CWUAlumni NewsAlumni News from the Director: Moments that Matter, 07 May 2015 10:51:53<p>Significant moments in time help shape who we are and often impact the lives of those closest to us. These moments serve as a tapestry stitch or a finished chapter in our book of life. Dr. Seuss once said "You will never know the value of a moment, until it becomes a memory." With graduation looming and the close of another academic year on the horizon, there are some significant moments ahead that are worth highlighting.</p><p>This Saturday May 9, 2015 the Women’s Rugby Team will be competing for a National Championship against Penn State. Currently undefeated in collegiate competition, head coach Mel Denham and assistant Katie Dowty have been laser-focused since the start this inaugural varsity season. The team has developed a dynamic culture of support both on and off the field and the team members have been dedicated to the task of sharpening their competitive edge. The transition of the program from a collegiate sport club program to a varsity sport over the past year has been a tremendous life for the program. The hard work and effort of all those Alumni and volunteer coaches that helped establish the program has created a foundation for the success of the current program. The investment from both the student body and the university administration has provided the necessary resources for the team to hire a full-time coach, recruit national caliber talent, and compete, week in and week out, to prepare for this opportunity. So tip your hat to these ladies and make sure to tune in to <a href="">watch the match live</a> at 2:00 pm (EST) / 11:00 am (PST) and cheer on your Wildcats as they embark on a historic match!</p><p>Careers are not made overnight. They are a culmination of education, hard work and commitment. This year, the Wildcat family will recognize Dr. Larry Gookin’s thirty-four year career as the Director of Bands as he transitions into retirement. Gookin will conduct the Central Washington University Wind Ensemble for the last time on Sunday, June 7th at 4:00 pm in the McIntyre Music Building Concert Hall. In celebration of Professor Gookin’s career, a consortium of former students have commissioned a new composition from Professor Gookin’s friend, and favorite composer, David Maslanka. The premiere of this composition will be the centerpiece of this final concert. Following the performance, there will be a hosted reception open for all who wish to attend from 5:30 pm-7:00 pm in the Student Union and Recreation Center Ballroom in Dr. Gookin’s honor. The performance is expected to sell out the 600 seat auditorium and those wishing to attend the performance can purchase their tickets on <a href=";w=c24075cf11a40b8d6b2b5fe4d6debd4c">Wildcat Tickets</a>.</p><p>On Saturday, June 13th and Sunday, June 14th, the University will confer more than 3,000 degrees over three ceremonies as we celebrate the class of 2015. With the campus beginning the preparations for the largest ceremony of the year, it is easy to recall those moments prior to graduation when expectation for the future was meet with some trepidation. Perhaps our soon-to-be-newly-minted Alumni will take comfort in a recent Bloomberg Business article that indicates competition for jobs is decreasing.</p><p>“Over the past year, employers posted an average of 148 jobs each. That is a significant increase from the 2013-2014 average of 99 postings. But over the same period, the average number of applicants per post actually fell from 28.4 to 23.4. That is good news for job seekers because it suggests competition for positions is likely decreasing. The job market is poised to grow. About 56% of employers plan to hire more people in the coming year than they did last year. That is an increase from the 48% who said the same last year (Otani, Bloomberg Business, 4/15).”&nbsp;</p><p>If this bullish perspective isn’t enough to encourage our graduates, then they should also note that with more than 88,000 alumni nationwide they have a network of support avaiable to help them take their next step. So be on the lookout for these aspiring graduates the next time you are looking to fill a position and feel free to visit our <a href="">Facebook page</a> and send our graduates a note of encouragement.&nbsp;</p><p>Finally, make sure and mark your calendars as we look ahead to Sunday, September 20th when the Central Washington University Big Band takes the stage at the <a href="">Monterey Jazz Festival </a>under the direction and tutelage of Dr. Chris Bruya. After a first place finish last month at the Next Generations Monterey Festival, the Band has earned the opportunity to perform at this historic event where more that 500 artists will entertain over 40,000 spectators on 8 stages for 3 nights and 2 days. These jazz fans will come from all over the world to hear a genre of improvisational music that originated in America, but has always been an amalgamation of musical styles from around the globe. This will be the first time the University has sent a performance group to the largest jazz festival on the West Coast. So plan to be there in person to support our students or watch for the opportunity to give and support the band as they continue to perform on the national stage.