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2018 Highlights

photo of Franz Campus

35-acre riverfront property named Franz Campus

Rev. Mark L. Poorman, C.S.C. announced that the river campus below The Bluff would be named the Franz Campus to honor the incredible generosity of Bob Franz ’41 CP and Elsie Franz Finley. Watch a video about Bob and Elsie.


April 4-5, 2018 PilotsGive Giving Day

#PilotsGive, UP’s first 24-hour day of giving, declared a monumental success

In April, UP launched #PilotsGive, a first ever 24-hour day of giving meant to inspire the UP community, whether local or around the world, to come together for 24 hours to help make UP stronger. The initial goal of receiving gifts from 1,000 donors was met and exceeded with contributions made by 2,771 donors. At the end of the 24-hour period, a total of $683,263 was raised, with gifts received from regents, alumni, parents, employees, and friends, all united to support students.


Crowd of students wearing cap and gown

Largest UP graduating class in history earn degrees

UP celebrated its Commencement on May 6 with nearly 1,200 graduates earning degrees, making the Class of 2018 the largest graduating class in the University’s history. Watch the 2018 Commencement highlight video.


photo of Medina and Shillam

New deans appointed to College of Arts and Sciences and School of Nursing

Herbert A. Medina, Ph.D. was named dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, overseeing the College’s core curriculum education program in the liberal arts for all students at the University, as well as 15 departments offering 28 majors and 25 minors. Casey Shillam, Ph.D., was appointed dean of the School of Nursing after serving as the Interim Dean.

More about Medina >

More about Shillam >

photo of chalkboard with stars

UP received several top rankings in 2018

  • UP was ranked no. 18 in Forbes’ “Top 25 STEM Colleges of 2018”
  • UP was named best Oregon college for value by MONEY Magazine’s 2018-2019 Best Colleges rankings
  • UP was ranked the top university in Oregon in Kiplinger’s “Best College Values: Private Universities” for 2018
  • UP was ranked 6th in the West by the U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges rankings. UP was also ranked 3rd in the “Regional Universities – West” classification for “Best Undergraduate Teaching.” And rounding out the accolades, the Donald P. Shiley School of Engineering was ranked 26th nationally among engineering schools whose highest degree is a bachelor’s or master’s.
photo of Durham and Dexheimer

Katherine Phillips Durham ’88 and Brian Dexheimer ’84 inducted into Pamplin School of Business Hall of Fame

Durham and Dexheimer join 11 other Hall of Fame members. The Hall of Fame was created in 2009 when the Pamplin School of Business celebrated its 75th anniversary.


photo of Rami Nashashibi, Ph.D.

Rami Nashashibi, Ph.D., awarded 2018 Opus Prize for Chicago’s Inner-City Muslim Action Network

Nashashibi has been awarded the prestigious 2018 Opus Prize for his inspirational work as founder and director of the Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN) in Chicago, Illinois. IMAN is a nonprofit organization that fosters health, wellness, and healing in some of the Chicago’s most challenged neighborhoods.


graphic of UP Athletics wheel logo

Pilot athletics sent multiple teams to the NCAA Championships, experienced unprecedented levels of success

  • The men’s cross country team earned its third podium finish the past five years by finishing third at the 2018 NCAA Championships
  • The women’s cross country team had its best performance ever at the NCAA’s by placing 12th
  • The men’s soccer team advanced to the second round of the playoffs for the first time since 2009
  • Women’s soccer experienced immediate results on the pitch under the guidance of first-year head coach Michelle French, more than doubling the previous year’s win total by claiming 11 victories this fall
  • Volleyball won their first 12 matches of the season and earned a post-season berth for the first time in program history, reaching the quarterfinals of the 2018 National Invitational Volleyball Championship
  • University of Portland students Ian Hannah ’18 and Cyrus Maunakea ’19 received two nominations each in the 2018 College Awards section of the Northwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, and each won a Northwest Emmy® Award
  • Women's soccer alum Tiffeny Milbrett ’95 was named to the National Soccer Hall of Fame