NEWS RELEASE: Western Oregon University Board of Trustees Approves Academic Programs, Considers Master Plan

MONMOUTH, Ore. – The Western Oregon University Board of Trustees on Wednesday addressed multiple agenda items, including proposed changes to academic programs and a master plan presented by university President Rex Fuller.

Two academic program changes were approved by the board and now move to the Higher Education Coordinating Commission and the Northwest Commission for Colleges and Universities for consideration. The first, a B.A. or B.S. in Sustainability, is a new major program housed in the Geography department. The second is a reconfiguration of current programs to create a B.A./B.S./B.F.A. in Art and Design.

“We are very excited about the addition of a Sustainability major,” said Stephen Scheck, provost and vice president of Academic Affairs. “Our faculty have recognized the need for a program of this focus, especially considering the importance of the health of the environment in our community, our state and our world. In addition, the alteration of the Art and Design major is better aligned to meet the needs of our students in regards to their career goals.”

Fuller introduced a proposed revision to WOU’s Facilities Master Plan, which aims to examine building use and how it would best be altered to match the university’s goals and priorities. The Portland architecture firm SRG Partnership has been retained to shepherd the project.

“It is vital that we ensure our facilities plans are in line with our vision for the university,” said Fuller. “WOU has a reputation for the beauty of our grounds, and we want to move forward with a strategy that maximizes our campus while also serving students and providing faculty and staff the spaces they need to support student success.”

In other Board of Trustees action Wednesday, the panel:

  • Approved the FY2018 budget
  • Discussed HB2998 and WOU’s goal to become the campus of choice for transfer students
  • Examined enrollment figures, which seemed to indicate higher numbers than predicted
  • Heard from Fuller about the project to renovate the former Oregon Military Academy building

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