financial aid can continue to be provided in a manner that reflects statutory policy for the Oregon Opportunity Grant program.
  • Cap & Invest/Clean Energy & Jobs – In the months since the 2017 legislature adjourned, the House Energy & Environment and Senate Environment & Natural Resources Committees have been working on revamping legislation considered during the 2017 session that would establish a program by which large emitters of carbon dioxide would participate in a market to counterbalance and reduce their emissions. The bills under consideration in the 2018 session include a regulatory threshold of 25,000 tons of carbon dioxide produced annually. An entity over the threshold would need to purchase – via auction – emissions allocations. The OSU cogeneration heat plant, which became operational in 2010 and significantly reduced the university’s overall carbon output and reliance on coal-fired electricity, exceeds the 25,000 ton regulatory threshold by about 15,000 tons. OSU is working with Oregon Health & Science University, which is the only other state-based institution that exceeds the regulatory threshold, to consider ways by which both institutions can meet the goals and intent of the legislation. The bills are generating a high level of positive and negative interest among environmental and business interests.
  • Authority to conduct hemp research – OSU is working with the hemp industry, Farm Bureau, and Oregon Department of Agriculture on legislation that would enable university research on hemp cultivation and utilization.

More bills will surface in the coming weeks. If you have questions or concerns about legislation, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Altman skips meeting with Wyden, Schill, Tracy on sex assaults

He was coaching a basketball game instead. Michael Tobin has more on the meeting in the Emerald:

On Friday, U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden met with University of Oregon President Michael Schill to discuss the school’s handling of sexual violence and misconduct.

The meeting was prompted by November’s exchange of letters between the university and Wyden in which the senior senator and UO alumnus expressed concern over the university’s handling of the Kavell Bigby-Williams sexual assault investigation.

Brenda Tracy, a sexual assault prevention activist, was also at the meeting.

In a statement released on AroundtheO, President Schill called Friday’s meeting “a productive dialogue,” despite what he referred to as “tough questions.” …

Update Jan. 14 at 2 p.m.: Brenda Tracy responded to The Emerald’s request for comment Sunday afternoon about the meeting. She said the meeting was “not as productive as I would have hoped.”

“They’re standing firm that they did nothing wrong. I left there feeling like this could happen again and probably will,” she said.

The Around the O report has not yet been updated:

President Michael H. Schill has released a statement on a recent meeting regarding the University of Oregon’s approach to dealing with incidents of sexual violence and misconduct.

“Friday afternoon, key members of our leadership team and I had an opportunity to meet with Sen. Ron Wyden, members of his staff, Brenda Tracy and attorney Jacqueline Swanson about the university’s approach to dealing with incidents of sexual violence and misconduct. The university is grateful for the opportunity to speak directly to the senator and discuss in detail the complexities that surround these kinds of issues.

While there were certainly some tough questions, it was a productive dialog, and I greatly appreciate the senator and Ms. Tracy’s commitment to fighting sexual assault on campus. We share that commitment and strive everyday to meet the needs of survivors and reporters.

I came to the University of Oregon immediately after a well-publicized incident involving the alleged sexual assault of one of our students. I pledged to our community that I would do everything in my power to combat sexual violence at our school. Over the past three years – with the support and hard work of the University Senate Task Force on Sexual Violence and a cadre of committed administrators, faculty and students – the University of Oregon has created innovative prevention programs and an effective Title IX enforcement mechanism that is best-in-class. 

I am proud of our achievements in this area but I am far from satisfied. Our procedures and our programs can always get better. We look forward to working with Sen. Wyden, Ms. Tracy and others to do just that.

Undergraduate Studies reorganization: Town halls Jan 12th and 19th, 5:00

Update from Banavar:


There is no question that we all share a common goal—supporting our students and ensuring that they have the resources to be successful during their time at the University of Oregon and beyond. This week Dennis Galvan, interim vice provost and dean for undergraduate studies, announced some changes to the UGS team that are aimed squarely at improving and enhancing the way we support student success initiatives at the UO. These changes include a new arrangement in which our highly successful programs such as PathwayOregon, Teaching and Learning Center tutoring and academic support, and our first-year enrichment programs are all better connected and are all ultimately managed by Doneka Scott, associate vice provost for student success. Dennis has detailed those changes in a memorandum to the UGS staff.

