Curiosities on our Campuses

The shoe tree (Photo by Parrish Evans)

Weird and wonderful parts of campus ... historic and current.

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Shoe Tree

This campus tree receives a few new pairs of unusual decorations every year around the time the Greek organizations start to pledge. Is there a connection? Hmm …

Spirit Bench

Mike Steele, Distinguished University Professor Emeritus, advised the Alpha Zeta (AZ) fraternity in the 1990s. Mike says, “My wife and I were invited to an AZ party. It was festive, but more festive than the occasion warranted. As a surprise, they took us to the garage, and there was the Spirit Bench in about four pieces. Someone had driven a truck onto the lawn and pulled up the bench with a chain, breaking it. It took $2,500 to fix. I hear the new bench is sunk six feet into the ground, so no one can do that again!”

The most recognized "rules of painting" the bench include only painting between dusk and 6 a.m., painting the bench completely and only using spray paint.

College of Health Professions

The Intermodal Transit Facility at the Health Professions Campus in Hillsboro isn’t just a place to park cars. While the sustainable building does provide 794 parking spaces, it also includes 20,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space, including 9,500 square feet of classrooms and Portland Community College’s Hillsboro Education Center. It also features the region’s first bicycle commuter station, which offers 40 hooks for bicycles, along with lockers, showers, restrooms and a bicycle service area. With the MAX station right outside, it’s all one needs for transportation to and from the Health & Education District, which includes the Health Professions Campus.