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History of University

Fall 2020

Gallery: The antics of Butch T. Cougar

Butch T. Cougar is a WSU celebrity, in the spotlight at games, rallies, parades, and other events both on campus and off, including appearances at elementary schools and the wedding receptions of die-hard alumni.

Here is that legendary icon throughout all his (or her) costumed years at WSU…

Read more about Butch in “Cougar Confidential” and “Behind the Mask: Profiles of Cougs who were Butch T. Cougar.”

Bryan Clark as Butch Cougar
Fall 2020

Behind the mask

Meet some of the people behind the mask of WSU’s iconic mascot.

Dean N. Grevé

Dean N. Grevé (’81 Comm.) is credited with creating the character’s signature swagger. As the first student dedicated to playing the role, he’s referred to as the Butch godfather—or “furfather”—and beginning of the lineage. “I was the first full-time Butch,” he says. “I always will be. I’m very proud of that.”
Dean N. Grevé as Butch CougarDean N. Grevé
 

Grevé portrayed Butch from 1979 to 1981, his junior and … » More …

Summer 2020

Talkback for Summer 2020

 

A woman’s place

When I started my career at WSU in the fall of 1969, I knew I wanted to be a biologist. My all-girl high school had an excellent science program. I spent the summer of ’69 working at the WSU Extension Center in Puyallup raising house flies and counting bark beetles in entomology.

My assigned advisor was in the zoology department. Apparently, he was pretty famous. His first question to me was, “Are you going into this professionally, or do you plan to get married?” Although I was a pretty timid 18-year-old, I stared at him and … » More …

Map of Washington state with WSU campuses marked with flags
Summer 2020

Fun facts and stories from the campuses

Looking at three decades of Washington State University at Vancouver, Tri-Cities, and Spokane yielded some pretty interesting facts about the campuses.

Read three stories from the three campuses.

WSU Vancouver

It’s… Alive!
In 1993, WSU Vancouver was.one of the first institutions in the country to use interactive electronic classrooms (classes simulcast via video).

Home, Sweet Recreation Home
The sole remnant of the campus’s previous life as a family-run dairy farm is a small brick farmhouse, known today as the Annex, home to the Recreation Program.

Doctors in the House
Fall 2019 is the first time WSU medical students … » More …

Where were you logo with Mount St. Helens in background
Summer 2020

“It was raining ash”

The angry-looking ash cloud billowing above Mount St. Helens is one of the most iconic images in state history.

And is etched in our collective memory.

Those living in the state of Washington at the time of the May 18, 1980, eruption all have a where-were-you-when-it-blew moment. Here are some of them.

 

Don Swanson

Volcanologist Don Swanson (’60 Geology) agreed to man the mountain’s forward observation post for a few days to replace a geologist who needed to travel out of town. But Swanson himself needed a replacement for a night—that night.

David A. Johnston, a younger U.S. Geological Survey colleague, agreed to … » More …

Where were you logo with Mount St. Helens in background
Summer 2020

Reader memories of Mount St. Helens

Washington State Magazine asked readers to share their memories of the eruption of Mount St. Helens 40 years ago. Here are their recollections of that fateful day.

 

Long drive home

For whatever reason, we decided that May 18, 1980, was an excellent day to leave campus and go to the motocross races in Clarkia, Idaho. We were watching the races when a large, ominous thunderstorm appeared over the ridge. As we got ready to head for the cars to avoid the rain, it started to snow. Except it wasn’t snow. We hopped into the car and started the long drive back to Pullman. The … » More …