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Washington State University
College of Arts and Sciences CAS Story Hub

Top Ten Seniors for 2021

Hobbs, Brandt, King-Shaw, Mederios, Kopta.Five of the WSU Top Ten Seniors are graduating with degrees in the College of Arts and Sciences: Dallas Hobbs, Brandt Fischer, Samantha King-Shaw, Kyle Kopta, and Ariel Medeiros.

For more than 80 years, WSU has recognized top seniors in each graduating class. These women and men represent the highest standards in specific aspects of the college experience: academics, athletics, campus involvement, community service, and visual and performing arts. » More …

Pre-law, Spanish major earns Congressional internship

Daniela Carvajal-Macias.Daniela Carvajal-Macias, a junior pre-law student majoring in Spanish, has been selected for a National High School Equivalency Program/CAMP Association Congressional Internship. Over the summer, she will work with Arizona Representative Raúl Grijalva, who has served his congressional district since 2003.

“I am super excited and a little nervous,” Carvajal-Macias said. “I want to learn more about what it is like to work in a congressional office, and I look forward to » More …

A growing international research collaboration

A plant scientist working in a greenhouse.Plant scientists at Washington State University and in Germany are launching a new research collaboration through a series of virtual talks about advances that help feed and sustain our world.

“Direct cooperation between German and U.S. scientists and collaborative education of our scholars helps expand society’s knowledge about beneficial crops,” said Mechthild Tegeder, Herbert L. Eastlick Distinguished Professor in » More …

Social tensions preceded disruptions in ancient Pueblo societies

Cliff Palace of the Ancestral Pueblo people.Drought is often blamed for the periodic disruptions of ancient Pueblo societies, but research with potential implications for the modern world, a WSU archaeologist has found evidence that slowly accumulating social tension likely played a substantial role in three dramatic upheavals in Pueblo development.

“Societies that are cohesive can often find ways to overcome climate challenges,” said Tim Kohler, Regents professor of » More …

Q&A with Erica Crespi

Erica Crespi.An associate professor in the School of Biological Sciences, Erica Crespi is interested in how animals interact with the environment and understanding how early exposure to environmental conditions can alter behavior, growth, reproduction, and overall fitness during later life stages.

She thrives on engaging with students at all levels. She regularly mentors undergraduate and graduate students and is a member of WSU’s Teaching Academy.  » More …

Too much of a good thing?

Lake Vancouver.On most summer days, Vancouver Lake is a popular place for windsurfing, boating, and birdwatching. More and more, however, this picturesque place is closed to recreation for months at a time due to harmful algae blooms (HABs) that contain toxins which can cause sickness, or even death, in people, pets, fish, birds, and wild animals.

Gretchen Rollwagen-Bollens, associate professor in the School of the Environment and co-director of the WSU Aquatic Ecology Lab at WSU Vancouver, has spent more than a decade working to identify contributing factors and » More …

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 …

Women of Distinction honored for accomplishments, service

Ramirez, Lee, Peters, Crespi, Thepvongsa, and Hurt.Six CAS women were honored for their accomplishments, service, and commitment to student success at the 15th annual WSU Women of Distinction awards ceremonies this spring.

“It is amazing to see what all of these women accomplished over the past year, and we are truly in awe of their dedication to diversity, equity, and inclusion,” said Davi Kallman, Women of Distinction co-chair and » More …