Home | Board of Trustees | Presidential Search

Presidential Search


Oregon Tech Trustees name U. of Toledo Engineering Dean Nagi Naganathan its 7th President

Nov. 16, 2016, WILSONVILLE, OR.- The Oregon Institute of Technology (Oregon Tech) Board of Trustees named Dr. Nagi Naganathan as its seventh president, following a national search begun this spring. Dr. Naganathan is currently Dean of the College of Engineering at the University of Toledo, a position he has held since 2003. Naganathan succeeds Dr. Jay Kenton who has been Interim President since July 1 after former president Dr. Chris Maples chose not to renew his contract earlier this year. Trustees voted unanimously to appoint Dr. Naganathan during a Board meeting held at its Wilsonville Campus.

Naganathan is expected to begin his tenure as president of Oregon Tech in the spring of 2017. He will lead a polytechnic university that has seen record enrollment and degrees in recent years, reaching 5,232 students at all of its campuses and sites in fall 2016, and consistently ranking high in graduates’ return on investment. With three campuses – Klamath Falls, Wilsonville and Online – and other delivery sites, Oregon Tech is growing its footprint in Oregon with degrees not offered elsewhere in the state and often the region, that are meeting industry demand in engineering, technology, healthcare and other applied fields.

Full press release available here.

The Oregon Institute of Technology (Oregon Tech) Board of Trustees voted March 18, 2016 during a Board meeting to accept the wishes of President Chris Maples to not renew his contract, which ended on June 30, 2016. In addition the Board voted to begin seeking new leadership of the university.
After this transition, the Board appointed Dr. Jay Kenton as interim president to serve during several months of a search process for a permanent president. Dr. Jay Kenton became Interim President of Oregon Tech on July 1, 2016 from his previous role as Interim Vice President for Finance and Administration. Dr. Kenton has held various roles in higher education including Interim President at Eastern Oregon University, and Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration at the Oregon University System.
 2016 Schedule of events:
July 14
Search Committee Teleconference
August 11
Search Committee Teleconference
September 14 Search Committee Teleconference
October 6
Search Committee Meeting - initial candidate review
Week of October 17 First round of interviews with Search Committee and candidates
October 31-Nov 1
November 7-8
On-campus (Klamath Falls and Wilsonville) interviews with finalists
November 10
Search Committee meeting to recommend top candidate(s) to the Board of Trustees
November 15-16
Board of Trustees Meeting (Wilsonville)

Board of Trustees News

Oregon Tech Trustees approve new BS degree in professional writing, discuss factors impacting tuition and budgets for fall 2017

by User Not Found | Feb 24, 2017
Budget development process for 2017-18 is underway, Bachelor of Science in Professional Writing approved unanimously, the OMIC will be able to move forward later this year and open its doors

The Oregon Institute of Technology (Oregon Tech) Board of Trustees met February 23 and 24 at its Klamath Falls Campus to review the tuition setting process and relationship to the state budget, approve a new degree program in professional writing to move forward to the next step, receive an update on the Oregon Manufacturing Innovation Center (OMIC) planned opening, and to re-elect Dr. Lisa Graham and Dr. Steve Sliwa as Board Chair and Vice-chair, respectively.

Tuition and Budget     Vice President for Finance and Administration, Brian Fox, provided information on the factors impacting tuition setting, budget, and institutional priorities. Fox noted that the finance officers from Oregon’s public universities are meeting with the Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) and legislators on budget hydraulics and forecasts to help their Funding and Achievement Subcommittee understand the budget pressures affecting universities. These include continued increases in costs to fund biennial PERS costs, as well as healthcare increases in PEBB. Because of these costs that are not within the control of the public universities in Oregon, institutions are estimating tuition increases for fall 2017 that could exceed 10%, depending on the funding level provided by the state, which won’t be known until late June. The current biennial budget for 2015-17 is at the funding levels that the universities received a decade ago (2007). Without adjusting for inflation, institutions are still catching up in rebuilding core areas that support students once they get onto campus. Fox said that Oregon Tech is in a relatively strong position because we continue to experience enrollment increases and strong student and market demand for hands-on, applied programs.

Fox noted that Oregon Tech’s budget development process for 2017-18 is underway. This includes developing a revenue forecast, defining institutional needs, and establishing a baseline budget, with some assumptions about state funding and tuition levels, that can then be presented to the Board as a recommended budget. Some key ways that the university is increasing revenues to support students and operations is to strengthen growing in-demand programs while making investments focused on enrollment and on increasing completion rates. The balance between making key investments in a period with potentially lower state funding will likely bring about a deficit budget at Oregon Tech for a period of time until those investments come to fruition.

Regarding the tuition setting process at Oregon Tech, Fox noted that public forums are held on each campus in order to hear from stakeholders; and the Tuition Recommendation Committee – which includes students, faculty and staff -- meets multiple times to determine a recommendation to the President. Oregon Tech’s policy revolves around creating affordable access, bringing in a diverse group of students, being able to offer strong degree programs, supporting the long-term fiscal integrity of the university, and maintaining campus infrastructure.

New Program     LeAnn Maupin, Interim Provost and Dean of the College of Health, Arts, and Sciences, presented follow up information on the proposed new degree program, a Bachelor of Science in Professional Writing. Maupin summarized the program, which has a technical and scientific underpinning that matches Oregon Tech’s specific mission. The program focuses on professional, technical, business, and scientific writing; and prepares individuals for academic positions or for professional careers as writers, editors, researchers, and related careers in business, government, nonprofit sector, and the professions. The new degree will include instruction in theories of rhetoric, writing, and digital literacy; document design, production, and management; visual rhetoric and multimedia composition; usability testing; web writing; and publishing in print and electronic media. After discussion by Board members, the program was approved unanimously, with a recommendation to forward to the Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) for the final approval step. Assuming that approval, the program is expected to launch in fall 2017.

OMIC Update     Laura McKinney, Vice President for Oregon Tech’s Wilsonville campus, provided an update on the progress of the Oregon Manufacturing Innovation Center. She noted that once the Membership Agreements are completed and signed, that the OMIC will be able to move forward later this year and open its doors. Oregon Tech manages the landlord functions and is coordinating getting the site furnished and managing equipment donations with current partners; Boeing and others have identified equipment for placement in OMIC. To date, there are seven industry partners, as well as Oregon State University and Portland State University. Approvals for egress and ingress access into the site is underway with property owners.

McKinney noted that there is work underway to apply for a grant with the federal Economic Development Agency, which would fund infrastructure needs, including roads and building equipment; she noted that OMIC is working with the City of Scappoose and Oregon Business Development Department on the grant. Legislative engagement and support continues to be strong, with wonderful advocacy from Sen. Betsy Johnson, and support from Congresswoman Bonamici. The business plan is currently being developed, and will be reviewed by the OMIC Board. She said she is encouraged by the commitment of industry partners, including donations of equipment, and active engagement at board and technology road-mapping meetings. The Board commended the Oregon Tech OMIC team for all of their efforts to move this development forward quickly; and noting that it will have a profound affect in Scappoose.