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Alumni Association

WSU alumni headshot in a speech bubble
Spring 2018

What a time it was

One by one, they share memories of curfews, 42-cent dinner dates at the CUB, the JFK assassination, and the birth of women’s lib. A few regale listeners with the infamous tale of the 1964 “Pot Push,” which had nothing to do with cannabis.

These are just a sample of the treats recorded at the recent Diamond and Golden Grads digital storytelling workshops, led by Washington State University English instructor and former assistant director of the Digital Technology and Culture program Rebecca Goodrich.

The workshops, held at the Lewis Alumni Centre during the Diamond and Golden reunions, are available to visiting 50- and … » More …

Karl and Steve Huhta
Spring 2018

The perfect gift for every Coug

When you choose a gift for a special person in your life, you want to pick just the right one. A gift that will delight when it’s opened and make an impact for years to come.

Recently, we received a postcard from a 1947 graduate whose father gave her a WSU Alumni Association Life Membership for graduation over 70 years ago. She told us that she thinks of her dad every time she receives something from the WSUAA. There aren’t many gifts that can prompt that kind of gratitude nearly three-quarters of a century later.

Many of our members choose this gift for the … » More …

WSU license plate. Courtesy WSUAA
Winter 2017

The #1 license plate

Driving around the state of Washington, Cougar license plates are impossible to miss. In fact, they are the number one specialty license plate on the road, dwarfing all others. What many do not know is that these crimson plates mean a lot more than just Cougar Pride; with $28 of each plate supporting WSU student scholarships, this program raised over $600,000 last year.

Since the WSU Alumni Association assumed responsibility for managing the license plate program and launching its cool crimson plate design, the program has exploded. Today, the Cougar plate is proudly displayed on nearly 23,000 vehicles (and counting!). The growth of this program … » More …

Jamie Callison and students
Fall 2017

Bounty of the Palouse

Each fall, the WSU Alumni Association’s wildly popular Feast of the Arts dinner series brings together some of the very best aspects of WSU for a can’t-miss evening. These special dinners feature wines from a different Coug winery expertly paired with exquisite food courses by Executive Chef Jamie Callison of the Carson College of Business School of Hospitality Business Management and his talented students.

“I work with my students to craft a menu inspired by WSU-focused fare—like fresh vegetables from the WSU Organic Farm and Wagyu beef from the Premium Beef Program,” Chef Jamie explains. The Feast also incorporates the WSU » More …

Summer 2017

Robert Smawley 1928–2017

Bob Smawley, “Mr. WSU,” embodied what it meant to be a Cougar for generations of Washington State University students, staff, and alumni, through his selfless service to the University, his caring nature, and his deep knowledge of WSU history, all delivered with a dry sense of humor and true compassion.

For over six decades, Smawley worked under six WSU presidents in several departments, volunteered and led in the Alumni Association, taught many the history of WSU through engaging slideshows, and mentored thousands of students.

“He was the heart of WSU,” says Malia Martine Karlinsky ’92. “Bob had a magical way of making you feel … » More …

Spring 2017

Anna King ’00

Growing up in the foothills of Mount Rainier, Anna King ’00 figured she’d end up either a veterinarian or a writer. Her family ran a small cattle farm in Roy, and she loved animals.

King participated in 4-H projects, raising animals but also giving presentations that taught her to communicate with an audience. When a TV reporter from the Seattle area paid a visit to her high school class, she remembers thinking, “This person is so smart, so edgy, so inspiring.”

The Honors College alumna worked for several newspapers in the Puget Sound area, including the Puyallup Herald. She figured out early that … » More …

Meleah and Dan Nordquist
Spring 2017

Adopt a Coug

Meleah Nordquist ’16 loves WSU, and so does her dad, Dan Nordquist. He grew up on the Palouse, has worked at WSU for 26 years, and enjoys listening to his father tell stories about his days as student body president and a Cougar football player in the early ’50s.

With those ties, you’d think that all of the Nordquists are Cougs.  Truth is, Dan is not. He went to the University of Idaho. Despite his silver-and-gold education, Dan bleeds crimson and gray. Meleah knew that her dad was a Coug deep inside. She just needed to find a way to officially acknowledge it.


This … » More …

WSU license plate
Winter 2016

Road rave

We have a bunch of ways to express our pride: waving the flag, joining the Alumni Association, yelling “Go Cougs!” But considering how much time we spend in our vehicles, what better way to tell the world you’re an alum than a crimson Washington State University license plate?

You certainly won’t be alone. WSU plates outnumber every other specialty plate in the state, and can be spotted all over the Northwest. Almost 21,000 plates grace the roads and highways—more than all state collegiate plates combined, and more than twice as many as the University of Washington.

It’s not just about pride. Each license plate sends … » More …