Last Updated on December 26, 2022
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About Cheapest Universities in Oregon
Last spring’s abrupt, pandemic-induced pivot to virtual learning led to tremendous financial disruption for colleges. The educational technology came with a lofty price tag. So did retrofitting campuses to comply with public-health guidance, with needs for plexiglass dividers, extra campus cleanings, and personal protective equipment — to say nothing of smartphone screening apps and the cost of Covid testing itself.
There were housing refunds to process, reduced revenues from flat or even decreased tuition pricing, and widespread enrollment declines. State governments threatened enormous funding cuts, and sometimes followed through, exacerbating a troubling pre-pandemic trend. The economic losses have been steep — one estimate comes in at $183 billion — and although the federal government has provided stimulus funding with more likely on the way, the amount seems certain to fall far short of the $120 billion advocates sought.
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The Pandemic Year
Fifty-two weeks ago, campuses closed and higher education as we’ve known it came to a halt. Ever since, we’ve been asking two questions: How will the pandemic change higher education? And how many of those changes will stick? Read on.
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How Much Has Covid Cost Colleges? $183 Billion
Observers were quick to grasp the enormousness of Covid’s effects on our sector. Last March, Moody’s Investors Service downgraded its financial outlook for higher ed, citing the pandemic as a cause for the change. In the pages of The Chronicle and elsewhere, experts like Robert Kelchen, Robert Zemsky, and William R. Doyle sounded dire notes. Existential perils loomed, it seemed; mass college closures appeared imminent. Zemsky told The Wall Street Journal in April that the toll could be as high as 200 closures in a year. In Forbes, Richard Vedder wrote that more colleges were vulnerable to closure now “than at any other time in American history” in an article headlined “Why The Coronavirus Will Kill 500-1,000 Colleges.” Last January, John Kroger, a former president of Reed College, predicted 100 small-college closures over the course of a decade. By May, he had revised that estimate upward: “More than 750 to 1,000” such schools would now “go under.”
Two hundred closures, 500, 1,000 — these predictions steeled us for the worst. So what has the cost been so far? How many colleges have shuttered?
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Ten — at least that’s the number of permanent closures or consolidations between the beginning of March 2020 and the end of January 2021 according to Higher Ed Dive, which has been tracking college closure announcements. The prognosticators have been wrong, so far — off by factors of 10 or 20 or nearly 100, though in fairness, some predictions were for longer time periods.
These 10 have been small, private institutions, and were often in deep financial trouble before the pandemic. MacMurray College, in Illinois, said the coronavirus’s disruptions were “not the principal reasons” for closure. Pine Manor College, in Massachusetts, began a phased two-year handoff to Boston College to let current and incoming students avoid disruption. The Pacific Northwest College of Art is on track to become part of nearby Willamette University, in Oregon.
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These changes are lamentable for the faculty, staff, students, and administrators directly affected, but collectively they represent more of a glancing blow than the direct asteroid hit many pundits predicted. Why?
First, a few caveats. For one thing, it’s still early. A year is a short amount of time in the lifespan of colleges that have existed, in some cases, for centuries. Closures and consolidations take often years of planning to bring about. Also, the significant federal stimulus to colleges may be propping some up just for now, and a wave of closures is possible if such funding disappears. Still, the fact remains that the pandemic has not driven a large number of colleges past their breaking points, at least not yet.
Some of what’s happening fits a longstanding pattern. Should the past year’s predictions of doom remain off target, they will be in good company. Prognosticators like the late Clayton Christensen and Earl Cheit predicted the demise of large segments of higher ed years ago, to no avail. As it turns out, colleges are remarkably durable.
Before our very eyes we’re witnessing an enormous, slow-motion change.
