Monday, December 22, 2014

Ex-farmworker: WSU ring says it all

sylvia guzman Global CampusSylvia Guzman holds out her hand. Her class ring is silver with a red garnet, and engraved with the words Washington State University, her year of graduation, and the Cougar logo. It’s a substantial piece of jewelry—as much monument as ornament—and looks bulky on her slender finger.

“I wear it every day,” she says. “It reminds me of what helped me become who I am now. I can’t carry my diploma around with me, but I can wear my ring and say, ‘see that, that’s my BA.’”

Sylvia now teaches two classrooms of mainstream and disabled preschoolers for Skagit Island Early Head Start. She uses Spanish, English and sign language. She makes daily visits to low-income parents to connect them with such agencies as GED programs and food banks—and she brings a personal familiarity with their struggles:

At 13, Sylvia started working in the fields of Central California to help her parents, immigrants from Oaxaca. At 18, Sylvia married Cornelio, a fellow Oaxacan. They traveled up and down the Northwest, picking oranges, grapes, lemons, olives, blueberries, cucumbers, apples, and strawberries. They lived in labor camps, their van, and livestock barns—and awoke to rats in their bed.

More... At 21, Sylvia was fed up with fieldwork. It was 2001. She was sharing a two-bedroom house with Cornelio, their two young children and about 20 other people in Burlington, Wash. She walked across the street to a child-care center.

“I told the woman that I’d come here every day for a week and work for free,” she says. She got a job, then earned her associate’s degree from Skagit Valley College and enrolled in WSU’s online program.

“The WSU instructors really work with you,” Sylvia says, “They understand that we’re working people, and they’re flexible when we have issues with our jobs or children.”

In 2010, she earned her bachelor’s in human development with a minor in early childhood education. She was featured at the WSU commencement ceremony, in Washington State Magazine, and on the front page of the local paper.

Next on her list are getting a promotion and a master’s in counseling. While her WSU degree has put those goals within reach, she says, it’s also helping her now, both with practical skills—“everything I learned at WSU I’ve been able to use in my current position”—and increased confidence.

“My BA is an affirmation that I know what I’m talking about, that I know what I’m doing,” she says. “This ring tells me that, every day.”

Monday, December 15, 2014

Two new American Indian Studies options

ais web photoWSU Global Campus is launching an online certificate and an online minor in American Indian Studies.

The certificate will be available in Spring 2015, and registration is now open. Applicants do not need to be enrolled in a degree program at WSU.

The certificate requires 18 credits, or six courses: Three core courses and three electives from related areas. Core topics include history, politics and law; elective topics include gender roles, film art, and contemporary cultures. For more information, please go to the WSU Global Campus website.

The Global Campus is also offering a new minor in American Indian Studies this spring, with a similar course list. The minor requires 18 credits. More info is here.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

WSU Global Campus ranked #1 in state

IMG_0565WSU Global Campus has been named the best online degree program in Washington state by Edudemic, a Seattle organization that covers teaching, learning, and technology.

“Washington State University really knocked our socks off,” the group said. “We appreciated their strong reputation, proven out by placement on all three of our outside rankings, as well as top graduation and retention rates for the state. … Overall, Washington State University is our clear top choice for the state.”

The group’s methodology involved looking at metrics in five areas: performance, financial aid, career services, responsiveness, and transparency. “We started by scouring for data high and low, organizing publicly available data like graduation and tuition rates, and augmenting it with our own surveys,” the group said. “In many cases, especially for the top ranked schools, we picked up the phone and asked our questions directly.”

In the end, the group said, “It’s hard to write about Washington State University’s performance without lapsing into superlatives. They are above average in every metric, and their reputation is recognized by all three of our outside rankings. They finish #1 in the state in a broad set of categories, including graduation and retention rates. They finished at the top of our list for a reason: they’re the best in the state.”

The Global Campus was also named best in state this September by The Best Schools.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Criminal justice degree is best in nation

emily chandlerThe online criminal justice bachelor’s degree at WSU Global Campus is the best non-profit program in the nation, according to a new ranking by Criminal Justice Degree Online.

The group emphasized its thorough methodology:

“To reach number one,” it said, “a program had to pass a gauntlet of tests: be a part of a university with stellar graduation and retention rates, provide more department resources than others, amaze us with useful answers to our survey, and even answer more questions over the phone. WSU did it all.”


The group praised the faculty’s strong professional affiliations and found that the criminal justice program had the nation’s ninth highest graduation rate and 12th highest retention rate, as well as high placement in rankings from U.S. News and World Report, Forbes, and Washington Monthly. It also said the responses from Global Campus admissions counselor Emily Chandler, top right, were the “most informative and sincere” of their entire survey. (The full methodology can be seen here.)

