PULLMAN, Wash. — The Washington State University Board of Regents approved plans submitted by officials of WSU Vancouver and WSU Tri-Cities for expanded educational opportunities at the two campuses.

The regents acted during their regular meeting held Friday (Nov. 19) on the Pullman campus.

The self-study process was undertaken by the campuses in response to Substitute House Bill 2707, adopted by the Washington Legislature this year. Administrators on both campuses worked with business, education and civic leaders in their communities to put together their recommendations.

The WSU Vancouver plan calls for expanding the campus’s role to include the admission of as many as 200 freshmen in fall 2006; continued growth of upper-division, transfer and graduate-track enrollment; expansion of degree offerings in high-demand areas, including health and human services, high-tech and information sciences, education and business; continued focus on the campus’ research mission and a continuation of WSU Vancouver’s role as part of the WSU system.

The WSU Tri-Cities plan also called for enrollment growth and a move away from strictly upper-division and graduate-level courses to more comprehensive course offerings. Under the Tri-Cities plan, the campus would expand its enrollment; would continue to be part of the WSU system; would develop a stronger strategic alliance with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and would extend its primary service area to encompass more counties in its region.

The plans will now be forwarded to the Washington Higher Education Coordinating Board, which will make its recommendations to the Legislature.

In other action items, the board approved an agreement between WSU and Weyerhaeuser Co. concerning a 147-acre parcel of land in Bonney Lake. As a result of the agreement, Weyerhaeuser will take back a 147-acre site in the city of Bonney Lake now occupied by the university.

Weyerhaeuser originally donated the Bonney Lake land to the university in 1941 to be used for experimental and demonstration purposes, including forestry education and 4-H club activities. Under terms of that donation, the property would revert to Weyerhaeuser if the university ceased using it for these purposes. A ropes challenge course is located on part of the property.

Under the agreement, Weyerhaeuser will be responsible for selling the Bonney Lake property and will pay WSU one-half of the net proceeds of any sale. The company will also give the university a 104-acre parcel of land located in King County, will build a ropes challenge course on the new property and will pay WSU’s relocation costs. WSU will continue to occupy the current site until the 4-H facilities are relocated and the property is sold by Weyerhaeuser.

Using part of the proceeds from the deal, the university also plans to build an additional ropes challenge course facility on property that WSU owns in Thurston County.

In other action, the regents also approved the design and installation of a fire suppression system for Bryan Hall on the Pullman campus. Estimated cost of the project is $600,000.

Friday afternoon, the WSU Board of Regents is scheduled to hold a joint meeting with the University of Washington Board of Regents. The joint budget proposal that the two research universities have submitted to the Higher Education Coordinating Board is expected to be one topic of discussion.