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HECC Director Ben Cannon corrects RG Editorial about funding formula


In calling for the Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission to reconsider its prioritization of science, technology, engineering, and math subjects in how it distributes state funding to state universities (“Oregon shortchanges the liberal arts. What the HECC?”), The Register-Guard editorial board misses several critical points about the existing funding formula.

It is true that under the current formula Oregon State University benefits from awarding more STEM degrees than the University of Oregon. But far more consequential is the fact that OSU enrolls 45% more in-state students than UO. This matters greatly because the HECC does not consider non-resident students in its funding distribution.

The HECC’s distribution formula includes additional weights — such as for underrepresented students, degree completion, and the cost of instruction by discipline — that also help explain differences in its outputs. Over the next year, the commission will consider all of these issues, including the modest bonuses the formula provides for the completion of STEM degrees, to ensure that our approach to distributing state funding advances student success, equity, affordability and economic and community impact.

Ben Cannon, executive director, HECC


  1. eugenenative 09/05/2019

    I guess if OSU is educating more Oregon students, it’s only logical they would (and should) receive more Oregon tax dollars.

  2. Oldtimer 09/06/2019

    Red herring. The issue raised was more funding per resident student. The number of resident students is irrelevant to that issue, but it appears to have worked as a bright shiny object to distract. The UO enrolls a higher percentage of poor resident students than OSU, but the HECC representative did not point that out.

    • eugenenative 09/06/2019

      What were the dollars-per-resident-student numbers?

  3. Alum-inati 09/06/2019

    And UO continues its downward spiral of spending untold dollars recruiting international students with beaucoup bucks, with a white nationalist in the white house trying to build walls to keep people out. Losing battle until 2020 at least.

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