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Dr. Universe: If snakes smell with their tongues, what do they do with their noses?

Dr. Universe: a cat in a lab coatSnakes have an amazing sense of smell. They can use their tongues to pick up on all kinds of scents in the air.

Whenever we smell something in the air, we are actually sniffing tiny building blocks called molecules. These molecules are what make up the scents of everything around us—things like baked bread, fresh-cut grass, and warm cookies. » More …

Students pen original songs of protest, social commentary

Jacob Wade, Letícia Monteiro, America Hoxeng, and Gabe Condon.From the morality of science and the banality of pandemic lockdown to struggles with money, police, queerness, and being the only girl in the band—the diverse topics of songs composed by students in Gabe Condon’s Songwriting II course reflect a wide range of social concerns and music created to address them.

For their capstone project, the 11 emerging songwriters composed songs focused on topics of protest and social commentary, one of several thematic areas they studied during the semester. » More …

Fine arts professor’s research wins NEH grant support

Glass sculpture.The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) recently announced $24 million in grants for 225 humanities projects across the country, including work by Hallie Meredith, a career-track assistant professor of fine arts at Washington State University.

Meredith’s project, “Fragmentary and Unfinished Art: Documenting Undocumented Late Roman Art and Process,” is the only project » More …

A quest to improve science communication, funding

Milica Radanovic.In addition to winning first place in her division for a compelling, three-minute overview of her complex, years-long biological research project, Milica Radanovic won a place among 23 graduate students selected nationwide by the Ecological Society of America (ESA) to inform Congress about the importance of funding scientific research.

“We are living during a time of global change and scientists have a social responsibility to » More …

Criminologist internationally honored for her work

The Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS) has selected Faith Lutze, a WSU professor and expert in criminal justice, to receive the group’s prestigious Founder’s Award in recognition of “a career of providing substantial contributions to the Academy and to the discipline of criminal justice through education and research.”

A member of the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology faculty since 1995, Lutze regularly enters prison facilities to work with staff and inmates and provides essential research and » More …

Fine arts professor wins two national awards

Hallie MeredithHallie Meredith, a teaching assistant professor of fine arts, is being honored with two major awards for her research into ancient Roman art processes.

“The Roman period is crucial as a point of comparison with contemporary craft because art and craft were understood as coequal,” Meredith said. “My complementary areas of research in late Roman carving and contemporary craft enable me to strengthen our understanding of » More …

More than just numbers

Sergey Lapin.When he’s not teaching mathematics – from introductory calculus to advanced numerical analysis of elliptic equations – WSU math professor Sergey Lapin might be working to speed detection of deadly disease or to expand understanding of European history, Russian language and culture, Chinese economics, or higher education in America.

A firm believer in pursuing one’s interests and sharing the knowledge gained along the way, Lapin applies his math expertise not only in the classroom but also in research projects aimed at » More …

The power of poetry to advance social change

i know i'll be the one.When America’s first youth poet laureate, Amanda Gorman, presents another of her original poems during Super Bowl LV events on Sunday, WSU campus civic poet Allyson Pang will be among the millions of people cheering her on.

Like Gorman, Pang wants to use her education and creative writing skills to make the world a better place.

“In my poetry, I always want to inspire and » More …

Fine arts education flourishes in face of pandemic

Four people sit on a couch with their faces lit up but obstructed by the digital devices they're holding in front of them., photograph, Samantha Wiltermood.From moist, cool clay to wet, drippy paint and dry, smudgy charcoal, visual art is a distinctly hands-on, sometimes messy, field of practice and study. So, what happens when art education goes online?

“Remote teaching certainly hasn’t slowed us down. In fact, these strange times have helped us reimagine new, more expanded ways to reach out to our students while still having deep and meaningful experiences in » More …

Data analytics games provide education, professional opportunities, fun

Mathew Jockers at his computer.Working to build community among students learning remotely this fall, expert problem solvers in the WSU data analytics (DA) program created course-related games to stimulate interaction while providing some educational fun and valuable professional networking opportunities.

In collaboration with academic advisors for the WSU Pullman, Everett, Vancouver, and Global campuses, the program director and statistics professor Nairanjana “Jan” Dasgupta brought together students from across » More …