Skip to main content Skip to navigation
Washington State University
College of Arts and Sciences Covid-19

Testing arrest deferrals, early release amid the pandemic

County jail.Sociology professor Jennifer Sherman studies rural jails in eastern Washington. Together with fellow WSU sociologists Jennifer Schwartz and Clay Mosher, she investigates why rural jail populations are on the rise despite declines in urban and suburban jails.

“Our research began before the pandemic hit, so we did our best to adapt and used COVID as a natural experiment,” Sherman says. “We learned a lot about the resilience of our communities by » More …

Research and innovation highlights

WSU Spirit Mark.As COVID-19 swept the nation in March 2020, faculty with ongoing studies were required to put them on hold or pivot to make the research relevant to the pandemic.

“Science and teamwork are our best hope for a way forward,” said WSU President Kirk Schulz in October 2020. “I am incredibly proud of our faculty whose persistence and innovation will help us get through this crisis and prevent a future one.” » More …

Pivoting academics during the pandemic

hands on a laptop computer_stockTen minutes before the official start time, Paul Buckley posts the first note in the chat box. “Happy Friday, everyone!” Today’s topics are already listed on the screen: properties of gases, gas pressure and units, and gas laws. As the clock ticks on, more and more Washington State University students log in via Zoom on Blackboard, most without video.

While online teaching and learning were new to most faculty and students, “WSU has almost three decades of experience in » More …

Finding his voice

Brandt Fisher playing a saxophone.During recess, most third graders go outside to play. Some, however, play the marimba with their fellow students. Brandt Fisher was one of those recess marimba players.

“When I joined the marimba band in third grade, we learned music by ear,” Brandt said. “This taught me how to truly listen to music and the musicians I played with. And, playing during recess was so much fun.” » More …

Workplace protocols impact overall behavior

A person working at a laptop.Employer COVID‑19 safety measures influenced worker precautions even when they were not on the clock, according to a new study led by WSU psychology professor Tahira Probst.

Researchers found workplace cultures that adopted COVID‑19 prevention measures, such as daily health checks and encouraging sick workers to stay home, resulted in less “sickness presenteeism” or going places when feeling ill. The effect was found both inside and outside of work – meaning fewer employees with » More …

Essay: How history offers comfort

Alumna Nikki Brueggeman (’13) reflects on how the field she loves can help us through the pandemic and beyond.

After college and graduate school, I wandered away from studying history. My life became filled with employment, relationships, and other distractions. My history books sat on shelves, ignored. Then, a virus began to spread across the world, and I found myself reaching for my books once again. » More …

International Cougs: distanced but connected

An abstract map of the Americas.Washington State Magazine reached out to Washington State University international alumni to see how they were holding up during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. With an email questionnaire and interviews conducted by Zoom, phone, and Skype, the responses came in from ten countries on six different continents. Many reported using the skills and knowledge gained while studying at WSU to help » More …

Similar values, different views

A face mask with one half blue with white stars, the other side red with white stars.When it comes to wearing masks, partying, or just going to work at the office, Americans react a little differently based on which side of the political aisle they sit on.

In a nationwide survey, WSU sociologists found both liberal and conservatives in the U.S. disapprove of individuals putting the health of their community at risk, but conservatives cared more about why those individuals were taking the risks in the first place. » More …

Breastfeeding while COVID‑19 positive

An infant.Breastfeeding women who have COVID-19 transfer milk-borne antibodies to their babies without passing along the SARS-CoV-2 virus, according to a new study.

“The results indicate that it is safe for moms to continue to breastfeed during a COVID-19 infection with proper precautions,” said Courtney Meehan, a WSU anthropology professor and co-author on the study published » More …

Standing by for testing surge

Sylena Harper, Hannah Wilson, and Victoria Fitzpatrick.Inside the Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (WADDL) on the WSU Pullman campus, three recent Coug alumae—Victoria Fitzpatrick (biology), Sylena Harper (chemistry and biochemistry), and Hannah Wilson (genetics and cell biology)—are busy providing laboratory results that could save lives.

Since last July, the three have been working in shifts to process COVID-19 tests from throughout the Palouse and eastern Washington. To date, the lab has tested over 55,000 samples. » More …