In a 2017 article in the American Educational History Journal, the University of Memphis associate professor R. Eric Platt and colleagues observed that during the Great Depression, only about 2 percent of U.S. colleges closed, and an even smaller number merged with other institutions. As the American Council on Education’s Phil Muehlenbeck and Karina Pineda wrote in 2019, some of the institutions that struggled in the 1970s, including Boston College and New York University, are now among the nation’s most well-regarded. In a November 2020 study, Robert Kelchen found that among private colleges with risk factors for failure, a wide majority were still operating four years later. The story here is that American colleges are strikingly resilient: Even in extremely grim economic contexts they rarely close — and even when they have the sorts of risk factors associated with closure.
It is true that a large number of for-profit colleges (more than 1,000 according to a 2019 article) have permanently closed in recent years. As relative newcomers to the higher-education sector, for-profit institutions tend not to have the deep roots or many of the institutional trappings possessed by a lot of their nonprofit counterparts, which are factors in institutional longevity. Moreover, for-profit institutions have seen their enrollments rise substantially in recent months, indicating a possible turnaround for the sector that may prevent further closures.
While institutions may survive, not everything about them will. Institutional evolution is an important part of institutional survival. That is, although many more institutions than expected are likely to survive the current crisis, they are also likely to adopt fundamental changes to adapt to resource scarcity, changing markets, and the new competitive environment. As Platt and colleagues have noted, colleges throughout history have survived economic and other crises by rebranding themselves, not infrequently following a merger of two or more institutions into one. For instance, two New Orleans institutions in 1930 merged to rebrand as Dillard University. More recently, Southern New Hampshire University successfully rebranded itself from a small, private, regional college to a global distance-learning provider, enrolling over 130,000 students.
Back in 1990, the economist David W. Breneman observed that liberal-arts colleges had expanded their curricular offerings in response to market pressure to adopt more “professional” degree programs, such as business, education, engineering, and health professions.
In recent decades, increasing numbers of colleges have developed fully online course offerings in response to changing market demands. Some colleges have entered into partnerships with business and industry to help increase enrollments, for example, by providing skills training for employees of corporate partners or by working with external firms that specialize in recruiting and serving international students.
Largest Universities in Oregon
Colleges have also reduced or transformed certain programs and practices in response to evolving environments — as well as to reduce their costs. For example, over the years, the proportion of tenure-line faculty has declined while the proportion of lower-cost contingent faculty has increased. Colleges have also eliminated or restructured departments and degree programs to make their offerings more marketable to prospective students. In short, institutions have proved they are willing to make adjustments, reorganizations, and even substantial cuts to lower expenses and keep up with market demand. This willingness to adapt has no doubt been a factor in keeping many colleges financially afloat.
If history is a guide, the vast majority of colleges will survive the current crisis.
Colleges have generally been reluctant to drift too far from institutionalized practices that have been embraced by the sector for ages, such as tenure. And with good reason: Organizational scholars argue that holding onto such practices provides institutional legitimacy, which can in turn bring more resources to an organization. However, as the examples described above demonstrate, colleges have shown a greater willingness to adapt to new circumstances than stereotypes about the sector’s rigidity and reluctance to change would suggest.
Although most traditional institutions will survive the pandemic largely unscathed, many will adapt to the post-Covid “new normal” by instituting new policies or programs and by eliminating others. For example, Stanford University recently eliminated 11 varsity sports programs; the University of Vermont terminated its entire departments of classics, geology, and religion; and the University of Nevada at Las Vegas recently announced the addition of a new graduate program in cybersecurity, to address a growing demand for technologists. While being among the first to make such changes may invite shock and even resistance, the changes will most likely become more accepted over time — part of the new normal.
Such changes are plenty painful. Sadly, higher education has already experienced a large number of cuts in faculty and staff employment in response to pandemic-related financial losses, both current and projected. Some institutions have cut back on employee retirement benefits. And as noted above, consolidations of two or more colleges have also been announced or are being considered. More cost-saving measures are likely to come, at least until college leaders have more clarity about the market demand for higher education in the months and years ahead.