</p>Innovative Solutions, 07 May 2015 10:27:33<p>Laura Sauermilch knew that 40-hour-a-week job behind a desk would be torture for her. Always an “outdoorsy” type, Laura graduated from Central in 2005 with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Geology Sciences. The academic service learning projects, field trips and camp outings required by Central for her degree helped her discover and solidify her passion for nature and the adventure it can provide. This passion for environmental safety and sustainability would lead Laura to start her own business in that sector.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 300px; height: 225px; float: left; margin: 5px;">Prior to opening her own business, Laura worked in various environmental capacities including a Hazmat spill responder for Washington state and a safety consultant for a private company. Wanting to be closer to her extended family to raise her own young family, Laura relocated to Plymouth, Wisconsin. While the Pacific Northwest is all about the “green lifestyle,” in Wisconsin, Laura struggled to find a job that was flexible and satisfied her desire to teach others how to save money by choosing a greener path. Starting her own business seemed like the obvious solution. Hence, Innovative EHS Solutions was born.</p><p>Innovative EHS Solutions provides two different services, industrial environmental safety and sustainability coaching. After an initial site assessment, Innovative Solutions provides a list of ways to create a safe work environment while saving money, protecting the natural resources surrounding the site and remaining complaint with local, state and federal regulations.&nbsp;</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 310px; height: 174px; float: right; margin: 5px;">Laura also operates as a green event organizer and guest environmental educator. Through Innovative EHS Solutions, Laura teaches various gardening and environmental classes. These green classes include “intro to backyard composting,” “eco-consumerism” and “the many uses of vinegar.” These classes are available and taught to people of all ages and backgrounds.</p><p>Laura’s unique knowledge of both environmental, safety and sustainability is rare in the consulting field, especially in Wisconsin. With 13 years of experience on the West coast, Laura provides Wisconsin with a fresh perspective to local situations. Central was a great platform for her to launch from, especially because of the service learning projects and end-of-major review classes that let her get a glimpse of the real world prior to graduation. To her knowledge, there are no other companies besides Innovative EHS Solutions in the Midwest that offer the same combination of passion, experience and service.</p><p>Opening her own business was no easy task. At the time, Laura was pregnant with her second child. The process from idea implementation to start took about 18 months. This was how long it took to do the research, and to gain the confidence to quit her job and to dedicate her time to launching a new career path. Time management has been the key to this business’s success. With two young children and a business ran from her home, Laura creates two different to-do lists daily and relies on a great support staff when she needs to leave her “office.”</p><p>Innovative Solutions can be reached on Facebook at Innovative EHS Solutions LLC or through Laura directly on LinkedIn. Laura’s latest project is rejuvenating 10 acres, a 115-year-old farm house and a 200 fruit tree orchard. Perennial Farms LLC is open to u-pick customers and will be a place to teach classes and showcase living sustainably in harmony with nature. Laura will be blogging about the experience and posting videos to her YouTube channel so that anyone with an internet connection can learn about her tips and hints on an eco-friendly lifestyle.</p><p>“Starting your own business is really more about confidence than anything else,” Laura advised. “There are plenty of free or low cost resources out there to help get you up and running. You only live once, why not spend your days doing what you love?”</p><p>You can find more information about Innovative EHS Solutions <a href="">here</a>.</p>A Lifetime of Achievement, 07 May 2015 10:18:28<p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 280px; float: left; height: 420px; margin: 5px;">Once a CWU graduate, always a CWU graduate. These are words that obviously mean something to 1953 graduate Shirley Richards. Over 60 years after her graduation date, Shirley is still heavily involved in alumni programs at Central. Last year, Shirley was honored with the Lifetime Service Award at the annual Alumni Award Banquet. Even without her commitment to Central, we would still be proud to call Shirley a CWU (or CWCE as it was called when she attended) alumna as she has lead a life that has been quite outstanding.</p><p>Raised in the tiny city of PeEll in Lewis County by a teacher, there was always an expectation that Shirley would get an education. Not only did Shirley get an education, she created educational opportunities for herself. While at Central, Shirley was very involved in numerous extra-curricular activities. She was a part of the CWU choir, band and was a member of the honors sorority Sigma Mu Epsilon. Not only was Shirley musical and academically driven she was also a part of the Catering and Home Economics club. Shirley would go on to graduate with a Bachelor of Education degree in Home Economics.</p><p>“CWU taught me to have confidence in myself so I could navigate the many curves in the pathway of my life,” says Shirley.