CWUCWU NewsCWU News Behind Smithsonian “Ashley’s Sack" Uncovered by CWU Professor, 06 Dec 2016 14:32:31<p>For almost a decade, a slavery-era artifact known as “Ashley’s Sack” has intrigued historians unable to identify Ashley—the girl’s name preserved in needlework. The Smithsonian, where the sack is on display, may now attribute the recent discovery of Ashley’s identity to Central Washington University Professor Mark Auslander.</p><p>Auslander, who teaches in the <a href="">department of Anthropology and Museum Studies</a> and is director for the <a href="">Museum of Culture and Environment</a> spent the last year researching the lineage of the three women whose names were needle worked into the cloth. Research led him to North Carolina and Philadelphia where he searched slave, court and estate records, as well as early bank and census data.</p><p><a href="/sites/default/files/documents/Ashley%27.pdf"><img alt="Ashley's Sack" src="/sites/default/files/Ashley%27s%20Sack.jpg" style="width: 243px; height: 300px; float: left; margin: 2px;"></a>“The object has become a kind of obsession for me during this past year,” said Auslander.</p><p>His findings were recently published in the article <em>“<a href="">Slavery’s Traces: In Search of Ashley’s Sack</a>,”</em> in the noted academic journal Southern Spaces.</p><p>Ashley’s Sack, on loan from Middleton Place in South Carolina, is currently on exhibit in the newly opened <a href="">Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture</a> in Washington, DC.&nbsp;</p><p>The original object was found in 2007 at a flea market in the small town of Springfield, Tennessee. Little was known of its history, but it gained great attention by historians and academics. Even less was known about the females listed on the sack.</p><p>Ruth Middleton created the embroidered sack in 1921. In needlepoint lettering, Middleton presented an account of her family's legacy. She traced the story of nine-year-old Ashley, who was born a slave, being sold to another owner, and how Ashley's mother, Rose, provided her with simple yet meaningful family keepsakes. Ashley was Ruth's grandmother.</p><p>Since its rediscovery, the sack is now considered a lasting legacy of slavery and the resilience of families to keep <a href="/sites/default/files/documents/auslander-timelineinfographic.pdf"><img alt="Timeline" src="/sites/default/files/auslander-timelineinfographic.jpg" style="width: 233px; height: 300px; margin: 2px; float: right;"></a>connected.</p><p>Auslander mentioned that there are very few objects that were passed along through the generations from slaves to free slaves. Often family histories were maintained through oral storytelling, but in this case, Middleton transferred her family’s story into writing.</p><p>Auslander recognized that hundreds of thousands of children were torn apart from their mothers in slavery. Yet, each mother and child had their own unique story.</p><p>“I felt a moral sense to honor this specific story,” he said.</p><p>Auslander uncovered the potential identities of all four generations of women spanning the full 150-year history of the sack.</p><p>His work with slavery and the importance of inherited objects has extended beyond that of Ashley's Sack. In 2011, Auslander published a historical book <em>“<a href="">The Accidental Slaveowner: Revisiting a Myth of Race and Finding an American Family</a>.”</em> He has also published <em>“<a href="">Enslaved Labor and Building the Smithsonian: Reading the Stones</a>,”</em> on the role of enslaved persons in the construction of the original Smithsonian building.</p><p>Auslander is currently preparing for an upcoming exhibit “The Things We Carry: Objects in Motion.” This exhibit will feature stories about journeys—from people living in Kittitas County— told through the medium of physical items such as beloved articles of clothing, a family photograph, keepsake, or heirloom.</p><p>The CWU Museum of Culture and Environment will display these stories and objects from January 10-March 11, 2017.</p><p><em>Photo credit: &nbsp;<a href="">Ashley's Sack</a>, Charleston, South Carolina, 2016. Photograph courtesy of the Middleton Place Foundation.</em></p><p><strong>Media contact:</strong> Dawn Alford, CWU Public Affairs, 509-963-1484, <a href=""></a>.</p><p>December 6, 2016<br>&nbsp;</p></a href=""></br>CWU Professor Brings Home International Design Awards for Third Consecutive Year, 05 Dec 2016 15:39:24<p>Central Washington University professor David Bieloh won three awards for his logo designs at this year’s Summit International Competition. His latest accomplishment—a silver and two bronze—bring his total winnings to seven.