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History of University

Kimbrough Hall piano with image of woman playing overlaid
Summer 2018

WSU in 100 words

A mini-essay contest

Every Coug has a story. That’s what we’ve discovered over the years—from memorable football games to wedding engagements to midnight donut runs, WSU alumni have got some great memories. Now we’d like to hear your Washington State story in 100 words or less.

Pick your favorite memory and send it to us. The top essays will receive a can of legendary Cougar Gold cheese or a WSU hat.

Send us your 100-word WSU memory by June 1, 2018, through the contact form below, You can also email wsm@wsu.edu, or send a letter.

We’ll print our favorites in the August issue and … » More …

Mooberry Field
Spring 2018

WSU Track & Field favorites

I didn’t realize until I compiled this favorite-moments list just how much the dictum of “no cheering in the pressbox” has come to dominate how I watch/enjoy the sport. Unfortunately, I’ve done a good job—too good, in fact—of learning how to be dispassionate. It makes me a better journalist and broadcaster, but it saps some of the vitality out of being a fan. So as you’ll see, my list is very much front-loaded.

Chronologically, these self-centered moments stick with me (noting that I’ve restricted individuals to a single appearance apiece, or it would run the risk of being all Gerry Lindgren and Henry Rono):

» More …

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 …

WSU University mace
Fall 2017

Fabric of the university

The ornate Washington State University mace, a convocation and commencement fixture, is perhaps the most widely recognizable of artist Tim Doebler’s creations.

But his artwork is interwoven throughout the University. Commemorative and recognition placards in building lobbies. A stone monument on Terrell Mall. Finely crafted tokens of appreciation awarded to University leaders and supporters.

“I see this as part of the fabric of the University,” says Doebler ’84 MFA, who is retiring in November after 38 years as an engineering technician with WSU’s fine arts department.

A Vietnam veteran and survivor of the bloody Easter offensive, Doebler returned to the States in 1972 and … » More …

Vintage slide rack projector (Photoillustration from photos by yanukit/123RF and WSU MASC)
Summer 2017

Washington State University history and traditions—A slideshow

Bob Smawley ’52, “Mr. WSU” to many generations of Cougs, presented thousands of his famous slideshows that educated and entertained everyone from student groups to retiring University presidents and regents.

Above is a 47-minute history of WSU told through pictures from 1890 up to the 2000s. The presentation covers major happenings from Rose Bowl appearances and the Martin Stadium fire, to WSU traditions like “Hello Walk” and ringing the Victory Bell. It replicates one of the slideshow presentations that Smawley gave on many occasions at WSU.

Smawley’s audio was recorded at WSU’s MASC (Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections) in 2005.

Courtesy WSU » More …

Winter 2016

The currency of challenge coins

Rooted in World War I lore, and popularized with dramatic references in books and TV shows, military challenge coins have become a powerful symbol of camaraderie and support.

Beginning this spring, they also will help recognize the sacrifice and determination of student veterans at Washington State University. The newly minted WSU challenge coins will be handed out to all graduating veterans, and to faculty and staff with military service.

“This was one of our first projects,” says WSU Veterans Coordinator Blaine Golden, noting the expanded student Veterans Center opened in 2014. “We wanted something that would show veterans we value their contributions…and are proud … » More …

Fall 2016

The long view

“I do not believe that any man can adequately appreciate the world of to-day unless he has some knowledge of … the history of the world of the past.” —Theodore Roosevelt, 1911

A hundred years ago, Theodore Roosevelt’s vision of conservation came to fruition with the establishment of the National Park Service. Although President Woodrow Wilson established the NPS, Roosevelt had doubled the number of national parks and passed the Antiquities Act in 1906 when he was in the Oval Office. Roosevelt believed that we must have a deeper and longer-term view of our country’s natural and historical heritage.

In the spirit of Roosevelt’s aims, … » More …