CWUAlumni NewsAlumni Newshttps://www.cwu.edu/alumni/newsen-usFrom the Director: CWU’s Got Talenthttps://www.cwu.edu/alumni/node/3165Thu, 05 May 2016 11:45:10<p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/Bob_Ford_0.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 267px; float: left; margin-left: 3px; margin-right: 3px;">Central Washington University has many accomplished and talented alumni that continue to give back to campus and provide meaningful direction and support to the next generation of Wildcats. With recent events like <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/student-alumni-association-hosts-yopro-young-professional-networking-event">YoPro</a>&nbsp; and the <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/cwu-students-hear-top-ceos">CEO speaker series</a>&nbsp; it is clear that the professional innovation of our Central alum is a powerful resource for our current students. From recent graduates, to young professional, to our highly experienced alumni each person in the alumni network plays a significant role in the Wildcat family even though they are at different places in their own development.</p><p>Recognizing that most of us began the pursuit of our professional careers when we walked across the graduation stage we want to invite you to join us as we celebrate our recent graduates by surrounding them with the rich alumni network that you are each a part of today. Please make plans to join us on June 16th at the Seattle Center Armory to help us welcome these newly minted Wildcats at the <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/2016-grad-celebration">2016 Grad Celebration</a>. This is a great time to welcome these greenhorn innovators and help encourage them to do what they love and do it well. As Henry Longfellow said, “The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well, and doing well whatever you do without thought of fame. If it comes at all it will come because it is deserved, not because it is sought after.” I hope you take this opportunity to invest in our young alumni and to be a part of their success story.</p><p>Speaking of success stories, one alumna that has blazed a trail of her own is <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/cwu-mariners-night-safeco-field">Amanda Hopkins</a>. Amanda was recently hired by the Seattle Mariners to be an area scout. Amanda has worked hard for this opportunity and by all accounts it is well deserved. In preparation for her new role, Amanda served as an intern for the Mariners for the last three summers. She also performed well in class and was a leader on CWU’s softball team. Her dedication, leadership and talent attracted the eye of the major leagues while making history as one of the first female scouts in professional baseball. Make sure to read more about Amanda in our feature stories as she demonstrates the amazing qualities of what it means to be a Wildcat.</p><p>In continuing our commitment to engage our alumni not only regionally, but also nationally and internationally, I would be remised if I didn’t close this letter by highlighting two new opportunities for alumni to connect. The first will be in Washington D.C. as we partner with other Washington state colleges to bring together our Wildcats in the greater D.C. metro area when the <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/battle-two-washingtons-sounders-vs-dc-united">Seattle Sounders take on D.C. United</a>&nbsp;on June 1st. Wildcat Alumni will not only be able to purchase discounted tickets, but they will also have an opportunity to purchase limited edition co-branded CWU/Sounders scarves at our pregame celebration before kickoff.</p><p>Finally, if you live in or are traveling to Japan don’t miss your chance to be a part of CWU alumni history.&nbsp; That’s right, Japan. Over the last several months we have been working with several committed individuals to help promote and organize the very first Japanese Alumni Social in Tokyo, Japan. We are very excited to take the first steps in crossing the Pacific as we look to bring together Central Alumni around the world. Our very own Michoan Spoelstra will be heading to Tokyo herself to congratulate Kazuko Nakamura and Kazuhiko Kikukawa on this exciting endeavor. If you are interested and want to join us in Tokyo,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/cwu-alumni-party-tokyo">please register today.</a></p><p>Having served as your Alumni Director for the last year and half it is energizing to see the level of enthusiasm and support our alumni have for this great institution. As we approach the 125th birthday of the Washington State Normal School that we all know today as Central Washington University I am reminded of the talented alumni, faculty and staff that have called CWU home. You don’t have to look very hard to see that CWU’s got talent.