Institutes, Centers, and Programs

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Border Policy Research Institute

Border Policy Research

The Border Policy Research Institute (BPRI) is a multi-disciplinary institute that undertakes research to inform policy-makers on matters related to the Canada – U.S. border, particularly in the British Columbia – Washington State region. Priority focus areas include trade, transportation, economic relationships, human mobility, and border security. The University established the BPRI in 2005 to further a mission of promoting research, academic programs, and public programming on critical policy issues affecting the Cascadia region. The BPRI works closely with cognate programs at the university and collaborates with many public and private entities within the region.


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Canadian-American Studies with flags of both Canada and the United States

Center for Canadian-American Studies

The Center for Canadian-American Studies, in consortium with its counterpart at the University of Washington, is one of just two US Department of Education National Resource Centers for the Study of Canada. The Center offers comprehensive interdisciplinary majors and minors for undergraduates, fosters research on Canadian topics, organizes seminars and symposia on current Canada-U.S. public policy issues, sponsors events highlighting Canadian culture, and conducts the nationally recognized STUDY CANADA program for K-12 educators.

Offers B.A. in Canadian-American Studies and Canadian-American Studies Minor.


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Office of Sustainability logo

Office of Sustainability

The Office of Sustainability is Western’s hub for campus sustainability. The “OS” is dedicated to helping WWU achieve its strategic goal of campus sustainability by integrating sustainability into operations, academics, research, and outreach. For example, the OS works with Western’s executive management and Sustainability Committee to identify campus sustainability goals and manages projects and programs to achieve those goals. They also work to integrate sustainability into WWU’s academics by facilitating faculty, staff, and students to research aspects of campus sustainability.


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The Ray Wolpow Institute

Ray Wolpow Institute

The Ray Wolpow Institute for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity was created to advance knowledge about the Holocaust and genocide, including ethnic and religious conflict, as well as attendant human rights abuses. Students engaged in studying the Holocaust, genocide, and crimes against humanity will be provided with the critical tools to analyze, understand, and differentiate their underlying complexities and to work towards their prevention.

Offers Holocaust and Genocide Studies Minor.


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Karen W. Morse Institute for Leadership Studies

Karen W. Morse Institute for Leadership Studies

The Morse Institute for Leadership provides courses, activities, and programs in Leadership Studies to support students’ leadership learning, development, and practice to become social or professional change agents. Students engage in empirical research, behavioral observation, reflective inquiry, and critical thinking key to understanding, practicing, and developing as leaders. While Leadership Studies as a discipline is based in the social sciences, curricular initiatives and institute programming include interdisciplinary contributions from the arts, humanities, sciences, and applied and professional studies.

Offers Leadership Studies Minor.


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WWU Institute for Global engagement

Institute for Global Engagement

The Institute for Global Engagement provides internationally-focused educational experiences that prepare students to be global citizens and supports faculty and staff who are engaged inter-culturally. IGE works with academic programs to integrate global perspectives into the curriculum and collaborates with international partners to connect with institutions and individuals in other parts of the world. IGE also advises students who participate in education abroad through faculty-led programs, service-learning or internship opportunities, study programs, and exchanges. In addition, the Institute provides visa and immigration services, as well as orientation and co-curricular activities, to Western’s international students and visiting scholars.

Offers International Studies Minor.


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Western Institute for Energy Studies

Institute for Energy Studies

The Institute for Energy Studies is a unique, multi-college collaboration that offers interdisciplinary undergraduate degrees to address the science, technology, policy, business and economic aspects of energy systems. Our interdisciplinary programs are designed to meet the future workforce needs of Washington’s emerging energy economy, which emphasizes clean energy technology, energy efficiency, smart systems, environmental mitigation and entrepreneurial solutions.

Offers B.S. in Energy Science and Technology, B.A. in Energy Policy and Management, Energy Science Minor, Energy Policy Minor, and Energy Concentrations in Electrical Engineering and in Business & Sustainability


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Salish Sea Institute

Salish Sea Institute

The Salish Sea Institute is an interdisciplinary center for collaboration, education, research, and community involvement focused on the health of the Salish Sea, the body of water encompassing the Strait of Georgia, Puget Sound, and the Strait of Juan de Fuca. The Salish Sea basin and the people who inhabit it have much to share with each other, and the Institute, as an intentionally collaborative effort, aims to bring these diverse groups together in transboundary initiatives of all types to facilitate this sharing. The Salish Sea Institute is also the administrative home for the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference, the Salish Sea Studies minor and several programs relating to the health of the Salish Sea.

Offers Salish Sea Studies Minor.


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Blue waves in the shape a mountain, with Academic Program in Entrepreneurship and Innovation as text underneath the mountain

Academic Program in Entrepreneurship and Innovation

The Academic Program in Entrepreneurship and Innovation promotes multi-purpose, interdisciplinary entrepreneurship and innovation. Any student from any college can receive a minor in entrepreneurship and combine it with the focus of their studies. This interdisciplinary program is designed to provide the knowledge, skills and abilities to successfully engage in entrepreneurial and innovative behaviors in new and existing organizations.

Offers Entrepreneurship Minor.

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EAS Logo

East Asian Studies

The Center for East Asian Studies provides opportunities for an interdisciplinary study of East Asia, with a primary focus on the countries of China and Japan. Offering a BA and a Minor in in East Asian Studies, the Center’s East Asian Studies Program is designed to attain three major objectives: offering students an opportunity to acquire accurate, detailed, and comprehensive knowledge of a region that is becoming increasingly important in world affairs; preparing students who are attracted by job opportunities related to East Asia in business, government, or teaching; and providing solid undergraduate training for students who plan to enter East Asian programs in their graduate studies.

The major offers students an opportunity to prepare for positions in cultural organizations, diplomatic offices, companies engaged in international business, and in educational institutions.

WGSS program

WGSS program

The WGSS program at WWU pursues critical inquiry through queer and feminist scholarship, teaching, and activism. We draw on intersectional and interdisciplinary approaches to study how sex, gender, and sexuality are shaped by race, indigeneity, ethnicity, class, age, ability, nationality, and religion. The program prepares students to pursue grad school, as well as careers in law, social service, counseling, public policy, health care, teaching, and the arts.

Offers BA in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies along with a Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Minor.