The reorganization that Dennis has embarked upon does not eliminate any programs. It simply consolidates administrative oversight of our student success programs within UGS to increase collaboration and coordination. Dennis has been working closely with me and leaders within the provost’s office and UGS to develop a plan that will ultimately strengthen and improve alignment among various student success programs. While we have many fantastic programs—and many talented and dedicated people who support those programs—in some instances our siloed and decentralized structure meant that those programs were not achieving their full potential. 

I understand that change can sometimes be unsettling, but change is necessary if we are to better support our students. I thank everyone within UGS for their patience and understanding. Though some positions may change slightly, this is not an effort to reduce FTE within UGS. Some of you may have questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me or Dennis.

Thank you,

Jayanth Banavar

Provost and Senior Vice President

Update from Galvan:

Short overview of UGS reorganization

Dear Colleagues: 

The Division of Undergraduate Studied is undertaking a reorganization to expand on our best programs and maximize student success. 

In particular, we are changing reporting lines and eventually relocating some of our best programs, now in the Teaching and Learning Center, by making them the center of our reorganized division. We will build on and expand Pathway, Trio SSS, Learning Specialists, Class Encore, McNair, Health Professions Program, among other marvelous endeavors. 

The new division of UGS involves a new, more integrated organizational structure. Reporting lines and locations will change gradually in the coming months. There will be no reduction in positions. While change of this kind is often challenging, we’re convinced we will come out of it better equipped to advance the university’s student success goals. 

Please do be in touch with me or Doneka Scott if you have any questions or concerns. 

Very best,

Dennis …

1/12/2018: I’m just posting what people have sent me. I don’t have any inside info on UGS. As noted below Interim Dean Dennis Galvan has set up a survey and two forums to provide more info and answer questions:

The first will be especially for TLC staff members (though all are welcome) and will be tomorrow, Friday (1/12) from 5-6:30pm in the Swindells room in the EMU
The second will be for all UGS staff on Friday, January 19th, 5-6:30pm in the Harrington Auditorium (room 101) in Jacqua.

While UO Matters welcomes comments with actual facts, unsubstantiated rumors, prophecies of doom, or inspiring messages from PR flacks such as Tobin Klinger about how the light of the world will move forward into broad sunlit uplands, I encourage people to fill out the anonymous survey below (which helpfully asks for questions for the forums) and then to go to the forums if they can. Reports from the forums would be very welcome.

1)  A letter from Galvan, forwarded to me by “Anonymous”:

Dear Colleagues,

I write to share some important changes coming to Undergraduate Studies. Over the last several months, I’ve spent a lot of time learning about what UGS does, the many strengths that each unit brings to the division, and opportunities for efficiency and alignment. As you all know, Undergraduate Studies has been tasked by the president with the significant task of enhancing student success at UO. Retention and graduation rates are of course key metrics. Student success also depends on our ability to offer a meaningful, comprehensive, and rigorous education to all our students, while giving them the support they need to make the most of that education.

After many meetings and conversations with leaders in UGS, I’ve decided that, to maximize student success, we need to place programs that have been highly successful in impacting students (from retention and graduation rates to holistic student support services ) within a new arrangement for our division, enabling us to expand synergetic relationships that will make our efforts even more robust.

