Issue 2012-01 (January 19, 2012)



WSU Researchers to Help Young Warfighters Become Socially Adept

By Judith Van Dongen

Researchers at Washington State University Spokane have been awarded a three-year $2.25 million grant by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to help develop a high-tech social interaction training module for young warfighters sent on foreign missions.

James and Vila inside the simulation suite
(Photo by Judith Van Dongen)

The grant is part of DARPA's Good Stranger program, an ambitious $32.5 million research program that seeks to maximize the success of military ground troops who face culturally diverse encounters in unfamiliar environments.

"These days, the generals sitting back at headquarters often have less control of ground wars, peacekeeping, and humanitarian missions than you'd expect," said Bryan Vila, the principal investigator on the project. "In infantry missions, success can and often does hinge on how younger enlisted men and women interact with the people they meet, and the initiative they show or don't show."

Vila, a professor of criminal justice, and postdoctoral research associate and co-principal investigator Lois James will collaborate with two Washington-based partners on the project: the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission (WSCJTC), which handles the training of nearly all law enforcement, corrections, and public safety professionals in the state, and Advanced Interactive Systems, a Seattle-based firm that manufactures realistic use-of-force training simulators.

The team's efforts will focus on training techniques research. Based on a number of key skills that will be identified through social science research, the team will create the training curriculum; develop metrics to measure trainer and trainee performance; provide training to experienced military and police trainers; and oversee the formation of a mobile training team that will pilot test the curriculum out in the field.

Trainer training will take place at the WSCJTC's Spokane facility. Prior to and following the training, trainers' skills will be tested on interactive, simulated encounter scenarios developed by the team and filmed in Spokane. The scenarios will be run in two use-of-force simulation suites inside the simulation laboratory Vila heads up as part of the WSU Sleep and Performance Research Center.

Vila says earlier grant-funded work made the team well positioned to work on the prestigious project. In previous projects funded by the National Institute of Justice, Office of Naval Research and DARPA, Vila and his staff converted training simulators into research tools to measure police officers' judgment and driving performance while well rested versus sleep deprived. A former Marine and cop himself, Vila has done extensive research on issues related to the performance of police officers, whom he points to as excellent role models for successful interactions in culturally diverse, fast-paced and high-risk encounters.

"What we're developing isn't just cultural sensitivity training," said Vila. "By teaching young warfighters how to observe, understand, and engage people—some of the same skills valued in cops—we  will help them be safer and do their jobs better in a tough environment."

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Nursing Visits Tied to Improved Environmental Health

By Alli Benjamin, College of Nursing

Public health nursing interventions might help reduce environmental health risks, according to a recent study by researchers at Washington State University and Montana State University.

Butterfield (left) and Postma

"To our knowledge, this is the first study in the nation that used public health nurses to deliver a multi-risk focused program aimed at reducing environmental risks to rural low-income children," said co-author Julie Postma, assistant professor at WSU.

The findings, published in the December issue of the American Journal of Public Health, demonstrated that rural low-income parents who received visits from public health nurses were more likely to take precautionary environmental health steps than those who only received published health literature.

"We designed our study from the perspective of a parent or guardian who needed to be vigilant about risks in water, air and soil," said lead author Patricia Butterfield, professor and dean of the WSU College of Nursing. 

The study was funded by the National Institute of Nursing Research, part of the National Institutes of Health.

The financial cost of environmental disease in U.S. children recently was estimated at more than $75 billion per year. However, the real costs come from seeing a child suffer from asthma, cancer or renal disease. Preventing some childhood diseases requires parents to know about risks in the home and how to take action to reduce these risks.

Potential hazards in low-income, rural families

Since they often rent rather than own their homes, low-income families in particular may be unfamiliar with their environmental safety and what to do if related health problems arise.

Families living in rural areas are more likely to receive their drinking water from private wells or springs, which may be contaminated from nearby septic systems, agricultural runoff or heavy metals. Improperly ventilated wood or gas stoves may cause elevated carbon monoxide levels.

"Oftentimes environmental health research focuses on a single agent. In contrast, this study began with the premise that families live in a home and can act to reduce multiple risks to their children's health," said Susan Wilburn, occupational and environmental health officer for the World Health Organization. "It's a subtle difference, but one that is important if we are to be as effective as possible in reducing the burden of environmentally associated disease in children." 