</p><p>Now a retired accountant for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Shirley helped create a very impactful scholarship endowment. During a reunion for graduates of the 1950s and 1960s, the idea of a scholarship was developed to help current CWU students. A scholarship endowment was founded by eight women who had been friends while attending CWCE. This group of women included Shirley. Both men and women donated funds to the scholarship as the years went on. The first scholarship of $400 was awarded in 1991 in honor of Central's Centennial.&nbsp; Reunions continued each year and the scholarship endowment has grown to over $108,000.&nbsp; The CWU Alumni Association was able to award a $5,000 scholarship in 2014, an incredible achievement for a group of folks who started with just $400.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 275px; float: right; margin: 2px 5px; height: 183px;">The endowment Shirley helped start isn’t her only philanthropic achievement. Shirley has received the Wakan Award for leadership through the Camp Fire Organization, U.S. Department of Agriculture Bridge Builder award and numerous awards from her work with the CWU Alumni Association including the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014. Shirley has also served as a Peace Corp Volunteer Recruiter/Speaker and was a member of the Puget Sound Peace Corp Service Organization.</p><p>After graduating from Central, Shirley (whose maiden name is Pearsall) married her now husband of 64 years, Milton. They have two daughters and one granddaughter. Shirley enjoys gardening and traveling in her spare time and has been to countries all over the world including Japan, Kenya and England.</p><p>Shirley’s advice is to keep in mind that your own family should come first, but encourages all alumni to stay involved with both CWU and their college friends. Shirley has made a profound impact on the Alumni Association and the students of CWU who have received the scholarship she helped start. We are proud to call her one of our own and her legacy will continue for years and years to come.</p>Careers in Service, 07 May 2015 10:13:01<p>Fireman, doctor, lawyer, teacher, magician…all careers that children frequently spout out when asked what they want to be when they grow up. One career path that isn’t always as obvious is a career of service, a career in the non-profit sector. Central Washington University is proud of the graduates now working in the non-profit sector and in mid-April was able to highlight three graduates at a non-profit Q &amp; A panel at a Seattle International film Festival theater.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 250px; height: 333px; float: left; margin: 2px 5px;">One of these graduates was Sarah Schact. Sarah’s path to an education was definitely the road less traveled. Sarah started school in Fall of 1998 but did not finish her Political Science degree until June of 2014. Despite taking over 15 years to complete her degree, Sarah has over a decade of experience and is extremely well-versed in the field known as “open government.”</p><p>Described as the “open government Swiss army knife” by her peers, Sarah currently works as a consultant for a sole proprietorship called Smarter Civic. She is also a public health data advisor for a company called Socrata. In her roll with Smarter Civic she works with governments, and non-profits in a sector titled “civic technology.” Sarah’s passion for government and politics began at Central when she was elected VP of Political Affairs on the ASCWU Student Government. Sarah left school after her first year for various reasons, transferring to UW, leaving to work on Howard Dean’s campaign in New Hampshire and Vermont, eventually returning to CWU.</p><p>At 21, Sarah started laying the groundwork to start her own non-profit. The dream being to create a site that provided information on government and political happenings in a non-partisan way. At the time, the technology to do this sort of thing was too expensive but a couple years after the idea was formed, the technology prices lowered enough to make Sarah’s dream a reality.&nbsp; Sarah launched the first free, non-partisan legislation tracking system in the US based on public government data.</p><p>It’s Sarah’s tenacity and work ethic that allowed her to become a sought after professional in her field even before she officially had her degree. Sarah is even working on a book about open government titled “Civic Spark.” We are proud to call Sarah a Wildcat but also celebrate the road less traveled when it comes to acquiring a degree and starting a successful career.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>“You may feel like you’re failing at times,” reflects Sarah. “You may feel like this isn’t working out but you have to understand that you’re in this learning process not just of job skills but also of how to engage with people and to ask for help.”</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 250px; height: 250px; margin: 5px; float: right;">Dan Hoon was another member of the non-profit panel with an unconventional journey to his current position. Like many students, Dan struggled to find his “calling.” From wanting to be a Broadway actor to knowing he was meant to be a lawyer, Dan’s path eventually lead to non-profits. Though the choice wasn’t obvious at first, Dan couldn’t be happier in his current position.</p><p>The Nature Conservancy is the largest conservation non-profit in the United States, and Dan jokes maybe even the world! They have a presence in all 50 states and 35 countries. The non-profit has an operating budget of about $1 billion and endowment of $5 billion. Recently they purchased 48,000 acres in Clem Elum that will be open and available to the public.