Dear Alumni

I love December! It’s a great time to reflect on the year that was and to look forward to the year ahead. As I reflect on 2014 at the University of Oregon, I can see that we are positioned very well for 2015. From the success we’ve celebrated and the challenges we’ve overcome to the aspirations we’ve declared, 2014 will be seen as a turning-point year for the UO.

Success. In 2013, advocacy efforts paid dividends and alumni all over the state had a hand in the passage of Senate Bill 270, establishing a board of trustees as the governing body of the University of Oregon. On July 1, 2014, the Board of Trustees of the University of Oregon assumed leadership. For the first time in a century we are governed by a body that has the University of Oregon’s sole interests in mind.

Challenges. State support of higher education is critical to the growth of the state’s economy, the quality of life that Oregonians enjoy, and keeping our state universities accessible to all. The University of Oregon receives only about 5 percent of its annual budget from state appropriations. Now, more than ever, we will need alumni to call upon the Oregon Legislature to help restore our funding to 2007 levels. Learn more about our state and federal legislative priorities and how your advocacy can help in the coming months.

Aspirations. The University of Oregon has declared its aspirations for the future in numerous ways this year, including the competitive excellence plan, the clusters of excellence faculty hiring initiative, and the launch of its $2 billion fundraising campaign, to name just a few.

The university is poised for great things because of the plans made, challenges overcome, and successes enjoyed in 2014. Join this conversation in our LinkedIn group and let us know what you think were the top moments in 2014 for the University of Oregon.

Go Ducks!

Paul J. Clifford

P.S. You also might have heard of our athletic success, including the accomplishments of 2014 Heisman trophy winner Marcus Mariota and 2014 Bowerman Trophy winner Laura Roesler.

This year has been a memorable one all across campus. From all of your friends at the University of Oregon, have a happy holiday season and an amazing New Year!