To that end:

Pathway, Trio SSS, and the Health Professions Program will become part of the Office of Academic Advising (OAA), with OAA reporting to Doneka Scott;
TLC tutoring and academic support programs will remain under Amy Neutzman’s supervision, with Amy reporting to Doneka Scott;
FIGs, ARCs and Common Reading will also become part of Doneka’s portfolio, which will weave academic support and first-year enrichment into a wrap-around system for student success, especially in the first two years;
McNair will move under Josh Snodgrass in a team focused on undergraduate research and experiential learning;
Ron Bramhall will continue working on core ed and curriculum reform, but he will be formally “detailed” from OPAA into a 0.5 role as AVP for Undergraduate Academic Excellence, with reporting line to the UGS Dean and Vice Provost;
TLC administrative support staff will be reassigned to central UGS duties, with appropriate consultation and evaluation;
Teaching Engagement Program will have a new relationship with both the Office of the Provost and Academic Affairs and Undergraduate Studies, with further details to follow.

I also want to take advantage of Susan Lesyk’s experience and success in developing programs that enhance the student experience. She will be joining a team that will be charged with implementing an advising and support program for students during their first two years on campus, and leading a series of critical assignments at the heart of student success. In assuming this new role, she is being promoted to Associate Vice Provost for Strategic Academic Initiatives.

While the effective date for change in reporting lines is 1 February 2018, we will work out detailed and tailored transition plans for each unit and individual experiencing a change. Consultations will begin immediately to work out ways to minimize disruption of student services and help units and individuals shift to the new organizational structure along timelines and following processes that make sense for our operations, services, and staff.

As reporting lines and some positions may change, everyone in UGS will continue to have a place within the division. This reorganization is not designed to reduce our FTE or eliminate positions, but instead to maximize integration and build a unified team to advance the university’s student success agenda.

The issue of space allocations continues to evolve, but over time, all UGS units will be located in the Knight Library, Oregon Hall, or the new Tykeson Building. A number of these moves will take place during winter and spring terms 2018. Timing of moves will be a part of the individualized transition plans mentioned above.

Excellent work has been done on student success within every UGS unit. These changes will present the opportunity to continue this work in a more streamlined and efficient way, while taking advantage of the experience and expertise that exists within UGS

That said, change is always hard, and I am committed to providing, open, public space to share our perspectives on major changes. I want to hear from you and answer your questions as best I can. To that end, I have scheduled two open forum meetings:

The first will be especially for TLC staff members (though all are welcome) and will be tomorrow, Friday (1/12) from 5-6:30pm in the Swindells room in the EMU
The second will be for all UGS staff on Friday, January 19th, 5-6:30pm in the Harrington Auditorium (room 101) in Jacqua.

I realize that, given the short notice, many of you will not be able to attend at either of these times. Maeve Anderson will be in touch to schedule other meetings either by unit, or in open forum format, beginning next week.

If you would like to submit questions or comments anonymously in advance, please do so through this qualtrics survey [https://oregon.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_50dFDVfGDS91PlX] for anonymous feedback and comments.And of course, please do feel free to reach out to me directly at any time.

With thanks for your understanding and collaboration,


Dennis Galvan
Interim Vice Provost and Dean, Undergraduate Studies
Professor of Political Science & International Studies
University of Oregon

2) A response to the above, emailed to uomatters and about 65 others including reporters from “A concerned University of Oregon member”:

Dear President Schill,

I am dismayed to learn that the Division of Undergraduate Studies intends to eliminate the Teaching and Learning Center; home to programs such as Health Professions, Class Encore, Student Support Services, Pathway Oregon, and the Teaching Effectiveness Program. The elimination of the Teaching and Learning Center is part of a reorganization of the Division of Undergraduate Studies lead by the current Interim Vice Provost for Undergraduate Studies and current Vice Provost for International Affairs, Dennis Galvan. Through my years at the University of Oregon, I have work directly with the Teaching and Learning Center on countless student engagement and student success initiatives which is why I find this news so shocking and troubling. If you, President Schill, truly feel as strongly about student success as you have stated on multiple occasions, including your 2017 State of the University address, you will feel equally as shocked and troubled by this news.

The Teaching and Learning Center has a storied history within the University of Oregon as a leader in student support and a home to students which is why this is so stunning as to be inconceivable. Furthermore, I was shocked an appalled to discover that this decision was made without consultation of the committed and hard-working directors within the Teaching and Learning Center or the executive counsel of the Division of Undergraduate Studies. With an effective date of February 1st, the campus community and the students we support are left with no time to plan, much less prepare for such a monumental upheaval of an integral pillar to student success on campus. Such a rash and rushed initiative can only serve to harm the very students we are here to support.