Institutions are also likely to expand curricular offerings in post-pandemic high-demand fields, such as health professions and technology. Also, because colleges have invested so heavily in distance learning during the pandemic, expect institutions to continue to expand their online course and degree offerings even after the need for socially distant teaching subsides. Before our very eyes, we’re witnessing an enormous, slow-motion change: The academy is becoming a more frugal employer, a more virtual entity, and less of a home to the traditional liberal arts — again, extending trends that were already present before the arrival of Covid.
This, it seems, is change enough for now. If history is a guide, the vast majority of colleges will survive the current crisis, as they have survived many other difficult periods in the past. It will be up to us to ensure that higher-education institutions — in their post-pandemic, altered forms — remain true to the important missions of centering student learning, producing valuable research, and adeptly serving their communities.
In this ranking, we examine top-value universities and colleges in Oregon. Also see our ranking of the best value online colleges and universities in Oregon.
If one were asked to describe the stereotypical Oregonian resident, the typical response would probably outline a progressive, stylish, eco-conscious activist with an affinity for organic produce and handmade goods. While we don’t like to endorse stereotypes, we must admit that many of the best universities in Oregon seem to cater to this exact individual. From the Oregon College of Art and Craft, which consists almost entirely of studio art classes in areas of study like ceramics and “fibers,” to Portland State University, which is popular for its socially-conscious curriculum as well as majors like Environmental Studies and Urban Planning, higher education in Oregon is undoubtedly oriented toward serving a higher purpose. Even the schools that deviate from the above description, like the religious Warner Pacific College and gargantuan Oregon State, display a level of conscientiousness and community involvement that should make residents – and students – proud.
And ultimately, when you consider how these top 15 colleges balance their budgets with the academic, social, and career benefits they offer students (the very definition of “best value,” as far as we are concerned), it’s not hard to see the advantages in attending a university in this state.
Methodology: Ranking the Best Oregon Colleges and Universities Based on Value
Graduation Rate: This indicator refers to the percentage of students who complete their degree within 150% of normal time (six years for a typical four-year degree program). Schools that perform well in this area have a track record of keeping students engaged and successful for their entire time on campus. We weighted this category 30% of the total and retrieved the information from College Navigator.
Net Price: In order to make sure that cost was still a factor in the ranking, we also considered overall net price as an indicator. Taken from data on College Navigator, “net price” is an approximate value that refers to the average amount of money a student could expect to pay each year after taking into account tuition, room and board, living expenses, scholarship awards, and financial aid packages. We weighted this category 25% of the total.
Acceptance Rate: Academically challenging, popular universities tend to be more selective and thus have a lower acceptance rate. In order to pinpoint those colleges that boast rigorous academics and also receive a large number of applications, we considered acceptance rate – the percentage of students out of the total number of applicants who receive an acceptance letter. We retrieved this information from College Navigator and weighted it 30% of the total.
Universities and Colleges in Oregon
20-Year Net Return on Investment: Taken from information on the website PayScale, this statistic provides a picture of how much students can expect to make after they graduate from a particular college. More specifically, the figure is calculated by taking the average income an alumnus will make over his or her first 20 years after graduation and subtracting the amount paid in tuition. Schools with a high ROI tend to be better at preparing their students for the job market. We weighted this category only 15% because data was not available for all colleges considered.
After adding all the points, we gave each university a final score out of 200. The schools below have scores ranging from 89 to 143, and each has something different to offer in terms of its cost, quality, and reputation. No one college is perfect (which is why the scores vary so much) but this ranking offers you a premier selection of universities to help get you started on your search for an education in Oregon.