A total of 441 adults and 399 children under age 7 living in Whatcom County, Wash., and Gallatin County, Mont., participated in the study. Public health nurses and environmental health specialists from both counties delivered the intervention.

Homes were tested for multiple contaminants, including E. coli, nitrates and pesticides in drinking water. Participating families were randomly assigned to receive either four follow-up visits from public health nurses or a letter that detailed their test results and provided referrals to local public health services.

Three months later, adults in the public health nursing visit group had significantly improved outcomes related to precautionary adoption of environmental safety changes and self-efficacy. Self-efficacy improvements were observed for six of the six contaminants being studied; precautionary adoption improvements were seen for questions addressing five of the six contaminants.

"What we learned is that parents want to take steps to protect their children, but they often don't know what to do," Butterfield said. "Much of the environmental health information available is technical in nature and doesn't provide them with the type of actionable advice they need. 

"Our findings indicate that public health nursing interventions can be highly effective in helping parents understand more about common-sense actions in their home," she said.

The study also provided specific information about the frequency of household risks in a previously unstudied population of rural families...

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Pharmacy Faculty Create Company To Help Families With Drug Concerns

By Doug Nadvornick

Josh Neumiller and Lindy Swain are among the youngest faculty members at WSU Spokane. But their professional interests lie with people a generation or two ahead of them.

Both have appointments in the pharmacotherapy department within the College of Pharmacy. Neumiller is an assistant professor, Swain is an instructor. Both focus their current clinical work on older people.

Now they are business partners.

A year ago, Neumiller and Swain created a consulting company, Pharmacy Advocates. They work with older adults who need help sorting out medication issues.

"We see a lot of older patients who are taking a boatload of medications," said Swain. "They often think they're having drug interactions or are overmedicated."

Swain and Neumiller say they're often called by the adult children of their clients. They meet with the families and ask about medical histories and the drugs the older adults take. Then they analyze their clients' cases and offer guidance for managing their prescriptions and over-the-counter remedies.

"We're not just trying to fix one little problem with a medication," said Neumiller. "We're looking at it from more of the whole patient, how these medications interact with their other disease states. We look at any changes we can make to keep them functional as long as possible and in their home as long as we can."

Finding clients through social media

Neumiller and Swain have developed their clientele using traditional methods. They receive referrals from geriatric case managers with whom they work. They have a contract with the Washington Department of Social and Health Services to see older adults referred by state social workers. They've received clients through word-of-mouth from local doctors and support groups organized around illnesses like Parkinson's disease.

But they're also using Facebook and a Web site,, to reach out to potential customers.  They maintain a blog on which they answer patient questions.

"I wouldn't say that what we're doing necessarily is new, but it's new in that it's a private business doing it," said Swain. "There are a lot of pharmacists doing this as a side thing or who do it for free. But doing this as a business with the Web site and social media is innovative."

Their patients pay a per-hour consultation fee. Insurance companies don't yet cover their services. Swain and Neumiller hope that will eventually change.

But even if insurers don't consider Pharmacy Advocates' services valuable enough yet to include in their plans, Neumiller says the feedback from patients has been very positive.

"Particularly if they have a lot of cooks in the kitchen, as we like to say, a lot of people prescribing," said Neumiller. "One physician may not know what the other is doing. And so we serve as a liaison, cleaning up the regimen, letting all of the players know what's going on. It can make a huge difference in these individuals' lives."

Eventually, Swain says, she and/or Neumiller may consider making Pharmacy Advocates their full-time job. But for now, she says, they'll fit the business in with their teaching and research duties within the College of Pharmacy.

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SLIDESHOW: Construction Crane Installed for Biomedical & Health Sciences Building

Photos by Cori Medeiros & Doug Nadvornick

In case you wondered whether construction on the new Biomedical and Health Sciences Building has started yet, there's a giant construction crane in place to prove it has. The installation of the crane, last week, was quite a sight. In case you missed it, here's a slideshow of photos for you to enjoy.

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Special Session Advocates College Credit for WSU-affiliated STEM Courses

By Doug Nadvornick

The main purpose of the recent special legislative session in Washington was to ease the state's fiscal woes. But before adjourning, legislators took action on an issue near and dear to Sylvia Oliver and Joan Kingrey at WSU Spokane.

