Awards, CAH, CAH Social Media, Central Washington University, College of Arts and Humanities, Department of Art, Department of Communication, Department of English, Department of History, Department of music, Department of Philosophy & Religious Studies, Department of Theatre Arts, Department of World Languages and Cultures, Uncategorized

We Are #CAHProud: Celebrating Our 2017 Year-End Celebration Winners

How can a future-oriented liberal arts college celebrate and recognize the talent and achievements of its undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, chairs, and staff from its eight dynamic departments and four diverse interdisciplinary programs?

One way is to take quality time near the conclusion of each academic year to honor those with extraordinary achievements, making our college better as a result of their impressive contributions.

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Another way is to salute our eight departments through a cavalcade of unique posters, leading from the SURC Ballroom entrance to our college’s 2017 Year-End Celebration right up to the podium.

And let’s not forget that each one of these theatre-style posters included our hashtag: #CAHProud.

We are indeed, #CAHProud.

Who is better at telling our story of overachievement than each of our departments? Consider the contributions of our Department of Art in nurturing the skills of students dreaming of painting, sculpting, and designing the next masterpiece.

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How about our Department of Communication, offering degrees in Communication Studies, Digital Journalism, and Public Relations, thus preparing the next generation of story tellers to advocate and report the news, stories, and information that society needs.

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Our Department of English aims to develop scholars in the world’s Lingua Franca, and recently received the state’s only “Big Read” grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).

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Our Department of History prepares our students to succeed as evidenced by alumnus Lori Bohn, a Boeing Systems Planner. The department emphasizes both historical knowledge and historical modes of understanding.

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Our recent “Community Day of Music” was the centerpiece for our poster presenting our Department of Music. The department prepares students for careers in music, providing them with the skills to become knowledgeable and confident music educators, performers, and practitioners.

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There are three primary reasons to major in philosophy or religious studies: Earn more, score higher, love what you do. Philosophy majors are paid well because employers want talented people who can think critically, communicate clearly, and solve complex problems.

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The Department of Theatre Arts produces fabulous shows each season (e.g., Chicago, The Musical and Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream), both on the main stage and in studio (workshop) settings. These opportunities and many others allow students to put classroom theory into practice as part of the regular season of Central Theatre Ensemble, the department’s production wing.

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Study abroad (e.g., Spanish Professor Dr. Eric Mayer’s student hike along Spain’s legendary Camino de Santiago de Compostela) are among the opportunities provided by our Department of World Languages and Cultures. The department offers majors in five languages, and minors in eight more.

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Besides extolling our eight dynamic departments, the main purpose of the College of Arts and Humanities Year-End Celebration was to recognize the accomplishments of our award winners:

Undergraduate Awards:

Thomas Gause Award for Achievement in Music: Composition, Taylor Griffin

Betty E. Evans Award for Achievement in Creative Writing: Poetry, Jason Days

CAH Award for Achievement in Non-Fiction Writing: Creative Writing: Joshua Swainston

The George Stillman Award for Achievement in Art, Austin Harris

CAH Award for Achievement in Performance: Live Performance, Joshua Johnson

Raymond Smith Award for Achievement in Scholarship, Sophia Andarovna

Marji Morgan Outstanding Student Award, Omar Manza

Marji Morgan Outstanding Student Award, McKenzie Lakey

Graduate Awards:

Outstanding Graduate Student Scholarship Award, Lexi Renfro

Outstanding Graduate Student Artistic Achievement Award, Brock Jensen

Faculty Awards:

Outstanding Faculty Teaching Award, Gary Bartlett (Philosophy and Religious Studies)

Outstanding Faculty Research Award, Cesar Garcia (Communication)

Outstanding Faculty Artistic Achievement Award, Vijay Singh (Music)

Outstanding Faculty Service Award, Michael Johnson (World Languages)

Outstanding Non-Tenure Track Faculty Teaching Award, Kirsten Boldt-Neurohr (Music)

Achievement Award for Inclusivity and Diversity, Cynthia Coe (Philosophy and Religious Studies)

Outstanding Employee Award, Sara Carroll (Music)

Outstanding Department Chair Award, Marji Morgan (Communication)

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Most of all, our Year-End Celebration provided all of us an opportunity to thank Dr. Marji Morgan for her leadership, her track record as college dean for nearly a decade, and for her willingness to serve as the interim chair of our Department of Communication for the past two years.

Starting this coming fall, Marji will return to teaching History. She will always be a great mentor, advisor, confident and most of all a wonderful friend.

Now, that calls for a Year-End Celebration!

By Stacey Robertson

21st Century Life, Arts and Humanities, CAH, Central Washington University, College of Arts and Humanities, CWU, CWU Department of Communications, CWU Film Program, Department of Art, Department of English, Department of History, Department of Philosophy & Religious Studies, Department of Theatre Arts, Faculty, Higher Education, LaunchPad, Liberal Arts, Stacey Robertson, Uncategorized

Showcasing Our Talented Students and Faculty to the World

By Stacey Robertson

Film has the power to inspire, enlighten, and excite – and our new college video certainly does all of this and so much more.

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Please take a moment to enjoy the virtuosity and creativity that our new video showcases. Our very own Film Program co-leader Jon Ward carefully directed and expertly produced this video in collaboration with two recent CWU grads Dara Hall and Jobe Layton.