</p><p>Regards,<br><span style="line-height: 1.4;"><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/BobFordSigSm.jpg" style="width: 152px; height: 42px;"><br>Robert Ford</span><br><span style="line-height: 1.4;">Executive Director of Alumni &amp; Constituent Relations</span></p><p>O: 509.963.2752<br>C: 509.899.0046<br>E: fordro@cwu.edu</p></br></span style="line-height: 1.4;"></br></br></span style="line-height: 1.4;"></br></br>CWU Mariners Night at Safeco Fieldhttps://www.cwu.edu/alumni/node/3164Thu, 05 May 2016 08:46:04<p><br><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/Mariners%20Article552016.jpg" style="width: 500px; height: 118px;"></p><p>The Seattle Mariners have a long-standing relationship with Central Washington University though their continuous hosting of the annual CWU Mariners Night, and their support of our College of Business’ Sports Business program. However, it wasn’t until recently that CWU was able to see a new relationship with the Mariners when they hired on former CWU student and softball captain, <a href="http://m.mlb.com/news/article/159132908/amanda-hopkins-hired-by-mariners-as-scout">Amanda Hopkins.</a></p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/Mariners%20Article%202_552016.jpg" style="line-height: 16.8px; width: 300px; height: 200px; float: left; margin-left: 3px; margin-right: 3px;"></p><p>Hopkins was recently hired on by the Mariners as an area scout. She is the first full-time female area scout since the 1950s, according to Baseball America. Hopkins has worked as a scouting intern for the Mariners for the past three summers while she attended CWU.</p><p>Tom McNamara, Mariners scouting director said, "I look at [Amanda] as a scout. Everybody here is excited. We're excited because we feel we've hired a good scout.”</p><p>The 2016 season will be Amanda’s first season as a fulltime employee with the Mariners. We are so proud that one of our own CWU Alum has this great opportunity to follow her dreams and have an impact in a sport that she loves. This is a great opportunity to not only showcase our amazing Wildcat alumni, but it also opens doors for future alums through networking and continuous partnerships with Major League Baseball.&nbsp;</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/Mariners%20Thumbnail552016.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 168px; float: right; margin-left: 3px; margin-right: 3px;">Speaking of the Mariners' 2016 season, if you would like to see the M’s first hand, CWU is having a <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/cwu-mariners-night">CWU night at Safeco Field </a>on Friday, May 13, 2016. This event is open to all CWU alumni, students, staff, faculty, and friends. Proceeds from each ticket will go back to <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/business/nwcsb">CWU's Northwest Center for Sports Business</a>.</p><p>The first pitch is 7:10 p.m. and you can receive a free co-branded Mariners &amp; CWU hat when you purchase your tickets through this special site created for our Wildcat family. <a href="http://seattle.mariners.mlb.com/sea/ticketing/special_event.jsp?group=cwu">Click here</a> to purchase tickets now. To pick up your free gift make sure to join the CWU Alumni Association from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. for a pregame celebration in the "Outside Corner" of Safeco field where you can connect with your fellow Wildcat Fans and show your ticket to receive your hat.</p><p>DEADLINE TO <a href="http://seattle.mariners.mlb.com/sea/ticketing/special_event.jsp?group=cwu">PURCHASE YOUR TICKETS</a>: Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 5:00 p.m.</p></br>CWU Students Hear from Top CEOshttps://www.cwu.edu/alumni/node/3163Thu, 05 May 2016 08:37:43<p>A selected group of CWU student leaders recently had a chance to interact with two of the world’s foremost chief executive officers during the CEO series sponsored by University Advancement.</p><p>“We’re delighted to have two distinguished members of our President’s Advisory Board here on campus to engage with our students and faculty,” said Scott Wade, vice president, University Advancement and CWU Foundation executive director. “These are world class leaders who are pushing the envelope in their respective industries, and we are honored by their investment in the lives of our students.”</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/CEO_Article552016.