A dedication ceremony for of the new permanent public artwork by artist Claude Zervas entitled “Nooksack Middle Fork” will take place at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 12 in the Western Washington University Performing Arts Center.
Following the ceremony there Zervas will hold a lecture and reception at 5 p.m. in the Western Gallery. The dedication, lecture and reception are free and open to the public.
The piece, which is a four-channel, wall-mounted video installation that presents aerial views of four bends in the Nooksack Middle Fork of the Nooksack River, will be located in the lobby of the PAC. The images for the piece relied on new drone technology, which Zervas used to fly his video equipment above the Nooksack River.
Zervas is known for his exploration of light and nature by technologically sophisticated means, such as video and electronic sculpture. He attended Western in the early 1980s before moving to Paris. He now lives and works in Seattle and his works have been shown widely and have been collected by major museums, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, Seattle Art Museum, Tacoma Art Museum and the Microsoft Corporation.
For more information, contact Chris Casquilho, Western Washington University’s College of Fine and Performing Arts manager of Marketing and Special Events at (360) 650-2829, or email@example.com.Image:
14 Western Washington University Design students who participated in the “2015 Summer Design Abroad: Germany & Switzerland” program have released a series of three separate projects documenting their experiences in web, video, and editorial mediums.
For three weeks, the students studied international art, design movements and historical landmarks while experiencing local culture, including visits to the Bauhaus and Etsy. Daily activities included sightseeing, visiting design firms and museums and participating in workshops.
The final web and video projects can be viewed at wwu.edu/design/summerabroad and the final publication can be viewed online at http://issuu.com/wwudesign/docs/publication_final.
For more information, contact Brittany Schade, Western Washington University assistant professor of Design, at (360) 650-7705 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about the Department of Design visit wwu.edu/design, or follow @wwu_design on Twitter.
Western Washington University will host a Children’s and Young-Adult Book Sale from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 3, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4 on the sixth floor of Wilson Library.
Over a thousand new children’s and young-adult books will be available for purchase, including hardbacks for $5 and paperbacks for $2. Teachers, community members and readers of all ages are invited to discover and enjoy award-winning titles.
Proceeds will support student scholarships to Western’s 13th Annual Children’s Literature Conference, which will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2016 at Western’s Performing Arts Center. Four award-winning children’s and young-adult book authors and illustrators will give presentations and answer questions.
For more information, contact Nancy Johnson, Western Washington University professor of English, at (360) 650-3227 or Nancy.Johnson@wwu.edu. For more information about this years conference and to register visit wwuclc.com.
Student and community volunteers are being sought to assist in the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program at Western Washington University from early February through April 15.
Sponsored by WWU’s Beta Alpha Psi and Accounting Society in cooperation with the Internal Revenue Service, the VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) program is staffed by students from Western, Whatcom Community College, and other volunteer members of the community. The VITA program helps low- and moderate-income taxpayers electronically prepare their tax returns.
Training is free and is a combination of self-study, online training, and in-class training. The training materials may be picked up at WWU (or downloaded) in early December. The training includes two in-class training days on WWU’s campus on Jan. 9 and Jan. 23 from 9 a.m.- 4p.m. No prior tax experience is necessary.
For more information and to sign up to volunteer, please visit: http://www.wwubap.org/volunteer-activities/volunteer-income-tax-assistance-vita/ or http://www.wwubap.org/?p=212 or contact Allen Sher, WWU VITA Coordinator, at email@example.com.
Western Washington University will host artist George Trakas for a lecture and discussion at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 2 in the Old Main Theatre on the WWU campus.
The event will be free and open to the public.
George Trakas has been a leader on the national public art scene for the last six decades. In his discussion, he will discuss his outdoor sculpture “Bayview Station,” the history of its installation at Western in 1987, and how it relates to his other artwork. Bayview Station will undergo major renovation in 2016.
Located on the steep slope below the performing arts center plaza, Bayview Station consists of a welded steel catwalk and wood platforms that provide an open view over Bellingham Bay. It is an environmental artwork that responds perfectly to the physical site and creates a connection between the city and the University.
Trakas is best known for his permanent public artworks, located in six countries, and temporary site-specific installations. His work has also been exhibited by major art museums and is in the permanent collections of the Louisiana Museum in Denmark, and the Guggenheim Museum in New York City.
