UO Agenda

State Affairs Agenda

The role the state of Oregon plays in our operations and business stretches far and wide. UO is not just an institution of higher learning, but also a major employer, economic driver, and community partner in the region.

The University of Oregon works diligently will all state entities that have an impact on its work. This includes the Oregon State Legislature, the Office of the Governor, the Higher Education Coordination Commission, and many other state other boards, commissions or agencies.

The UO’s specific policy priorities and budget requests change from session to session, but its core agenda remains the same.

  • Investment in public university operating budgets: State appropriations for higher education dropped precipitously over the last two decades. As a result, the burden of paying for a college education has shifted from the state to students and their families. UO and its advocates will fight year after year to protect and increased funding so that higher education remains accessible and affordable.
  • Investment in financial aid: UO supports increased investment in need-based financial aid programs like the Oregon Opportunity Grant, which makes college a reality for more low-income, underrepresented, first-generation students.
  • Investment in capital construction: One of the ways the State partners with UO is to provide bonding for the construction and renovation of buildings. In order to provide an excellent academic experience for students, UO must have safe, accessible, and high-quality spaces for students to learn, faculty to teach, and the community to gather.
  • Implementation of policies that benefit students and the university: UO works continually to ensure that the legislation and policies adopted by the state help students be successful and ensure public universities can be nimble, accessible, and excellent.

Federal Affairs Agenda

While specific concerns vary by Congressional session, UO’s federal agenda is focused on student aid, research funding, and federal activities involving universities that are particularly important to our region and state.

  • Student aid: More than 10,000 University of Oregon students depend upon about $160 million in federal financial aid to make college more attainable.

  • Research funding: UO faculty make a bigger impact with their work when they secure external support for their research. The federal government funds the vast majority of research at UO.

  • Special priorities: Federal activities and funding involving universities that are particularly important to our region and the state of Oregon such as ShakeAlert, the earthquake early warning program.

We coordinate our federal advocacy activities with national coalitions, including the Association of American Universities, the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, and the Student Aid Alliance. We work closely with our elected leaders representing Oregon in Congress and draw upon our national network of alumni whenever we can.