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Washington State Magazine launches podcast

You’ve read the stories of Washington State University for almost two decades in Washington State Magazine. Now you can listen to them, too, in a new monthly podcast.

Episodes of the podcast, Viewscapes, run about 15 minutes, with three different stories covering a wide variety of topics from around the University.

Greg Yasinitsky.
Yasinitsky

The first episode has a summer flavor with music, cherries, and those frequent visitors to barbecues: wasps. It features Regents Professor and composer Greg Yasinitsky talking about how he creates and performs music. Yasinitsky also wrote the jazz tunes for the podcast. Other segments uncover the truth about wasps with entomology doctoral student Megan Asche, and dive into a bowl of WSU’s own Rainier cherries with executive chef Jamie Callison.

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Enhancing research, creative activity in the arts and humanities

Eleven of Washington State University’s most innovative scholars and artists have been selected for faculty fellowships and mini-grants from the Center for Arts and Humanities (CAH) and the Office of Research.

Todd Butler.
Butler

“We are excited to support faculty as they advance not only their academic fields but also the communities we serve,” said Todd Butler, director of the center, associate dean in the College of Arts and Sciences, and professor of English.

Funded by a five-year commitment from the Office of Research and its strategic research investment program, the center’s grant programs strengthen and enhance research and creative endeavors across WSU. Any faculty member pursuing arts and humanities-related work, regardless of rank or home department, is eligible to apply.

“This year, almost all of the arts and humanities departments—as well as associated faculty working in the social sciences—were represented in the proposals submitted, testifying to the ongoing vitality and reach of these disciplines at Washington State University,” said Butler.

Reflecting upon her CAH experience, School of Music instructor and 2019 faculty fellow Melissa Parkhurst said, “The CAH Faculty Fellowship put me in regular communication with a group of dedicated interdisciplinary scholars. I gained a vital support network, valuable feedback, and ideas for future projects.”

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Flattening the curve with jazz

The WSU Jazz Big Band isn’t letting the global pandemic get in the way of delivering excellent big band entertainment.

Greg Yasinitsky.
Yasinitsky

The award-winning group, directed by Regents Professor Greg Yasinitsky, put technology to the test to produce a YouTube video of the aptly titled composition, “Flatten That Curve.”

Apart from the quality of the music, what makes the performance fascinating to watch is the fact that the band members recorded their parts and video individually using whatever technology they had available. Yasinitsky then mixed, mastered and assembled the performance together.

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WSU senior headed to Wales as a Fulbright Student

Thomas LeClair.
LeClair

Washington State University senior biology and music double major and future veterinarian Thomas LeClair is the 2020 recipient of a prestigious, nationally competitive Fulbright Student Award that will fund his master’s degree studies in marine biology in Bangor, Wales.

This fall, he will travel to Bangor University’s School of Ocean Sciences to pursue his Fulbright topic, “Investigating Anthropogenic Effects on Cetacean Populations.” That is, the effect humans are having on marine ecology, specifically dolphins and whales. His program calls for nine months of master’s-level coursework and three months of research.

“As varied effects of anthropogenic changes have already begun to take their toll on the seas, it is imperative that we gain a deeper understanding of both our relationship with the environment and what steps we must take to mitigate these existing human-made changes,” he wrote in his application.

Thanks to the Fulbright, LeClair can also pursue additional learning experiences.

“I’ll be able to gain the skills and knowledge I’ll need to succeed while satisfying both my practical penchant for science and my passion for music.”

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Tuba student earns second place in national competition

Timothy Schrader holding his tuba.
Schrader

Timothy Schrader of Blaine, Washington, a first-year student at Washington State University majoring in tuba performance and music education, recently placed second in the 2020 Music Teachers National Association Senior Brass Division Competition on April 13.

He was one of five finalists from a national pool of applicants for the online competition. Timothy performed an impressive program of music originally written for tuba as well as transcriptions. Major repertoire included Edward Gregson’s Tuba Concerto and the Fantasy for Tuba by Malcolm Arnold.

“This is an enormous accomplishment for this up-and-coming performer,” said Chris Dickey, clinical associate professor of music at WSU. “As Timothy’s private teacher, I am so proud of what he has done. I knew he would do well because of his constant devotion to tuba and music making. He is most deserving of this honor.”

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