It is a thinly veiled secret that there have been significant issues in undergraduate advising at the University of Oregon. Through the hard-work of dedicated advisors and faculty across campus we have seen progress; although not as fast as we had hoped and certainly not as rapidly as you have wished. But the response to slow progress should be seen through support and recognition of programs that work, not their destruction. There is more than the constituent programs that make the Teaching and Learning Center so effective in its mission of student success. That magic cannot be simply transplanted from one office to another, but must be grown at its core.

I cannot begin to understand how Susan Lesyk and the wonderful team she has assembled must feel, but I am left in shock and grief that the University of Oregon may lose yet another institution to student success and we as a community may lose these wonderful people. While Mr. Galvan may herald this as the beginning to a new era of student success I fear this is the end to these critical programs and the philosophy of student success  at the University of Oregon.

President Schill, there is still time to rectify this ill-advised and ill-conceived proposal, but I beseech you to act promptly less an integral home to student success is lost forever.


A concerned University of Oregon member.


To my colleagues,

The shocking nature of this calamity has lead me to write this letter, an act I would have found unthinkable mere hours ago. I write this letter of my volition and without awareness from those involved. I could not sleep without taking some small action.  

Please do not let the Teaching and Learning Center go quietly into the pages of history. Please share your wonderful experiences with the Teaching and Learning Center and your sentiment on the importance of student success with the leadership and Mr. Galvan. Please pass this message along to all those who will care deeply about this troubling news. I have also learned of two open forums at which Mr. Galvan will be taking questions.


Friday (January 12th) from 5-6:30pm in the EMU Swindells Room

Friday (January 19th) from 5-6:30pm in the Harrington Auditorium (Room 101) in Jacqua

Mr Galvan has also created a survey (https://oregon.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_50dFDVfGDS91PlX) for anonymous feedback and comments.

Thank you!

Campus Update from President Schill

Dear colleagues and friends,

As I write this Open Mike, I feel the earth move under my feet. Before you get concerned that I am singing Carole King songs (she is one of my favorites) or having a nightmare about the Cascadia Subduction Zone, you should understand that just outside my office massive trucks and bulldozers are busy breaking ground for the new Willie and Donald Tykeson Hall, the college and careers building. Since the start of the term, construction crews have been diligently digging, hammering, and preparing the site for a stunning new building that will open in fall 2019. It is noisy; it is loud; and sometimes it feels like the earth really is moving, but it is all for a great and important cause.

The Tykeson building will not only be placed at a central location on our beautiful campus; in many ways it will serve as a new center of gravity for our efforts connected to the single most important objective we all share—helping our students succeed. It will provide us with a once-in-a-generation opportunity to refocus and rethink how we deliver academic and career advising to our students, all under one roof. In addition to adding much-needed office and classroom space to campus, the new building will house College of Arts and Sciences advising services and the UO Career Center. It will provide an integrated approach to advising that will help students consider their career options and then work to devise an academic plan for getting there.

The construction of Tykeson Hall is the latest chapter of the conversation we started three months after I took office about the importance of doing everything we can to enable our students to succeed. So much has happened since I stood in front of campus at the EMU and made the case that on-time graduation promotes a student’s likelihood of earning a diploma and substantially reduces the cost of college. We have already seen modest increases in carrying loads, retention, and graduation rates. While I am pleased that we have made progress, there is much, much more to accomplish.

Over the next year we will work with academic advisors in the Division of Undergraduate Studies, the Center for Multicultural Academic Excellence, PathwayOregon, and all the schools and colleges to improve and enhance coordination through creation of a unified academic advising action plan. The important work of improving our student success efforts is being led by Provost Jayanth Banavar and Dennis Galvan, the interim vice provost and dean for undergraduate studies. You can expect to see changes throughout the university to support these efforts in the coming year. We cannot let our decentralized administrative structure stand in the way of our students’ success—and we won’t.