1 Reed College Portland, OR
2 Oregon Institute of Technology Klamath Falls, OR
3 University of Oregon Eugene, OR
4 University of Portland Portland, OR
5 Oregon State University Corvallis, OR
6 Portland State University Portland, OR
7 Corban University Salem, OR
8 Oregon College of Art and Craft Portland, OR
9 Bushnell University Eugene, OR
10 Concordia University Portland Portland, OR
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At the end of the day, college is supposed to be about learning and intellectual growth, and Reed College embodies that mission more than most. It has a reputation as “one of the most intellectual colleges in the country, ” and attracts a horde of high-achieving applicants each year who hope to overcome the Oregon college’s selective 39% acceptance rate. The curriculum ditches rote memorization in favor of divergent thinking and creative analysis, while small, conference-style classrooms promote interactive discussions among peers. Most students would be quick to acknowledge the rigor of academic life at Reed, but they also understand that the challenge will pay off (and the 79% graduation rate demonstrates this persistence).
Oregon Institute of Technology
Klamath Falls, OR
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The Oregon Institute of Technology is not only one of the best universities in Oregon, it’s also the only public technical institute in the entire Northwest! You’ll enjoy a curriculum that is both hands-on and real-world, whether you choose to study Electronics Engineering Technology, Geomatics, Entrepreneurism, or Nuclear Medicine Technology. Pre-professional programs are available for aspiring dentists and dental hygienists, medical and osteopathic medical doctors, pharmacists, veterinarians, and physical therapists, while study abroad programs that blend cultural immersion with technical training are available in 15 countries. OIT’s practical approach to learning makes its alumni highly sought after in the job market, and its average net ROI of $550k is the highest in the state!
University of Oregon
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If you can’t decide between attending a large research university or a small liberal arts college, the University of Oregon might convince you that you don’t have to choose! One of only 36 public schools to earn membership with the prestigious Association of American Universities, UO has proven its status as a hub of scientific exploration. And yet academics take on a surprisingly “liberal arts” feel, thanks to a classical focus on critical thinking, unrestricted inquiry, and an unyielding quest to uncover the unknown. The university also exemplifies what it means to truly be a diverse campus. In fact, UO rejects the word “diversity” in favor of “inclusivity,” a sign of its mission to encourage cross-cultural collaboration at every turn.
University of Portland
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This University of Portland has earned almost unanimous approval as one of the top universities in Oregon – and in the nation. U.S. News, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, and Bloomberg Businessweek have all recognized this Oregon university’s caliber and overall value in private education. UP continuously earns high rankings because of its unparalleled investment in its students: the administration is constantly renovating and expanding its facilities, from the shiny new recreation and wellness center to the state-of-the-art engineering building to the recently updated athletic fields. UP students feel this support and are motivated to give their all in return, as evidenced by the notable 80% graduation rate.
Oregon State University
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“Beaver Nation,” as Oregon State University is affectionately known, encompasses a massive community of 30,000 students and more than 200 undergraduate programs. And the numbers continue to astound: the 400-acre campus is located on the National Register of Historic Places, is surrounded by more than 11,000 acres of pristine woodlands, and contributes more than $2 billion to the state’s burgeoning economic footprint. And OSU “Beavers” are as productive as their industrious mascot would suggest; the school is one of only two U.S. universities to hold land, sea, space, and sun grants, and its impact on research continues to grow year after year. This work ethic apparently sticks with students long after graduation; PayScale.com reports an average 20-year net ROI of almost $385k!
Portland State University
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As one of the state’s premier public universities, Portland State is without a doubt one of the best cheap Oregon colleges. But it’s not just the low in-state tuition that makes PSU so affordable – it’s also the only university in Oregon to pledge a “Four Year Degree Guarantee.” Sign up as a freshman and as long as you attend full-time and follow your advisor’s advice, you’ll either graduate in four years or get the rest of your education for free! PSU is an urban research university, and its location in one of the nation’s most progressive, socially-conscious cities has a strong influence on both academic and research pursuits. Top programs include Environmental Studies, Urban Planning, and Social Work, while the required “senior capstones” are a hallmark of the community-oriented curriculum.