Science teachers undergo PLTW teacher training,
last summer on the Riverpoint Campus
(Photo by Doug Nadvornick)

Lawmakers approved a bill (Senate Bill 5974) that encourages colleges and universities to grant credit to students who complete high school engineering and biomedical courses that use a curriculum developed by Project Lead The Way (PLTW). Lessons created by the nonprofit organization are used by more than 4,200 schools in 50 states.

Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire requested the legislation and is expected to sign it into law.

"PLTW biomedical and engineering courses meet the rigor demanded for STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) preparation," said Kingrey, a clinical associate professor in the College of Education. "College credit will be a value-added component for high school students enrolling in PLTW."

The bill sponsors' primary intent was to strengthen the state's aerospace industry by increasing the number of people trained to design and assemble airplanes. But the legislation also aims to lure more young people to careers in science and medicine.

That's where Oliver's interest lies. WSU Spokane is a PLTW biomedical affiliate, and Oliver is the university's affiliate director.

She agreed that high school students interested in science careers may be more attracted to PLTW's biomedical and engineering classes if they can receive college credit. That, in turn, will make the students who take the courses more attractive to colleges and universities, including WSU, she said.

"We want these students," said Oliver. "They learn strong content. They learn critical thinking skills and how to work in teams. And once they come to college, they're more likely to move through and graduate than those who don't have that training."

PLTW established in Washington schools

PLTW's engineering program is 14 years old. More than 70 high schools and 44 middle schools in Washington offer its engineering courses, Oliver said.

PLTW's newer biomedical curriculum is catching on fast. During the 2010-11 school year, only a handful of Washington high schools offered it. Now 19 do, including 14 in the Spokane area.

Most of those offer only the first-year curriculum. But Cleveland High School in Seattle also offers the second-year classes, as do Mt. Spokane and Mead in Spokane. The classes are popular in the two Spokane schools, with 324 students taking the biomedical elective classes.

They learn about human body systems and disease as they work to solve medical mysteries.

The curriculum has become more popular partly because of the work WSU has done to market the program. Last summer, 40 teachers from around the country met at WSU Spokane to learn how to teach the PLTW biomedical curriculum.

WSU, as an affiliate site, plans to double the training next summer to 80 teachers. Gradually, the university hopes to expand the program so that school districts can offer students the full four years of PLTW biomedical training.

Kingrey is working with WSU and Community Colleges of Spokane to determine what kinds of academic credit those institutions will give to high school biomedical students. She's also working with a consortium of rural schools in northeastern Washington to figure out how smaller districts can afford the biomedical curriculum.

The university is trying to work out how it can help teachers who already teach everything add a specialized biomedical course to their workload, said Kingrey.

The rural project is funded by a $15,000 grant from Spokane's Empire Health Foundation.

Read earlier stories on PLTW:

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Cougs Garfield County

The Lure (and Challenges) of Rural Medicine

By Doug Nadvornick

For about two years, Garfield County, a rural agricultural county in southeastern Washington, went doctorless. In 2007, the county's only physician moved to Atlanta. It wasn't until 2009 that the local hospital district was able to replace him with a Washington native who had been working in Montana.

The county's medical situation wasn't as dire as it might seem. Garfield County has only about 2,000 residents and one incorporated town, Pomeroy. At the time, the district also employed two nurse practitioners and a physician assistant.

"People picked up the slack," said Mallory Beale, a Pomeroy native who was then a WSU student. She volunteered at the town clinic. The mid-level practitioners there "did as much as they could. They covered basically everything a family practitioner would do."

In addition, two physicians from Clarkston—30 miles away—made periodic visits and were available by phone for consultations.

Still, "it's a problem in that, for really serious things, you have to go to Lewiston (across the Snake River from Clarkston) or you have to come to Spokane (a two-hour drive)," said Beale.    

Rural medicine: not for everyone

Garfield County is a textbook case of the challenges of rural medicine.

"We really struggled to find someone who wanted to practice in a very rural community," said hospital district CEO Andrew Craigie. He concedes the county's remoteness means the district often must rely on local people to fill its medical needs. For example, he says his physician assistant is a Pomeroy native who trained in the University of Washington's P.A. program.