</p><p>As a philanthropy operation specialist for The Nature Conservancy, in his own words Dan “gets paid to cyber stalk people.” This is where Dan’s degree in history comes in handy. Although the connection may not seem obvious, Dan is essentially the person that connects the dates for the Nature Conservancy. He figures out what big players are connected to what organizations or charities in order to help widen his non-profit’s sphere of influence. Dan is also involved with planned giving which is related to working with individuals who want to leave part of their estate to the Nature Conservancy.</p><p>Although Dan never thought he would work for a non-profit, volunteering was a huge part of his life. It wasn’t until a friend suggested he try out non-profits and gave him a part-time job, that something clicked. Dan quite his full-time job at a jewelry store where he had been for two years to work a part-time job for a non-profit that would eventually lead him to the Nature Conservancy. The woman and mentor who suggested the non-profit sector is still a mentor in Dan’s life as is his new boss for whom he has worked the last four years.</p><p>“Follow whatever you find interesting and make a niche for yourself,” Dan advises to alumni.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 250px; height: 167px; margin: 5px; float: left;">The third non-profit panel member who is a CWU alumnus also had an interesting journey to non-profits. Non-traditional student Kevin Osborn graduated from CWU with an online degree in sociology. This was a reflection of his career change which had shifted from for-profit to non-profit. This transition was a long-time coming for service-minded Kevin and he is now an advocate for all things non-profit and volunteering.</p><p>For the majority of his career, Kevin worked in logistics for a major trucking company. He rose quickly through the ranks which lead him to Washington where he took over their west coast operations. This path was brought to a halt when as Kevin puts it, “life happened,” and he quit his job to spend more time with his kids. When Kevin was ready to go back to work, he knew it was time for a change.</p><p>Kevin’s life was laced with service. He was a foster parent and involved with numerous food and clothing non-profit organizations. Unfortunately, Kevin’s interest in non-profits occurred during a time of financial downturn and he was continually denied opportunities by non-profits looking for someone who fit their job descriptions exactly. Eventually, Hopelink gave Kevin a shot and he has been with them ever since.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 300px; height: 200px; margin: 5px; float: right;">Kevin’s position as Center Manager at Hopelink means his interaction skills are the key to his success. When people come to Hopelink, they are in a crisis mode and Hopelink is there to help provide emergency shelter, long-term affordable housing, case management, food programs and more. Kevin deals with all kinds of people from different walks of life which means his job is rewarding, challenging and keeps him on his toes. Admittedly from a somewhat privileged background himself, Kevin attributes much of his life-long learning to his time at Hopelink.</p><p>“Every day I am interacting with people that have a different situation,” says Kevin. “They’re having struggles and coming in at a different place, but everyone that is coming in at our place is in crisis mode in some way, shape, or form.”</p><p>Although it seems the road to a career in non-profits isn’t always the original plan, those who end up in that sector are doing work that is rewarding and fulfilling. We applaud these graduates for not only contributing to society in such a positive way, but utilizing their Central degrees to do so.</p>Continuing Education Spring Programs, 07 May 2015 09:57:24<p>CWU’s Office of Continuing Education has launched a variety of new programs available to the general public. These programs are designed for adults who have an interest in learning new skills, acquiring new hobbies and exploring new interests. There is still time to register for spring courses in a variety of subjects. Check out some of the highlights below or visit for more information<strong>.</strong></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Fly Fishing 101&nbsp;&nbsp; NEW!</strong></p><p>6/20/2015</p><p>Receive a great fly fishing foundation through our Fly Fishing 101 class! This four hour course progresses from the classroom at Troutwater Fly Shop in downtown Ellensburg to the banks of the Yakima River and will give anglers the knowledge necessary to fly fish for trout. The course will cover the different methods of fly fishing, the necessary equipment and supplies, and solid instruction on casting techniques. After lunch, travel to the banks of the Yakima River for more casting practice and to study aquatic insects. Trout prey on these bugs and we’ll select a few artificial fly patterns to test your new found skills by fly fishing the Yakima River. Lunch is included. Follow up this class with the Fly Fishing ½ Day Guided Trip to really practice your new skills on a drift boat!</p><p><a href=";pc=27&amp;mc=68&amp;sc=0">Register here </a><br>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Fly Fishing Guided Trip - Half day&nbsp;&nbsp; NEW!