Oregon’s public universities submit 2025-27 biennium funding request to the HECC

On April 5, Oregon’s seven public universities submitted their consolidated funding request for the 2025-2027 biennium to the Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC). 

Collectively, the public universities request a $276 million increase to the Public University Support Fund (PUSF) in the next biennium. The PUSF is the primary source of state funding supporting educational and operational expenses at Oregon’s seven public universities. University leaders are asking that the state adopt a stairstep approach toward PUSF funding levels that will eventually bring Oregon public universities at east up to the national average for state operational funding per full-time equivalent student

Oregon must aspire to set a national standard in public higher education funding, creating educational pathways that improve accessibility and affordability, yield greater student outcomes through academic and wraparound supports, and bridge vital workforce gaps. Achieving this bold vision requires an initial commitment to reach the national average in public university funding, laying a solid foundation for a future marked by robust economic development, groundbreaking innovation, and an improved quality of life for every Oregonian.

Currently Oregon ranks 44 out of 50 in per student funding and trails far behind neighboring states in funding for public universities.

Public university leaders are also requesting an increase of $124 million to the Oregon Opportunity Grant (OOG) for 2025-2027. The OOG is Oregon's largest state-funded, need-based grant program for college students. The grant provides funding to more than 30,000 Oregon resident students each year.

The document outlines the value and contributions Oregon’s public universities make to their students and the state by supporting student academic and wraparound service needs, producing graduates who contribute significantly to local economies, and contributing to industry needs, workforce development, and overall prosperity across the state. It then makes the case for how the state can help students and universities through investments that increase base funding and student aid, provide equitable access to higher education, and support university-based public service programs that benefit Oregonians.

As the document notes in conclusion, “Oregon stands to benefit greatly from these investments, as they will contribute to a more diverse workforce equipped with the skills needed to drive economic growth and address pressing workforce needs. Moreover, public universities remain committed to being accountable to accrediting bodies, state government officials, and all Oregonians, ensuring that funding is directed toward priorities that align with the state's educational and economic objectives. By continuing to invest in students and higher education, Oregon is paving the way to opportunity and success for all.”

The full document can be found here.  The Oregon Legislature will consider and pass budgets for public universities and student aid in the 2025 legislative session.