Chandler said the group took a “secret shopper” approach to the survey. “I had no idea that I had spoken with any reviewers – they must have posed as a prospective student,” she said. “I do my best to always give thorough and sincere answers, but the credit really belongs to our WSU faculty, and to the Global Campus as a whole.”

Professor Craig Hemmens, chair of WSU’s criminal justice department, said the department is dedicated to ensuring a world-class education for all students, no matter where or how they attend: “We take seriously our mission to educate the next generation of justice professionals and policymakers, and to make sure they have the knowledge necessary to make the criminal justice system the best it can be.”

The group looked only at non-profit universities, citing factors that ranged from reputation to graduation rates on a webpage that it devoted to for-profit programs.

The Global Campus online criminal justice program has also been ranked in the nation’s top 10 by Create a Career, Best Colleges, and The Best Schools. For more information, please go to the Global Campus website.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Students get big helping of Coug spirit

Global Campus student Rebecca Holdquist and son TylerRebecca Hultquist counts on the help of her son Tyler.

People leaving the Bookie stopped and sniffed. Children let go of their balloons. Vegetarians reconsidered.

The scent of grilled ribs was wafting from a Global Campus tailgate party on the lawn atop the library at WSU Pullman.

“This is amazing,” said student Jasmine Goodwin as she sampled the food at last Saturday’s Homecoming event. “We’re really impressed.” After lunch, she and her friends were planning to join swarms of other avid Cougs at the Bookie: “I want socks,” she said. “Coug socks.”

The party was organized by the Global Campus student government, ASWSU Global, and drew more than 100 guests. Along with barbecued ribs, the event featured shrimp skewers, pulled pork sandwiches, and giveaways that ranged from football tickets to an iPad Mini.

More... Jasmine and two friends came from the West Side for the event. Jasmine has a 2013 bachelor’s in communications from WSU Pullman and is now earning her online professional writing certificate—“I have all A’s so far”—as a stepping stone to getting an online master’s in strategic communication from WSU. She is a publicist for Three Girls Media in Seattle, and the reigning Miss Seafair.

So why did she drive all the way to Pullman? Are there no ribs in Seattle?

“Because …” she said. “Because … Go Cougs!”

Maria Romero drove two and a half hours from Sunnyside, Wash., along with her daughter, Sonya, and son, Angel.

“I like attending these events,” said Maria, who is earning her bachelor’s degree in human development. “They’re really good, family oriented and a great opportunity to meet school staff and other students.”

She’s planning to graduate in 2016, and will definitely return for commencement. “I’m looking forward to it,” she said.

Rebecca Hultquist came from Spokane with her husband and two sons. She started at WSU Pullman in the late ’90s, left, got married, and had kids. Then she realized she needed a human development degree to do what she loved: Teach children.

“Kids have always been my passion,” she said. Her own kids have been equally passionate about supporting her decision to go back to school.

“They said, ‘We’ll do whatever we need to do to help you finish your degree.’ And whenever I need to go study, they let me be.”

Her son Taylor nodded in agreement, and chimed in: “It’s kind of disappointing because now she can’t come out and play basketball,” he said.

“There are things I have to sacrifice,” Hultquist said.

The next in-person ASWSU Global events are December commencement parties in both Pullman and Seattle. The Global Connections program offers regular online extracurricular activities, which can be found on its CougSync page.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Global Campus enrollment rises 17%

DSC_0062Washington State University Global Campus posted a 17 percent enrollment increase in fall 2014 as the university overall reached an all-time enrollment high of 28,686, according to WSU’s Office of Institutional Research.

The increase was led by students seeking online graduate degrees. Graduate enrollment in the Global Campus rose 49.4 percent, from 482 students in 2013 to 720 students this fall. The percentage of graduate students self-identifying as ethnic minorities increased from 20.5 percent to 22.5 percent, the highest figure for any WSU campus.

Undergraduate enrollment in WSU’s online degree program also posted a healthy increase of 8.9 percent in the last year, from 1,894 to 2,062.

More... Overall, WSU experienced a 4 percent increase over last year’s enrollment, including a 3.5 percent increase in undergraduate enrollment and a 5 percent increase in graduate students.

One reason for the Global Campus increase, said WSU Vice President Dave Cillay, is the 2013 decision to charge a single tuition rate for non-resident and resident online students

“In 2013, just 0.7 percent of our undergraduates were international students,” he said. “That jumped to 3.6 percent this year. We anticipate that as more people learn of our traditional yet innovative approach to online education, our enrollment will continue to grow. But whether we have 10 or 10,000 students, what’s important is the service we provide to each person who decides to entrust us with their academic goals.”

