New Oregon Quarterly showcases UO’s move to the Big Ten conference

Think the best thing about the University of Oregon’s move to the Big Ten conference will be watching the Ducks thrash Ohio State and Michigan on Saturdays? Think again.

The UO will join a conference consortium that provides scores of academic resources to the Big Ten’s 18 schools. That group is the Big Ten Academic Alliance, and in the summer Oregon Quarterlyavailable now — you’ll explore its value as part of a feature package on the UO joining the Big Ten.

As an alliance member, the UO will be able to tap assets that include leadership groups, one of the largest library collections in the world, and a network for the study and preservation of less commonly taught world languages. During their tenures at Big Ten schools, UO President Karl Scholz and Provost Chris Long worked closely with peers in the alliance and have become strong proponents of the group.

“Others have tried to replicate the alliance, but no one else has,” Scholz said. “There’s a spirit of cooperation among these large, mostly public research institutions that gives the alliance a coherence. People have seen the value of it, so they buy into it.”

The move to the Big Ten, which happens in August, also means more opportunities to partner on research. Scientists at the UO and their Big Ten counterparts have long teamed up on projects; OQ’s profiles of UO-Big Ten pairings — featuring UO faculty members Elliot Berkman, Adrianne Huxtable, Leslie Leve, Daniel Lowd and Sara Schmitt — spotlight work that will help babies breathe, kids learn and smokers kick the habit.

So, who’s in the Big Ten? OQ’s Big Ten interactive map offers a digital, coast-to-coast tour of the UO’s new neighbors, with mini-profiles and images of each school sure to spark pride when you see the company Ducks will be keeping. Rounding out OQ’s Big Ten coverage: Raphe Beck, executive director of the UO Alumni Association, scouts the new league, wintry conference destinations, and other peculiarities of the move, tongue squarely in cheek.

If you’d prefer to stay closer to home, join OQ’s tour of the Eugene campus to discover some of its 4,000 trees. A photo essay features exceptional examples of native and unusual trees and their aesthetic, environmental and historical significance to the university community.

Also in the summer OQ: Alumnus Cam Burks takes you inside the world of being a special agent for the U.S. government; biologist Patrick Phillips leads an initiative studying root causes of aging and novel ideas on ways to prolong health; undergraduates embark on transformative summer adventures; and a new OQ video introduces you to Keyen Singer, who is balancing a major in environmental studies and tribal traditions as Miss Indigenous UO.