LBCC unveils major gifts, capital campaign program

A vision of Linn-Benton Community College for the next decade.

That’s what LBCC President John Carnahan said a proposed major gift and planned giving campaign will provide the college as it enters its 30th year of service.

Carnahan told Sweet Home residents Wednesday morning that the changing face of the state’s tax structure and financial support of community colleges has prompted the campaign.

“We have a vision of a public-private partnership,” Carnahan said. “We are having to rely on ingenuity and new resources.”

Area residents passed a bond measure last fall earmarked for infrastructure improvements on the main campus as well as at outlying education centers.

Wednesday’s meeting was the second of two held at the Jim Riggs Community Center. It was emcees by Bill Rauch, East Linn task force chairman. Task force members include Don Hopkins, Bob Pascalar and John Davis.

The college’s vision for a planned giving campaign is for $14.3 million spread out over at least five years.

Numerous facets of the college would be positively impacted by the campaign, task force members told the public.

Some of those areas of impact would include the addition of scholarships throughout the academic spectrum.

Academic enhancement such as endowing chairs in academic areas.

Capital projects such as enhancements to the performing arts center, library, student center, athletic fields, fitness center, conference center, etc.

Cultural and artistic enhancements such an art and sculpture fund, a cultural series endowment, faculty in residence or guest artists fund.

LBCC means many things to many people, Carnahan said.

“There is a heritage to LBCC,” Carnahan said. “This is a community-oriented situation. The community built LBCC. More than 50 percent of Sweet Home and Lebanon high school graduates, who go on to college, attend LBCC. We have a unique partnership with Oregon State University that provides for dual enrollment.”

High tech industries and health care facilities look to LBCC to provide training programs.

“An education at LBCC is affordable and we’re trying to keep it affordable,” Carnahan said. “We serve not only young people but people who need a second chance. We cannot depend solely on tax funds to continue being able to meet those needs.”

Carnahan said the college’s board of education is sensitive about raising tuition costs each year but since one-quarter of the school’s budget is derived from tuition, it must keep up with inflation of impact services.

The major gifts campaign concept began about two years ago, Carnahan said.

“I challenged our staff to look out 10 years and envision the college’s needs,” Carnahan said.

Staff returned a wish list that would cost about $75 million. Voters passed a $19 million bond.

“About 65 percent of our students receive financial aid,” Carnahan said. “We still had $7.5 million in unmet needs.”

Carnahan said that over the last decade, the balance between scholarships and loans has shifted from 60 percent scholarships and 40 percent loans to now 60 percent loans and 40 percent scholarships.

“Many students today are starting off after college with a huge debt because of student loans,” Carnahan said.

Information gleaned from community meetings in Sweet Home, Lebanon, Albany and Corvallis will be compiled and brought back to the communities on October 10, Carnahan said.

Some facts about LBCC


LBCC was founded in December 1966 as a two year public college to serve the educational needs of residents in Linn and Benton counties.

Linn and Benton county voters approved formation of the Linn-Benton Community College district in a December 6, 1966 referendum by a vote of 3,742 to 1,702.

Dr. Eldon Guy Schager was named the college’s first president in April 1967. A full-time staff of 12 prepared for the evening-only classes held in 30 leased or borrowed facilities throughout the district.

The first daytime classes were held in September. Tuition was $60 per term with 283 full-time equivalent students.

In February 1970, voters approved a bond issue to build a permanent campus for the college. By the end of summer, eight portable classrooms were moved to the current LBCC site two miles south of Albany. Construction of permanent buildings began. By fall term, enrollment was up 33% over the previous year.

By October 18, 1974, the newly completed 11-building LBCC campus was dedicated. Takena Hall was completed five years. The Family Resource Center was built in 1988 and the WEB building was constructed in 1992.

About LBCC students

LBCC ranks sixth of 17 community colleges in Oregon in terms of student enrollment.

An average of 25% of local high school graduates attend LBCC directly after graduation.

An average of 26,509 different students take at least one class a year at LBCC. Of those, 4,635 attend full-time and 6,524 attend part time.

Some 89 percent of full time students are age 35 or younger.

During 1998-1999, some 39 percent of LBCC students lived in Benton county and 44 percent lived in Linn county.

About LBCC staff

Some 6.6 percent of LBCC staff are in management, 31.6 percent are support staff, 21.9 percent are full-time faculty and 39.9 percent are part-time faculty.

Some 64% of staff members have been with the college more than 10 years.

About funding

Total budget is $61.2 million, of which $33,628,798 is general fund.

56 percent of the budget comes from the state.

22.7 percent is derived from tuition and fees.

15.7 percent comes from local property taxes.

Financial aid

LBCC students receive $6.8 million in financial aid each year.