Friday, September 12, 2014

Global Campus named best in state

IMG_6648WSU Global Campus has been named the top online college in Washington state by The Best Schools organization.

The group cited WSU Global Campus’ “dedication to online education,” and said that WSU “offers one of the nation’s oldest and most-respected online degree programs.”

Criteria included academic excellence, course and degree offerings, reputation and faculty.

"Renowned professors teach and design the courses that are available completely online," Best Schools said.

The group also took note of extracurricular opportunities available through the Global Campus' Global Connections program: "Events include exhibits, musical performances, visiting speakers, and an online career fair."

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Global Campus top ranked for grad rate

WSU graduateWSU Global Campus has been ranked 12th on a national list of online universities with the highest graduation rates.

“A school’s ability to see a student through the process of choosing a major, maintaining a good grade point average, obtaining a diploma and onto the path of success is a direct reflection of the school’s overall quality,” the Online Schools Center organization said in a news release.

The list was compiled from a combination of sources, including rankings by U.S. News and World Report, statistics from each university’s school of business, and data from the National Center for Education Statistics, the center said.

“At WSU, it’s not sink or swim,” said Dave Cillay, the WSU vice president in charge of the Global Campus.

“We’ve built and implemented an extensive infrastructure to support our students. It starts with our enrollment counselors, who help prospective students determine if we’re a good match. Once enrolled, students have a personal academic consultant who helps them find the best path toward graduation," Cillay said.

"Our Global Connections program makes students part of the WSU community, our in-person events introduce them to the Cougar spirit, and, most importantly, our WSU professors have inspired generations of students to reach their goals."

For the complete list of rankings, please see

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Awesome new staffer at tailgate party

Emma and JamesJames Pappas with his daughter, Emma.

This year’s Seattle tailgate party came with extra awesomeness—a Box of Awesomeness, thanks to the new director of child’s entertainment, 11-year-old Emma Pappas.

Emma’s position was created when James Pappas, the ASWSU Global senator who helped organize the Aug. 28, event, wanted his daughter to be included. “It was logical for her to do something for the other kids,” he said. “So I asked her what made sense.”

Emma thought of the dentist, and how she liked to play with the toys in the treasure chest. “Can I do a treasure box for the kids at the Cougar event?” she asked.

“It was a brilliant idea,” said James, who helped Emma buy enough toys to turn her art supply box into Emma’s Box of Awesomeness.

Emma’s next problem was familiar to any event director. People were ignoring her awesome offerings. So she developed a way to reel them in:


“I went up to the kids and said, ‘Come and pick something out of the Box of Awesomeness.’ ”

“What’s the Box of Awesomeness?” they would respond, innocently.

“I’ll show you,” she’d say, then lead them to the box.

She quickly gave away most of the toys—or, as James put it, “exhausted her Box of Awesomeness.” The most popular toy was a ball on a string that you attach to your arm.

“You throw it, then you catch it,” she explained.

The several hundred adults gathered on the patio of Henry’s First Avenue Tavern near CenturyLink Field enjoyed their own awesome gifts, including game tickets, a buffet lunch, a bag of cool Cougar gifts, and a Cougar watch. They also got the chance to meet their online classmates and academic consultants.

Shelly Mills, an accounting major, said her consultant is Chrisi Kincaid. “When I met her, I couldn’t believe I was hanging out with her,” Shelly said. “She gave my daughter advice too.”

It was the first Global Campus event for Brian Beldo, also an accounting major. “It’s pretty cool,” he said. “We got free game tickets and this really nice patio. It gets everyone out, you can feel the school spirit and you get to meet your fellow students. It’s a great idea.”

For an album of event photos, please see our Facebook page. For a list of upcoming face-to-face events, including the Oct. 4 tailgate party in Pullman, please see the ASWSU Global events page.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Global Campus leader: Let's talk

Dave Cillay interviewDave Cillay in a recent interview with an Oklahoma TV station.

Dave Cillay is a WSU vice president, a nationally known expert in  elearning, and in charge of the WSU Global Campus. He’s also committed to making your WSU Global Campus experience the best it can be.

To do so, he’s holding a live online chat at 6 p.m. (PT) Sept. 18 with Global Campus students. He’ll answer your questions about WSU’s online program, and seek your feedback. Just sign up here, and we'll send you a link to the live-stream event. In the meantime, if you’d like to submit a question in advance, please send it to by Sept. 15.

