Alumni ignite creative ideas, solutions

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERANearly 179,000 people have earned a PSU degree. That’s a lot of people who are driven to make a difference in a world that needs them desperately. Here are two quick stories about how PSU alumni are boldly putting their values into action.

With COVID-19 testing kits in short supply outside of the Metro area, Portland State University alumnus Jeremy Filip found a way to develop an interim test for Southern Oregon.

Filip drew upon his experience working under Ken Stedman, a biology professor and virologist, and modified an instrument at Asante Lab in Medford to begin testing patients for hospitals in the area. As Stedman told PSU News

“… Jeremy was working on determining the sequence of some new viruses that we had discovered. This turned out to be very difficult because of how weird these viruses are,” said Stedman, who runs PSU’s Extreme Virus Lab. “So Jeremy had to try lots of different techniques to solve the problem. This kind of problem solving apparently has served him well, so that he was able to establish COVID-19 testing in Southern Oregon.”

In another example of PSU alumni supporting our community, a group of 2019 MBA alumni developed a pro bono enterprise called the Portland Business Support Project to help the city’s economy stay afloat.

By offering free consulting, the collective of more than 20 prominent professionals in finance, human relations, lending, operations and management is helping about 20 small businesses in fields including law, hospitality and construction.

“Sustainability and giving back to the businesses around us are the foundations of the PSU MBA program, and we wanted to do something positive,” project volunteer Jennifer Greenberg said.

I cannot tell you how much it cheers us at PSU to see our alumni taking on the challenges of today with creativity, determination and optimism. Have your own story to share about alumni making a difference? Please share it in the comments, and thank you for being a part of PSU.

Author: President Stephen Percy

Hi, and thank you for visiting! I have led Portland State University since May 2019. Before that, I served as dean of PSU's College of Urban & Public Affairs.

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