This just in from FOPA (friend of Portland Architecture) Matt Janssen: Although the effort has been in the works on and off for years, this coming weekend, Portland State University kick starts the process of becoming only the second accredited architectural program in the state of Oregon. The National Architectural Accrediting Board is sending a team to begin the multi-year long evaluation process whereby PSU could/should have a graduate program in place in the fall of 2009 with full accreditation coming in the summer of 2011.
There will a reception (read: free beverages and food) occurring this upcoming Monday at 6:00pm at the AIA Center For Architecture at 403 NW 11th Avenue. As Matt reminds us, "A strong show of support from the architecture community would go a long way in letting the NAAB team know that you/we believe in the creation of a second venue for architectural education within Oregon."
With a new Portland campus in Old Town, I'll bet the University of Oregon isn't too keen on PSU giving them competition with an accredited school of their own. But even as the Biggest Ducks Fan In the History of Humankind, I'd argue that PSU getting accreditation is a great move.
Although ours is increasingly a city becoming known for its quality design, Portland lacks enough accredited architecture schooling. PSU isn't ever going to be a top American architecture school, most likely, but it'd help the overall case for design here to have more kids able to start and finish their architectural education here in town - without having to spend time in Eugene or elsewhere. I hope PSU gets its accreditation, that UO doesn't fight it, and then they play in football with a 63-2 Ducks victory.