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All the knowledge in the world won’t do you much good professionally if you don’t have the emotional maturity and moral framework necessary to guide smart decisions. Corban University capitalizes on this fact by offering a comprehensive, religious education that integrates theological perspectives with practical coursework. The Oregon college also recognizes that learning isn’t limited to the classroom, and extracurricular activities and events offer endless opportunities for fun (the annual Beach Party and Turkey Trot are two examples), service (volunteer at the Turtle Ridge Wildlife Center or Habitat for Humanity), and recreation (outdoor adventures like kayaking, camping, and “cosmic tubing” are specially popular). With so much to do, it’s no wonder Corban is so popular. The annual acceptance rate is just 37%!
Oregon College of Art and Craft
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While other art schools establish a competitive and formal campus environment, the Oregon College of Art and Craft puts a predictably “Portland” spin on artistic education. City residents generally desire globally aware, locally produced, hand-made products and have popularized the idea of values-based consumerism, and OCAC fits right into this ethos. The small campus of just 180 students functions less like a business and more like a family; professors – who are artists and “makers” themselves – act as mentors and motivators for courses that are largely studio-based. Students can dive into hands-on projects in one or multiple of OCAC’s seven specialties (Book Arts, Wood, Photography, Ceramics, Metals, Fibers, and Drawing and Painting) while also taking liberal arts courses that emphasize critical thinking above all.
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Although Bushnell University is yet another religious college in Oregon, that doesn’t mean it’s unoriginal or generic. BU sees its faith as a way to cultivate wiser, more culturally rich graduates who understand that community, family, and service are essential aspects of a fulfilled life. Leadership, character development, and global engagement go hand-in-hand, making Northwest Christian one of the best universities in Oregon for religious students with big ambitions. This multifaceted approach to education – which has inspired academic initiatives such as the American Culture and Language Program and a competitive forensics debate team – has earned BU a top ranking on U.S. News’ list of “comprehensive colleges.”
Concordia University Portland
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Even among the most affordable universities in Oregon, Concordia stands apart from the rest. Its low tuition and generous financial aid programs (98% of students receive financial help and the average award for freshman tops $13k) give new meaning to the word “accessibility.” Concordia is genuinely committed to education for all – a mission made clear in the attention it provides distance-learning initiatives. Almost 75% of students at this university in Oregon attend courses online through a web platform that features striking interactivity, flexibility, and connectivity to professors. Far from feeling isolated, online students at CU enjoy the same rigorous, stimulating curriculum and religious undertones that characterize on-campus courses.
Universities Closing in Oregon
Concordia University Chicago is letting go of 51 faculty and staff members and closing 15 academic programs due to budget concerns that have been accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic and a reassessment of its priorities.
The university, affiliated with The Lutheran Church — Missouri Synod, is offering retirement or severance packages to employees who were laid off, departed voluntarily or had their positions eliminated, said school spokesman Eric Matanyi. That’s about 7% of total employees prior to the reduction in force, he said.
The 15 programs slated for closure include graphic arts, theater, chemistry, women’s and gender studies and business communication, according to an email sent to students. Current students enrolled in the programs will be able to complete their degrees at Concordia, which might involve the use of adjunct faculty or partnerships with nearby universities, but new students won’t be able to enroll.
Concordia-Chicago, which describes itself as “a Christ-centered Lutheran university,” serves more than 6,000 students at its campus in suburban River Forest. It’s one of eight institutions in the national Concordia University System.
Addison Hall in the Concordia University Chicago campus at River Forest on Aug. 14, 2019.
Addison Hall in the Concordia University Chicago campus at River Forest on Aug. 14, 2019. (Antonio Perez / Chicago Tribune)
During an online forum with students Monday night, Concordia-Chicago President Russell Dawn said the decisions were finalized by the Board of Regents on Dec. 11 and that they follow a two-year “prioritization” process that evaluated academic programs and the allocation of resources.
“It was a long and challenging process,” Dawn said during the event, which a Tribune reporter watched. “It involved people from a variety of areas across the institution. It involved a great deal of data. We actually had consultants come in and help us put together the data we would need in order to do a really thorough job of it.”