</p><p>Bieloh, who is also a professional graphic artist, garnered Summit awards the past three years. He won gold in 2015 as well as a gold and two silvers the prior year for his logos, book covers, and posters.</p><p><img alt="CWU Professor David Bieloh" src="/sites/default/files/David%20Bieloh.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 400px; margin: 2px;"></p><p>“It’s nerve-racking to put your work out there for all of the other designers in the world to see,” Bieloh said. “But I wanted to see if I could compete on an international level.”</p><p>Summit is an international competition that recognizes creative excellence. There were more than 5,000 entries from medium-size agencies worldwide.</p><p>Bieloh recognition extended beyond winning awards for his work. He was also chosen to serve as one of this year's select judges in the Interactive Design category. The honor placed him among judges that came from 21 different countries.</p><p>Bieloh’s professional work helps build synergies and teaching opportunities for his students. He uses some his projects to teach and engage them in the classroom—where he’s able to guide and involve them through the extensive design process from concept to reality.</p><p>He admits that most people have a misconception about graphic design. They tend to simplify the process, thinking that designers produce images and are simply technical operators—that the work comes directly from the computers. By <img alt="Book Cover" src="/sites/default/files/Book%20Cover.jpg" style="width: 199px; height: 300px; float: right; margin: 2px;">sharing the process with his students, they quickly learn graphic design is far more involved.</p><p>“Really, it starts far before they touch a computer, with a lot of research, a lot of sketches, and ideations,” Bieloh said.</p><p>He also instills an understanding in his students of how their graphic designs impact consumers’ daily decision-making.</p><p>“[Graphic designers] help people make decisions. It’s often decisions about what products they purchase at the store, what stores they visit, what brands they engage in, and what ads they respond to,” he said.</p><p>Bieloh’s work, both inside and outside of the classroom, continues to bring added value to CWU’s Graphic Design program.&nbsp; Ryan Moffat, senior graphic design student commented that the fact that his faculty members are winning awards proves they actually know what they are teaching and shows that they are current and keeping with the latest trends.</p><p>For more information about CWU Graphics Design program, contact Gregg Schlanger, 509-963-2665, <a href=""></a> or visit the website at <a href=""></a>.</p><p><a href=""><strong>WATCH VIDEO</strong></a></p><p><strong>Media contact:</strong> Dawn Alford, public affairs coordinator, 509-963-1484, <a href=""></a>.</p><p>December 5, 2016<br>&nbsp;</p></a href=""></a href=""></br>President Gaudino Joins Call to Preserve Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, 05 Dec 2016 08:22:07<p><img alt="" src="/sites/default/files/CWU%20Medallion.jpg" style="width: 150px; height: 150px; border-width: 1px; border-style: solid; margin: 3px; float: right;">Central Washington University President James L. Gaudino has joined more than 400 other college and university presidents in calling for the preservation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.</p><p>Gaudino this week signed an open letter urging the nation’s leadership to continue the DACA program, which was an executive order signed by President Barack Obama in 2012 that allows undocumented immigrant students to continue their educations without fear of deportation.</p><p>“We have seen the critical benefits of this program for our students, and the highly positive impacts on our institutions and communities,” the letter stated. “To our country’s leaders we say that DACA should be upheld, continued, and expanded. We are prepared to meet with you to present our case. This is a moral imperative and a national necessity.”</p><p>Gaudino said he was honored to sign the letter, which has also been signed by, among others, the presidents of the University of Washington, Washington State University, and Western Washington University, because it addresses an issue that is important to CWU.</p><p>“The state of Washington has an estimated 17,000 students benefitting from DACA, who are important contributors to our campus communities,” he said. “I strongly support permitting them to continue to achieve their educational goals.”