</strong></p><p>6/27/2015</p><p>Leave the troubles of hauling a boat, equipment and supplies to an expert guide while you practice your newly acquired fly fishing skills on this half day guided trip. The knowledgeable, friendly and dedicated guides of Troutwater Fly Shop will help you have a fun, educational, safe and successful day on the river. The trip includes flies, fly fishing supplies, rods and reels. You don’t want to miss this opportunity to enjoy the peaceful serenity of the Yakima River while practicing your techniques on a drift boat!</p><p>Please note: $325 is the price per drift boat, up to two people can fit in a drift boat.</p><p><a href=";pc=27&amp;mc=68&amp;sc=0">Register here</a><br>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Brushes &amp; Brews&nbsp;&nbsp; NEW!</strong></p><p>6/18/2015</p><p>Tap your creativity and brew up a masterpiece! Relax, enjoy and learn about fresh handcrafted brews while creating an instructor-directed painting in one night in Downtown Ellensburg at the Goodey Gallery. Bring a friend or socialize with the class. Combining painting and beer, you’re bound to have a great time! Class price includes painting materials and complimentary beer. Students will get to take their painting home at the end of the night. Must have valid ID and be 21 years of age to participate.</p><p><a href=";pc=27&amp;mc=72&amp;sc=0">Register here </a></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Guided Wine Tasting Tour - Wahluke Slope AVA&nbsp;&nbsp; NEW!</strong></p><p>6/27/2015</p><p>Join us on a guided wine tasting tour through the Wahluke Slope American Viticulture Area (AVA) which produces 15 percent of Washington’s wine grapes! This very warm South Slope growing above the Columbia River near Mattawa provides high degree growing days with cool nights. Home to more than 20 vineyards and at least 3 wine production facilities, the Wahluke Slope has the perfect environment for making big flavors, developing sugars, and keeping essential acids for a perfectly balanced wine. Join us for a trip to the vineyards where we will meet some of the state’s best viticulturists, tour the Milbrandt Winery crush facility, and taste some of the end product! A box lunch and bottled water are included; bringing snacks is encouraged.</p><p><a href="">Register here </a></p><p><br><strong>Digital Photography II&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; NEW!</strong></p><p>6/6/2015</p><p>This course is designed to build on the basic skills learned in the “Digital Photography I” course. Students will expand their understanding of the controls and functions of their digital cameras and basic digital editing while learning how to use the most fundamental, yet most overlooked, element of photography: LIGHT. In addition, students will also explore the process of digital printmaking and will learn how to take their images from the computer screen to the ultimate expression of photographic artistry: the fine art print. By the end of the course, the student will have created a small portfolio of their best images.</p><p><a href=";pc=27&amp;mc=72&amp;sc=0">Register here </a></p></br></br></br>Continuing Education Spring Programs, 09 Apr 2015 13:30:04<p>CWU’s Office of Continuing Education has launched a variety of new programs available to the general public. These programs are designed for adults who have an interest in learning new skills, acquiring new hobbies and exploring new interests. There is still time to register for spring courses in a variety of subjects. Check out some of the highlights below or visit for more information.</p><p><strong>Fly Fishing Guided Trip – Half Day</strong></p><p>4/11/2015 and 6/27/2015</p><p>Leave the troubles of hauling a boat, equipment and supplies to an expert guide while you practice your newly acquired fly fishing skills on this half day guided trip. The knowledgeable, friendly and dedicated guides of Troutwater Fly Shop will help you have a fun, educational, safe and successful day on the river. The trip includes flies, fly fishing supplies, rods and reels. You don’t want to miss this opportunity to enjoy the peaceful serenity of the Yakima River while practicing your techniques on a drift boat!</p><p>Register <a href=";pc=27&amp;mc=68&amp;sc=0">here.</a></p><p><strong>Fly Tying &amp; Microbrews</strong></p><p>5/13/2015</p><p>Learn to tie flies for trout fishing while enjoying a handcrafted microbrew from the Iron Horse Brewery. Join the experts from the Troutwater Outfitters on Wednesday, May 13 from 6 to 8 PM in tying a few local favorite imitations for the streams and lakes in the Ellensburg area. All fly tying equipment and material along with microbrews are included in the course. Must have valid ID and be 21 years of age to participate.</p><p>Register <a href=";pc=27&amp;mc=68&amp;sc=0">here.</a></p><p><strong>Next Level Knitting</strong></p><p>5/7/2015 – 6/4/2015</p><p>Take your knitting skills to the next level! This intermediate class on the fiber art of knitting will feature step-by-step lessons on how to create more complex knitting projects such as lacework, blankets, sweaters or socks. Students will learn expert information on swatches, gussets, and bead work and will be given the foundation to make many small, detailed and beautiful knitting projects.</p><p>Register <a href=";pc=27&amp;mc=72&amp;sc=0">here.</a></p><p>Additional courses listed <a href="">online</a>!