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School Notes: PSU raises tuition, salaries; BOLI apprenticeship conference; Prof. Laurence wins award; Camp Invention comes to Portland

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PSU raises tuition, professors’ salaries

Portland State University raised standard tuition by 3.7 percent March 31 beginning in the 2016-17 academic year. Annual tuition and fees for in-state undergraduates will now average about $8,337 per year.

The Board of Trustees approved the increases over the loud and disruptive protests of students who say they are being priced out of an education.

On April 5, the university also announced the rising cost of staff with the attainment of a four-year labor contract with the American Association of University Professors for its faculty and other staff. The contract came after 400 hours of interest-based bargaining, according to the university.

The contract guarantees a 2 percent salary increase for the first year and annual cost-of-living adjustments after that. Union members also will get salary market adjustments and sabbatical pay increases.

Peter Nickerson, chair of the board of trustees, said without tuition increases, the university would have to cut $6 million from the budget.

“Oregon ranks near the bottom nationally in state support of higher education, and we need to find alternatives that help make PSU more affordable for our students and future students,” he said in a news release.

BOLI hosts apprenticeship conference

The Bureau of Labor and Industries will host the 2016 Pacific Northwest Apprenticeship Education Conference in Portland as educators, industry associations, and apprenticeship sponsors from the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia meet and discuss how best to strengthen registered apprenticeship programs.

More than 300 attendees are expected at the event that will focus on four topics: nontraditional apprenticeships, education systems, government policy and construction trades apprenticeships.

The conference will be Tuesday, May 24, and Wednesday, May 25, at the DoubleTree Hilton Hotel and Conference Center. Visit: http://apprenticeshipconferences.com

PSU prof gets national award

Portland State University Graduate School of Education Curriculum and Instruction Assistant Professor Wendi Laurence won the Wendell G. Mohling Outstanding Aerospace Educator Award from the National Science Teachers Association on April 3.

The Park City, Utah, resident teaches online classes at PSU and has taught there since 2009.

The award recognizes a teacher with at least three years of experience for “excellence in the field of aerospace education.” The award includes an honorarium of $3,000, along with $2,000 toward her trip to the annual NSTA conference in Nashville, Tenn.

Laurence uses a puppet called Confuzzled and a Twitter account @createosity to engage students.

STEM summer camp comes to Portland

Camp Invention, a camp sponsored by the federal government as a way to increase science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) access, is coming to Rieke and Woodstock school locations June 27 to July 1.

Register children entering grades 1-6 online at campinvention.org. The cost is $220 per week, and scholarships are available.

This year’s Camp Invention curriculum is called Epic, inspired by experienced educators, inductees of the National Inventors Hall of Fame, and developed in partnership with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.