Though the process was underway before the pandemic, new costs for adapting to remote learning and other pandemic-related expenses required Concordia to act quickly, Dawn said. Without making any changes, Dawn said, school leaders predicted financial crisis in two to three years.
But some students questioned why the process wasn’t more transparent and felt blindsided by the changes, which they said were communicated for the first time in a school email Friday.
Esmeralda Torres, a senior studying business, said the news came as a shock to many of her peers and that she was disappointed by the outcome. She said the ongoing program review was not widely known among students.
Torres, 20, of California, said she first learned about the situation because of complaints on social media, before the school sent out the formal message.
“A lot of people were upset, and I don’t blame them,” she said Tuesday. “I have a lot of respect and admiration for the faculty members at Concordia, and at the end of the day, they are not in control of what’s going on.”
Faculty members, however, were working behind the scenes to resist the plans, or at least improve their options.
In a Nov. 12 letter, the faculty senate raised three key concerns about the prioritization process to university leadership, according to a copy obtained by the Tribune. The letter detailed their reservations about “the suspension of the institution’s responsibility to uphold tenure, the termination of faculty during the height of a global pandemic, and the intermixing of finances with religious-based decisions of who to let go.”
The employees also requested a “respectful” severance package, honoring years of service, that allowed instructors to stay in their positions through May.
A terminated faculty member contacted by the Tribune this week declined an interview, saying she feared she would lose her health insurance and severance benefits for speaking publicly. She said her last day of work will be Jan. 4 and that her severance is equal to two weeks of pay per year of employment.
Matanyi, the school spokesman, declined to comment on whether the severance packages include a nondisclosure agreement, citing employee confidentiality. Instead, he shared a statement sent to alumni that described the changes as “extraordinarily difficult” but necessary for the school to “navigate a challenging higher education landscape and ensure that we are able to thrive in a crowded marketplace.”
Samantha Arreguin, a recent Concordia-Chicago alumnus, said she is in contact with faculty members and speaking on their behalf since they are restricted from talking with media.
Arreguin, who graduated in 2018, said administrators haven’t publicized which faculty members were let go but there’s an unofficial list circulating online.
“They reached out because their biggest concern is that students are not aware of what’s going on,” Arreguin said.
This isn’t the first controversy to flare up at Concordia-Chicago involving the Board of Regents.
In August 2019, a board member accused of posting offensive comments about women and minorities on social media left his role after his alleged conduct drew scrutiny. Some faculty members shared screenshots of the comments in question but the former board member, Eric Arno Hiller, has not publicly addressed them.
After more than 2,880 people signed an online petition calling for his removal, which was created by concerned alumni, Hiller departed from the board without explanation from the school.
This fall, Concordia-Chicago saw record enrollment of 6,490 students — the majority in graduate programs — and offered solely remote classes this fall because of the pandemic.
Some of the influx might have resulted from the closure of Concordia University Portland in Oregon last spring. Graduate students in some Portland programs were allowed to complete their degrees at Concordia-Chicago.
Portland State University
Portland State University is a public university founded in 1946 in Portland, Oregon. PSU offers more than 70 master’s programs, more than 30 graduate certificate programs, and 18 doctoral programs. The most popular majors chosen to study are Liberal Arts and Humanities, Psychology, Public Health, Social Science Research Methods, Business, and Criminal Justice and Safety Studies. Portland State University provides students with the opportunity to gain experience through internships and community-based projects in their chosen fields of study. This school also features an award-winning curriculum providing small class sizes and peer mentoring for each first-year student. Students also participate in Senior Capstones, which places them into their field using their knowledge and skills learned in the classroom to create community projects. In 2019, Portland State University rated fourth for best colleges in OR that are public, eighth for most liberal colleges in America, 20 for best colleges in America, and 32 for most innovative schools. Students have the opportunity to pursue certificates, undergraduate, and graduate degree programs online in several different subjects if they do not have time to attend a traditional classroom setting.