</p>Letter from the Director: Innovation and Change, 09 Apr 2015 13:26:29<p>Since the last week in October I have had the pleasure of serving as Senior Director for Alumni and Constituent Relations. Reflecting on the last 5 months, I find myself balancing our opportunity to innovate while helping to manage in the very fluid and ever-changing environment of higher education. What is most exciting is the speed at which we can learn as an organization and the accelerated time frame to implement new systems that will create meaningful impacts on the work we are doing. Whether the change is onboarding new staff, developing engagement opportunities, establishing new relationships on campus or launching new system to help improve our efficiencies and improve connections with our Alumni, we must continue to press to the finish line and seek to innovate as we move the needle forward.</p><p>Over the next 30 days, we have some exciting events. On Saturday April 18th, there will be an alumni reunion for past Track and Field athletes during the 23rd annual Spike Arlt Invitational meet at Tomlinson Stadium. Wednesday April 29th, we are planning an event with Iron Horse Brewery for those alumni in the greater Ellensburg area. Watch for more information and the opportunity to RSVP in the near future. On Saturday May 2nd, make sure to purchase your tickets for the Encanto Gala <a href=""></a> and enjoy an evening in support of higher education. Tuesday May 5th, we reach out to the other Washington…Washington DC as we host an evening with the Washington Nationals. Watch for evites to these events and look for additional details on our events page as we continue to build our programs and outreach opportunities.</p><p>On Thursday April 16th, we will welcome our new Director for Program Development, Ashley Gillum.&nbsp; Ashley brings her past experience as a District Outreach Coordinator with the Community Colleges of Spokane and her work at Coconio Community College in Flagstaff, AZ. Her experience implementing targeted outreach initiatives aligned with institutional strategic plans will ensure sustainable program development while stewarding resources to maximize their impact. Ashley’s experience managing volunteers and facilitating large, district-wide committees will make an immediate and positive impact on the Alumni Association. If you have an opportunity, I encourage you to send Ashley a note of encouragement at <a href=""></a> and help welcome her to the Wildcat family.&nbsp;</p><p>If you are currently following us on <a href="">Twitter</a>, <a href="">Instagram</a> or <a href="">Facebook</a>, you have probably noticed that we are working hard to share the stories of our Alumni and highlight their achievements. This new platform and communication plan has been developed by Connie Morgan ‘14 and Josh Ingebretson ‘15 who have truly innovated how we are using our social media platforms. This shift has helped improve our reach in each of these platforms and our engagement has improved dramatically as current alumni are sharing their stories with us.</p><p>We have also recently began the process of reaching out to our Alumni-owned businesses. We are highlighting a new business each month and this month we are excited to feature the Bottlehouse. If you would like us to feature your business please email me directly at <a href=""></a>. I also want to remind everyone about the amazing opportunity to give back to the Alumni Association by designating CWU as your non-profit of choice for your Fred Meyer Rewards Program. <a href="">Click here</a> for all the details and show your Wildcat Pride!</p><p>At the beginning of April, we sent out an exciting ring promotion that includes introductory pricing of $179.00. We are working directly with Student Government to plan and execute the first ever ring ceremony. In addition to this exciting venture, the Alumni Board approved $5,000.00 to partner with student government as they sought support for a new Wildcat Statue that is scheduled to be delivered just before graduation and installed on the Student Union and Recreation Center east patio.</p><p>In the coming weeks, we will begin meeting with an external consulting firm that will help us benchmark our current program and organization structure against 5 -6 peer institutions. This firm will also provide recommendations on future program development as well as a full assessment of our current systems and staffing levels. The final report will be used to help inform our Alumni Board retreat this summer and finalize our strategic plan.</p><p>This summer, watch for update requests from Harris Connect as we work to publish a new directory for alumni to connect with one another. We encourage you to respond and provide us with updated information so we can make sure you are included in upcoming events and programs.</p><p>We are very close to finalizing a vendor that will work with us to deliver a new online presence for the Alumni Association and all of University Advancement. The result will be an enhanced web environment that allows you to access your alumni benefits and membership in one location.&nbsp;</p><p>With all this change and exciting development, it is important to celebrate our staff and supporters. I want to provide special thanks to our Senior Director for Foundation Operations, Mr. Todd Mildon and Vicki Dicken, our Senior Accountant for the Foundation. Both Todd and Vicki have been outstanding partners and have worked long hours to help improve our systems. I also want to recognize the members of our outstanding Alumni Board who have helped to support these initiatives and helped create a clear pathway for the next 1, 3 and 5 years. Without their direction and commitment, none of the work we have accomplished would have become a reality.