That puts Mallory Beale in an interesting position. She's now a third-year medical student based in Spokane. She says she has thought a lot about whether her future employment plans will include her hometown.

"I get asked that all the time and...I don't know," said Beale. "I can honestly say I love small towns. I loved growing up in one and I have a very realistic understanding of what a small-town doctor needs to do."

n one hand, "I love that continuity of care idea," she said. "You see families and generations of families over years and help them through different problems in their lives."

On the other hand, "I think it's a daunting idea. You're the gatekeeper to all of the specialists and you need to determine whether something is serious or not."

For now, Beale is working through her required third-year clinical rotations. She started medical school in Pullman, studied her second year in Seattle and is now in Spokane.  Before she graduates in June 2013, she'll have plenty to do, including applying for a residency program where she'll work after she collects her medical degree.

On her to-do list: decide where she'll eventually practice medicine. She's interested in staying in Washington, particularly east of the Cascades.

"I could see myself maybe a little bit bigger than Pomeroy, not as big as Spokane, just somewhere kind of in the middle, but it would just depend on the right situation."

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University District-Sprague Corridor Planning Study Update

In December, a workshop to solicit community input into the University District-Sprague Corridor Planning Study was held at the Riverpoint Campus. The aim of the study is to create a green, transit-oriented land use and transportation plan for the Sprague Corridor (Browne to Fiske).

For those interested in keeping up to date with the planning process, feedback received from the December 8 workshop has now been posted on the University District-Sprague Corridor Planning Study blog. Comments on the findings are welcomed.

The feedback will guide the process for identifying and refining preferred roadway design and land use alternatives for the South University area and Sprague Corridor. These comments-along with others received from stakeholder interviews, the project team, and the advisory team-will be analyzed to determine the feasibility of the alternatives, address traffic impacts and operational characteristics, and coordinate with concurrent street projects.  The analysis will result in an illustrative plan and implementation strategy, as well as updates to the comprehensive plan.

In March 2012, the draft plan will be presented to the public at the final open house.  Based on feedback received from this event, the project team will create a second draft and final plan for adoption in April of 2012.

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Grant and Contract Award Summary - October 1 through December 31, 2011

In the last quarter of 2011, researchers at WSU Spokane won close to $970,000 in grants and contracts. Below is an overview of the projects funded. Congratulations to everyone involved.

Faculty Member(s) Department Research Title/Funding Source Summary
Celestina Barbosa-Leiker/
Sterling McPherson/
John Roll/
G. Leonard Burns
College of Nursing Assessing the psychometric properties of the Adjective Rating Scale for Withdrawal (ARSW) and the Clinical Opiate Withdrawal Scale (COWS)

University of California-LA
This project involves the examination of two common scales-the Adjective Rating Scale for Withdrawal (ARSW) and the Clinical Opiate Withdrawal Scale (COWS)- used to assess withdrawal in treatment and recovery from opioid addiction to determine whether they vary over time and across gender and ethnicity. This will help determine if revisions to the scales need to be made or if meaningful comparisons of levels of withdrawal can occur. This project has the potential to positively impact future research by helping to revise current scales of withdrawal and/or moving toward the examination of trajectories of withdrawal over the course of treatment and recovery across various populations. Additionally, examining differences in the assessment of withdrawal across the proposed groups may help reduce health disparities for groups that are noted to have higher rates of attrition in substance abuse treatments.
David Brody Criminal Justice 2011 King County Superior Court Judicial Performance Evaluation

King County Bar Association
This project involves the design and oversight of a performance evaluation program for King County Superior Court judges. The program will provide information for citizens to use while voting in judicial elections and will be based on survey feedback from attorneys and jurors who have appeared before each judge during the evaluation period. A final report will summarize the survey results for individual judges and the court as a whole, including performance on such measures as legal skills, communication, courtroom management, professionalism and demeanor.
John Hinson/
Paul Whitney/
Hans Van Dongen
Sleep & Performance Research Center
Information throughput in risky decision making underlying self-regulation

National Institutes of Health (R21)
The impact on decision making of the interaction of deliberative (cold) and automatic (hot) cognition is crucial but still poorly understood. This research will explore when the cold cognitive information essential for good decision making is absent, and when it is improperly weighted in the decision making process because of challenges to cold or hot cognitive pathways. The study should help the researchers understand why suboptimal decision making occurs in a particular situation and what can be done to improve this. The study will also explore the impact of total sleep deprivation on these decision-making processes, providing an opportunity to address broad health and safety issues relevant to sleep loss in everyday life.
Suzan Kardong-Edgren College of Nursing WWAMI Nursing Technology Collaborative

