Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Our Commitment to the Spokane Community

WSU Spokane Aerial

WSU Spokane Aerial

If not for the greater Spokane community, our campus wouldn’t sit along the beautiful Spokane River.

Our campus wouldn’t be able to grow like it has over the past 25 years. Without the Spokane community and the many partnerships it has offered, our pursuit of a medical school here would hit a brick wall.

» More …

Teaming Up With Our Neighbors to Help The Less Fortunate

Gonzaga University

Gonzaga University

Our academic programs tout teamwork and an inter-professional approach to health care.

So it’s no wonder we’d want to walk the talk. We have a terrific track record of working with community organizations, and we continue to do so with Gonzaga University, The Center for Justice, Empire Health Foundation and Providence Health Care.

This team – which we are proud to be part of – is working to bring health and legal services to low-income families.

Studies show those in lower income environments are more prone to poor health because they don’t have access to the care they need. They also may lack access to the legal services that may be needed.

Law students and medical residents will use teamwork to pinpoint those that need health and legal services and address them.

Teamwork produces great results. There’s no need for us or Gonzaga to build a wall on our sides of the Spokane River. It’s better for the community for us to build bridges and become a team. This is exactly what we’re doing with this new medical-legal partnership

WSU Spokane Research Gaining Worldwide Attention

Lois James WSU Spokane

Lois James WSU Spokane

Lois James is a Research Assistant Professor in our Sleep and Performance Research Center. The Center and our Criminal Justice program have worked with the Spokane Police Department on a number of studies and trainings.

James conducted research last year that showed racial disparities in police confrontations. Her research showed that participants in the study hesitated longer to shoot when confronted with black suspects compared to white and hispanic suspects.

This research was timely, since the nation is currently in an ongoing debate regarding police shootings in the wake of the deadly shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.

As one might expect, this research has received considerable attention from around the world. Here’s a rundown of some of the coverage James’ research has garnered so far:

» More …

Michael Baumgartner and Marcus Riccelli Featured on The WSU Health Sciences Update

State Senator Michael Baumgartner (R-Spokane) and Representative Marcus Riccelli (D-Spokane) recently announced their bipartisan support for a WSU medical school in Spokane.

The two legislators are featured on the latest episode of The WSU Health Sciences Update, where they talk about their support.

The University District Health Clinic is on the Horizon

University District Health Clinic

University District Health Clinic

Last week, the WSU Board of Regents met in Spokane and among the items it took action on was the approval of the design of the University District Health Clinic, which will be built on our campus. The clinic is part of the Spokane Teaching Health Center, a consortium of WSU Spokane, Providence Health Care and Empire Health Foundation.

The clinic will be a teaching site for medical residents.

» More …

CNN’s Don Lemon References WSU Spokane Research

Bryan Vila WSU Spokane

Bryan Vila WSU Spokane

Our research on police and deadly encounters has received attention in a number of places.

Dr. Lois James’ research shows that police officers hesitate longer when encountering black suspects in deadly situations than they do with white suspects.

Dr. Bryan Vila’s research on police fatigue and decision making shows that police officers have an extremely difficult job and was featured on Anderson Cooper 360.

Last night, CNN’s Don Lemon hosted a town hall called “Cops Under Fire” and referenced the research happening on our campus.

Watch the Video


WSU Spokane Criminal Justice Professor Gives TEDx Spokane Talk on Police Decision Making


Bryan Vila is a Criminal Justice professor and a researcher on our campus. His research on police work has received attention in a number of media outlets, including the New York Times, NPR and CNN.

Recently, Vila presented at TEDx Spokane, an event independent of TED Talks but with a similar mission: to share ideas.

Vila talked about the various factors that impact police officers’ decision making processes, including fatigue, too much work and too little sleep, distractions in the squad car and more. Vila attributes some of this to insufficient funding in many police departments around the country. Vila’s suggested solutions to these problems boil down to increasing staffing and improving how the challenges of shift work are managed.

Watch the presentation:

State Legislators Announce Support for a WSU Medical School in Spokane

Marcus Riccelli

If you haven’t heard yet, there is growing support for a WSU medical school headquartered in Spokane.

On Tuesday, State Senator Michael Baumgartner (R-Spokane) and State Representative Marcus Riccelli (D-Spokane) announced bipartisan support for a WSU medical school. The two legislators announced they would introduce bills in their respective chambers to amend a law that is nearly a century old that mandates that only the University of Washington can operate a publicly funded medical school in the state.

» More …