For a preview of Dave answering tough questions,  please select the video link, above.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Join this workshop, get better grades

a game coverCollege professor Kenneth J. Sufka spent decades helping students figure out where they went wrong: Why weren’t their study skills translating into good grades?

The answer, he found, is that many study habits range from ineffective to horrible. In response, he wrote “The A Game.” It contains nine simple rules for academic success, and a list of dozen “deadly habits” to avoid.

Our Global Connections program has invited Dr. Sufka to hold a workshop with Global Campus students about how to make the most of their study time. Please join us for his interactive online presentation at 3 p.m. Aug. 24 by selecting this link.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Crazy fun tailgate party in Seattle

Global Campus student at Seattle week events

Throngs of Cougs will crowd Seattle streets. The marching band will play, cheerleaders will dance, foam fingers will point toward the sky.

WSU’s first football game is always a fun raucous event—a sensory overload of crimson and gray, spirit and pride, high hopes and Cougar camaraderie.

This year’s game is Aug. 28 against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights at CenturyLink Field. But close to the field will be another, more exclusive, event. Global Campus students, family and friends are invited to a free tailgate party from 3:30-6:30 p.m. at Henry’s 1st Avenue Tavern, 1518 1st Avenue South. There will be free food, giveaways, and a chance to rest your vocal chords before cheering the Cougs on to victory.

Here are the details:

When: 3:30-6:30 p.m. Aug. 28.

Where: Henry’s 1st Avenue Tavern, a couple of blocks from CenturyLink.

Who: You and up to three guests.

Deadline to register: Aug. 21

Registration link:

Monday, July 28, 2014

Once again, tuition to remain same

Trisha JohnsonFor the second consecutive year, Washington State University has decided to hold the line against tuition increases.

The Board of Regents recently voted for a zero percent increase for the 2014-15 academic year. “We don’t want to see students in the state of Washington get priced out," said Connie Niva, chair of the Board of Regents.

For WSU Global Campus tuition, please see:

Friday, July 11, 2014

Lions and tigers and Cougs! Oh my!

IMG_5937 You’re invited to join fellow Global Campus students for a free day at Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo. The event includes free admission, a catered lunch on the zoo meadow, a close look at some animals with zoo staff, and free face painting. If you want to see for yourself, have a look at this slide show from last year’s gathering.

The event is 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Aug. 16, and you can bring up to five guests. It’s presented by your student government, ASWSU Global.

What do you need to do? Just two things: Sign up by Aug. 5. And bring a photo ID to the zoo.

Here’s the link to get more info and to register.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

WSU helps you help neighbors

cce video play buttonOne great thing about being a Global Campus student is you can participate in community service in your own town through WSU’s Center for Civic Engagement. We recently asked a few students what they thought of the experience. To see their answers, please select the video above.

Monday, June 23, 2014

New course: Watch 15 movies in 3 weeks

children of heavenTired of sunlight? A new Intersession course, Foreign Language 110, Introduction to Foreign Film, gives you a great reason to stay inside: The three-week course requires watching 15 foreign films, from “Life is Beautiful” to “Children of Heaven,” right, from “Good Bye Lenin!” to “Farewell My Concubine.”

The movies are all subtitled, and available online (there may be a fee), at local libraries or on YouTube. But you’ll have to do more than curl up on the couch and watch TV. The three-credit course also requires homework for each movie, plus three essays. Fortunately, you can access the course space the day after you register and get a head start.

For more information about this and other Intersession courses, please go to the Intersession website.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Faster options: Earn 3 credits in 3 weeks

intersessionGlobal Campus students can race to the finish by earning three credits in three weeks online at WSU’s Intersession.

This year’s session runs Aug. 2-24. It’s a demanding schedule, but students are given access to the course space beginning June 20 so they can get a head start. More information is on the Intersession website.

Other accelerated Global Campus sessions include the three-week Winter Session and six-week summer terms. “These sessions let students earn their degrees more quickly,” said Global Campus Executive Director Dave Cillay. “And they provide flexibility for students with busy lives.”

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Veterans react to U.S. News top rankings

U.S. News & World Report this week ranked the best online degree programs for veterans. Ranked third in the nation are WSU’s online graduate degree programs in business and engineering; eighth is the Global Campus’s online bachelor’s degree program. You can read the story here, but we wanted to ask a couple of actual veterans what they thought of their time at the Global Campus:

Andrew Zander, U.S. Navy veteran

andrew zanderHearing that Washington State University is ranked among the top 10 undergraduate programs for veterans doesn't surprise me. While earning my B.S. in psychology through WSU Global Campus, I experienced first hand the quality of the program and how important that program is to the university administrators.

Even though I earned my degree through an online program, I had opportunities to meet with the university president, the chair of the psychology department, and participate in the Global Campus student government.

