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Surgery, trauma expert Don Trunkey receives Alumni Achievement Award

Alumnus receiving awardDon Trunkey (’59), a professor emeritus of surgery at the Oregon Health Science University, received the WSU Alumni Association’s Alumni Achievement Award in recognition of his influential career and contributions to medical education, surgical methods and trauma care. » More …

History department newsletter, June 2017

Screen shot image of history newsletter2017 has been a year of growth and accolades for the Department of History. The summer newsletter highlights the Roots of Contemporary Issues Program, directed by Professors Jesse Spohnholz and Clif Stratton, which has become a center for transformative learning across the University, plus curriculum innovations, faculty and student awards, alumni updates, and more.

Read the full newsletter on the Department of History website >>

 

 

Health of amphibians in oil sand fields area assessed

wood frog on hand from "nature north"The impact of pollutants from the world’s largest oil sand field on the health of amphibians marks the focus of a team of research biologists from Washington State University and Canada.

The scientists are studying the effects of development in the Athabasca oil sands region of Northern Alberta on the habitat, physiology, behavior and long-term health of wood frogs. » More …

Grad student nabs $103,938 NIH research fellowship

Smiling grad studentA Washington State University graduate student turned the unexpected results from a laboratory experiment into a prestigious National Institutes of Health predoctoral fellowship.

Chemistry Ph.D. student Jacob Day is the recipient of the Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award for the accidental discovery and subsequent development of a compound that enables scientists to investigate the protective role that sulfur dioxide plays in the heart.

The highly selective fellowship is awarded annually to top U.S. graduate students in health science-related fields. » More …

Gonfalon honor goes to political science, history double major

Student with CAS deanCasey McNicholas, a U.S. Army officer and senior in political science and history (pictured, left, with Daryll DeWald, CAS dean), has been selected to carry the College of Arts and Sciences gonfalon during Saturday’s commencement ceremony in Beasley Coliseum.

Gonfalons are the shield-shaped banners that represent WSU’s 11 colleges during the commencement ceremony. Being selected as a college’s gonfalon bearer is a prestigious recognition given to a graduate with a record of outstanding achievement.

McNicholas, a 4.0 student with a minor in military science in addition to his double major, » More …

Bob Smawley: “Mr. WSU”

1950s ticket officeBob Smawley, “Mr. WSU,” embodied what it meant to be a Cougar for generations of Washington State University students, staff, and alumni, through his selfless service to the University, his caring nature, and his deep knowledge of WSU history, all delivered with a dry sense of humor and true compassion.

For over six decades, Smawley (’52 General Studies) worked under six WSU presidents in several departments, volunteered and led in the Alumni Association, taught many the history of WSU through engaging slideshows, and mentored thousands of students.

“He was the heart of WSU,” says Malia Martine Karlinsky ’92. “Bob had a magical way of making you feel valued and welcome.”

» More …

Time, Place, and the River

River and students-WSUVA research project led by scientists at WSU Vancouver is working to understand how increasing human activity affects the Columbia River, upstream and down. Called CRESCENDO, the Columbia River Scientific Education and Outreach program is a partnership between five Washington high schools along the river and WSU Vancouver that integrates scientific and educational research. CRESCENDO has received $213,496 for this two-year project from Washington Sea Grant, a state entity set up to manage funds from the federal National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Read more on page 19 in WSU Vancouver’s Crimson and Gray magazine >>

Tree growth model assists breeding for more wood

Trees at edge of a lakeA meeting in a forest between a biologist and a mathematician could lead to thicker, faster growing trees.

“Mathematicians like translating biological processes into numbers,” said Andrei Smertenko, assistant professor in Washington State University’s Institute of Biological Chemistry. “I’m a biologist, and I want to help grow stronger, better trees.”

Breeding trees is a time-consuming and imprecise field, with breeders relying on a few genetic markers and what they can see. It takes years before they see the traits they’re looking for in a young tree. To help speed things up, » More …

Chemists make major strides in organic semiconductors

figure from published paperWashington State University chemists have created new materials that pave the way for the development of inexpensive solar cells. Their work has been recognized as one of the most influential studies published in the Journal of Materials Chemistry in 2016.

Professors Ursula Mazur and K.W. Hipps, postdoctoral researcher Bhaskar Chilukuri and graduate students Morteza Adinehnia and Bryan Borders grew chain-like arrangements of organic nanostructures in the laboratory and then used mathematical models to determine which arrangements were the best conductors of light and electricity.

Journal editors recognized the WSU study as an important step in the advancement of organic semiconductors that perform on par with metal- and silicon-based electronics. They included the work in a collection of 2016’s most influential research publications, or “Hot Papers.”  » More …