Higher Education Coordinating Commission: Agency Subdivisions

 Office of Academic Policy and Authorization

Address: 3225 25th St. SE, Salem 97302
Phone: 503-378-5690
Fax: 503-378-8395
Web: https://www.oregon.gov/HigherEd/APA​
Contact: Veronica Dujon, Director
Statutory Authority: ORS Chapter 345,
348.594–348.615, ORS Chapter 350, 350.085

Duties and Responsibilities: This office oversees two primary areas: the quality, integrity and diversity of private postsecondary programs in Oregon for the benefit of students and consumers; and public university academic policy and program approval. The private postsecondary units consist of the Office of Degree Authorization (ODA) and the Private Career Schools Licensing Unit (PCS), responsible for policy and regulatory action that affect private institutions serving Oregonians.

The ODA authorizes degree-granting private institutions, offering academic programs in Oregon or to Oregon students from outside the state. The PCS Licensing Unit licenses private career schools in Oregon. Both units also provide educational leadership, technical assistance, student and consumer protection and serve as conveners of private institutions and partners in Oregon. The office is also the portal entity for distance education offerings in Oregon through the multistate State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement. The public university academic policy unit provides academic coordination related to Oregon’s seven public universities, including coordination of the academic program approval process, student complaints, statewide initiatives and legislative directives to enhance postsecondary pathways and student success.

Office of Community Colleges and Workforce Development

Address: 3225 25th St. SE, Salem 97302
Phone: 503-378-8648
Fax: 503-378-8434
Contact: Patrick Crane, Director
Statutory Authority: ORS 326.051

Duties and Responsibilities: The office provides coordination, leadership and resources to Oregon’s network of 17 locally-governed community colleges, as well as adult basic skills providers, high school equivalency program providers and other partners. It has responsibility for coordinating community college programs and services, developing biennial budget recommendations for the community college funding and capital projects, allocation of state funding, coordination of the academic approval processes, and reporting to the Legislature. The office provides statewide administration of the Adult Education and Family Literacy components of the federally funded Workforce Investment and Opportunity Act; the Carl Perkins Career and Technical Education Act programs; and the Oregon High School Equivalency General Educational Development (GED®) programs.

Office of Postsecondary Finance and Capital

Address: 3225 25th St. SE, Salem 97302
Phone: 503-378-5690
Fax: 503-378-8395
Contact: Jim Pinkard, Director, HECC
Statutory Authority: ORS Chapter 350

Duties and Responsibilities: This office provides fiscal coordination related to Oregon’s public postsecondary institutions, including financial planning, fiscal reporting and analysis, capital bond funding administration, the allocation of state funding to public post-secondary institutions, and biennial budget recommendations. The office prepares budget recommendations to the commission for the Public University Support Fund, Public University State Programs, Public University Statewide Public Services, Community College Support Fund, as well as university and community college capital investments.

Office of Research and Data
Address: 3225 25th St. SE, Salem 97302
Phone: 503-947-5701
Fax: 503-378-8395
Contact: Amy Cox, Director
Statutory Authority: ORS 351.735

Duties and Responsibilities: The office collects, analyzes and reports research and data on postsecondary education and training, including data on students and their characteristics, courses, enrollments, academic performance, completion and academic pathways to comply with state and federal reporting requirements and to inform decisions on the postsecondary education enterprise. The office also includes administration of the State Longitudinal Data System, which links data about students as they move from kindergarten through postsecondary education and employment.​

Office of Student Access and Completion

Address: 1500 Valley River Dr., Suite 100, Eugene 97401
Phone: 541-687-7400; Toll-free: 1-800-452-8807
Fax: 541-687-7414
Contact: Juan Báez-Arévalo, Director
Statutory Authority: ORS Chapter 348
Duties and Responsibilities: The Office of Student Access and Completion (OSAC) administers several financial aid programs for students attending college or other postsecondary education and training programs. These include state and federally-funded grants and privately-funded scholarships. In addition, OSAC promotes college access and affordability for Oregonians through ASPIRE, a college and career mentoring program, and statewide community outreach events.

OSAC’s largest financial aid programs are the Oregon Opportunity Grant (OOG), the Oregon Promise Grant and the OSAC Scholarship application. The OOG is the state’s largest need-based grant program and helps low-income students afford eligible Oregon colleges and universities. Oregon Promise is for recent high school and GED® test graduates to help cover tuition costs at any Oregon community college. The OSAC Scholarship application includes more than 600 scholarships, which students can access through the single application. These scholarships target a variety of student groups and are funded by private donors, foundations and employers. OSAC also administers grant programs supporting specific populations such as foster youth, students raising children and Oregon National Guard members.

Office of Workforce Investments

Address: 3225 25th St. SE, Salem 97302 
Phone: 503-947-5949
Fax: 503-947-1246
Contact: Karen Humelbaugh, Director
Statutory Authority: ORS 660.300–660.364

Duties and Responsibilities: The Office of Workforce Investments (OWI) is one of several state entities focused on employment opportunities, skill attainment and work-related training statewide. OWI works in partnership with the Oregon’s Employment Department, Department of Human Services, Commission for the Blind and others to provide leadership to Oregon’s workforce system. It is responsible for convening partnerships, supporting and providing technical assistance to the Workforce and Talent Development Board (WTDB) and local workforce development boards, and implementing the governor’s vision and the WTDB strategic plan. 

The HECC is the administrative entity for federally-funded programs authorized by Titles I and II of the U.S. Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, including Youth, Adult and Dislocated Worker programs and Federal Discretionary grants, for which the HECC provides program and fiscal oversight as well as policy direction and technical assistance to state and local partners. 

The OWI also administers and supports the Oregon Youth Corps, providing grant funding, training and resources to youth-serving agencies; Oregon Volunteers, supporting statewide service and volunteer efforts and providing funds for the state-based AmeriCorps program; and the STEM Investment Council, supporting STEM education initiatives ​