In my opinion, this feeling of connectedness is where the Global Campus sets itself apart — you're not just a number. You become part of a family. You become a Coug.

John Larson, U.S. Navy veteran

John LarsonThis is quite a validation for all of the hard work that I see WSU investing in Global Campus. We have a phenomenally engaged student community here and that really helps break down the solitary feeling of using a computer to interface with our colleagues.

My reaction to our frequent appearance on “best of” lists is just wait; you haven’t seen anything yet. Global Campus has been recognized for nearly everything it does, and the veteran-friendly ranking is well-deserved.


I had wanted to graduate from WSU for over twenty years, from since I was still in high school. I took a short detour in 1996 when I joined the U.S. Navy to learn how to operate and maintain the nuclear reactors aboard our warships. I invested $100 a month for the first year of my service—with the hope of someday making good on my dream of being a Coug—into the Montgomery G.I. Bill so that I could help pay my way through college.

Five years ago, I decided I had put it off long enough and started looking for the only kind of program where I could earn a degree and balance family obligations and a rotating shift schedule.

Imagine my overwhelming joy when I found out that one of the best universities online for my chosen majors (accounting and psychology) was Washington State University. With its fantastic academic advising and a generous veteran tuition discount, WSU was always the program I compared my other options to. I never found one better.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Outstanding writing by online students

James PappasFour Global Campus students have won top 10 honors out of 5,224 writers submitting work for the WSU Writing Portfolio.

“My first response was utter surprise,” said James Pappas, right, of Liberty Lake, Wash. “To say that I'm genuinely honored doesn't really begin to express my appreciation adequately.”

Every year, juniors must submit three writing samples to the Office of Undergraduate Education’s Writing Program to ensure their skills are up to snuff. The criteria are focus, supporting facts, organization, and grammar.

The top 10 percent are rated “Pass with Distinction.” Of those submissions, only 10 are chosen for the Harold and Jeanne Rounds Olsen Writing Excellence Award and Scholarship, which includes a $100 prize.

More... “James’s essays exhibit a real strength with exposition and argument,” said Brooklyn Walter, assessment coordinator for the Writing Program. “Each essay – all written for upper-division liberal arts courses – is organized logically with a clear purpose and developed with meaningful, careful evidence.”

Pappas served eight years abroad in the U.S. Marines and during the Desert Shield/Desert Storm War, and spent 20 years in corporate leadership. He is now earning a humanities degree and plans to get a Ph.D. so he can teach at the college level.

Pappas offers three tips for other writers: Read lots of scholarly works, seek feedback, and practice with an eye towards constant improvement.

Award winner Jesse Ashcraft of Brush Prairie, Wash., said his method is to start with an analytical approach to the material. “In doing so, I am able to shed any preconceptions or assumptions that might color my treatment of the material,” he said, “thus I am allowed to understand and synthesize multiple perspectives to which I might have otherwise been blind.”

Ashcraft is earning his humanities degree with the goal of becoming a high-school English teacher.

Amber Allshouse, an accounting major, came from the West Side to pick up her award. “It was a good opportunity to see the campus for the first—and maybe only—time,” she said.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Criminal Justice program gets top ranking

Global Campus Online Criminal Justice degreeThe online criminal justice program at Washington State University Global Campus has been ranked 10th in the nation by Create a Career, an online resource for career information.

The group researched such factors as academic quality, courses offered, faculty, awards, rankings and reputation. It cited WSU’s renowned faculty, wide array of studies, and affiliated research centers.

Earlier this year, WSU’s online criminal justice program was ranked sixth in the nation by “We looked at factors that contribute to an excellent program, from acceptance rate to graduation rate,” Outreach Coordinator Laura Daniels said.

The WSU Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology offers a policy-focused curriculum that provides undergraduates with a broad exposure to social sciences. The department also offers an online master of arts in criminal justice.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Global Campus student to be featured speaker at commencement

DSC_2195A WSU Global Campus student—and super-spirited Coug fan—will be one of the featured speakers at this Saturday’s commencement ceremony at WSU Pullman.

Katey Koehn is a director of program management for Yahoo, and is graduating with a B.A. in social sciences. In 2013, she was recognized as one of Yahoo’s top 100 managers. At WSU, she is a member of the Alpha Sigma Lambda national honor society and has spent nine consecutive semesters on the president’s honor roll. 

“I plan to talk a bit about being a Global Campus student and the cool things we all do to stay in touch with our ‘inner Coug’ while off-campus,” said Koehn, who lives in California’s Silicon Valley. “If I can offer just one person in the room even a small nugget of inspiration I will consider my task successful.”