Today’s students need more than just a degree: they need assistance and guidance in landing jobs that meet their needs and aspirations. We owe it to future generations of students and to those who gave to this endeavor to get this right. We must break down silos between administrative divisions and schools to devise the sort of comprehensive resources and advising that will prepare our students for fulfilling careers in a fast-moving and increasingly global economy. In addition, we must create more high-impact opportunities for students to work with the faculty and more avenues for them to gain experiential education, such as internships and study abroad.

While the construction crews are building a strong foundation for the Tykeson building, we must start now to lay the programmatic foundation for long-term success. This is one of my top priorities for 2018.

Speaking of construction projects and laying a foundation for the future, moving the Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact closer to its launch will occupy a good deal of my time in 2018. Luckily, I will be working with a terrific team, including interim director Patrick Phillips; our newly hired executive director, Bob Guldberg, who will be joining us this summer; Mike Harwood from our planning and development office; and scores of others. You may have noticed crews clearing the land on the corner of Agate and Franklin, and we anticipate breaking ground for the first two buildings in March.

Prior to the time those Knight Campus buildings are ready for occupancy in 2020, we need to do a lot of planning. Among the most important tasks will be for us to work with our faculty here at the UO and potential partners such as Oregon Health and Science University to determine the areas of applied science on which to focus. Our challenge is to pick areas that are not just hot today but that will be at the forefront of scientific advancement in 10 years. We will then need to identify, recruit, and hire world-class researchers and postdocs to come to Eugene.

Part of the promise of the Knight Campus is the advancement of science with a tangible, beneficial impact on society. We hope that the discoveries and innovations will make the world better and, at the same time, drive economic activity in the region. One way this will occur is through the creation of companies that will bring new products and therapeutic treatments to market. We will need to work with faculty members, alumni, and community members to create an ecosystem in Eugene to promote this kind of activity. That work begins now.

While the creation of the Knight Campus is the most dramatic academic undertaking at the UO, it is certainly not the only one. Provost Banavar and I are working with faculty members and deans to support existing areas of excellence and seed new and exciting ones that will strengthen our university’s academic profile and meet our students’ needs. We have already provided seed funding for the School of Journalism and Communication’s Media Center for Science and Technology, the College of Education’s Oregon Research Schools Network, and faculty lines for the College of Arts and Science’s emerging Black studies program. We are also working with faculty members to conceptualize and fund new and exciting programs in data science, neuroscience, and the microbiome.

We have asked deans to work with their faculties to think about new and innovative interdisciplinary programs. It is my hope that great ideas in the social sciences, humanities, arts, and professional schools will outstrip available resources. That is the sign of a healthy, striving institution. The provost and I will work with deans to find new resources through philanthropy, an increase in revenue, and the reallocation of existing resources. The new institutional hiring plan will be one way we can achieve this.

I am also eager to move forward with online education. The UO has been slow to move into this realm and, frankly, it is hurting us. Students today demand online options. If we do not provide them, they will go (and are going) elsewhere. More robust online offerings could generate revenue to moderate future tuition increases and help fund our march toward excellence. What is more important, the creation of online course options would help our students graduate on time—saving them time and money and accelerating their move into the workforce. I have asked the provost to move quickly and to work with our faculty and administrators to explore and implement models of online education that simultaneously maintain high levels of quality and achieve these objectives.

A new year is about resolutions. Before winter break I attended a Quack Chat talk by Elliot Berkman, associate professor of psychology, who presented research that shows much of the motivation to hold to our resolutions is driven by social connections and our own self-image. I couldn’t help thinking as I listened to Elliot that if we all work together toward excellence, expect and encourage each other to be great, and see ourselves as a world-class public research university, we will continue to enhance and increase excellence at the UO. We have much work to do. I hope you’ll join me in the effort to stay focused on the things that matter most—moving heaven and earth to help our students succeed and building an academic program of distinction.