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 200px; float: left; margin-left: 3px; margin-right: 3px;">Christine Day, former CEO of Lululemon Athletica and current CEO of the food company Luvo, which offers chef-created, nutritionist-approved meals, was the first to meet with the group of students. She believes the key to developing a high functioning and successful company is their focus on the five greats: great purpose, great differentiation, great discipline, great team, and great leadership.</p><p>In her leadership role, Christine has followed the principle that purpose creates loyalty. If you can focus your employees work on the mission, you can create a higher rate of job satisfaction leading to greater productivity causing people to love working for the company. “Leadership starts with you, but isn’t really about you. You need to create a space for others to perform” Day said.</p><p>The students then met with Hoby Darling, Cashmere native and president and CEO of audio and gaming brand Skullcandy. Darling started building this company being gritty with humble roots and hard work. Every time he got knocked down, he got back up and tried harder to succeed because every team needs a strong leader.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/CEO_Article_Hoby552016.jpg" style="line-height: 16.8px; width: 300px; height: 200px; float: right; margin-left: 3px; margin-right: 3px;"></p><p>Darling is an inspiration to many and left CWU students with this message, “Do it because it’s fun and because you wear your heart on your sleeve. You are future leaders, stay loud!”</p><p>The motivation derived from these two CEOs speaking to our Wildcats will last in their memories and drive them to succeed for years to come. Seeing top industry leaders, such as Day and Darling, use their leadership skills and their determination to become top leaders in their industries, gives our students the aspiration to always push through any obstacles they may face and climb to the top.</p><p>We believe that Central Washington University gives students the tools needed to succeed; providing networking and professional development opportunities, such as the CEO series, is proof of our investment in the future of our Wildcats.</p>Student Alumni Association Hosts YoPro: A Young Professional Networking Eventhttps://www.cwu.edu/alumni/node/3162Thu, 05 May 2016 08:26:51<p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/YoPro%20article552016.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 329px; float: left; margin-left: 3px; margin-right: 3px;">The Student Alumni Association (SAA), in partnership with CWU Career Services and the College of Business, hosted the Young Professional Networking Event (YoPro) on April 25th on Central’s campus. Students were encouraged to speak with the panel of professionals to make connections and create a vision for their own future career endeavors. The panel was comprised of six young professionals representing industries in physical therapy, insurance, law and justice, and supply chain management.</p><p>“YoPro was implemented by the Student Alumni Association to afford Central students the opportunity to connect with alumni and professionals from an array of companies.” said Clint Lemkus, Assistant Director of Program Development for the CWU Alumni Association and Student Alumni Association President. “Ultimately, our intention was to give students a glimpse of where their education at Central can take them, as well as bridge the gap between current students and established alumni.”</p><p>Panelists were asked to share their career path and to identify key learning opportunities that could benefit our ambitious students. A few of the panelists found their callings early. Brittany Buna of FAST Enterprises, said she decided to pursue IT during her Freshman year and stuck with it.&nbsp; Others, like Wilson Hiner, a SRS Branch Manager, decided two months before graduation that he needed a job and worked hard to get the one he has.</p><p>The panelists addressed how to write resumes and the importance of proper etiquette during interviews. Jonathan Neill, District Marketing Manager for Federated Insurance Company, advised students to be personal during interviews. He said that his best interviews were those that he asked just as many questions as his potential employer. Neill said that interviewing the interviewer shows your potential employer your interest and focus on the job.</p><p>Before one last round of networking that evening, each panelist was asked to give the best advice they have received or wished they had received when starting out their careers. Physical Therapist, Greg Gillum, told students to be able to explain how they work, and how specifically their skills would benefit a company.