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The scene begins with a bird’s eye view of our campus from historic Barge Hall to modernistic McIntyre Music Building Concert Hall on a gorgeous Ellensburg day, beautifully filmed by a drone-mounted camera.

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From Music Professor Nikolas Caoile conducting our orchestra to musical-theatre-produced Mary Poppins flying through the air, the video is a cornucopia of images documenting our incredibly innovative and skillful students and their ardent and dedicated faculty.

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There are dancers floating across the stage, pottery taking shape, piano keys expertly played, theatre productions magnificently choreographed, broadcast productions carefully digitized, newspapers meticulously printed, and graphic designs precisely created.

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Our video highlights the talent and commitment of our students and faculty in dozens of different ways. You can experience the energy in our English, History, Philosophy and Religious Studies classrooms as students reach into the past to try to fully comprehend the challenges of the future.

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This video is refreshing and illuminating because it offers a compelling glimpse into what we do best: Create a culture of excellence that enhances and builds on every bit of talent and potential from our students and faculty for the benefit of our region and the world.

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The new college video also highlights an exciting truth: We are educating and mentoring the creative leaders of the future.

If you have not yet had the opportunity to experience our new college video, the link can be found immediately below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hu93R9nL7Fo

http://www.cwu.edu/arts/

http://www.cwu.edu/film-video/

Arts and Humanities, Central Washington University, College of Arts and Humanities, Department of Philosophy & Religious Studies, Faculty, Faculty Mentoring, Higher Education, Liberal Arts, Lifelong Learning, Out of the Box Thinking, Philosophy, Public Hospitals, Religious Studies, Uncategorized, Undergraduates

How A Philosophy Degree Leads to Career Success and Personal Fulfillment

By Stacey Robertson

There are three primary reasons to major in philosophy or religious studies: Earn more, score higher, love what you do.

The CWU College of Arts and Humanities Philosophy and Religious Studies Department believes students who want to succeed should choose one of its majors. The contention may raise an eyebrow or two, particularly as politicians have used Philosophy as a preferred example of a “useless” degree

“We need more welders and less philosophers,” said Florida U.S. Senator Marco Rubio.

With all due respect to welders, the evidence of demand for philosophers runs directly counter to Senator Rubio’s contention.

According to the Payscale.com 2015-2016 College Salary Report, a biochemistry major earns an annual salary of $43,400 in early career and $84,500 in mid-career. In comparison, a philosophy major starts at an average of $42,200 and reaches $85,000 by mid-career.

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Philosophy majors are paid well because employers want talented people who can think critically, communicate clearly, and solve complex problems. Moreover, for students who want to pursue a postgraduate degree, these skills also lead to excellent scores on professional and graduate exams. Philosophy students score second highest among all majors on the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), fourth highest on the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT), and top of the list among Humanities majors in the Graduate Record Examination test (GRE).

Part of the CWU Family for 13 Years …and Counting

Dr. Matthew Altman, who earned a Ph.D in philosophy from the University of Chicago in 2001, has served as our department chair for three years. Asked why students may opt for philosophy, Altman quickly replies that students love all aspects of the major. They develop the courage to question their own closely held beliefs. They learn how to defend their assertions. They position themselves for success in life and career.

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Before assuming his present position as department chair, Altman was the director of the William O. Douglas Honors College for six years. He now oversees the activities of 10 faculty members, who teach hundreds of students every quarter in both general education and advanced courses.

The department’s 130 majors and minors take courses in a wide variety of subjects including: Philosophy and Science Fiction; Philosophy of Law (e.g., same-sex marriage, juvenile executions, Nuremberg trials, Edward Snowden); Philosophy of Race (e.g., Black Lives Matter); Medical Ethics (physician-assisted suicide, health care, Terri Schiavo).

Similar to many of the disciplines offered by the CWU College of Arts and Humanities, philosophy is grounded in ancient history (e.g., Aristotle and Plato), advancing through hundreds of years (e.g., Descartes, Hegel, Kant), and arrives in the present day (e.g., Rawls, Nussbaum, Nagel). Courses cover many topics of modern relevance, including contemporary ethics, politics, and social theory.

According to Altman, great philosophers will always have important lessons for students. Aristotle taught us that philosophy begins in wonder. René Descartes said that in order to have well-founded beliefs, we need to build on a certain foundation: cogito, ergo sum, “I think therefore I am.” Immanuel Kant espoused that when it comes to ethics, we cannot make an exception of ourselves and that all people have inherent value.

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Equally relevant to today’s complex world is the field of religious studies. Issues related to religious history, meaning, and culture appear in the headlines nearly every day. Altman made it clear that his department does not teach religious theology, but provides a broad background for students to understand the interplay and relationship among the world religions.

Dr. Altman embraces the philosophy of serving one’s community. He was a member of the Ethics Committee at a local hospital from 2008-2015, and in fall 2015 he was elected to the Board of Commissioners for Kittitas County Public Hospital District No. 1 for a six-year term.

Clearly, it is misguided to say that philosophy and religious studies are useless, or that professors live in an ivory tower. The fields are alive and well: philosophy and religious studies graduates are employable, and the field is crucial to understanding and engaging with our ever-changing world.

http://www.cwu.edu/philosophy/

http://www.kvhealthcare.org/press-release-56/

http://time.com/4110418/gop-debate-philosophers-welders/