October 2019

Provost Perspective

Retreat attendees gather for a group photo at Ross Point.

Provost’s Leadership Academy
kicks off

Dozens of faculty members gathered for the launch of the latest Provost’s Leadership Academy earlier this week. The program is designed to prepare faculty for both formal and informal leadership positions at WSU. The program began with a short retreat at Ross Point, where faculty shared perspectives and grew their support networks.


Honored to serve as interim provost

It’s an honor to guide the academic enterprise at my alma mater. I will strive to maintain and build on our established priorities of inclusive excellence, student success, and system-wide growth. Our predecessors have laid excellent groundwork and we are positioned well to set our next provost up for success.

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Indigenous Peoples Day celebrated across the WSU system

Native American community and culture were honored across the WSU system on October 14. WSU strives to provide more opportunities for Native American students, and to outreach to communities through programs such as the Center for Native American Research and Collaboration’s Affiliates and Associates program.

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Drive to 25

WSU climbs 47 spots in institutional rankings

Washington State climbed 47 spots in the Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education U.S. College Rankings, released last month. The University system ranked 176 out of more than 800 colleges in the report, which is based on outcomes, resources, engagement, and environment, in order of their weight in the evaluation.

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Student Success

Faculty put Affordable Learning Grants to good use

Faculty put in time over the summer to save students thousands of dollars by developing online education resources (OER). Affordable Learning Grants funded the ventures, which are saving students money, and in some cases, increasing engagement with instructors, peers and the text itself.

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Faculty Development

Using technology to help first‑gen students

Researchers have shown that using technology, applications and social media can increase engagement and augment learning, particularly for first-generation college students. The use of technology aided in the academic transition and helped students maintain important relationships with family members, which are key in supporting first‑gen success.

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Link Up

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

WSU Vancouver receives Insight into Diversity 2019 Heed Award

WSU Vancouver was recognized for its outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion, receiving a 2019 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine. The campus will be featured in the November issue of the magazine along with 91 other award recipients.

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College Highlights

Jessica Willoughby, assistant professor in the Murrow College of Communication, received a third place teaching award from the Communicating Science, Health, Environment, and Risk division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC). She presented her teaching approach, highlighting the value of research, in an award-winners’ teaching panel session at the AEJMC conference last month.

The Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine launched Range Health, a nonprofit academic health network designed to bring health care to Washington’s rural and underserved areas. Range Health will utilize a mobile medical unit named for William A. Crosetto, and will begin providing services early next year. Range Health will be led by executives from the college of medicine, the College of Nursing, and the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Two Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture faculty members are working abroad this fall on Fulbright award-funded research. Katie Zhong, Westinghouse Distinguished Professor in the School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering (MME), is conducting research on bio‑nano materials for energy and environmental applications at Singapore’s Nanyang Technology University. John McCloy, a professor in MME, is collaborating with research on international environmental issues surrounding radioactive waste management and nuclear waste disposal at the Immobilisation Sciences Laboratory at the University of Sheffield in the United Kingdom.