</p><p>YoPro was an excellent way to encourage and lead students in their careers and professional pursuits. University Advancement thanks all the young professionals who came to share their wisdom. Some takeaways from the event: interview your interviewer, and remember to never get discouraged.</p><p>Nick Birkenfeld, a Student Alumni Association member, walked away from YoPro feeling confident. “YoPro was an amazing opportunity from the prospective of a current student here at Central.” Birkenfeld said. “This event allowed me the opportunity to connect with professionals within my field of study and to learn about what qualities and skills employers are most looking for today. It was also beneficial to learn about the various hiring processes that companies employ.”</p><p>If you would like to participate in future Young Professional panel programs, please contact Laura Sanchez at lauras@cwu.edu or at 509-963-1976 . You can also contact our Student Alumni Association at centralsaa@cwu.edu.</p>Letter from the Director: Wildcats Make a Difference https://www.cwu.edu/alumni/node/3156Thu, 07 Apr 2016 13:12:10<p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/Bob_Ford_0.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 267px; float: left; margin-left: 5px; margin-right: 5px;">Central Washington University’s educational experience is a gateway to professional excellence.&nbsp;Each year we see more and more Central Alumni making an impact in the business world and beyond.&nbsp; With more than 2,100 alumni owned businesses, it is clear that Central provides unique opportunities to develop the skills and interests of entrepreneurs that make a difference in our local and global communities.</p><p>Lisa Conquergood, this month’s featured alum, has rocked both business and technology circles. She has been as a game-changer in <em>100 Top Women in Seattle Tech</em> and <a href="http://techcrunch.com/gallery/30-women-who-have-revolutionized-a-male-dominated-industry/"><em>30 Women Who Have Revolutionized a Male-Dominated Industry</em></a>.&nbsp; Picmonkey, a business that Lisa co-founded, has proven itself as an innovative way to provide a useful product while meeting the demand of not only her local community, but globally equipping people with tools that help capture the human experience and preserve our lasting memories.</p><p>In order to prepare the next generation of Wildcat business leaders the Alumni Association is developing a new mentorship model in conjunction with Career Services and various colleges we hope to launch fall of 2016 to connect Alumni and experts in their respective fields with students. This will allow students to get a jumpstart on their careers and start applying what they’ve learned to the real world.</p><p>On Monday, April 25th The Student Alumni Association will be putting on a <a href="https://www.cwu.edu/alumni/yopro-young-professionals-networking-social">Young Professionals Networking Conference (YOPRO).</a> The YOPRO conference will provide an opportunity for students to hear from and connect with professionals from 9 different industry sectors. Students will have a chance to interact one on one in addition to hearing from the panel of experts about their journey.</p><p>For those CWU alumni blazing trails and making a difference, we want to recognize them. Whether a distinguished alumni like <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/alumni-award-honorees">Mimi Healey or Jeff Hensler,</a> or a young alumni in their first job. In order to honor the amazing work of our young alumni we are adding a new category to this years Distinguished Alumni Awards that will be announced during a special banquet Friday October 14th as we celebrate 125 years of history as an institution during homecoming. The new category titled the <em>4 Under 40 Award</em> is open for at large nominations and will include alumni that excel in their industries or communities through their leadership roles, share a commitment to personal growth and community involvement, and exemplify true Wildcat spirit.</p><p>We invite you to nominate a deserving alumni in your industry or community now. To nominate a deserving alumni simply <a href="https://www.cwu.edu/alumni/awards">click here</a> or visit <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/awards">www.cwu.edu/alumni/awards</a>. Nomination will be open until Sunday May 15, 2106.