Koehn is active in the Northern California Alumni Association, and has waved the WSU flag for ESPN’s College GameDay. “I got up at 4 in the morning and drove to Palo Alto,” she said. “I waved the red one and ran over to the other side and waved the white one.”

Koehn will be speaking at 3 p.m. to graduates of the College of Business, College of Education, and Edward R. Murrow College of Communication. The other two featured speakers are WSU President Elson S. Floyd and Orlin Reinbold, owner of Landmark Turf and Native Seed of Spokane, Wash. The ceremonies will be live-streamed at, and archived at the same Web address.

“I can't believe the journey I started four and a half years ago is reaching this milestone and I am proud to have been so warmly welcomed into the WSU family,” Koehn said. “I learned more than I ever thought I would and while my time as a student is over, I am looking forward to staying involved and contributing in any way that I can.”

A “Cougar shrine” in her office. For more about Katey Koehn, please see the WSU Online blog article.

Friday, May 2, 2014

New top 10 rankings for Global Campus


The online criminal justice degree program at Washington State University Global Campus was named sixth in the nation this week by

“We looked at factors that contribute to an excellent program, from acceptance rate to graduation rate,” Outreach Coordinator Laura Daniels said.

Judges noted that the Global Campus program is built upon the curriculum that has been offered in WSU’s brick and mortar classrooms since 1943.

Also this week, the Social Science Careers website ranked the Global Campus social sciences degree program ninth in the nation for affordability.

“The focus of the social sciences program at WSU is on flexibility,” judges said. “Students may choose from 12 different concentrations, studying multiple disciplines, or just a couple concentrations as they desire.”

For other recent top Global Campus rankings, please select this link.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Four win WSU leadership awards

Leadership award winnersClockwise, from top left, Janna Carter, John Larson, Kelsea Holbrook, and Rebecca Stern.

Every year, a few dozen WSU students are honored for their extraordinary leadership skills with the President’s Award for Leadership. In the past, Global Campus students have won a couple of times. But this year brought an unprecedented surprise: Four of the winners are Global Campus students. They are:

Janna Carter
Kelsea Holbrook
John Larson
Rebecca Stern

All four are involved with ASWSU Global, the online student government. The ceremony will be live-streamed starting at 5:30 p.m. April 24. To tune in, just select this live-stream link.

Both Carter and Larson will attend the ceremony.


“For the past several years, I have passionately worked in my local community and on behalf of all WSU Global students to give them a voice,” said Carter, ASWSU Global vice president. “I would have done it regardless of the award, but it is very generous for someone to have recognized me in this way and I feel very privileged!”

Larson, incoming ASWSU Global president, said the news took him by surprise. “I didn’t believe it at first,” he said. “I’m always the last to figure those types of thing out.”

Stern and Holbrook will be watching the live-stream.

“I am very excited and honored to have won the President's Award,” said Stern, ASWSU Global secretary. “Although I am an online student, I don't feel like any less of a Coug! This award proves that Global Campus students can both contribute to the WSU community and be recognized for their efforts.”

“It was very validating to know that such a high level of the university recognized my involvement in the school, and it definitely reinforced my feeling like a Coug – being a distance student hasn't held me back from making the most of my collegiate experience,” said Holbrook, incoming ASWSU Global vice president. “It might be different than the typical campus experience, but I have found it to be just as fulfilling.”

The awards ceremony is 5-7 p.m. April 24 at WSU Pullman, and will be live-streamed starting at 5:30. For more information, please go to To tune in,  select the live-stream link.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Astonishing! Miffed mom uses Facebook to get revenge

rebecca kempe Global Campus1She got fed up — and what she did next may change your life forever.

It started with an online headline, like this real life example: “You Won’t Believe What’s Buried In This Mountain. Seriously, You Won’t.”

Click-bait, thought Rebecca Kempe, I hate click-bait. She went possibly ballistic, and her head may have exploded. So she did something that was literally priceless. She created a Facebook page that shows both the enticing headline and the more mundane truth.

So, what was buried in that mountain? “An underground seed store so we won’t starve to death after the apocalypse,” she revealed on her Clickbait Spoilers page.

And what’s the reality behind “Insane New App Will Allow You To Read Novels In Under 90 Minutes”? Rebecca’s spoiler: “They've come up with a new font they are saying better reaches where your eyes go as they read a page.”

Will my mind be truly blown by “Powerful Video Will Change How You Parent In 60 Seconds”? Spoiler: “The video, created by True Activist, shows kids mimicking common adult behavior — smoking, littering, yelling at other drivers.”

