Letter from the President

President Lesley Hallick at the Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration January 17, 2011. (Photo by Heidi Hoffman)

While the healthcare debate goes on we’ll be doing what we do best: strengthening our educational programs in the liberal arts, teacher education and healthcare.

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MY HEALTHCARE CRYSTAL BALL  Whatever the outcome is of the ongoing debate over healthcare reform, one thing is certain. Oregon and the nation will need the best healthcare practitioners our colleges and universities can provide.

Last August we opened our second building (HPC2) at the Health Professions Campus in Hillsboro and formally dedicated the Health & Education District. This new district is a partnership with Tuality Healthcare, Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center, Portland Community College (PCC) and the City of Hillsboro. The Health & Education District builds on the strengths of all of these community organizations, both in terms of new space for classrooms and research, and as an economic magnet for jobs and services.

In addition, we joined with state and federal governments and our district partners to build a new Intermodal Transportation Facility (ITF). This is not just a fancy name for a parking structure, though that’s part of its function. The ITF includes classrooms for PCC, charging stations for electric cars, showers and lockers for bicycle commuters. And, it is topped by large solar panels—all part of a continued commitment to sustainability.

The opening of HPC2 allowed us to bring our growing School of Professional Psychology from Portland to Hillsboro to join with our other healthcare programs. Like Creighton Hall, the first building on campus, HPC2 is LEED Gold-certified for energy efficiency. It also includes extensive common areas for study and gathering, a new anatomy lab and additional administrative space.

I’m not putting my hard hat away just yet, though. We are moving ahead on plans for a third building at HPC that will house our nationally known College of Optometry and bring all of our healthcare programs together on one campus. This project will also support the creation of new programs, such as audiology, which was just approved by the Board of Trustees.

In addition, plans are developing rapidly for the science and technology complex on the Forest Grove campus that over time will allow us to expand capacity, to modernize our equipment and classrooms to keep pace with the cutting edge curriculum the faculty developed. It will also make it easier for faculty and students to integrate the undergraduate science disciplines. Both of these capital projects will require significant philanthropy.

When we dedicate those new facilities, the healthcare debate will likely still be raging. And we’ll still be doing what we do best: strengthening our educational programs in the liberal arts, teacher education and healthcare to best prepare our graduates to succeed and to contribute to the rapidly changing world they will then encounter.

Lesley Hallick, President