</p><p>The Library named after former CWU President and Distinguished Alumni Dr. James E. Brooks will host the 3rd annual gala and silent auction on April 9th from 7:00-10:30 p.m. We encourage you to join Dr. Brooks as we raise a glass to our national award winning library that plays an important role in our community. Come out and spend <em>An Evening At The Brooks</em> and dance in the stacks to the music of the Ellensburg Big Band accompanied by swing dancing lessons from the CWU Swing Cats. Local saxophonist Lenny Price and CWU’s music students also will perform. Tickets are available at <a href="http://www.cwu/tickets.com">www.cwu/tickets.com</a> or by calling 509-963-1429.</p><p>Making a difference in your community doesn’t mean you have to run out and start your own company or be an industry titan although we tip our hat to these trailblazers. Making a difference in your community also means caring for our shared environment.&nbsp; "Lady Bird" Johnson once said “The environment is where we all meet; where all have a mutual interest; it is the one thing all of us share.” With earth day coming up the Alumni Association is excited to partner with the Center for Leadership and Community Engagement to provide our Alumni with opportunities to make a difference.</p><p>On Saturday, April 16th you can volunteer to help with the <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/yakima-river-clean-up">43rd annual Yakima River Clean-up</a> and two weeks later on Saturday April 30th you can take part in the <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/downtown-clean-up">Downtown Clean-up</a>. You can see the full list of volunteer opportunities in the <em>Ellensburg Celebrates Earth Day</em> feature in this newsletter. If you are not able to make the trek back to Ellensburg don’t worry you can still join us! Check out your local chamber of commerce, downtown association, or visit <a href="http://www.earthday.org/">www.earthday.org</a> and find out ways you can make a difference in your community. Post your photos on our <a href="https://www.facebook.com/CWUalumni/">Facebook page </a>and will select some deserving alumni to honor with the some swag bags full of branded Wildcat items!</p><p>Wildcats make a difference every day. We look forward to celebrating the difference you will make.</p><p>Regards,<br><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/BobFordSigSm.jpg" style="width: 152px; height: 42px;"><br><span style="line-height: 1.4;">Robert Ford</span><br><span style="line-height: 1.4;">Executive Director of Alumni &amp; Constituent Relations</span></p><p>O: 509.963.2752<br>C: 509.899.0046<br>E: fordro@cwu.edu</p></br></br></span style="line-height: 1.4;"></br></span style="line-height: 1.4;"></br></br>CWU Alum Revolutionizes Tech Industryhttps://www.cwu.edu/alumni/node/3155Thu, 07 Apr 2016 12:49:45<p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/Conquergood_Article472016.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 200px; float: left; margin-left: 5px; margin-right: 5px;">Lisa Conquergood graduated from Central in 1991 with her B.S. in Business Administration with a Marketing focus. As Vice President of the Marketing Club during her time at CWU, she knew she wanted to explore the world of innovation and ambition.</p><p>When asked why she chose to go to CWU she said, “I chose CWU because I wanted to stay in state but wasn't sure of my career interests yet. CWU had a strong reputation for both the education and business programs. It was the right size of school for me. Not too big and not too small. I always felt like I was a student to my professors, and not a student number.”</p><p>Some of her greatest memories during her time at Central include meeting her husband, Bill Conquergood, along with the friendships, learning, laughter, and experiences wrapped up into one defining time in her life.&nbsp;</p><p>Upon finishing college at Central, Lisa became a Co-Founder and CMO of PicMonkey, an internet start-up that has created a web based photo editing service. She realized her love for start ups while working on an e-commerce team at Eddie Bauer that gave her a taste for small, tight, nimble, teams working on new ideas. Lisa says that building a company from zero traffic and revenue to what PicMonkey has become has been an incredible experience and she can't wait to see what it leads to next.</p><p>Lisa is not the only one who recognized her hard work and passion to create something great. She was named one of <a href="http://techcrunch.com/gallery/30-women-who-have-revolutionized-a-male-dominated-industry/">TechCrunch’s 30 Women Who Have Revolutionized a Male Dominated Industry</a>. She believes the biggest opportunity in technology is increased diversity in who participated in its creation. The more diverse the participation, the more diverse the ideas and solutions.