University of Washington / U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - Health Resources and Services Administration
This is continued funding for a five-year project to develop and present continuing education programs for health professions educators in the use of electronic technology for educational purposes. The end product of this project will be a Web site that will house a technology toolkit with training modules developed by WWAMI expert faculty. The toolkit will be available to nurses in the WWAMI states (Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana, and Idaho).
Joan Kingrey/
Sylvia Oliver
Education Design and Implementation of a Rural Schools Model for Delivery of a Project Lead the Way Biomedical Science Coursework in the Panorama Rural Ed

Empire Health Foundation
This funding supports a project to design and pilot rural school delivery models for the Project Lead the Way Biomedical Sciences course work. WSU will bring together a project development team comprised of administrators and teachers from the Panorama Rural Education Partnership (PREP) to achieve the project goals. The rural delivery model will remove barriers for students in small rural school districts that limit access to high-quality science course work. It is anticipated that this will result in improved student achievement in science and college- and career readiness, as well as increases in the number of students taking additional science course work and successfully entering and completing two and four-year programs in biomedical fields.
Sterling McPherson/ Celestine Barbosa-Leiker/
John Roll
College of Nursing Investigating Longitudinal Not-Missing-at-
Random Methods in Substance Use Disorder Clinical Trials

University of California-LA
Although much research has documented the strength of modern missing data methods (i.e., multiple imputation, maximum likelihood, selection models, pattern-mixture models), their use in substance use disorders treatment research is relatively rare. The objective of this project is to compare innovative methods for the treatment of missing data to allow researchers to assess treatment effectiveness and recovery during follow-up as accurately as possible. This project will advance addiction science and support researchers who are faced with the ever-present problems associated with missing values when assessing treatment effectiveness and recovery.
Robbie Paul College of Nursing Growing Our Own Native American Students and Faculty (GONASF)

Native American Research Centers for Health/
Northwest Indian College
This subcontract funds WSU's contribution to the GONASF project, which is supported by a partnership with the Northwest Indian College, the University of Washington, and the Northwest Washington Indian Health Board. The goals of the GONASF program are to increase the number of American-Indians/Alaska Natives in health science career tracks, build community-based participatory research capacity, and facilitate the professional development for American-Indian/Alaska-Native graduate students, post-graduate trainees, and faculty and staff
Buel Rodgers/
Sue Marsh
Animal Science / Nutrition & Exercise Phys Washington Center for Muscle Biology, Exercise Physiology Phenotyping Core        

Muscular Dystrophy Association
This grant funds the establishment of a new exercise physiology phenotyping core at the Washington Center for Muscle Biology, a WSU Pullman-based research center focused on seeking new treatments for muscle disease. This new equipment will support the development of novel drugs and therapeutics for preclinical studies.
John Roll/
Donelle Howell/
Janet Katz/
Roberta Paul/
Matthew Layton/
Merry Armstrong/
Sterling McPherson
College of Nursing Clinical Trials Network: Pacific Northwest Node

National Institutes of Health
This grant renews funding for the Pacific Northwest Node of the NIDA Clinical Trials Network (CTN). It supports the CTN's mission to improve the quality of drug abuse treatment throughout the country using science as the vehicle; to conduct studies of the effectiveness of behavioral, pharmacological, and combined/integrated treatment interventions in rigorous, multi-site clinical trials; and to ensure the transfer of research results to physicians, clinicians, providers, and patients.
Kawkab Shishani College of Nursing Physiological and subjective affects associated with nicotine-containing hookah smoking

WSU Office of Research
The purpose of this study is to conduct a rigorous pilot test of the physiological and subjective effects related to hookah smoking in non-dependent hookah users. The intermittent use of hookah may be a risk factor for nicotine dependence. Transition to nicotine dependence needs exploration in the hookah smoking population.
Jill Shultz Nutrition & Exercise Physiology Food $ense WSU Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program -Education (SNAP-Ed)