</p><p>Gaudino also sent out a campus-wide memo this week that reinforced the university’s official policies regarding undocumented students. In it, he said the university’s current policies provide many protections for those students fearful of being deported.</p><p>He wrote that under present campus practices:</p><p>• CWU has no legal obligation or affirmative duty to enforce federal immigration law. That is the responsibility of federal law enforcement agencies.</p><p>•&nbsp;Campus police do not question people about their immigration status and do not detain or arrest undocumented persons just because they are undocumented.</p><p>• CWU does not make admissions or other decisions about students based on their immigration status, and does not request immigration documentation (except as needed to determine the eligibility of “HB 1079” students for resident tuition rates).</p><p>• CWU does not volunteer information about student enrollees and does not disclose protected information from their student education records, except as required in response to a lawfully issued subpoena or court order.</p><p>• While protecting freedom of speech, sometimes even offensive speech, CWU does not tolerate unlawful harassment, threats, or hate crimes as defined under its student conduct code or applicable law.</p><p>• CWU welcomes and affirms the values of diversity and inclusiveness, as well as the right of all students to be free from unlawful interference with the attainment of their educational goals.</p><p>Media contact: Richard Moreno, director of content development, 509-963-2714,</p><p>—December 5, 2016</p>The Gothard Sisters Perform Musical Magic December 9, 05 Dec 2016 07:50:25<p><img alt="" src="/sites/default/files/images/gothard%20sisters.jpg" style="width: 450px; height: 300px;"></p><p>Once again, the Gothard Sisters will delight music lovers with their unique brand of Celtic music and dance at Central Washington University. The three sisters from Edmonds will perform a holiday concert at 7:00 p.m. on December 9, in the McIntyre Music Building Concert Hall. This concert will feature your favorite holiday melodies, with a Celtic twist!&nbsp;</p><p>Tickets are $12.00 for general admission; $7.00 senior/child/CWU Student with ID and may be purchased online at or by calling 509-963-1429. Tickets may also be purchased in person at the Wildcat Shop Customer Service at the Student Union and Recreation Building. Their concerts usually sell out, so be sure to purchase your ticket in advance.</p><p>Greta, Willow, and Solana Gothard began playing music at an early age, and before they were teens they became entranced with the intricate Celtic style of dancing they saw in <em>Riverdance</em>. In 2006, they began their career by playing and dancing for tips at the local farmer’s market and gradually built a large and faithful audience in local venues.</p><p>According to their website,, “the band has built a loyal following, independent of any music label, by connecting with audiences in a lively, entertaining and touching way and by insisting on a DIY approach in everything they do— self-producing their award-winning albums, energetic live shows, and imaginative music videos.”</p><p>In March 2015, their music video covering the old English ballad, "Scarborough Fair," reached over a million views on YouTube.</p><p><iframe class="youtube-player" frameborder="0" height="390" src="//" title="YouTube video player" type="text/html" width="480"></iframe></p><p>In 2013, the Gothard Sisters received the Best New Irish Artist Award from Irish Music Awards, and in 2011, the Album of the Year for Celtic Radio for their album, Story Girl.&nbsp;</p><p>This year alone they have performed 200 shows, and traveled a total of 70,000 miles all over the world.</p><p>Parking in CWU lots is free on evenings and weekends, except in specially designated spaces and residence hall lots.</p><p><br>Media Contact: Valerie Chapman-Stockwell, Public Affairs, 509-963-1518,<br>&nbsp;</p></br></br>University Campus Sanctuary Status, 02 Dec 2016 08:50:02<p><img alt="CWU Seal" src="/sites/default/files/CWU%20Mountain%20Medallion-finalcrop.jpg" style="width: 100px; height: 100px; float: left; margin: 2px;"></p><div><p>As you may be aware, recently universities around the country have been discussing whether establishing a campus as a “sanctuary” enhances protections for students. Just two weeks ago, this discussion arose at all public baccalaureates in Washington. The inquiries, including one from CWU, prompted review and discussion by the Attorney General’s Office.