</p><p>Until recently, most of Lisa’s time was spent building her company. She now lives in Redmond and is the mother of two boys, ages 14 and 16. In her free time she enjoys skiing, hiking, and reading when it is rainy outside.</p><p>Lisa believes CWU gave her a tremendous foundation to build her life on. “My experience provided me with confidence. To leave your family and friends and to start something new wholly on your own is a powerful thing. To discuss and debate topics with your classmates and professors is an empowering thing. To work on a difficult project and see it through is a skill you need not only in your professional life but life in general.”</p>Volunteer for Earth Week Activitieshttps://www.cwu.edu/alumni/node/3154Thu, 07 Apr 2016 12:47:01<p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/EarthWeek_Article2_472016.jpg" style="width: 502px; height: 142px;"></p><p>Spring has sprung which means Earth Day is approaching! If you enjoy fun outdoor activities that benefit our community in this sunny spring weather, the Center for Leadership and Community Engagement has a whole week of events planned for you.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/EarthWeek_Article1_472016.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 200px; float: left; margin-left: 5px; margin-right: 5px;">Kicking off the week will be the <a href="https://www.mycentral.cwu.edu/yakima-river-clean-up">43rd annual Yakima River Clean-up</a>. This year, over 250 volunteers are expected to help with activities ranging from trail restoration to litter removal at one of six different locations. This event is taking place on Saturday, April 16th from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. We are asking our volunteers to meet at the SURC East Patio at 9 a.m. to complete registration paperwork.</p><p>Following is the event ElemenTree, which will be held April 22nd from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.&nbsp; This is your opportunity to help fifth graders complete Earth Day activities such as planting trees and a nature walk through Olmstead Place State Park.</p><p>The following day, volunteers are heading back to Olmstead, one of the first homesteads in Kittitas Valley, for the Olmstead Spring Clean-up. From 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., volunteers will assist in moving artifacts, weeding the garden, and trimming trees at this historic site.</p><p>The final event for Earth week will be the <a href="https://www.mycentral.cwu.edu/ellensburg-downtown-clean-up">Ellensburg Downtown Clean-Up on</a> April 30th from 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. We are asking our alumni volunteers to arrive at the SURC pit to complete registration paperwork. You can help plant flowers, clean up litter, and sweep the streets. This is a great local project and gives students, alumni, and the community an opportunity to familiarize themselves with downtown Ellensburg.</p><p>The CWU Alumni Association, in partnership with the CLCE, are asking all of our Wildcat alums to sign up to volunteer for either the Yakima River Clean-up on April 16th or the Ellensburg Downtown Clean-Up on April 30th. We will have exclusive CWU alumni buttons for all of our CWU alumni and lunch will be provided.</p><p>If you have any questions about any of these events, please contact the CLCE office in SURC 256 at 509-963-1850 or <a href="mailto:clce@cwu.edu">clce@cwu.edu</a>. Or, to RSVP to volunteer for the 43rd annual Yakima River Clean-up or the Ellensburg Downtown Clean-up, you can contact the CWU Alumni Association at 509-963-2160, or visit us at cwu.edu/alumni for all of our upcoming events.</p></a href="mailto:clce@cwu.edu">Third Annual Brooks Library Gala https://www.cwu.edu/alumni/node/3153Thu, 07 Apr 2016 12:38:46<p><span style="line-height: 1.4;"><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/Gala_Thumbnail472016.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 231px; float: left; margin-left: 5px; margin-right: 5px;">The James E. Brooks Library at </span>CWU<span style="line-height: 1.4;"> will have its third annual gala and silent auction, <em>An Evening at the Brooks</em>, from 7:00 to 10:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 9, 2016.</span></p><p>The evening will feature entertainment from local musicians and poets including Lenny Price, the Ellensburg Big Band, and the CWU Swing Cats. A CWU student jazz combo and string quartet will also join us for the evening.</p><p>Enjoy a variety of hors d'oeuvres all evening as well as beer, wine, and a signature Brooks Library cocktail served by Ellensburg’s own Starlight Lounge.