Higher One Timeline

August 2003

PSU begins developing the idea for a student ID that functions as a debit card and allows students to deposit financial aid directly onto the card.


December 8, 2003

PSU publishes a “request for proposal,” seeking submissions of proposed solutions for PSU’s ID needs.


January – February 2004

PSU reviews proposals and presentations from Wells Fargo, FSV Payment Systems, Global Cash Card, U.S. Bank and Higher One.


August 6, 2004

PSU and Higher One sign a five-year contract for Higher One to provide ID and financial aid disbursement services to the university.


September 20, 2004

Student government submits formal request to PSU to suspend contract with Higher One.


September 24, 2004

PSU and Higher One agree to defer implementation of contract by one month.


October 19-20, 2004

PSU hosts forums for students to discuss the new IDs with Higher One Chairman Mark Volcheck and members of the university administration. The forums erupt with student outrage about the new program, with particular concern directed at the difficult-to-navigate web site.


October 20, 2004

ASPSU announces a boycott of Higher One’s OneAccount service unless the terms of PSU’s contract are renegotiated. Over 600 students sign a petition to join the boycott on the first day.


November 15, 2004

Higher One program at PSU officially launches.


November 23, 2004

Hundreds of students protest PSU’s contract with Higher One. Beginning in the Park Blocks, the protest culminates with a sit-in at Portland State President Daniel Bernstine’s office.


January 12, 2005

President Bernstine offers students a “fourth option,” allowing students to replace their Higher One ID card with a non-Higher One ard for $20.


February 16, 2005

A bill aimed at curtailing the ability of Higher One to conduct business in Oregon, Senate Bill 643, is introduced to the Oregon Senate. By the time the bill receives a vote, however, the language is virtually completely changed, making it about protecting disclosure of student social security numbers.


April 6, 2005

Oregon Senator Vicki Walker strongly criticizes the Higher One program to PSU officials at a meeting of the Senate Education and Workforce committee. "If these students don’t want a Higher One card they should be able to get another card at no charge,” Walker said. “I find this very objectionable that if they don’t want this card they have to pay 20 bucks."


September 6, 2005

Recent activation statistics show that 50 percent of issued Higher One cards were activated, with 38 percent of those with activated cards choosing to use the card’s debit feature.