</p><p>The conclusion of its informal review was that public universities have limited legal authority to unilaterally declare their campuses sanctuaries in defiance of federal law. Further, it is not clear how such defiance might affect receipt of federal funding (e.g. Pell, GEAR-UP, and Perkins), or what the repercussions might be for state funding.</p><p>However, C<strong>WU</strong><strong> already provides a very safe environment for students</strong>, thanks to university policies and state law. The recent sanctuary declaration by the University of Oregon promises protections that CWU currently provides:<br><br>• We have <strong>no legal obligation or affirmative duty to enforce federal immigration law</strong>. That is the responsibility of federal law enforcement agencies.<br>• Our <strong>campus police do not question people about their immigration status</strong> and do not detain or arrest undocumented persons just because they are undocumented.<br>• <strong>We do not make admissions or other decisions about students based on immigration status</strong>, and we do not request immigration documentation (except as needed to determine the eligibility of “HB 1079” students for resident tuition rates).<br>• <strong>We do not volunteer information about students</strong> and do not disclose protected information from their student education records, except as required in response to a lawfully issued subpoena or court order.<br>• While we protect freedom of speech, sometimes even offensive speech, <strong>we do not tolerate unlawful harassment, threats, or hate crimes</strong> as defined under our student conduct code or applicable law.<br>•&nbsp;&nbsp; We <strong>welcome and affirm the values of diversity and inclusiveness</strong>, as well as the right of all students to be free from unlawful interference with the attainment of their educational goals.<br><br><strong>Recently, I joined more than 400 other college and university presidents in signing an <a href="">open letter</a> calling upon U.S. leaders to preserve the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.</strong> In the letter, US presidents urged the nation’s leadership, including the incoming administration, to continue to support DACA, which was created in 2012 and allows undocumented immigrant students to continue their educations without fear of deportation. This is an issue that is important to CWU, to the state of Washington, which has an estimated 17,000 DACA beneficiaries, and to me. CWU is a welcoming place that puts the safety and security of students above all else. That has not changed, nor will it.<br><br>Finally, I wanted to congratulate CWU faculty, staff and students; members of the community, and local elected officials who are working so hard to turn speech and acts of hate into opportunities to express unity and inclusion. CWU, Ellensburg, Kittitas County all have endorse unity proclamations. A Wildcat Facebook posting of the City proclamation has now prompted similar action by Clark County, and the cities of Vancouver and Ridgefield.&nbsp; I am humbled and amazed by the way your work has brought people together and is bringing light and hope to our community.</p><p>—President James L. Gaudino</p><p>December 1, 2016</p><div>&nbsp;</div></div><p>&nbsp;</p></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br></br>CWU Grad Nominated as Secretary of Defense, 02 Dec 2016 08:30:04<p>&nbsp;</p><p><img alt="" src="/sites/default/files/James%20Mattis%20and%20CWU%20President%20Gaudino.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 133px; border-width: 1px; border-style: solid; margin: 3px; float: right;">President-elect Donald Trump will nominate retired Marine General James N. Mattis, a graduate of Central Washington University, to serve as his Secretary of Defense.</p><p>The former commander of U.S. Central Command grew up in the Tri-Cities area and graduated from CWU in 1971. Mattis was Central’s commencement speaker in 2011 ( During his speech, Mattis told graduates it would be important for them to have a code to live by in public and private life.</p><p>“You need to write your own code; no one can write it for you,” Mattis said. “It will help you make a positive impact on the lives of others and help you overcome mental and physical scrapes and bruises.”</p><p>In 1971, Mattis graduated from CWU in the middle of the school year and didn’t have the chance to walk with his fellow graduates in spring commencement exercises. During his appearance at the 2011 commencement, CWU President James L. Gaudino surprised Mattis by inviting him to step forward for the traditional exchange of diploma and congratulations by the president.