</p><p>The event will feature the talents of the CWU community, including entertainment from local musicians and poets. People can dance in the stacks to the music of the Ellensburg Big Band accompanied by swing dancing lessons from the CWU Swing Cats. Enjoy a stroll through the art gallery on the third floor, and drop by the Poet’s Corner to hear readings from local poet, Katharine Whitcomb and her students. Local saxophonist Lenny Price and CWU’s music students will also be performing.</p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/Gala_Article472016.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 240px; float: right;">Opening comments will be offered by Central Washington University President James Gaudino, Former CWU President James E. Brooks, and Kittitas County Chamber of Commerce CEO Jim Armstrong.</p><p>Come early to bid on the many unique items offered during the silent auction, all donated by Kittitas County businesses. The fundraiser will benefit the Brooks Library, which serves as a local landmark and beneficial resource to the CWU campus and community. All proceeds from the event will support the acquisition of research materials and the development of enrichment programming.</p><p>Tickets are available for purchase online at <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/tickets">http://www.cwu.edu/tickets</a> or in person at Wildcat Tickets in the SURC, or by calling 509-963-1429.</p><p>For more information about the event, or to contact the library for future collaborative or sponsorship opportunities, please contact Maureen Rust at 509-963-2102 or MRust@cwu.edu</p></span style="line-height: 1.4;"></span style="line-height: 1.4;">Central Washington University Will Retire “Wildcats” as Mascothttps://www.cwu.edu/alumni/node/3151Fri, 01 Apr 2016 10:40:38<p>A<em>pril 1, 2016</em></p><p><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/rp_primary_Orcas_GREY_AprilFools.jpg" style="width: 300px; height: 194px; float: left; margin-left: 5px; margin-right: 5px;">That’s right, Central Washington University will no longer be home of the Wildcats. As of recent deals with the new Surf City Water Park, expected to open Summer 2017, Central Washington University has agreed to a 10-year contract to move from the Wildcats to the Orcas.</p><p>The CWU Athletics Department is expecting to adopt the new logo and mascot into the team colors and uniforms beginning Fall 2016.</p><p>Orcas are among the most widely distributed marine mammal, found in every ocean.&nbsp; While being widespread, orca communities are tight knit, something Francois hopes resonates with fans.<br><br>"Around campus we have always tried to build a family mentality," Francois said.&nbsp; "Whether you're in Ellensburg currently, on the Westside, across the country or the world, we want to make sure you always feel included in the Orcas family."</p><p>The Orcas brand was developed over more than a year of research and input from community members, staff, student-athletes, water park officials, and alumni. It is anticipated that the water park will house the new mascot, Benny the Orca, who will be available for students, tourists, and Ellensburg community members to visit.</p><p>"We worked at it for over 18 months," Assistant Athletic Director for External Affairs Tyler Unsicker said. "It is the culmination of a lot of hard work and dedication from everyone.&nbsp; We are glad to be giving fans what they want."</p><p>The CWU Alumni Association will adapt with the new mascot changes as well in Fall 2016.</p><p>“We are really excited to be a part of such great change in the Ellensburg community. This will only create a new affinity for our Alums and, in turn, our great university.” Alumni Association Director Bob Ford said.</p><p>A celebration event is planned for fall when students begin to return to campus.&nbsp; The rebranding marks an important date in Central Washington history and a reminder to always have a happy April Fools' Day.</p><p>http://www.wildcatsports.com/news/2016/4/1/general-athletics-unveils-new-logo-and-nickname.aspx</p><p>http://surfcitywaterpark.com/</p><p>&nbsp;</p></br></br>Letter from the Director: Spring forward and join us!https://www.cwu.edu/alumni/node/3143Thu, 10 Mar 2016 11:53:59<p><span style="line-height: 1.4;"><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/Bob_Ford_0.jpg" style="width: 175px; height: 234px; float: left; margin-left: 4px; margin-right: 4px;">February’s overcast skies can add weight to your work load. It can get you down in the dumps. Well no more! Spring has hit the ‘Burg and your Alumni Association is sending a new wave of events your way. To quote the esteemed Robin Williams, “Spring is nature’s way of saying, ‘Let’s party!'”