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CAS in the Media Arts and Sciences Media Headlines

Showcase faculty, staff award winners announced

Eight members of CAS faculty were among faculty and staff selected for University-wide, Showcase 2020 awards, which recognize their scholarly achievements and professional acumen. They are:

Katie Cooper.Association for Faculty Women Samuel H. Smith Leadership Award
Catherine “Katie” Marguerite Cooper
School of the Environment


Donald Matteson.Emeritus Society Legacy of Excellence Award
Don Matteson
Professor Emeritus of Chemistry


Kimberly Christen.Innovation and Entrepreneurship Award
Kim Christen
Digital Technology and Culture Program/Center for Digital Scholarship and Curation


Janet Peters.
Chris Dickey.

President’s Distinguished Teaching Award for Instructors and Clinical Faculty
Janet M. Peters
Department of Psychology
Chris Dickey
School of Music

Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award – Leadership
Stephen Bollens
School of Biological Sciences and School of the Environment/Meyer’s Point Environmental Field Station


Cheryl Schulz.Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award – Outreach & Engagement
Cheryl B. Schultz
School of Biological Sciences


Greg Yasinitsky.Sahlin Faculty Excellence Award – Research, Scholarship & Arts
Gregory W. Yasinitsky
School of Music


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WSU Insider


Washington State University fine arts professor is taking on the issue of plastic waste

“Willow of the Waste” is an interactive mechanical tree installation, that “breathes” with mechanical movements. It opens its branches inviting you to go inside.

Sena Clara Creston.The art piece is made of used plastic grocery bags and water bottles that Washington State University’s professor of Fine Arts and Digital Media, Sena Clara Creston saved for the past three years.

Creston, a New York City native, said she did not grow up with a whole lot of wild life and nature. Instead, she said she grew up seeing plastic bags floating around the city. She wants to recycle that trash into something with a better meaning.

“I am thinking about this as things that are really helpful and people need and want,” Professor Creston said. “But they are destroying our planet and covering it with plastic. So we think about it as a sweet and supportive environment that maybe is trying to consume us and take over.”

The grand opening for WSU Fine Art Faculty Exhibition will start January 31, 2020, at five p.m. at WSU Art Center. It will feature art by Creston and 15 other fine arts faculty and staff from three WSU campuses.

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Daily Evergreen

Video on cryogenics research earns WSU graduate national award

A video exploring how Washington State University cryogenics research is helping advance a wide array of cutting-edge technologies earned a WSU undergraduate a prestigious award from the Science Coalition.

Lillie Xi Max Williams.

Lillie Xi Max Williams, who graduated last week with a double degree in digital technologies and culture and strategic communication, took first place in the undergraduate category of the Science Coalition’s Fund It Forward Student Video Challenge. The award came with a $1,000 prize.

The challenge is a contest for undergraduate and graduate students currently enrolled in one of the more than 50 research universities that make up the non-profit Science Coalition.

Participants were asked to create a video to tell the story of why science matters and remind members of U.S. Congress that now is the time to invest in research for the future of our nation. The winning videos can be viewed on the coalition’s website.

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WSU Insider

Language is power

Language, says Kim Christen, “is really about relationships. Languages bring to life relationships to other human beings, to ancestors, to ancestors that aren’t human, to landscape, to histories, stories—to knowledge.”

Kimberly Christen.Christen is a professor of digital technology and culture and director of the Center for Digital Scholarship and Curation at Washington State University. The Center develops collaborative projects between scholars, students, and diverse community members, with an emphasis on ethical curation and equitable access. One of the projects is the co-curated and managed Plateau Peoples’ Web Portal, a trove of Native American culture and a resource for teachers and community members working together to revitalize Native languages and cultures.

Christen prefers the term revitalization to preservation because, she says, “preservation conjures the idea that these materials and languages are not ongoing, critical parts of living cultures.” The word also invokes a past in which the U.S. government simultaneously sought to document disappearing Native languages while, “at the same time, they were promoting genocide.”

That, says Christen, was “a perverse notion of preservation.”

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WSU Insider

A Guided Stroll Through the Past

Beginning this summer, walk in the present while seeing some of Vancouver, Washington’s oldest historic sites with Now iTour, a self-guided, voice-activated virtual tour through the world’s first head-mounted tablet.

When RealWear, a San Jose–based knowledge transfer company, moved into the Artillery Barracks of Vancouver, they essentially became a part of The Historic Trust. With both organizations interested in bringing the local community together, a simple conversation birthed the grand idea of melding together the technology of RealWear, the history of Vancouver, Wash., and the talented students of WSU Vancouver’s Creative Media and Digital Culture program.

Dene Grigar.

Since fall 2017, Richard Burrows, director of community outreach and engagement at The Historic Trust, has worked with CMDC Director and Professor Dene Grigar’s students to develop three technology-based projects to provide engaging, interactive opportunities to experience the history of Vancouver in new ways. Each has been the focus of a senior seminar class, the last class taken before a CMDC senior graduates.

The first project was the Providence Academy Journey, an augmented reality experience, and the second, Unfolding Vancouver, an interactive game for tablets and smartphones. The graduating class of December 2018 developed Now iTour, an interactive tour given through a headset considered the world’s first head-mounted tablet, or the RealWear HMT-1. The company provided 10 headsets to The Historic Trust for the students to develop the application and for the Trust to give the tours.

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Northwest Crimson & Gray