</p><p>In 2007, Mattis returned to the CWU campus for the first time since his graduation and spoke to students on the topic, “Leaders of Character: Conflicts, Dilemmas, and Outcomes.” In his remarks, he noted, “between my life experiences, the education I received her at Central, and my experiences in the Marines, I was well prepared for the challenges that I face today.”</p><p>After graduating from Central with a bachelor of arts degree in history, Mattis was commissioned as a Marine Second Lieutenant. He later graduated from the Amphibious Warfare School, Marine Corps Command and Staff College, and the National War College.</p><p>Mattis served with distinction in the Persian Gulf War, the War in Afghanistan, and the Iraq War. He has been honored with numerous awards and recognitions for his service including the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the Navy Distinguished Service Medal, the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star Medal, and others.</p><p>In addition to achieving the rank of four-star general in the Marine Corp, Mattis served as NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander from 2007-2009 and commander of the U.S. Joint Forces Command from 2007-2010. He retired as the chief of the U.S. Central Command in spring 2013, following 44 years in the Marine Corps.</p><p>Mattis’ formal nomination is expected early next week and it must be approved by the U.S. Senate. According to the Washington Post, in order for Mattis to assume the position Congress will have to approve a waiver of an existing federal law stating defense secretaries cannot have been on active duty in the previous seven years.</p><p>Media contact: Richard Moreno, director of content development, 509-963-2714,</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>- December 2, 2016</p>Celebrate the Season with December Concerts, 01 Dec 2016 13:44:08<p><img alt="" src="/sites/default/files/images/cwuorchestra.jpg" style="width: 450px; height: 253px;"></p><p>Make merry this December with concerts that showcase the very best of student performances.</p><p>On December 3, the annual Afternoon and Evening of Jazz Concerts will feature the three jazz ensembles: Jazz Band 3, Vocal Jazz 2, and the award-winning Jazz Band 1. The concerts will be filled with jazz standards, new compositions, and topnotch performances. The performances begin at 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. Your ticket for the afternoon concert will also admit you to the evening concert.</p><p>On December 4, the CWU Symphony Orchestra will feature Concerto Competition winner Zane Boothby, trombone, and the world premiere of “Siren, Blind,” by Martin Kennedy, CWU professor of composition. The program also includes Rimsky-Korsakov’s epic symphonic suite, <em>Scheherazade</em>. The concert begins at 4:00 p.m.</p><p>All concerts will be performed in the McIntyre Music Building Concert Hall. Tickets are $12 for general admission and $7 senior/child/CWU Student with ID. Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling 509-963-1429. Tickets may also be purchased in person at the Wildcat Shop Customer Service at the Student Union and Recreation Building.</p><p>In addition, the Symphonic Bands will play on December 1 and the Wind Ensemble will perform December 2. All concerts will begin at 7:00 p.m. in the Music Building Concert Hall. These concerts are free and open to the public.</p><p><br>Parking in CWU lots is free after 4:30 p.m. and on weekends, except in specially designated spaces and residential hall lots.</p><p>Media Contact: Valerie Chapman-Stockwell, Public Affairs, 509-963-1518,</p></br>CWU’s Phi Kappa Phi Scholar to Present “Evolutionary Thinking and Society”, 01 Dec 2016 09:17:42<p><img alt="" src="/sites/default/files/images/L.-Sun-1-360x360.jpg" style="width: 200px; height: 200px; margin: 4px; float: right;">CWU’s 2016 Phi Kappa Phi Scholar of the Year, Professor Lixing Sun, will present “Evolutionary Thinking And Society: A Biologist's Venture into the World of His Own Species,” on December 2, at 3:30 p.m. in Science I, Room 216.&nbsp; Admission is free and open to the public.</p><p>Sun, a professor of biological sciences, has been at CWU since 1996. During his tenure he has authored or co-authored more than 30 scholarly papers in peer-reviewed scientific journals. His research ranges from developing new statistical methods for sampling beaver dispersal, to the interplay between biology and culture in human kinship. Sun has also authored three popular and critically-acclaimed books, with a fourth one in progress.