A major local effort is underway to collect $1 million in just over a month to show support for a four-year university in Bend.
The dream of developing a four-year school in Bend is not new, but recently the state set a goal that 40 percent of Oregonians will hold at least a bachelor’s degree.
There is not currently capacity at Oregon’s universities to accommodate that number of students.
This deficit has spurred Oregon State University officials to push for developing OSU-Cascades into the four-year school state and regional leaders seek.
The $1 million OSU-Cascades officials hope to raise in one month will indicate to Oregon University System leaders and state legislators widespread community support for a four-year school here.
OSU-Cascades President Becky Johnson told a packed house at an Accelerate Bend event at the Tower Theatre on May 24 that half the money has already been raised.
The Bend Chamber of Commerce pledged $50,000 last week.
The organization is encouraging chamber members to give, as well, and will match up to $50,000 in contributions, bringing the total chamber donation to a possible $150,000, said chamber Director Tim Casey.
“Now is the time for the business community to come together and show its support for OSU-Cascades,” said Casey in a news release. “With our combined voices, we can make a great impact on the community.”