Dear Eagle Family and Friends:

Amazingly, we’re already past Halloween and heading into the holidays. Every month at EWU goes by in a whirlwind. October was no exception.

On October 23, we celebrated our inaugural Eastern Edge community forum, “Women in STEM,” with a large crowd at the Convention Center. Moderated by the CEO of Washington STEM, Angela Jones, the event focused on the lack of women in science, technology, engineering, and math, highlighted extraordinary EWU STEM students and graduates, and examined strategies for attracting more women into those fields.

At the event, Dr. Leslie Cornick, associate dean of the EWU College of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, launched the “100 Women Strong” initiative to provide mentoring, scholarships, and leadership development to help recruit female students into STEM fields.

Leslie Cornick, President Cullinan and Angela Jones at Eastern Edge in Spokane

“Whenever you add women to a team, you add diversity. When you add diversity, you bring in interactions that will lead to greater creativity and innovation,” said panelist Rebecca Long, who earned an EWU computer science degree and works as a DevOps engineer.

In other news, our campus buildings have been in the limelight. As our new Interdisciplinary Science Building gets ready for opening in fall 2020, the Pence Union Building (PUB) received an award from the American Institute of Architects Washington Council for “design excellence.” The award highlighted the highest standards in sustainability, innovation, building performance, and overall integration with the university and surrounding communities.

President Cullinan gathers with leaders from Avista, McKinstry and Katerra

Then, on October 21, we celebrated the installation of the last beam on top of the Catalyst, Spokane’s inspirational first zero energy building, at an event known as “topping out.”

During the ceremony, a crane placed a cross-laminated timber tree on top of the building to commemorate the landmark moment in the construction process. When the Catalyst opens in fall 2020, it will house EWU programs such as Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, and Visual Communication Design. Within a couple of years, as many as 2,000 students will be studying and working in the building. So exciting!

The academic year is roaring by. I look forward to sharing more news in December!

Mary Cullinan
President, Eastern Washington University