Among his many awards, Trakas has received the American Academy of Arts and Letters Merit Medal for Sculpture (1996), a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship (1989), and a Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship (1982).
For more information, contact Chris Casquilho, Western Washington University College of Fine and Performing Arts manager of Marketing and Special Events, at (360) 650-2829 or firstname.lastname@example.org.Image:
Students from Western Washington University and Whatcom Community College, along with community volunteers, will offer free tax assistance through April 15 at Western’s Parks Hall 336 and Whatcom’s Heiner Library.
Sponsored by Western’s Beta Alpha Psi Accounting Society in cooperation with the Internal Revenue Service, the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program assists low- and moderate-income taxpayers in preparing their tax returns
Western’s hours for VITA will be on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 4:30 - 8:30 p.m., Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Sundays from noon-4 p.m. Western’s VITA will be closed during intersession closure from March 13-31.
Whatcom’s hours for VITA will be Mondays from 5-8 p.m., and Fridays from 9 a.m. to noon and 1:30 - 3:30 p.m. in Heiner Library. Whatcom's VITA will be closed during intersession from March 30 through April 7.
For more information, visit http://www.wwubap.org/volunteer-activities/vita/, or contact Marissa Jaksich, Western’s VITA coordinator, at email@example.com.
The Western Washington University College of Fine and Performing Arts is displaying a photographic art exhibit created by students enrolled in the department’s Intermediate Black and White Photography class titled “SEM-Holga: High-Tech and Low-Tech Diptych” through Nov. 23 in the Western gallery.
The photographs were taken using both a scanning electron microscope and a Holga toy camera. The project allowed students a chance to consider both microscopic and personal worldviews.
Students who will have their photos displayed or were involved with the exhibit include:
- Catheleen Abramowicz of Arlington
- Breanna Coon of Snohomish
- Noah Gray of Los Angeles, California
- David Henry of Marysville
- Kaitlin Howland of North Bend
- Rachel Ivancic of Seattle
- Rebekkah James of Castio Valley, California
- Kathryn Johnson of Snohomish
- Emily Jones-Blachowicz of Bothell
- Anna Kerr of Spokane
- Kendall Lawley of Seattle
- Maddie Price of Portland, Oregon
- Tasha Smith of Puyallup
- ErynDae Thorvaldsen of Madison, Wisconsin
- Alexandra Vincent of Castio Valley, California
- Collin Whalen of Vancouver
- Robin Sizemore of Mount Vernon
For more information about the exhibit contact Garth Amundson, WWU professor of Art, at (360) 650-3436 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Western Washington University’s Rich Brown, associate professor of Theatre Arts, has been selected as the 2015 Washington Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).
Brown, who has taught at Western since 2006, traveled to Washington D.C. on Nov. 19 to accept the award – the second such award in three years by a Western faculty member, with Geology’s Scott Linneman winning the award in 2013.
Brown said that he would like to think of this award as representing the quality of teaching across campus at Western, and being a reflection of the deep caring for theatre and for his students that he brings to his classes.
“Theater truly has the power to impact lives and change them for the better through compassion and empathy, and that is the belief I take into the studio each day – and I hope my students share that belief,” he said.
The U.S. Professors of the Year program salutes the most outstanding undergraduate instructors in the country – those who excel as teachers and influence the lives and careers of their students. It is recognized as one of the most prestigious awards honoring undergraduate teaching, and more than 400 faculty were nominated this year, only 32 were chosen to be honored.
Professors are chosen for the Carnegie award based on the criteria that they show extraordinary dedication to undergraduate teaching. This is demonstrated by excellence in the following areas: impact on and involvement with undergraduate students; scholarly approach to teaching and learning; contribution to undergraduate education in the institution, community and profession; and support from colleagues and former undergraduate students.
Brown said his research and curricular focus is on devising, or collaboratively creating new work that celebrates our culture’s differences, and he cited last year’s performance of the original play “/faust” as an example. Past productions that Brown said he feels exemplified his work includes 2013’s “Soapbox” and 2011’s “Us,” both of which were honored by the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, with “Us” winning three national awards.
Brown received his bachelor’s degree from Graceland College and his master’s degree from Central Missouri State University. He completed his doctorate in Theatre from the University of Oregon in 2003.
