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Exploring eastern’s relationship with

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EWU to host ncur » p 4

excavating ancient Cyprus » p 6

workforce ready » p 10

Standout research » p 18

Friends, One of the many things that makes Eastern Washington University such a special place is the unique partnerships that allow the university to connect with the communities it serves. For instance, Eastern is the only university in the country with a state crime lab and a digital state archives building located on its campus. Both provide a special opportunity for collaboration and research that students couldn’t find anywhere else. Eastern is also the only university in the nation with a research facility located in a national wildlife refuge. This often overlooked partnership with the Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge is the cover story of this edition of EWU’s DiscoverE magazine. Unlike the traditional lab inside a science building with microscopes, beakers and flasks, the Turnbull lab is literally a living, breathing ecosystem where EWU students and faculty conduct fascinating and valuable research that benefits the refuge and the world beyond. Sure, Eastern has a physical classroom, or lab, within the refuge. But the vast expanse of diverse landscape and wildlife give this lab a look and feel you won’t find on other college campuses. Explore the relationship between EWU and Turnbull, and you just might find a visit to the refuge will be your next adventure when visiting Cheney. Speaking of adventure, DiscoverE also takes you to some ancient ruins in Cyprus where one of our professors has access to an archaeological wonderland. It’s another fine example of how Eastern faculty and students are involved in some of the most distinct research and learning opportunities offered outside of the traditional classroom. When we talk about how Eastern faculty are constantly exploring, creating and testing new and innovative ideas – these two unique lab settings exemplify that point.

Dr. Rodolfo Arévalo, President

Contact Us

2013-14 | Volume 4, No. 1 DiscoverE, the research magazine of Eastern Washington University, is published annually by the office of Graduate Education & Research and EWU Marketing & Communications.

On the Cover: “Turnbull Field Notes” Illustration by Chandler O’Leary

DiscoverE Magazine, Eastern Washington University 300 Showalter Hall, Cheney, WA 99004-2445 Email: Phone: 509.359.6489 Website:

Contents 6


Eastern professor takes students on rare research trip

Eastern wins the right to host a prestigious national research conference

Excavating Ancient Cyprus

EWU to Host NCUR


Workforce Ready Computer science students tackle real-world challenges



EWU & Turnbull: A History of Restoration A unique partnership between Eastern and the federal government has been a win-win for nearly a quarter century

02 17 18 20 21

Research News of Note Creative Collateral Standout Research Book Shelf Grants By the Numbers

Discover E Magazine Staff Teresa Conway Director of Marketing & Communications Ronald Dalla, PhD Managing Editor

Sam Buzby Art Direction/Graphic Design

Larry Conboy, David Lane Photography

Teresa Conway, Brian Lynn, Dave Meany, Bart Mihailovich Contributing Writers

Chandler O’Leary Illustration

Kandi Carper, Brian Lynn Copy Editors



research news of note ROBOTS RETURN For the second year is a row, Eastern Washington University, with the assistance of Greater Spokane Incorporated, welcomed the electrifying FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) to EWU’s Reese Court Pavilion. The competition, which took place on April 4-6, is part of EWU’s ongoing effort to promote programs in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). FRC combines the excitement of sport with the rigors of science and technology. It features a real-world challenge to be solved by research, critical thinking, construction, teamwork and imagination. After the rousing success of last year’s Rebound Rumble, 38 high school teams came to Cheney for this year’s game, Ultimate Ascent. Operating under strict rules and time limits, robots built and programmed by each team shot Frisbee’s into goals at the far end of a court to score. At the end of the match, the robots climbed “jungle gym”-like pyramids to earn bonus points. “EWU was honored to welcome these outstanding students to campus,” said EWU President Rodolfo Arévalo. “As we saw last year, the energy, enthusiasm and innovation surrounding this competition will only encourage more students to take an interest in studying science and technology at Eastern and in our region’s public schools.” “The regional competition is an incredible event and we were excited to be able to partner with EWU and FRC again this year,” said Rich Hadley, CEO of Greater Spokane Incorporated. “Investing in STEM initiatives for our youth will help to provide a technically skilled workforce for our business community. FRC is a great way to inspire our students to be innovative problem solvers and to enter science, math and technical fields.”

NEW FACE OF ENGINEERING Eastern Washington University student Paul Brockmann, who earned a BS in mechanical engineering this past June, was named the next New Face of Engineering: College Edition for 2013 by a national building technology society. The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) selected Brockmann for the honor and $1,000 scholarship. The award is part of a national recognition program led by the National Engineers Week Foundation that recognizes the best and brightest junior and senior engineering students by highlighting their academic success and contributions to the industry and participating engineering society. In honoring Brockmann, the society noted he spreads the word of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) by hosting presentations about new and upcoming HVAC technology, such as dedicated outdoor air systems and building automation systems controls. He also organized a tour of Eastern’s utility plant for other students to see the boilers and chillers. Eligible students must be enrolled in a bachelor of science in engineering program from an ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) accredited school.