&nbsp; These books have received awards and popular use in the fields of science education, biology, and the emerging field of the evolutionary psychology of fairness.&nbsp;</p><p>His third book, <em>The Fairness Instinct: The Robin Hood Mentality and our Biological Nature</em>, was published by Prometheus Books in 2013, and analyzes the psychological, social, and evolutionary consequences of the concept of fairness in different societies both past and present. The book has attracted great interest and critical acclaim as it has become an important foundation of an exciting new discipline within the field of animal behavior and evolution.</p><p>Sun has also mentored numerous undergraduate and graduate students in their own projects and subsequent publications, and is a long-time member (and former director) of CWU’s Primate Behavior and Ecology Program. He employs a multidisciplinary approach to studying the evolution of human behavior, society, and culture. His interests and methods also draw upon anthropology, chemistry, mathematics, psychology, sociology, and economics. For these reasons and more, Lixing Sun was selected as the 2016 CWU Phi Kappa Phi Scholar of the Year.</p><p><br>For more information, contact Dr. Robert Holtfreter, PKP President, at or 963-2144.<br>December 1, 2016</p></br></br>CWU is Best Online University in Washington, 30 Nov 2016 08:31:43<p>&nbsp;</p><p><img alt="" src="/sites/default/files/bvs-arrow-logo256.png" style="width: 145px; height: 48px; border-width: 1px; border-style: solid; margin: 3px; float: right;">According to a national online college rating website, Central Washington University is the Best Value Online School in Washington for 2016.</p><p>The site, Best Value Schools (, ranked CWU first on its list of the three best online schools in the state. The other two schools cited in the report were City University of Seattle and St. Martin’s University in Lacey, Washington.</p><p>“Central Washington University is widely recognized as a leader in affordable online degrees in Washington,” according to the website. “Not only is CWU about half the price of other schools on this list, but it also features a range of unique degrees that transcend the typical offerings of business and health care.”</p><p>CWU Associate Provost Anne Cubilié, who oversees the university’s extended learning programs, said the university was honored to be recognized for the excellence of its online programs.</p><p>“At CWU, we’ve sought to be a leader in online education and this new ranking shows we’re doing something right,” Cubilié said. “Our students can find a rich variety of majors, minors, endorsements, certifications, and graduate degrees available through our online learning program (”</p><p>CWU is a regional leader in providing access to high quality, personalized online education. It offers fully-accredited online undergraduate and graduate degree programs as well as hundreds of courses available online each quarter.</p><p>In 2015, Central’s online psychology bachelor’s degree program was named one of the top 30 online psychology programs in the nation. Additionally, CWU’s bachelor’s degree in professional and creative writing undergraduate degree program and master of science degree in Information Technology and Administrative Management were both ranked top ten online programs in the U.S.</p><p>Media contact: Richard Moreno, director of content development, 509-963-2714,</p><p>- November&nbsp;30, 2016</p>Snow Removal Alert System, 29 Nov 2016 15:22:38<p><img alt="Snowy Highway" src="/sites/default/files/n%20sale%21.jpg" style="width: 273px; height: 273px; margin: 2px; float: right;">The weather patterns are changing, and it's anticipated there may be ice or snow coming our way in the not too distant future.</p><p>The City of Ellensburg has established a system to notify subscribers when crews are out deicing or plowing snow.&nbsp; The notification service is free, and you and your colleagues can subscribe to the free service at <a href=""></a> . Under “Alert Center”&nbsp; the topic (or list name) Snow Removal has two icons (or methods) to receive messages. Click either the email or text icon or both to receive messages. Deployment of winter road crews, and messages about their work, can occur at any hour of the day or night.</p><p>For more information, contact <a href="">Margaret Reich</a>, City of Ellensburg communications/government relations officer at&nbsp;(509) 925-8657.</p></a href="">