Courtesy University of Portland
Fr. Mark Poorman, president of the University of Portland, addresses crowd at annual luncheon Feb. 28. He discussed building projects and increased student-faculty research projects.

Courtesy University of Portland

Fr. Mark Poorman, president of the University of Portland, addresses crowd at annual luncheon Feb. 28. He discussed building projects and increased student-faculty research projects.

Parkes Kendrick, a University of Portland senior math major, was invited by several professors to join in their research. A soccer and track star as well as a high-flying student, Kendrick jumped in. She studied brain samples to get clues about degenerative disease. Then, in a dream come true, she was able to apply math to biology in a project on interpersonal violence.

“I have clarity because of all these experiences and I am certain that I want to dedicate my life to research,” she told a crowd Feb. 28 at a University of Portland luncheon. 

Kendrick’s progress is a sign of more student-faculty partnerships at the Catholic college in North Portland. The M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust has funded a dozen projects that have students joining in research.

Other examples include a look at the brain chemistry of addiction and depression, DNA analysis of bones from an ancient Roman city and a look at possible damaging runoff from eco-roofs.

At the annual State of UP luncheon, Holy Cross Father Mark Poorman, U.P. president unveiled plans for Dundon-Berchtold Hall, a new academic center with more than 63,000 square feet of classrooms, offices, auditorium, career center, and an institute for ethics.

The hall will provide needed academic space for the campus. As the student population at the University has grown 30 percent over the past decade, classroom space has remained the same. The University plans to begin demolition of Howard Hall, a former recreation center, in the late spring, with construction of the new building on that site starting in late summer.

Just completed is Lund Family Hall, a dormitory on the north end of campus.

Father Poorman called it part of the “intentional deepening of the residential character at U.P.” He said in the tradition of Holy Cross colleges, dormitories are places where students “develop habits of mind and habits of heart.”