University of Oregon
The University of Oregon is a public university founded in 1876 in Eugene, Oregon. U of O is well-known for its research efforts and dedication to teaching. This school is part of the Association of American Universities, which consists of 62 top-notch research universities in the nation. The University of Oregon has nine schools, over 300 academic programs, and more than 3,000 undergraduate courses. In 2019, this college ranked 1st for best public colleges in Oregon, 19th for best college food in America, 31st for most liberal colleges in America, 64th for best colleges for veterans, and 33rd for best college athletics in America. The most popular academic programs at this college are Business, Social Science Research Methods, Psychology, Economics, Physiology and Pathology, Advertising, and Political Science and Government. Additionally, this school offers over 170 online courses as well as a completely online master’s degree program in Sports Product Management. There are not currently any undergraduate degree programs that can be taken entirely online, but portions of degrees can be earned with online classes.
Oregon Institute of Technology
Oregon Institute of Technology is a public college founded in 1947 in Klamath Falls, Oregon. This school taught America’s first undergraduate program in renewable energy engineering, so sustainability and conservation are important to it. OIT even provides clubs and internships focused on sustainability at the Oregon Renewable Energy Center. If you are looking to get involved in snowboarding, deep-sea fishing, and skydiving, Oregon Institute of Technology has several different student organizations and an Outdoor Program that plans these fun activities. In 2019, OIT ranked 2nd in best value colleges in Oregon, 37th for best colleges for Information Technology in America, 5th for regional colleges West, second in top public schools, and 35th for engineering programs. The most popular majors chosen at this school are Sonography and Ultrasound Technician, Dental Hygiene, Medical Technician, Computer Engineering Technician, and Mechanical Engineering. Oregon Institute also offers the flexibility of earning degrees online for convenience. There are two associate degree programs, 12 bachelor’s degree programs, and two master’s degree programs currently offered online in different areas of study.
Warner Pacific University Professional and Graduate Studies
Warner Pacific University is a private Christian college located in Portland, Oregon. This university is one of the best schools in Oregon, offering beneficial adult degrees and graduate programs. The adult and graduate degree programs offered are created solely for working professionals to be able to earn an education. These programs consist of mainly online and evening courses to fit into working individuals’ busy schedules. These degree programs will help you thrive in your current career or help you explore other options for a new one.
WPU offers one night a week classes, courses that help you graduate quickly, and monthly start dates to begin your education anytime you would like. These programs were formed in 1989 for professionals seeking to fit an education around their busy lifestyles. While learning at this university, students can continue working their full-time schedules. The adult degree programs offered are Accounting, Business Administration, Criminal Justice and Criminology, General Studies, Health Care Administration, Organizational Dynamics, Paraprofessional Educators, Psychology and Human Development, and RN to BSN. The graduate degrees offered are Business Administration (MBA), Education, Human Services, Management, and Education.
Northwest Christian University
Northwest Christian University is a private university founded in 1895 in Eugene, Oregon, and is rooted in the Christian faith. NCU prepares students to continue their education for graduate school or have a successful career after graduation. At this school, education and faith play a huge part in the mission. In 2019, it ranked 75th for regional universities West. The most popular degree programs studied at Northwest Christian University are Business, Liberal Arts and Humanities, Elementary Education, Nursing Administration, and Accounting. This school features traditional undergraduate and graduate programs as well as adult degree programs offered online and in the evening so that, if needed, you can earn your degree on your own schedule with options and flexibility to take classes online. Classes begin every eight weeks for adult degree programs to offer more flexibility and convenience. If you do not want to wait until the Fall or Spring semester, you may take courses from the comfort of your own home. The adult degree programs offered at NCU are Accounting, Business Administration, Interdisciplinary Studies, Psychology, Forensic Psychology, Teacher Education, RN to BSN, and RN to MSN.