Michael H. Schill

President and Professor of Law

President Schill denounces hate speech, racism

In “Around the O“:

“I strongly condemn all forms of hate speech and racism,” said Michael H. Schill, UO president and professor of law. “I am troubled by the recent reports of an uptick in both subtle and overt acts of racism on campus and in the surrounding community. I have asked our law enforcement team to work with partners both here on campus and throughout Eugene to do everything they can within the law to provide a safe learning environment for our students that is free from threats and intimidation. The language of white supremacy has no place in our community.”

Madison-Cannon from UM-KC to lead School of Music and Dance

Dear Colleagues,

I am pleased to announce that we have selected Sabrina Madison-Cannon as the next dean of the School of Music and Dance. 

Sabrina will be an outstanding addition to the university and you can read full details in the Around the O story [here].

Please join me in welcoming Sabrina to the University of Oregon.


Jayanth Banavar

Provost and Senior Vice President


From the link:

Madison-Cannon spent her international performing career as a soloist with the Philadelphia Dance Company, known as Philadanco. After earning her Master of Fine Arts from the University of Iowa in 1998, Madison-Cannon has gone on to positions at Southern Methodist University in Dallas and the University of Missouri-Kansas City.
In 2016, she was promoted to professor of dance, focusing on composition and advanced choreographic design, while also serving in her associate dean role.
An associate dean since 2012, Madison-Cannon has focused on faculty issues, curricular development, assessment and credentialing. Additionally, she has had oversight of academic advising and student affairs in the conservatory.
Madison-Cannon has served on the boards and friends organizations of many of Kansas City’s arts organizations and brings with her a passion for partnerships and community engagement.
In addition to her teaching and administrative work, Madison-Cannon has been a featured presenter and performer at numerous scholarly events around the globe, including the Beijing Modern Music Festival, the Midwest Clinic–International Band and Orchestra Conference in Chicago, the International Choreographer’s Showcase in Barcelona and Madrid and several International Association of Blacks in Dance conferences.

Willie Taggart’s Professor of Strength leaves UO to return to FSU


Andrew Greif has the news here. Oderinde put 3 UO students in the hospital and kept his job for a year anyway. I’m not sure if Duck FAR Tim Gleason ever gave up the public records on his “investigation” of Oderinde. Say, I wonder if Dr. Skaggs ever got his Sports Medicine Board Certification?


More national publicity for UO, from CBS Sports: UO claims the Duck coach who put 3 students in hospital is “faculty”

The unregulated world of strength coaches and college football’s killing season

When three Oregon football players were hospitalized in January following a strenuous workout, they were being led by a strength coach certified from a track and field coaches association.

For a $245 fee, the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) offers a 21-hour strength training course to become a certified NCAA strength coach in any sport. By comparison, the widely-used Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Coaches Association (CSCCA) requires 30 times as much training — a 640-hour certification process.

According to the NCAA, that track certification was all that was needed by Oregon football strength coach Irele Oderinde, who was suspended for one month due to the January workout.

… Oregon declined to provide a copy of Oderinde’s resume to CBS Sports since it is part of his faculty record. Oregon said faculty records cannot be released without an employee’s written permission, and Oderinde did not grant permission.

You can’t make this shit up.

Shocking NSFW photo shows depravity behind OBF’s firing of Matthew Halls

Bob Keefer has the latest on the deBachle in the Eugene Weekly, from another drip of UO public records. Apparently OBF Exec Director Janelle McCoy was keeping a dossier on Halls’ various infractions, “small and smaller”, including photos of the depraved acts that took place at the house the festival rented for him in Eugene:

Actually, that’s a photo of Who drummer Keith Moon’s hotel room after a concert back in the 70’s. The photo below shows what happened at the house the OBF rented for Halls – courtesy of the UO Public Records Office:

Yes, that’s a dryer filter, with lint in it. I’m no Maytag repairman, but the family lint is pretty personal stuff for a university that claims it can’t release personnel records. While the EW choose not to publish this photo, UOM’s editorial board is far more progressive, and as Keefer reports this is not exactly Harvey Weinstein material:

… OBF executive director Janelle McCoy apparently kept a laundry list of Halls’ sins, small and smaller, nearly from the moment she began work at the festival on Jan. 28, 2016. … No transgression seems too petty for McCoy’s list, which contains a photo of excessive lint in the clothes dryer at the house where Halls stayed during the 2015 festival.

