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Gifts

Summer 2011

A plan for Washington

In 1972, as Scott Carson was preparing to graduate from Washington State University, a counselor told him he was still six credits shy of his degree. The Vietnam veteran was astonished. “He said I had to complete these physical education credits.”

Carson had already attended several semesters of community college, was married, had served his country, and had only budgeted for two years in Pullman to finish his business degree. That a handful of phys. ed. credits stood in the way of his degree seemed absurd.

But the counselor was unwavering. Carson took it to the department head, who insisted that it was a state … » More …

Winter 2001

Rucks consistently responsive to WSU needs

“We knew it would help students who were struggling.” —Jim Ruck

Last spring alumnus Jim Ruck of Everett made Washington State University an offer it couldn’t refuse. The chemistry graduate visited his old department and asked for a “wish list” of things the department could use. He made similar requests of Food Science and Human Nutrition (FSHN), Intercollegiate Athletics, and the WSU Libraries.

“In each case they found something they needed,” he says. “Given some choices, you look at what appeals to you and what would have the best value in your mind.”

Jim and his wife, Lee (née Neff), have made donations to … » More …

Summer 2004

Toys, Games, and Unique Gifts: Entrepreneurial spirit drives Edmistons

Two niche markets-toys/games and a Web site for gifts-have taken husband-and-wife entrepreneurs into new territories.

Steve Edmiston is president of Seattle’s Front Porch Classics. The company creates retro-feel toys and games. Melody Wickline Edmiston has created a Web-based consumer retail site specializing in high-quality and hard-to-find gift ideas. The couple lives in Des Moines. Both are Washington State University alumni.

Before joining the game company, Steve had created a Dread Pirate game as a Christmas gift for their daughters, 12 and 8. The game eventually developed into one of Front Porch Classics’ leading products.

Melody (’84 Bus. Adm.) watched the marketing of that game, later … » More …

Spring 2009

A gift toward fuel research

Oil industry executive Gene Voiland ‘69 and his wife Linda have promised $17.5 million to Washington State University’s School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering, contributing to the school’s focus on energy research.

An immediate $2.5 million gift will allow the school to hire faculty who will focus on transforming agricultural and municipal waste into useful fuels and chemicals.

In the pressing challenge to develop clean and sustainable energy sources, researchers are looking for alternative energy solutions that can employ the existing petroleum-based infrastructure. Municipal and agricultural waste can be converted to fuels that look and perform just like gasoline or fuel oil. But, because they … » More …

Summer 2008

A gift toward animal health

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has committed $25 million to Washington State University toward the construction of a research building that will become the centerpiece in the new School for Global Animal Health. The new facility will provide modern research space on the Pullman campus to support global animal health research. WSU is recognized internationally for research focused on preventing transmission of animal pathogens. “You cannot identify a healthy human population in which the animals are not also healthy,” says Warwick Bayly, dean of WSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

“Humans are inextricably linked to their animals. Solving the challenge of global poverty is not … » More …