Washington Dept. of Social and Health Services
This is renewal funding for the SNAP-Ed program, which aims to improve the likelihood that individuals and families eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) will make healthy food choices within a limited budget and choose physically active lifestyles. The program reached close to 140,000 clients statewide in 2011, with more than 85,000 receiving direct education. Participants have shown an increase in national indicators of nutrition quality and physical activity, food resource management, and food safety, including increased variety of fruits and vegetables consumed, more use of the MyPyramid Guide to plan meals, improved skills in food label reading, and increased physical activity.
Hans Van Dongen/ Peter McCauley/
Robert Short
Sleep & Performance Research Center Individualized Fatigue-Based Scheduling and Countermeasure System - Subproject 1

Office of Naval Research/Pulsar Informatics
This grant provides funding for a project to develop an individualized fatigue-based scheduling and countermeasure system that incorporates new advances in the field of sleep research and fatigue risk management. The system is based on a state-of-the-art biomathematical model that predicts the effects of different sleep schedules on individual performance, combined with a computational layer that aids in the selection of fatigue countermeasure strategies.
Hans Van Dongen Sleep & Performance Research Center Unobtrusive, Wearable Sensor Array to Collect Actigraphy, Ship Motion, Vibration, Noise and Temperature

Office of Naval Research/Pulsar Informatics
This work involves technical support for the development of a wearable sensor array to monitor variables relevant to fatigue in Navy personnel.
Bryan Vila Sleep & Performance Research Center Stress and Subclinical Cardio-Metabolic
Disease in Police: A Longitudinal Study

State University of New York (SUNY) Buffalo - U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
This is continued funding for a subcontract for a study funded by the Centers for Disease Control/National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health that looks at stress and cardiovascular and metabolic disease in police officers. As part of the research team, Vila will explore the system of interactions that connect sleep deprivation, shift work, and circadian disruption to subclinical cardiovascular and metabolic disease and psychological disorders among police officers. He will also contribute to the team's efforts to translate and communicate study findings to practitioners, policymakers and the general public.
Judy Zeiger Student Affairs/
Upward Bound
Upward Bound: Ferry and Stevens Counties

U.S. Department of Education/Office of Postsecondary Education (Upward Bound)
This is a continuation of funding for the Upward Bound program, which is designed to generate the skills and motivation necessary for success in education beyond high school among young people from low-income families and families where neither parent has acquired a bachelor's degree. Upward Bound provides program participants with fundamental support in their preparation for college entrance. This WSU Upward Bound project focuses on four small high schools in Ferry & Stevens Counties.
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  • Clinical associate professor of speech and hearing sciences Amy Meredith is one of four recipients of WSU's 2012 Martin Luther King Jr. Distinguished Service Awards. She received the award for the innovative strategies she uses to educate students, including those from diverse backgrounds, as well as for her dedication to provide services to children with disabilities and their families. A widely known expert on childhood apraxia of speech, Meredith has taken students to places like China and Guatemala to assist children with communications disorders. She plans to return to Guatemala this year as part of the worldwide Hearts in Motion project. Here at home, Meredith and her students have educated hundreds of children in elementary school through college on ways to prevent traumatic brain injury, a condition commonly encountered by speech-language pathologists. Meredith received her award during WSU's annual MLK Community Celebration on Jan. 12.
  • Gary Pollack, vice provost of health sciences and dean of pharmacy, has been appointed by Gov. Christine Gregoire to a four-year term on the board of directors of the Health Sciences and Services Authority (HSSA) of Spokane County.The HSSA was established by the Washington legislature to invest funds to create and support a nationally competitive health sciences research cluster in Spokane County. It works to catalyze higher education research and the health sciences industry to lead to higher wage jobs, long-term sustainability and economic diversification. Pollack is leading the expanding health sciences mission at the WSU Spokane campus and will facilitate efforts to take an increasingly interdisciplinary approach to teaching and research in the field.
  • Purely by coincidence, four WSU papers were published simultaneously in the December issue of the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education (APJE). The journal, which is the official scholarly publication of the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, contained papers by college dean Gary Pollack with a former colleague at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill about their experiment teaching physiology in small groups of teams instead of in a large lecture; faculty members Raymond Quock and Lisa Woodard, who published findings on the creation of an elective class assigning pharmacy students to teach science to second- and fifth-graders; faculty members Brenda Bray and Catrina Schwartz, about exploring approaches to assessing the effectiveness of teaching with human patient simulation and how simulation can be used to evaluate students' professional competency; and experiential program director Luke Rice, who collaborated with staff and faculty from five colleges of pharmacy in the Northwest to measure and compare solvency of experiential education programs. To read any of these articles, go to the APJE Web site.