Perhaps the biggest item on the laundry list was that Halls was “abusive” toward McCoy at an OBF Friends of the Festival board retreat on Oct. 30, 2016. Whatever abuse Halls may have committed, though, doesn’t appear anywhere in the official minutes of that retreat, which EW obtained from the university.

… Board member and OBF co-founder Royce Saltzman said, “OBF is in great hands. Openness has given each of us an insight into what has to happen to make OBF successful.” He’s also quoted saying, “The openness Janelle and Matthew demonstrated to the board of their working relationship is important.”

And Doug Blandy, the UO’s senior vice provost for academic affairs, says in the minutes that “such honest discussion leads to a stellar festival.”

No one, according to the minutes, felt the need to comment on or even hint at Halls’ supposed abusiveness.

In early December, though, more than a month after the retreat, Blandy — who would later sign off on Halls’ firing — wrote to Halls that his “treatment of Ms. McCoy [during the retreat] was unacceptable” and threatened to terminate his contract.

And then Blandy – not known for his decision-making ability – gave Halls a raise and a new contract. Then someone fired Halls. Then UO’s PR flacks cooked up a story for Around the O and the smear campaign started. I wonder when UO will give Keefer the records showing who started it?

Meanwhile I’m going to go check our dryer, just in case. For the nostalgic, here’s a link to the smear campaign against me from Doug Blandy, Tim Gleason, Sharon Rudnick et al. during the first round of union bargaining.

How to give money to SAIL, the University of Oregon, & state & local causes

12/20/2017 update: 

In response to my note the UO Development Office has now added SAIL to the list of “other” funds. Just go to the secure UO giving page at https://securelb.imodules.com/s/1540/foundation/2col.aspx?sid=1540&gid=1&pgid=408&cid=1095, click the “I want to view additional options” box, and you’ll get this pop-up:

Click Summer Academy to Inspire Learning, then you’ll be asked how much, contact, info, ccard info. Thank you!

12/19/2017 update: 

With only 12 days left before President Grinch’s tax “reform” increases the after-tax cost of giving – drastically for most of us – now is the time to give on the cheap. Even the Duck coaches, or at least one person working for athletics, have now got into the act with a pledge to the State Employee’s Charitable Fund Drive:

If you give this way and don’t have a lot of deductions (i.e. a big mortgage) you should consider switching from a monthly payroll donation to making a one-time gift before Jan 1. The phone number is on their website here. You can pick which of a list social welfare and other charities you want to send the money too. Very easy.

That’s for UO employees giving to state and local causes. As Honest Uncle Bernie reports, giving to UO is a bit harder. I like the Duckfunder website: https://duckfunder.uoregon.edu/ It has a few active campaigns at the moment, but it’s not very good crowdfunding because it doesn’t connect donors with related causes or vice versa. Meanwhile the main UO giving site, https://giving.uoregon.edu is not even secure:

Which sort of puts you off leaving a ccard number. However, if your browser lets you get past this, you’ll eventually find the UO Foundation’s secure giving webpage at https://securelb.imodules.com/s/1540/foundation/2col.aspx?sid=1540&gid=1&pgid=408&cid=1095:

If you click on “other” you get a poorly formatted list of other funds. If you want to give to, say, SAIL, sorry, it’s not on the list. So go back and type it in yourself. The UO Foundation will mail you a nice letter on O letterhead suitable for showing to the IRS, or what’s left of it now that Trump is in charge, confirming your money will indeed go to SAIL.

12/3/2017: UO librarians crush Duck coaches $6K to $0 in Charitable Fund Drive giving

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