Being thankful at WSU Spokane

WSU Spokane Students

Shameless cliché alert!

It’s the time of year where everybody makes a list of what they’re thankful for, and we’re not afraid to do the same (we will also post a “Year in Review” blog next month. You’ve been warned).

Time has an article on why being thankful is good for your health*. So being a health sciences campus, we figured we’d walk the talk and share what we are thankful for.

The tireless work of our late President, Elson S. Floyd
There once was a time when the thought of opening a WSU medical school in Spokane was a dream. President Floyd ensured that the dream would come true. His work to convince legislators and health care leaders that the state needed a second public medical school can transform the greater Spokane community, the state and the university.

Our awesome students
Our campus is unique. The average of our students is 28 and there is no on-campus housing. The majority of the student body is studying at the graduate or professional level. All of them are outstanding. Whether they are providing health care to citizens in Ecuador, or keeping the football team hydrated and healthy, our students are gaining valuable experience and instruction as they become part of our health care workforce.

Our problem-solving researchers
Researchers on our campus are solving problems and creating ways to better health outcomes. Georgina Lynch in the Speech and Hearing Sciences program will look into whether a routine eye test can help detect autism. Georgina and her team have preliminary research on that topic.

Grant Trobridge in the College of Pharmacy, has identified biomarker genes that can help predict prostate cancer survival and breast cancer recurrence.

Marcos Frank in the College of Medicine conducted research showing how important REM sleep is for young brains, and how some medications interfere with REM sleep, leading to more problems:

Martin Schiavenato in the College of Nursing has research that could lead to commercializing a device that would measure pain in premature infants:

And do you know the differences in how moms and dads talk to their babies? We have research on that, too.

Make sure you learn about all the research going on at WSU Spokane.

Community partners
Nothing can be done alone, and we’ve been able to accomplish a lot with the help of many others this year. The Spokane Teaching Health Clinic currently under construction on our campus is the result of a partnership among us, Empire Health Foundation and Providence Health Care. Rockwood Health System recently brought a da Vinci surgical robot to campus for our students to see and use. The Smith-Barbieri Progressive Fund is helping us reach into the East Central neighborhood to identify and reduce health risks in that area. Without these community partners and many others, the work we do would be quite a bit more difficult.

Our thoughtful community
It’s been a rough week around Spokane. An intense wind storm knocked power out for much of the city, and many are still without power as temperatures begin to dip. The Nutrition and Exercise Physiology Club’s campus pantry opened its doors to students, staff and faculty on campus to grab some non-perishable food items as they wait out this power outage. A number of individuals donated items as well, helping those that are still without power grab some food.

These are a few things we are thankful for this year. We obviously can’t list everything, so you’ll just have to tour our website to see all the cool things WSU Spokane has to offer.

*As that article states, there is still more research to be done to draw a straight line from thankfulness to good health.