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Community Connections

    • Saturday, Jan. 21 - KPBX Kids' Concert: Music of the Stage & Screen
      Come to the Bing Crosby Theater for a free concert on Saturday, January 21 at 1 p.m. The first KPBX Kids' Concert of 2012 will showcase songs from the stage and screen that kids will enjoy. The concert features the host of the Broadway Matinee radio show, Janean Jorgenson, who will bring a few of her friends from the Spokane Children's Theatre. The performers in this concert all performed in theatre groups' recent productions of Disney's Aladdin, Snow White, and Hansel & Gretel. For more information, go to the KPBX event page.

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Personnel and Staffing Changes    


  • Ben Gier, Custodian I, Facilities Operations, effective December 21, 2011
  • Joe Jacobs, Business Advisor, Small Business Development Center (Walla Walla), effective January 2, 2012
  • Tom McMeekin, Media Tech Senior, College of Nursing, effective January 3, 2012
  • Chris Coppin, Clinical Assistant Professor, WWAMI, effective January 12, 2012
  • Kelly Sylvester, Development Coordinator, College of Pharmacy, effective January 23, 2012


        • Richard Thorpe, Business Advisor, Small Business Development Center, effective November 30, 2011
        • Melody Wright, Custodian 1, Facilities Operations, effective January 8, 2012
        • Mark Zielinski, Assistant Research Professor, WWAMI, effective January 17, 2012
        • Joe Stout, Extension Coordinator, Spokane County, effective January 31, 2012
        • Dennis Hake, Business Advisor, Small Business Development Center, effective January 31, 2012

        Recruitments & Searches:

        • Assistant/Associate Professor, Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, position closed January 15, 2012
        • Associate Dean for Academic Programs, College of Nursing, open until filled, review of applications begins January 18, 2012
        • Assistant or Associate Professor, College of Nursing, open until filled, applications under review
        • Office Assistant 2-ASWSUS (50%). Student Affairs, position closed December 14, 2011, interviews have taken place
        • Program Assistant, Parking, Facilities Operations, position closes January 30, 2012
        • Research Study Coordinator 1, College of Pharmacy-Clinical Trials Group in the Department of Pharmacotherapy, open until filled

        2011 WSU Service Milestones:

        Recognizing and supporting the contributions of employees is critical to fulfilling the university mission. As part of its length of service program, staff are eligible for length of service awards at 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, and 50 years of service. Faculty recognition begins at 25 years of service. Below is a list of Spokane-based employees who reached length of service milestones in 2011.

        25 Years
        • Gail Furman, College of Education
        • Karen Malone, College of Nursing
        • Nancy Wagner, Riverpoint Library

        15 Years
        • Kenny Bisagno, IT

        10 Years
        • Kaarin Appel, AHEC
        • Angel Griffith, AHEC
        • Joyce Harbison, College of Pharmacy
        • Sally Hasher, College of Nursing
        • Debbie Holdren, College of Nursing
        • Lisa Hoveskeland, Student Affairs
        • Jane Kinkel, Student Affairs
        • Sarah Kohler, College of Pharmacy
        • Alisa May, University Advancement
        • Bryan Valley, IT
        • Barb Wallace, College of Nursing

        5 Years
        • Loretta Duncan, IT
        • Bethany Fruci, College of Nursing
        • Devon Grant, Sleep & Performance Research Center
        • Brigitta Jozefowski, WSU Extension
        • Juliet Knievel, FacOps
        • David Noble, IT
        • Kris Pitcher, College of Nursing
        • Wallace Williams, Office of Enrollment
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        Way to Go!

        Here's where you make someone's day a little brighter by extending your thanks for a job well done. Send your "Way to Go!" comments to Judith Van Dongen and watch for your thanks to be published in an upcoming issue of the Campus Bulletin!

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        The Bulletin is a monthly publication that is usually published on the second Wednesday of each month. The exact publication date may shift due to holidays. If you have an item that you'd like us to include, send it to us by Friday in the week before publication.

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