For more information on the award, contact Rich Brown at email@example.com.Image:
The Western Washington University College of Fine and Performing Arts will show a series of four performances to area K-12 students this winter and spring. Performances include tap dance, contemporary dance, opera, and band “pops.”
All performances are free of charge but pre-registration is required. Space is limited, and available on a first-come, first-served basis.
The performances that will be shown are:
- Friday, Jan 22: Western alum Jovon Miller will perform with his own studio students at the PAC mainstage.
- Friday, April 15: The Music Department Opera Studio will present excerpts from Mozart’s comic opera “Cosi fan tutti” in PAC 16.
- Friday, April 22: Members of Bellingham Repertory Dance will demonstrate original contemporary choreography and dance at the PAC mainstage.
- Friday, May 27: The Music Department’s combined bands will perform a “pops” concert of popular movie themes, video game scores and other well-known arrangements at the PAC mainstage.
All performances begin at 10:30 a.m. and last 45 minutes.
Information and registration are available at https://cfpa.wwu.edu/education-matinee-series or by contacting Chris Casquilho, Western Washington University’s College of Fine and Performing Arts manager of Marketing and Special Events, at (360) 650-2829 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Western Washington University’s Department of Design will sponsor a guest presentation by Seattle designer, Leslie Phinney at 6 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 16, in Fraser Hall room 4.
The talk is free and open to the public.
Phinney is the founder and Creative Director of Phinney Bischoff in Seattle. A graduate of the University of Washington and Cornish Institute of Arts, Leslie established the firm in 1982, which has since grown into a fully integrated marketing and brand strategy firm. Many leading brands have turned to Phinney for strategic counsel, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Nelson Mandela Foundation, BECU, Woodland Park Zoo, Seattle Symphony, Premera, and the Allen Institute for Brain Science. Phinney has received numerous creative awards including Awards of Excellence from the International Association of Business Communicators, Communication Arts and American Institute of Graphic Arts.
For more information please contact the WWU Department of Design at (360) 650-3660.Image:
This winter, Western Washington University will offer a non-credit Grammar for Editors course to help participants improve editing skills for print and online publications.
An information session and an opportunity to meet the instructor is scheduled for 5:30-6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 10, at Village Books in Fairhaven.
Participants will build editing skills for professional and personal writing projects, including website content, marketing, formal reports and freelance writing. Students will review grammar usage and common errors, while working to communicate with clear and accurate language.
The non-credit course will take place in hybrid form, consisting of eight online lessons and five in-class sessions, which will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. Thursdays, Jan. 14, Jan. 28, Feb. 11, Feb. 25, and March 10, 2016 at Western’s Communications Facility.
The registration deadline for this course is Jan. 7, 2016.
To register and find out more, please visit http://www.wwu.edu/enrich.
Western Washington University’s Department of Theatre and Dance presents a musical adaptation of Charles Dickens’ well-known tale “A Christmas Carol.” Performances are on the Performing Arts Center Mainstage from Dec. 2-6, with evening curtain at 7:30 p.m. and matinees on both Dec. 5 and 6 at 2 p.m.
The musical adaptation was written by Mike Ockrent and Lynn Ahrens with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Lynn Ahrens. Menken is best known for his line-up of Disney musical hits, which include The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, and Pocahontas, which won him two Academy Awards each. He also composed the scores for Little Shop of Horrors, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Hercules, and Newsies, among others.
Ahrens is best known for her work on the musicals Once on This Island, My Favorite Year, Ragtime, and Seussical. In addition to a successful career, writer Mike Ockrent also penned the scripts for the stage version of the hit movie Big as well as the Gershwin songbook vehicle Crazy for You. The WWU production is directed by Deb Currier and the cast includes numerous community members.
Tickets for A Christmas Carol: The Musical are $12-20, and available in person at the WWU Box Office by calling (360) 650-6146, or online at tickets.wwu.edu. Student discounts are available. More information on the production and the Department of Theatre and Dance is online at cfpa.wwu.edu/theatredance.
Image credit: Jim LortzImage:
“First Person: Diverse Student Stories,” a new play in the words of Western students, will be performed at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 19, 20 and 21 at the Western Washington University Performing Arts Center’s DUG Theatre.