</span></p><p>Join us on March 18th, as we hit the road to watch some exciting hockey when the Everett Silvertips take on the Victoria Royals in the last home game of the season. <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/everett-silvertips-hockey-game">Tickets are $10 for alumni, and $15 for general admission.</a></p><p>If you are in the 509 don’t worry, we have a couple of events you don’t want to miss. March 24th we will head to <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/creekside-west-bar-grille-happy-hour">Creekside West in Yakima</a>. Join us for happy hour and reconnect with some of your long lost wildcat friends we guarantee you’ll have a great time.</p><p>If you happen to still be in Ellensburg and you are looking for a date night or want to plan a family outing, consider joining us on March 30th when we <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/cornerstone-pie-takeover">“Take Over” Cornerstone Pie.</a> If you haven’t heard, Cornerstone Pie is a beautiful little artisan pizza house and beer garden on the corner of 5th and Sprague, the food is amazing and a percentage of all sales on the 30th will go to support future Alumni programs.&nbsp;</p><p>Now and again Mother Nature needs to freshen-up. If you’re an alumni and want to help our community and environment, we have volunteer opportunities for you in partnership with our Center for Leadership and Community Engagement. On April 16th, take a walk with us down the Yakima River to lighten our human fingerprint on this ecosystem we all enjoy so much every summer. Later in April on the 30th, we will be helping with the Downtown clean up in Ellensburg as we help give back to our community.<br><br>Now listen up… <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/burg-alumni-reunion">88.1 The ‘Burg is hosting an alumni reunion on April 22nd</a>. If you are a former DJ or if you volunteered in the radio station, mark your calendar and plan to return to the ‘Burg. We will host a Friday night social for all 88.1 The ‘Burg Alumni from 7 p.m.-9 p.m. as we celebrate one of the top student run radio stations in the country.</p><p>Finally, make sure you save the date and get your tickets now as we partner with the College of Business and bring you <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/alumni/cwu-mariners-night">CWU's day with the Mariners</a>. On May 13th, Wildcats past and present will be heading to the Safeco to cheer on the M’s as they square off against their western conference rivals, the Angels. Click here to get details and discounted tickets.</p><p>Don’t forget to <a href="https://www.facebook.com/CWUalumni/">“Like” </a>us on Facebook for timely updates of all our upcoming events!&nbsp;</p><p>But that’s not all that’s new, Central is changing the landscape and growing. Recently ranked #1 in the state of Washington by <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/cwu-ranks-first-state-washington-economist-magazine-college-ratings">the Economist</a> we are certainly a university on the rise. There are now two new cafés, and a couple new facilities coming on line including the new 120,000-square-foot <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/take-look-cwu-science-phase-ii">Science Phase II</a> building which is almost complete! For the full details take a peak at this month's director features. Besides renovations, <a href="http://www.cwu.edu/brooks-library-named-finalist-2016-national-medal-library-service">Brooks Library has been honored</a> for its outstanding service to the community.&nbsp; The National Medal for Museum and Library Service is awarded to only those institutions that are active and innovative in their outreach to their local community. We are proud that Brooks Library has been nominated for such a prestigious award.</p><p>With new events to connect you with fellow Alumni and new buildings to enhance the student experience while continuing to deliver on small class size where the teacher literally knows your name it is hard not to be excited for this new season. I hope you get caught up in the newness of spring and engage with Central and your Alumni Association. Don't miss the party!</p><p>Regards,<br><img alt="" src="/alumni/sites/cts.cwu.edu.alumni/files/images/BobFordSigSm.jpg" style="width: 152px; height: 42px;"><br><span style="line-height: 1.4;">Robert Ford</span><br><span style="line-height: 1.4;">Executive Director of Alumni &amp; Constituent Relations</span></p><p>O: 509.963.2752<br>C: 509.899.0046<br>E: fordro@cwu.edu</p></span style="line-height: 1.4;"></br></br></br></br></span style="line-height: 1.4;"></br></span style="line-height: 1.4;"></br></br>