Nancy R. Chandler Visiting Scholar Program

The Nancy R. Chandler Visiting Scholar Program (VSP) of the Central Oregon Community College Foundation brings renowned scholars, lecturers and experts to our region to provide broad-based programming on a diverse range of subjects. VSP's mission is to provide educational and relevant programming to COCC, its students and the community.

The program was established in 1985 by the late Robert W. Chandler, Sr. to honor his wife Nancy.

For more information about the program or its upcoming events, please contact Charlotte Gilbride, the Nancy R. Chandler Visiting Scholar Program Coordinator at or 541-383-7257.

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Spring Programming 

The Supreme Court: What's Next and Why it Matters

Dr. Alison Gash -- Associate Professor, Political Science, University of Oregon Gash

Wednesday, April 24, 6:30 - 8 p.m. 
Wille Hall, Coats Campus Center, COCC Bend Campus 

Few could have ever imagined the Supreme Court becoming one of the most powerful policymaking institutions in the United States. Yet today, the Court has the power to sidestep public opinion, upend federal legislation, constrain state governance and even bring down the President. Professor Alison Gash will take us back to the Court's humble beginnings, its skirmishes with legislative and executive power during the New Deal era, and its foray into areas of privacy, intimacy and expression.

Professor Gash will highlight the importance of understanding the Court not only as a legal entity but also as a check on politics. Through this lens, she will demonstrate why the Court's makeup--its personalities and its relationships--can make or break American public policy.

Tickets: $10
Buy your tickets here

FREE student tickets at COCC Coats Campus Center Information Desk and OSU-Cascades Student Life Office, Tykeson Hall, Room 110. 

About Gash 
Dr. Alison Gash is an expert in U.S. courts, gender, race, sexuality, constitutional rights and public policy. At the University of Oregon, she is an associate professor of political science. Her research explores how advocates work to overcome contentious policy debates and how their efforts ultimately influence the "facts on the ground." She is the author of Below the Radar: How Silence Can Save Civil Rights (Oxford University Press 2015) as well as multiple peer-reviewed articles on legal advocacy. Her work has also been featured in Washington Monthly, Politico, Slate, Huffington Post, Newsweek and Fortune.

This program is sponsored by Brooks Resources Corporation, Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund, Associated Students of COCC, Associated Students of OSU-Cascades and Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott. 

Our Kids: The American Dream in CrisisPutnam Head shot

Professor Robert D. Putnam, Malkin Research Professor of Public Policy, Harvard University

Monday, May 13, 6:30 p.m., Bend High School, 230 NE 6th St, Bend

It’s the American dream: get a good education, work hard, and achieve prosperity and success. This is the America we believe in—a nation of opportunity.  But during the last twenty-five years we have seen a disturbing “opportunity gap” emerge. Americans have always believed in the idea that all kids, regardless of their family background, should have a decent chance to improve their lot in life. Now, this central tenet of the American dream seems no longer true or at the least, much less true than it used to be.  Professor Putnam’s nationwide research on this topic included a case study of the opportunity gap in Bend.

This problem poses serious economic, social, political and moral challenges. Please join us as Professor Putnam discusses this growing opportunity gap, the multiple, unique causes that created it, and the many factors that are predicting life success.

Tickets: $15
Buy your tickets here

Free student tickets at COCC Coats Campus Center Info Desk and OSU-Cascades Student Life Office, Tykeson Hall, Room 110.

About PutnamOur Kids book cover
Robert D. Putnam is the Malkin Research Professor of Public Policy at Harvard University.  Elected to the the National Academy of Sciences in 2001, in 2006, he received the Skytte Prize, the world's highest accolade for a political scientist, and in 2012, the National Humanities Medal, the nation’s highest honor for contributions to the humanities. His most recent book, Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis, a New York Times bestseller, chronicles the growing gap in opportunity for American youth.  Putnam is now working on a major empirical project about 20th century economic, social and political trends and the implications for American culture.

This program is sponsored by Oregon Community Foundation with additional support from United Way of Deschutes County, TRACEs CO, Vic Russell Construction, Mt. Bachelor Rotary, Mid-Oregon Credit Union, Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund, Associated Students of COCC and Associated Students of OSU-Cascades. 

Community Book Conversations on Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis

Prior to Professor Putnam's key note on May 13, we are holding book discussions at all of COCC's campuses. 

Join us: 

Bend Campus: Thursdays on April 25, May 2 and May 9, 12 p.m., South Oregon Room, COCC Barber Library

Redmond Campus: Wednesdays on April 10 (Orientation and book hand out), April 24, May 8 and May 22, 12 p.m., Redmond Building 3 

Prineville Campus: Wednesdays on April 17 and May 8, 10 a.m., Prineville Campus, Room 112

Madras Campus: Mondays on April 15, April 29 and May 13, 3 p.m.

Call 541-383-7257 or email to register. Participation is FREE and OPEN to the public. Participants will be given a copy of Our Kids:The American Dream in Crisis

Putnam book conversations


 We now have Judge Xiomara Torres' talk, "Once an Undocumented Immigrant & Foster Child: Now an Oregon Judge," from February 21 available to view on-line.

Watch Judge Torres' talk here 


Sponsors of The Nancy R. Chandler Visiting Scholar Program:



 st charles logo


The Source Weekly 



 Coalition for Deschutes logo

Oregon Humanities 200 pixels


DCC logo

fairfield new logo


Bend Bulletin





Accessibility IconIn advance of College events, persons needing accommodation or transportation because of a physical or mobility disability, contact Joe Viola: 541-383-7775. For accommodation because of other disability such as hearing impairment, contact the office of Disability Services at 541-383-7583.