</p><p>Finally, please join me in recognizing a very special person, Mrs. Jody Baxter. Jody will be retiring on May 1st after 22 years of service with the institution. She has been an amazing support for not only the Alumni Association but also for all things graduation. Her warm smile, attention to detail and can-do-attitude will be truly missed.</p><p>"The horizon leans forward, offering you space to place new steps of change." Maya Angelou</p></a href=""></a href="">Passion Becomes Profession for Wine Studies Alumnus, 09 Apr 2015 12:49:20<p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 495px; height: 278px; border-width: 5px; border-style: solid;"></p><p>When Henri Schock started school at CWU, he wasn’t quite sure where his education would take him. By the time he graduated in 2007 he knew the wine industry was his calling and that he was passionate about the education he had received at Central. As a member of one of the first graduating classes to come out of the Wine Studies program at CWU (it was launched in 2003 as the only four-year degree in international business in the United States), Schock learned enough about the wine industry to start his own wine-focused business with his now wife, Soni Dave. The business, called Bottlehouse, will soon be celebrating its fifth year in operation.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 350px; height: 234px; float: left; margin-left: 5px; margin-right: 5px;">Bottlehouse is one of Seattle’s first true wine bars. Located in Seattle’s Madrona neighborhood, the bar hand selects all of their beverages that include 50+ wines by the glass, sherries, amaro + aperitifs, local ciders, bottled and tap beer, plus their ever-changing retail offerings for customers on-the-go. In addition to their robust beverage program, their cheese, charcuterie and carefully curated small plates follow the same passion and uniqueness as the drinks with which they are paired. <img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 170px; height: 170px; float: right; margin: 5px;">While they do serve food, they would never claim to be a restaurant. The food program at Bottlehouse is very concise with a focus on cheese, cured meat, and seasonally prepared wine-friendly small plates. With over thirty cheeses to choose from, Bottlehouse cheese mongers help custome<img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 170px; height: 170px; margin: 5px; float: left;">rs choose cheeses and/or cured meats to whatever beverage they are drinking.</p><p>Bottlehouse’s beginning is not only associated with CWU because Schock got his education here, if it weren’t for Amy Mumma former director of the Institute of Wine, Beverages and Gastronomy and founder of the CWU program, Schock may never have heard of the opportunity to open his own bar.</p><p>“Amy Mumma was one of the coolest professors I ever experienced at Central,” reflected Schock.</p><p>Mumma now lives and works in France in various roles in the wine world and continues to be an asset to her former students. After graduating, Schock received an email from Mumma telling him about an opportunity to work with Wilridge Winery in a space that hadn’t been used in years. After a meeting with the winery, Schock and his wife (then girlfriend), Soni Dave-Schock launched into a six month construction and planning phase which included a trip to Spain. Henri’s wine background and Soni’s degree in architecture<img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 325px; height: 343px; float: right; margin: 10px 5px;"> from the University of Texas proved to be a perfect combo for a European classics inspired neighborhood wine bar.</p><p>Bottlehouse offers an ever-changing menu and monthly events. In June, they will feature the annual “Summer Rose Days” wine series, complete with a ticketed kickoff event that sells out every year. The wine bar will also be teaming up with Hama Hama on the first and last Thursday of April to provide fresh oyster and wine pairings. You can keep up to date on Bottlehouse’s events and specials by signing up for their newsletter online at <a href=""></a>.</p>C-What? C-Who? Camp C-Woo!, 09 Apr 2015 12:16:11<p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 495px; height: 331px; border-width: 5px; border-style: solid;"></p><p>Central Washington University’s Recreation program is once again offering “Camp C-Woo.” The recreational and educational programs aid in the sport and educational development of children ages 6 – 11. Camp C-Woo runs from June 22nd to August 21st and offers a safe environment for children to have fun, make new friends and spend the summer with positive role models.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 300px; height: 200px; margin-right: 5px; margin-left: 5px; float: left;">Not only do campers benefit from the experience but CWU students benefit as well. Camp counselors are usually current CWU students enrolled in the Education, Recreation and Tourism majors. The hiring process is extensive and this year will include an opportunity for potential counselors to be observed interacting with kids as part of the search process. This resume booster has resulted in many of the staff continuing to work with children in teaching and mentorship roles. Most recently, Hannah Dailey, alumna and former Camp C-Woo counselor and assistant, was hired as a Camp Director at Summit Summer Camp.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 300px; height: 196px; margin: 5px; float: right;">“I feel very lucky to have worked for Camp C-Woo,” said Dailey. “The biggest part that helped prepare me for my current job was the opportunity to learn the ‘behind the scenes’ of how a camp runs successfully.”