Western Oregon University
Western Oregon University is a public university founded in 1856 in Monmouth, Oregon. This university is Oregon’s oldest public university, and it works with elementary, middle, and high schools and community colleges to get students ready for success. WOU provides students with resources for a successful life and to help them contribute to society. In 2019, Western Oregon University ranked 47th for safest college campuses in America, 63rd for regional universities west, 32nd for best colleges for veterans, and 18th for top public schools. Popular majors studied at this college are Business, Psychology, Education, Liberal Arts, Humanities, Criminal Justice, Law Enforcement Administration, and Public Health Education. This college offers master’s degrees and teacher certification online as well. Its goal is to reach students wherever they are for these programs. Additionally, Western Oregon University is forming an online learning professional learning community. This learning community will come up with suggestions to improve their online teaching continually.
Eastern Oregon University
Eastern Oregon University is a public university founded in 1929 in La Grande, Oregon. This university works with students to prepare them for entering the workforce after college. At this school, you can personalize your education to meet your goals. Classes are flexible and able to be taken on campus or online. In 2019, it ranked 96th for regional universities West and 65th for the safest college campuses in America. Most popular undergraduate degrees studied at this college are Business, Education, Liberal Arts and Humanities, Physical Education Teaching and Coaching, and Social Sciences. The online majors offered at Eastern Oregon University are Anthropology and Sociology, Business Administration, Communication, Computer Science, Early Childhood Education, Economics, Emergency Medical Services Administration, English and Writing, Fire Services Administration, History, Integrative Studies, Politics and Economics, Physical Activity and Health, Psychology, and Public Administration. Programs at this university will provide guidance and ease to help students through online education.
As the first university in the West, Willamette has inspired students to lead lives of significance for more than 175 years. And as the Northwest’s premier private university, our future is what drives us to be the best we can be.
By encouraging innovation and collaboration across academic disciplines, Willamette produces graduates who excel as 21st-century thinkers in a complex, rapidly changing world.
Willamette’s motto, “Not unto ourselves alone are we born,” is a guiding principle. Students continually turn their passion into action at the capitol on campus, across the street and around the globe.
No other college or university in the Pacific Northwest offers such direct access to state policymaking. Only a crosswalk away, the Oregon State Capitol provides another set of labs and classrooms for our students, whether they’re interning for legislators, conducting research in the Oregon State Archives or working side-by-side with the state’s top scientists and economists.
Devoted to offering a Christ-centered environment since its founding 125 years ago, Bushnell University encourages students to pursue wisdom, nurture faith, and champion service. Here, students answer God’s call in their lives and prepare to make a positive difference through career, family, church, and community.
Nestled in Oregon’s stunning Willamette Valley, Bushnell is located in Eugene, Oregon. From campus, it’s a short trip to the beaches of the Pacific Ocean, the fresh snow of the Cascades, or the cool waters of dozens of streams, rivers, waterfalls, and lakes.
Bushnell offers over 50 majors, concentrations, and minors to choose from, ranging from Business, Education, Music, Psychology, Pre-Medicine, Pre-Law, Software Engineering, and Youth Ministry. Bushnell’s athletic program competes in the NAIA.
Pacific University Oregon
Pacific University is a diverse learning community offering a unique combination of nationally recognized undergraduate, graduate and professional programs in the arts and sciences, education, business, optometry and the health professions.
Pacific’s focus on teaching and learning in a close nurturing environment leads to genuine transformation in students’ lives.
About one in four of our students — from freshmen to future doctors — are the first in their families to attend college. Each experience greater socioeconomic growth as a result of their educations, compared with peers at other colleges in the PNW.
Our students mix their rigorous academic experiences with meaningful research, community engagement and life experiences, helping them become successful and active citizens and leaders.
We put a premium on small classes and personal attention. We want our students to call Pacific “home” and with so many programs waiting for you – we cannot wait for you to join our Boxer Family!