“First Person: Diverse Student Stories,” written by Assistant Professor of Journalism Professor Maria McLeod and directed by Western alum Karee Wardrop, is a collection of seven monologues about college student lives told from the perspective of students of color, differing abilities, ages, ethnicities and gender identities.
The stories, derived from interviews conducted earlier this year by McLeod, are performed by Western student actors, community members and one visiting actor from Detroit. ASL interpreters will interpret all three performances.
Narratives include stories of finding one’s passion as a returning student veteran, learning the meaning of money on a senior trip to Las Vegas, trying to explain one’s gender identity to parents, being racially and/or ethnically profiled, and navigating the educational system as a deaf person in a hearing world.
“Every student has a story, and these seven are particularly powerful, compelling and deserving of an audience,” McLeod said. “Karee, cast and crew have done an amazing job of bringing these stories to life.”
This production of “First Person” marks the second time McLeod and Wardrop have teamed up for a documentary-theatre production. In 2012-13, Wardrop directed another piece by McLeod, also derived from interviews, “Body Talk: Sexual Triumphs, Trials and Revelations,” with sold-out shows at the Firehouse Performing Arts Center in Bellingham.
Tickets for “First Person,” are free with prior registration and can be obtained by visiting or calling the WWU Box Office at (360) 650-6146.
For more information, contact Maria McLeod, assistant professor of Journalism, at (360) 650-4270.
Andrea Joyce Heimer, a Northwest-based artist, will present her work in a public lecture on Monday, Nov. 16, from 1-2 p.m. in the Old Main Theater on Western’s campus.
The lecture is sponsored by Western’s Department of Art and is free and open to the public.
Born in 1981, Andrea Joyce Heimer is a self-taught painter known for her exploration of the suburban experience, drawing inspiration from the neighborhood mythos of her childhood home in Great Falls, Montana.
Adopted as an infant and plagued by lifelong clinical depression, Heimer struggled early-on with feelings of disconnect from her family and community. Her sense of isolation continued into her teens, but by then she'd found comfort in a peculiar activity: observation. Through quietly observing the lives around her, Heimer was able to piece together neighborhood tales of madness, conspiracy, and love, often substituting her own theories to fill any missing pieces of the story.
It is fragments of these stories that make up Heimer's darkly imaginative narrative works. Part allegory, part autobiography, her detailed paintings depict scenes of heartbreak, madness, and the emotional claustrophobia that stems from living as an outsider in one's own backyard.
Seattle art critic Matthew Kangas wrote about Heimer’s work, "What is the thin line between fine art and outsider or folk art? Most art critics don’t want to go there, but Andrea Heimer’s show since her 2008 debut … suggests that she may be among those artists who cross over quite easily from her early venues (“tattoo shops, salons, coffee shops, and sidewalk sales”) to the white cube space. Think Henri Rousseau, Ralph Fasanella, Morris Hirschfield and Florine Stettheimer, all of whom had little training but made up for it with big, wonderful ideas. As far as writers go, Flannery O’Connor, Don DeLillo, Shirley Jackson and ex-Seattle-ite Lynda Barry are forerunners of the kind of satirical demolishing of scary suburbia that is Heimer's specialty.”
For more information about Heimer’s lecture, contact Cynthia Camlin, Western Washington University associate professor of Art, at (360) 650-3747 or Cynthia.Camlin@wwu.edu.
Andrea Joyce Heimer
16x18" acrylic/pencil on wood
What do New Jersey mobsters have to do with climate change?
Western Washington University Environmental Science Librarian Rob Lopresti will explore this question when he presents “Crime Against Nature: Writing an Environmental Crime Novel,” at 4 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 19 in Special Collections at Wilson Library.
This event is free and open to the public.
Lopresti is an award-winning author of more than 50 mystery short stories. In his latest comic crime novel, “Greenfellas,” he combines his interest in the environment with his mystery-writing skills to create a story about a mobster who decides to save the environment for his granddaughter. At the event, Lopresti will read from Greenfellas and explain the what his process was for writing the book.
This event is being offered as part of the Western Libraries Reading Series, dedicated to showcasing the scholarly and creative work of Western faculty by featuring diverse speakers from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines who are engaged in research, writing, and teaching at Western.
