Dear university leaders,

First and foremost, I hope you are well. The uncertain times now facing our society drive home how greatly we rely on each other. Through these challenges, we have grown together, adapted together and continued to find silver linings in the disruption together. I am certain that both the university and the Foundation will come out on the other side of this stronger and more innovative than ever before.

image of shawn scoville

Shawn Scoville
President & CEO
OSU Foundation

I am delighted to share this update on our work together to engage and secure philanthropic commitments from our community of alumni, parents and friends.

ballroom at the alumni center

Supporting the fight against COVID-19

I am impressed and encouraged to see OSU experts contributing in many ways — to local communities and to the global search for solutions. We are doing our best to share this good news and support these efforts.

  • The TRACE-COVID-19 study, which gathers timely and lifesaving information that is vital to helping slow the spread and minimize the impact of COVID-19, has received national coverage. The Foundation was proud to support our university colleagues’ work in securing the initial grants for the project. We are continuing conversations with potential donors to secure commitments for OSU’s expansion of this project to other communities. The ballroom at the CH2M HILL Alumni Center has also been converted into the call center (pictured above) where student volunteers and faculty have been answering community questions and undergoing trainings.

  • In addition, the Oregon State University Fast Response Respiration (OFRR) team, which has identified a pathway to produce more than 100,000 ventilation systems per month — equal to the total current U.S. supply of ventilator machines — is another project we are proud to promote. The Foundation is working closely with the OFRR team, and $500,000 to date has been committed thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor.

I am proud of the university-wide partnership that made this incredibly important work possible, and we in the Foundation and Alumni Association are honored to play a supporting role. Thank you for giving us good news to share about our university’s contributions in the fight against COVID-19.

beavers care image with campus florals

Beavers Care

Last month we launched Beavers Care, a university-wide initiative to provide critical emergency funding to students, faculty and staff facing new and overwhelming challenges. We participated in #GivingTuesdayNow on May 5, a global day of unity and giving related to COVID-19. And, I am pleased to report that more than $500,000 ($480,000 of which is in spendable cash) has been raised so far in support of Beavers Care from more than 1,000 donors, and we’re not done yet!

This week, we kicked off both a focused giving effort for faculty and staff, led by the OSU Loyal Committee, as well as a Trustee challenge led by Penny Atkins ’79 and five of her fellow OSU Foundation Trustees. The Trustees have committed $120,000 to the initiative and offer their gifts as a challenge to their fellow OSU-affiliated volunteers to join them in supporting this effort.

As a testament to our commitment to the Beavers Care initiative, the Foundation and Alumni Association staff are endeavoring to secure 100% participation from our own employees.

I’m grateful to my colleagues and to all of you who have participated by making a gift and sharing the initiative with your networks.

A special thank you to President Ray and our university vice presidents and other leaders for their remarkably generous commitments to Beavers Care and other auxiliary units; we are making a big difference for the OSU community when it is needed most. Thank you!

Digital engagement opportunities

To help the OSU community stay connected during this time, we quickly pivoted from in-person events and recently launched Knowledge Breaks, a new online webcast series coordinated by the Foundation and featuring some of OSU’s exceptional faculty. The Alumni Association also recently launched a new Beaver Lodge online hub to promote the university’s many lectures, webinars, COVID-19 resources and other OSUAA digital offerings. The Beaver Lodge and its weekly email help our more than 200,000 alumni all over the world engage with the university. And, between now and May 16, all members of the OSU community, both near and far, can take part in the Alumni Association’s OSU Digital Days of Service.

Social media – Let's partner to get the word out!

Our goal at the OSU Foundation is to support your efforts however we can. In today’s digital world, some of that support can come from amplifying the messages that your unit’s social media team publishes. We are happy to like and strategically share your social media content when appropriate on our social platforms. Just remember to tag Oregon State University, Oregon State University Foundation or Oregon State University Alumni Association to alert us. 

photo of ed ray

Presidential transition

Unfortunately, the pandemic caused us to revisit our plans for alumni and donors to celebrate and thank President Ray for his 17 years of leadership, as well as our plans to welcome Dr. and Mrs. Alexander. At this time, we are collaborating with university colleagues on virtual and in-person options for President Ray and Dr. Alexander.

There's still time to send a message to or make a gift in honor of President Ray.

Fundraising progress

Although our staff is working remotely, campaign planning remains on track, and our fundraisers have shifted from face-to-face visits to video meetings and phone calls. We also remain focused on our annual fundraising goal of $123 million. Between July 1, 2019, and April 30, 2020, donors gave $105,407,252 or 86% of our annual fundraising goal.

We know the university is relying on donor support now more than ever, and it motivates us to work even harder.

Our fundraisers report donors are interested in learning more about tax-wise planned gifts and options to make larger payments in the final year of multi-year pledges. We are grateful to our donors, including our many faculty and staff donors, for continuing to support their areas of interest at OSU during these challenging times.

image of Joyce Collin Furman Hall

Save the date


We are grateful to be part of such a caring community. Like you, we are finding innovative ways to get our work done. We are excited to be building a new future with all of you. See you on Zoom.



Shawn L. Scoville 
President & CEO, OSU Foundation