“I try to be socially conscious and dislike manipulation in general,” said the Renton, Wash., resident and mother of three. “Maybe spoiling links is just a tiny rebellion against something I feel has gone too far.”

Rebecca spent 13 years at MSN, and witnessed the transition of headlines from succinct facts to provocative puffery. But what finally transformed her into a click-bait crusader? These top three reasons:

  • Her husband is a librarian—“citing sources is serious business around here,” she said.
  • She’s an online student at Washington State University’s Global Campus. “I’ve definitely been inspired by my courses,” said Rebecca, who's majoring in Social Sciences. “My critical thinking and writing skills have improved. I understand more about the impacts of consumerism, capitalism, and corporatism.”
  • She’s a DJ and aspiring music producer, and thinks artists are ripped off when their work is reposted. The only way to get the attention of click-baiters, she says, is to cut their profits. “With the Internet, we can do that from home in our pajamas after the kids are in bed,” she said.

For a heart-warming look at Rebecca’s one-woman war against the click-baiters, just click this link: You may never be the same.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Top 10 ranking for Global Campus

award clip fieldcrop     The WSU Global Campus has made another top 10 list, this time from The Best Schools. The ranking is based on three criteria: Academic excellence, return on investment, and incidental benefit.
     The criteria reflect what we believe are the top three attributes we offer our students: Excellent faculty, personal service and a diploma backed by a century-long record of success.
     The ranking follows other recent accolades, including:

Friday, March 14, 2014

Dream realized, then reconsidered

Despite more than 20 surgeries and 14 years of chronic back pain, A.J. Korba realized her dream of being a writer. She wrote a novel, and had it published.

Then she reread it. It wasn’t good.

“All those years of being focused on my condition—either planning surgery or having surgery or recovering surgery—something had to give,” she said. “Apparently what gave were some basic rules of writing.”

She decided she needed a refresher. The Mason County, Wash., resident enrolled at Olympic College, then transferred to WSU Global Campus. She’s majoring in humanities, with concentrations in English and sociology, and will graduate in May. “I think I’ve taken almost every upper level English course at the Global Campus,” she said.

She chose WSU Global Campus because of its reputation, she said. Now that she’s enrolled, she doesn’t want to leave. “It fits well with my life,” she said.

More...Korba shares her appreciation of college by bringing her two adult nephews to Global Campus gatherings, such as the recent Tacoma Rendezvous. “I don’t want them to discount school,” she said, because of bad information from friends, TV ads and news stories. “I want their choices to be informed choices.”

Korba’s disability resulted from two injuries in her 20s. She can’t sit for long periods—“I do my homework in a recliner”—yet she’s racked up an remarkable list of accomplishments. She was both a Phi Theta Kappa member and a President’s Scholar at Olympic College. She has a 3.95 GPA at the Global Campus, is on the WSU President’s Honor Roll, and has won scholarships from the Seattle Foundation and ASWSU Global, the online student government.

“What I lack in physical ability,” she said, “I make up for in determination, resourcefulness and perseverance.”

Monday, February 24, 2014

Fairchild airmen study up on future

Senior Airman Desiree StraughnAbout 50 airmen explored life after the military at a Fairchild Air Force Base resource fair last Wednesday.

Senior Airman Desiree Straughn came in empty-handed, but quickly gathered an armful of fliers, brochures, and pamphlets.

“I love this,” said Straughn, who has a year of service left. “Knowing there are so many options and so many people supporting the military is really awesome—and my brain is on overload right now with all the information.”

The fair is called the Fairchild AFB Quarterly Transition Assistance Capstone event. It’s a joint effort of the Fairchild Airman and Family Readiness Center and the Base Education Center, and a key component of the Transition Assistance program, which helps service members prepare for separation or retirement, said Barry Miller, education services specialist at Fairchild. Many attendees already had months or even years of preparation, including workshops on resume writing, interviewing, entrepreneurship and veterans benefits.

“This is the culmination before they transition out,” Miller said. “We wanted to let them actually meet local agencies.”

Among the 22 presenters were representatives of area universities, law enforcement agencies, and a truck-driver training school.

Washington State University Global Campus representative Kathreen Miller said she gave out dozens of fliers. “People here are very serious about their future,” she said, “and are looking for an online degree from a highly regarded university.”


Washington State Patrol Trooper Kyle Witt was kept busy fielding questions from interested airmen. Witt said the WSP’s paramilitary-style training and structure make it a good fit for the military. “We have quite a few veterans,” said Witt, who served in the Air Force from 1995-’98.