For more information about this event, contact Clarissa Mansfield, Western Libraries communications manager at (360) 650-3052 or Clarissa.Mansfield@wwu.edu.Image:
Western Washington University’s College of Business and Economics has awarded WWU Professor Kristi Lewis Tyran with the Allette and Cayden Franklin Excellence in Teaching Award for the second time.
The award recognizes a CBE faculty member who has successfully designed and implemented a teaching-related activity or project to enhance student learning in the area of business and/or economics. Past award recipients have been recognized for a variety of teaching-related activities and projects including the development and implementation of learning materials, innovative teaching/learning methods and other teaching-related initiatives.
Tyran’s work focuses on developing the Leadership Practicum which teaches students through experience by leading and managing a project in an organization of their choice.
Tyran said it gives students the opportunity to participate in an external leadership experience to apply leadership concepts and skills.
For more information, contact Sandra Mottner, College of Business and Economics associate dean, at (360) 650-2403 or Sandra.email@example.com.
Reflecting back on last summer, Western Washington University junior Zeké Lue remembers it as one of the best — albeit strangest — experiences of his post-military life.
For the first time in years, Lue, 26 and a Navy veteran, didn’t have any work to do after graduating from Olympic College in Poulsbo with his associate’s degree and waiting to start classes at Western.
Lue said his experience working as a cook on a Navy submarine had instilled in him a work ethic that couldn’t simply be put aside.
Lue was born in the Ivory Coast, and immigrated to Frederick, Maryland in 1998. After graduating from high school, Lue attended Frostburg State University before deciding to leave to pursue a professional dancing career in New York City. After exploring that path and deciding it wasn’t for him, he decided to join the military at the age of 21.
After just a short amount of time, Lue discovered that being out at sea for months at a time could be grueling. While deployed, Lue’s schedule on the USS Kentucky consisted of working 16 hours a day, 7 days a week without any days off, until he returned to port. This was, of course, on top of his other responsibilities that included daily study for required navy tests and being the leader of the boat's fitness program.
“If you’re not working, you’re studying,” Lue said. “You have to prove yourself to your chief and to the rest of the boat.”
So facing a summer with no real obligations, Lue said he turned to side projects to keep himself occupied while waiting to make his transition to Western to major in Communication Sciences and Disorders.
“I didn’t work, I wasn’t in school, I didn’t have anything. It was strange.” Lue said. “I started doing doing start-up projects like writing recipe and workout books - something to keep my mind going. I just couldn’t be idle.”
Like many other veteran students on campus, having an over-the-top work ethic is something that makes Lue stand out. While sitting at his workstation in Western’s Veteran’s Affairs office where he works, a position he received after two weeks of relentless inquiry, he’ll list off the five other classes he’s taking and the acapella group on campus he’s a part of.
“When I was transferring to Western, everyone told me that community college was easier and coming to a four-year college would stress me out,” Lue said. “But I came here and realized that this was something I was already used to. Because of the military I was already used to having to work hard.”
For many who have served, Lue said making the transition from military life to civilian life can be difficult. Mix in being a student and those challenges become even greater. Lue said it’s easy for veterans to feel isolated.
One of the reasons Lue said he chose Western as opposed to other universities was its commitment to helping veterans succeed.
“We like to think that we’re just the same as all of the other students on campus, but we aren’t. We have a vast amount of experiences behind us as veteran students,” Lue said. “Many of us are older and also have disabilities that hinder our ability to study.”
Through his position in the Veteran’s Affairs Office, Lue is able to help veterans and dependents of veterans apply their G.I. bill benefits. The office also exists to link veterans and dependents to tutors if they’re struggling in school.
Lue said the position has also provided him with an opportunity to meet and connect with many of the other veterans on campus. Knowing that he’s able to help other veterans is one of his primary motivations.
“Be it tutoring, books, or anything to help them,” Lue said, “we are here 100 percent.”
After his eventual graduation, Lue plans to continue on to pursue a master's degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders. Even though that’s still some time away, he knows that Western will support him every step of the way.
“It’s important to know that Western really wants to help its students, especially veterans,” Lue said. “The staff here want to do everything possible to see you graduate.”
Photo by Kyra BetteridgeImage: