Grad Profile: Faith Van Putten

WOU graduate Faith Van Putten smiles in her red graduation cap. She is leaning against a brick wall, and has a white tassel hanging from her cap.
Faith Van Putten is a graduating Early Childhood Studies student, with a minor in English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL). She is from Sacramento, California, and has participated in Peer Mentors, D.R.E.A.M., and Family Building Blocks while at WOU. Why did you choose WOU? I chose WOU because of the small class sizes, their [more…]

WOU Alumna Finds Herself in the Spotlight

People at a press conference
Western Oregon University alumna Colleen Thayer’s new high-profile assignments have placed her in a spotlight that’s slightly outside of her comfort zone. Even so, she gladly accepts the challenge, because she believes it’s important to provide accurate information to the deaf community during this unprecedented moment in history. A Certified Deaf Interpreter, Thayer has been [more…]

Grad Profile: Jon Montero

WOU senior Jon Montero is standing in front of large rock structures. Jon is wearing a black Adidas shirt and glasses.
Jon Montero is a graduating student from Seattle, Wash., who is completing a degree in Exercise Science. Why did you choose WOU? I chose WOU because I was excited about the hands-on experience you receive when taking the courses. In the first year you practice teaching to your peers and in the second year you [more…]

T.H. Gentle Professor of Education for 2021

Richard Woodcock Education Center
When she was a middle and high school teacher in rural China, Western Oregon University Associate Professor Xiaopeng Gong observed many of her students struggled with various social and emotional challenges. “As a teacher, there were so many questions that I wanted to find an answer to but did not have a means to do [more…]

Grad Profile: Maddie Hannah

Graduate student Maddie Hannah smiles in front of bright pink flowers, with a pink flower in her hair. She is wearing a light gray WOU sweatshirt.
Maddie Hannah will be graduating from WOU’s Master of Arts in Teaching program. Originally from Rome, Georgia, she graduated from WOU with a major in Humanities and a minor in Linguistics, and has worked as a graduate assistant for the Writing Center. Are you a transfer student? What has the experience been like? I transferred [more…]

Grad Profile: Kailee Goodrich

Person smiling, standing in front of blooming trees
Kailee is graduating with degrees in both American Sign Language (ASL) Studies and ASL/English Interpretation Major, and she has also earned a minor in health. She is from Livermore, California, where she attended Las Positas Community College and completed her Associate in Arts degree before transferring to WOU. As an outstanding student and member of [more…]

Grad Profile: Camryn Skari

Camryn Skari smiles for a photograph. Her hair is up, she is wearing red lipstick, and she is wearing and off-the-shoulder white shirt.
Camryn Skari will be graduating with a Masters in Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling this June. In addition to being a graduate student, Camryn has worked with the WOU Foundation Phonathon team for the past three years, and has been the lead caller for two years.     What has it been like working for the [more…]

Late WOU Professor Recognized for ‘Historic’ Contributions to the Field of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

A red bike rack that spells the name "Hank"
The American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities announced in early April that it was honoring the late College of Education Professor Hank Bersani in its National Historic Recognition Project 2000-2020. Bersani, a professor of special education who passed in 2012, was named a National Honoree in the project, which seeks to recognize the key [more…]

Recent InfoTech Graduate Helps Educators Navigate Emergency Shift to Online Learning

Person in a WOU sweatshirt standing outside in front of tall rocks
By Anthony Rimel Kaitlin Lucas graduated from WOU’s Information Technology M.S.Ed. program in December 2019. And just a few months later she would be on the frontlines of one of the biggest moments in the history of educational technology: the unprecedented shift to online learning following the global outbreak of COVID-19. Lucas, who also earned a certificate [more…]

I Love You Emoji Began at WOU

Wolfie surrounded by hearts
For anyone who has texted the “I love you” handshape emoji, please thank CM Hall and Chad Ludwig. Hall, the co-project director of DeafBlind interpreting, and Ludwig, the director of RRCD, petitioned Unicode Consortium, a nonprofit that regulates the coding standards for written computer text that includes emojis to have the “I Love You” handshape [more…]