A New Official ID Card for Portland State Students
Author: Cathy Dyck
Posted: October 13, 2004

Dear Campus Community:

On November 15, 2004, students at Portland State University will be receiving a new student identification card, the PSU OneCard via the mail. In addition to serving as the official student ID, the PSU OneCard also has the ability to act as a debit card and can be directly linked to financial aid disbursements.

The University administration continues to seek ways of improving services to students while at the same time lowering the costs of doing business. The University selected the PSU OneCard to give students greater flexibility in the disbursement of their financial aid and to streamline the costs associated with distribution of financial aid. The University followed an RFP (request for proposals) competitive process and the contract for this new identification card was awarded to Higher One, Inc.

The PSU OneCard gives students the choice of using the card as an ID only, or of activating the associated debit card functions called the OneAccount, an FDIC insured bank account. Choosing to activate the OneAccount will allow for financial aid to be directly deposited into the student's OneAccount. Other parties, such as parents, guardians, relatives or friends, can deposit funds into the OneAccount as well. Funds in the OneAccount can be accessed using the PSU OneCard at one of three Higher One ATM machines to be located on campus. If students activate the debit card features, they may use their PSU OneCard just as they would any other debit card (and just as with any other debit card there may be associated bank fees). In the future, it may be possible to have student payroll checks deposited to your PSU OneCard.

All students who receive financial aid must activate the PSU OneCard. At that time you will be asked to make one of three choices. 1) Financial aid payments deposited directly into the bank account of choice. 2) A paper check mailed to the address selected or 3) Financial aid deposited to your new OneAccount and PSU OneCard. Please remember that students are not required to open the associated OneAccount to receive financial aid.

Higher One has in place a rigid privacy and security system that protects student information and that complies with federal and state law. For all of the information related to these privacy policies, please visit:

To learn more about the PSU OneCard, please visit:

In addition, and at the request of ASPSU student leaders we will be holding three informational sessions with representatives from Higher One and Portland State to answer your questions. The information sessions are scheduled for Tuesday, October 19 from 2-4 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. and Wednesday, October 20 from 9-11 a.m. All informational sessions will be held in SMSU 101.

This week, PSU representatives will distribute additional information about the card on campus; I encourage all of you to learn more about the PSU OneCard and its benefits and to contact us at with any questions or concerns.


Cathy Dyck
Interim Vice President, Finance and Administration