</p><p>Camp C-Woo is giving alumni the experience they need to succeed past college while providing opportunities for young children to learn in a university campus setting.</p><p>Camp C-Woo will utilize resources available on campus that emphasize health, activity education and fun.&nbsp; The day camp runs every weekday from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Special rates for the whole summer are offered between April 1st and May 14th and include discounted rates for CWU Alumni Association members. You had fun at CWU. Now your children can too. Weekly registrations are available after the May 14th early bird deadline.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 300px; height: 196px; margin: 2px 5px; float: left;">Children enrolled in the program will try their hand at a variety of hands on and physical activities. The campers will have access to the indoor climbing wall and university pool. Lessons on nutrition and preparing snacks will be provided (campers are to bring their own lunches and snack each day) as well as a variety of arts and crafts activities. The summer will also include field trips to various locations such as the Moses Lake Aquatic Center and Lake Easton.</p><p>You can find information about Camp C-Woo on their <a href="">website</a>. For more information email: <a href=""></a>.</p><p><br><u><strong>RATES SUMMARY:</strong></u></p><p><em><strong>Registration rates for all 9 weeks of camp:</strong></em><br>Current CWU Student $1400 (April 1-May 14)<br>Current CWU Alumni Member $1450 (April 1-May 14)<br>(Please note to qualify for this rate you must be a current member of the CWU Alumni Association)<br>Non-Student $1500 (April 1-May 14)<br>Registration for everyone after May 14 $1600</p><p><em><strong>Weekly registration (opens May 15)</strong></em><br>Weekly Registration: $200/week, $220 for Field Trip Weeks</p></a href=""></br></br></br></br></br></br></br>Evening of Enchantment Supports Latino Scholarships, 09 Apr 2015 12:00:20<p>In order to support a growing demographic of CWU students and alumni, the first ever Encanto Gala will take place in the Student Union Ballroom on Saturday, May 2nd. The evening program will include music, a silent auction, special guest speakers and dinner with proceeds supporting the newly formed “Central Washington University Iñiguez Family Endowment Fund.” Tickets are on sale now for what promises to be an incredible evening.</p><p>The “Encanto Gala” not only serves as a fundraiser it is also a way to let the Latino community know they are welcome and have a place at CWU.&nbsp; Unfortunately, even with Central’s close proximity to numerous farming and migrant communities, the Latino student population isn’t as large as it could be.</p><p>“In order for Latinos to feel welcome at Central, they need a compelling story to which they can relate,” said founding brother and opera singer José Iñiguez.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 336px; height: 224px; margin: 5px; float: left;">For José, his story started with his older siblings who attended CWU before him. For other potential Latino students, the “Encanto Gala” itself may be part of that compelling story. The Latino experience will be illuminated in the form of operatic songs performed by José, classical pianist and doctoral student Jeremy Neufeld, and Mariachi Guzman de Pasco. A mix of traditional opera arias and music from the Latin American style of bolero will be brought to the stage. Between the opera arias and Latin American boleros, the listener is taken on a journey from the classical styles of the late 1700s to the modern music of the mid-1900s.&nbsp; The arias, reflecting a more classical style, will be sung in Italian and English, while Spanish language boleros will be performed with classical piano and Mariachi.&nbsp; Although the Italian, English and Spanish songs provide some contrast, the styles are more similar than one might realize at first listen.</p><p>“As a performer, I don’t think people realize how much we have in common even though we have different economic backgrounds, ethnicities et cetera,’ said Jose. “But that’s what’s so wonderful about music is that it’s blind to those differences.”</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/" style="width: 360px; height: 207px; float: right; margin-left: 5px; margin-right: 5px;">The endowment is a scholarship fund started by CWU alumni brothers José, Ricardo, Emilio, Simon, Jesus Iñiguez, and family friend, Josh Lopez. The six started the endowment in October of 2014 to honor the brothers’ parents Santiago Iñiguez and Guadalupe Rodriguez. Neither farm-working parents had access to a formal education but believed that education was the key to success. The parents instilled a desire to learn in all 11 of their children.&nbsp; As of today, all 11 have received at least a bachelor’s degree, five have a master’s degree while a sixth will be completing his master’s degree next month. Another brother is attending Dartmouth Geisel School of Medicine and will graduate in 2016 as a medical doctor.</p><p>The “Encanto Gala” is the first of its kind at CWU following a successful event at Eastern Washington University.&nbsp; Learn about the event, music and previous scholarship winner <a href="">here</a>.&nbsp; Tickets to the gala are $100 and are available online at <a href=";e=3bc4c927255311e0af5e51fc9050fe5e"></a>.&nbsp; Please join us for an enchanted evening supporting CWU Latino alumni and students.</p>