Many airmen already have a lot of driving experience, said Barbara Kayser, office manager and recruiter for Driver Training and Solutions, which makes them excellent candidates to fill the growing need for truckers. “Since the Post 9/11 GI Bill kicked in,” she said, “we’ve trained about 150 veterans.”

Straughn topped off her stack of fliers with a couple from WSU Global Campus. She wants to go into social work—“I think I can help people”—and was trying to figure out the best path:

“I’ve heard a lot of good things about online classes so I’m going to try it and see if it’s for me,” she said. “But I’ve got a lot of thinking to do. And a lot of decisions to make.”

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Get more from your WSU experience

aswsu globalEver think about running for student government? At ASWSU Global Campus, much of the work is done online, but you'll get to travel to our face-to-face events in Seattle, Tacoma and Pullman. You'll also meet lots of fellow students, have fun and bolster your resume.

If you're interested,  you'll need to file your declaration of candidacy before Feb. 17. More info is on the website.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Former student returns as judge

andrew zanderHe’s back. WSU Global Campus graduate and former student government president Andrew Zander has been selected to be a judge at the Wiley Research Expo, a graduate student research fair.

“I look forward to seeing what the next class of students is working on,” said Zander, of Silverdale, Wash. “Having really enjoyed my time at WSU, I'm always excited to find new and interesting ways to remain involved.”

Last spring, Zander was one of the first two Global Campus students to present research at SURCA, the undergraduate career fair. Both attended remotely, answering questions from judges in an Internet chat room. “It was a great way to feel connected and involved with WSU,” Zander said.

The Wiley research fair is Feb. 21. “We are very excited to have him on board,” said Matthew Tradewell of the Graduate and Professional Student Association. There will be up to 50 judges for the expo, he said, and all are WSU alumni.

The last time Zander came to Pullman, it was for another first: He was the first Global Campus student inducted into Psi Chi, the international honor society in psychology.

“I'm hoping that my wife will be able to accompany me this time,” Zander said, “since she has never been there. Of course, I will take her to Ferdinand's for ice cream and get a tin of the world's best cheese!”

Zander works for the Navy and supervises sailors who do maintenance on submarine warheads. So judging a research fair is unlikely to raise his stress levels. If so, he has a plan:

“A nightcap at Rico’s will be in order,” he said. “When I was a member of the Global Campus student government, many good ideas were hatched at Rico's.”

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Global Campus ranked in top 10 percent

handbook cover     Washington State University’s Global Campus has been ranked in the top 10 percent of U.S. online degree programs.
     The U.S. News and World Report rankings, issued Jan. 8, list the Global Campus’ undergraduate degree program as No. 21 out of a field of 276. WSU’s online MBA program was ranked seventh, and its master’s degree in engineering technology management was ranked 21st.
     “These rankings affirm what we’ve known all along,” said Dave Cillay, Global Campus vice president. “Washington State University is a premiere university, and WSU’s online program is able to bring that quality and prestige to a wider audience.”
     U.S. News used four main criteria in determining the rankings: Student engagement, faculty credentials and training, peer reputation, and student services and technology.
     “Student engagement was the most heavily weighted category,” Cillay said, “and we do that uniquely well. Our new Global Connections program brings students together for extracurricular learning opportunities. Our first-in-the-nation online student government provides leadership training and hosts lively face-to-face events. And our passionate WSU alumni network means that students’ sense of engagement continues long past graduation.” More...
     The latest ranking follows other accolades for WSU’s Global Campus:
· The 2013 Ralph E. Gomory Award for Quality Online Education from the Sloan Consortium.
· Third in the nation for online bachelor’s degree in psychology from
· Third place from for online criminal justice bachelor’s degree.
· Sixth place for supporting the military from the 2012 Guide to Online Schools.
· Fourth place for the overall degree program from the SuperScholars website.
· The Institution Achievement award from the National University Telecommunication Network
     Cillay said college rankings should be only one factor as people consider educational options.
     “We suggest that prospective students look at the bottom line: Will this university help you fulfill your goals? If you’re seeking career advancement, will you get the skills you need, and a distinguished diploma? WSU is a proven university with a century-long record of success. We think that’s what really matters to students.”
     Washington State University’s Global Campus offers online bachelor’s and master’s degrees, and a wide variety of certificates, to about 3,100 students a semester, and has produced 4,533 graduates. Other pillars of the campus are:
· Global Connections, which creates a virtual campus for students, with career fairs, a research pavilion, arts and education events, and a common reading program.
· The Digital Academy, which offers non-credit online courses, such as certificates for working professionals and a variety of free interactive seminars.
· eLearning Services, which offers training for instructors in technology used for both online and on-campus courses.
· Conference Management, which organizes educational conferences where experts can share information both in person and online.