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CAS undergraduate receives Sigma Xi research grant

AnnMarie McCracken, an undergraduate student at Washington State University, has been awarded a research grant from Sigma Xi, the scientific research honor society’s Grants‑in‑Aid of Research program.

Only 12 percent of the 810 grant applications in 2018 were approved for funding, and only 17 of the approved proposals were from undergraduates.

McCracken is pursuing a double bachelor’s degree with majors in French and in anthropology.

She will receive an $847 grant from the Sigma Xi program’s ecology category for her project “An Isotopic Examination of Dietary Niche Partitioning Between Lynx and Bobcats in a Range Edge Environment.”

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WSU Insider

Race & Sports: It’s not just a game

It has never been just a game.

History tells us that sports fields, courts, and victories have never been colorblind or devoid of politics. History also tells us that that the story of race and sports didn’t start by taking a knee.

This month, KING 5 is starting a new conversation series called Race & Sports. We’re going to peel back some of the layers and explore the intersection of race and sports from various perspectives. We’ll start by talking with a few high school coaches from the Seattle area. We’ll also talk to local fans and former athletes.

David Leonard.
David Leonard

David Leonard, professor in the School of Languages, Cultures, and Race, is among others interviewed for the series.

“When we look at our high schools, and we look at what sports are available at our high schools, that reflects political decisions,” Leonard said. “That reflects the histories—the ongoing histories—of housing discrimination. That reflects which school districts are being funded. And those decisions have consequences,” he said. “We need to have critical conversations about race so that we can have conversations about inequality and develop programs that rectify these inequities inside and outside of sports.”

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KING 5 News

WSU Tri‑Cities student combining social sciences with military service

For National Guardsman Peter Nolan, a degree combining psychology, English, and sociology is the perfect complement to his military training.

Nolan spent four years post-high school serving in the military police through the U.S. Army.

Peter Nolan.But as his enlisted contract came to a close, he decided to leave active duty to pursue college full-time because he knew an education would provide him with not only the background and know-how to succeed in a future job but  also greater career advancement options.

Finding and attending Washington State University Tri-Cities, he said, has allowed him to continue pursuing a rewarding military career part time through the National Guard while studying at a top research university on a small campus.

“I wanted to go to a good school in a small, tight-knit community because that is truly the type of school environment where I thrive,” he said. “I decided to visit WSU Tri-Cities and thought, ‘this would be great.’”

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WSU Insider

McGill Redmen: U.S. scholar says name reinforces white settler society

Why do non-Indigenous sports teams steal the names and symbols of North America’s first peoples?

McGill University’s continued use of “Redmen” for its teams has many on campus grappling with that question. The name is considered an anti-Indigenous slur. When it emerged in the 1920s, the name Redmen was intended to describe the school’s signature colour, but many still find it offensive and point to McGill’s use of racist tropes over the years.

One expert says it is less about honouring Indigenous culture than reinforcing the view that white society has conquered First Nations.

“It’s the image of this historic Indian that white society defeated and bested and took his image as a trophy,” said Richard King, former Washington State University professor of ethnic and cultural studies. “It reinforces a vision of white settler society.”

King wrote the book Team Spirits: The Native American Mascot Controversy, and he’ll be speaking at McGill Thursday.

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In US, blackface far from a thing of the past

U.S. journalist Megyn Kelly got fired after she made comments on air that appeared to condone the use of blackface in Halloween costumes, a major backlash ensued, and she lost her NBC talk show.

The problematic custom dates back to about 1830, and so-called “minstrel shows”—white performers caked their faces in greasepaint or shoe polish and drew on exaggerated lips in a caricature of blacks.

David Leonard.
David Leonard

“Blackface was used to depict African Americans as not human, to justify and normalize and sanction violence,” David Leonard, a professor at Washington State University who has written extensively on the subject, told Agence France Presse.

“The history of blackface is one of violence, one of demonization, one of racism,” Leonard said.

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