MANAGING WATER RESOURCES Competing users and interest groups have varying, and often contentious, opinions on how water resources should be managed in the Intermountain Province (IMP) of the Columbia River Basin. The divisive issue is examined in the biggest monograph released by Eastern Washington University’s Institute for Public Policy and Economic Analysis. Operating under the premise that water is the lifeline of this region and plays an important role in the sustenance of life and development of the Pacific Northwest, the study was conducted by EWU Associate Professor of government Vandana Asthana, who has addressed important water issues on a global scale. Because of the volume of issues and stakeholders, the scope of the monograph only focused on the northeast corner of the state of Washington. It included in-depth interviews with affected tribes, environmental groups, utilities, state agencies, local government, non-profit organizations and other stakeholders involved in the management and use of these resources. “Water management decisions affect people throughout the Columbia River Basin,” said Patrick Jones, executive director of the institute. “However, there are many different ideas on how water resources should be managed - a process complicated by the incredible amount of overlapping responsibilities at all levels of government.” Jones points that out many experts believe water is the new energy issue, and the monograph does a great job of making one wonder if we can meet the difficult challenge of managing that resource. “It will take great teamwork because this is such a controversial and muddled topic,” added Jones, who points to the challenge of serving hydropower, flood control, navigation, irrigation and fishery needs, while juggling the interests of municipalities, environmental groups and recreation users. The institute utilizes the expertise of EWU faculty to sponsor research in social, economic and public policy questions important to the Inland Northwest. It also conducts contract research for various organizations and governmental agencies around the region.

STATE-of-the-ART COMPLIANCE TRAINING EWU has become a member of the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) making available state-of-the-art online training in the major research compliance areas of Animal Care and Use, Human Subjects in Research, Privacy/Protected Health Information and the Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR). CITI was founded in March 2000 as a collaboration between the University of Miami and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center to develop a web-based training program initially focused on human subjects research. Since then, CITI has added training modules in all the major areas of research compliance and is subscribed to by more than 1,100 universities and federal and state agencies. The training is required for members of the university’s research oversight committees and for faculty, staff and students working on federally funded research projects. Faculty, staff, university clinicians and students who are not required to complete the training but who would like to have more knowledge on RCR and related topics may also access and complete the training modules. RCR topics covered include, but are not limited to, conflicts of interest, authorship, collaborative research, data management, mentoring, peer review, research misconduct, plagiarism, human subjects research and animal subjects research.



Eastern to Host Prestigious National Research Conference

By Dave Meany

national conference on undergraduate research April 16-18, 2015 Cheney, Wash.

For more than a decade, Eastern Washington University has hosted the annual Student Research & Creative Works Symposium (read more on page 18). The symposium is the largest, campuswide academic event at EWU, and allows undergraduate and graduate students to showcase their research after months of preparation with faculty mentors. Many of those students have wanted to take the competition up a notch by participating at the national level. Just last spring, 32 Eastern students traveled to La Crosse, Wis., for the national conference. Overall, EWU has sent 114 students to nationals to test their skills against the best of the best. With so much enthusiasm for the national event, university administrators decided to think big, and quickly the idea of taking a shot at hosting the prestigious national conference turned into reality. After an extensive review process, and with the assistance of Visit Spokane, Eastern was selected to host the National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR). The event will bring up to 3,000 students and faculty from 400 institutions to the Cheney-Spokane area in April 2015.


“Eastern is thrilled to be able to host this outstanding research event,” said EWU President Rodolfo Arévalo. “The selection of Eastern as the host of this national conference is indicative of the tremendous progress the university has made in promoting research and the development of high-quality programs. This conference will also give our students a chance to shine on a national stage against their peers.” “The opportunity to host this respected national event is evidence of the long-standing tradition at

Students presenting posters at the 2011 NCUR conference at Ithaca College

Eastern students at the 2013 NCUR conference at University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

EWU to involve our students in research and scholarly course of our college career and really engage them in a pursuits,” added Rex Fuller, EWU provost and VP for real-world, practical way.” Academic Affairs. “Hosting NCUR is a tribute to EWU’s Winning the bid to host NCUR is one thing, putting it commitment to academic excellence.” on is quite another. NCUR gives participants the valuable opportunity “Hosting this conference will require hundreds of to present their scholarly abstracts and creative student, faculty and staff volunteers,” said Christopher works in a formal, professional setting. It also gives Robbins, who was hired as the event’s project manager. students an excellent chance to interact, and it “Just about every building on campus, including 45 to 50 prepares them for graduate school and fine-tunes classrooms, will be in use. Additionally, attendees will their workforce skills. stay in hotels throughout the region, with transportation Recent EWU graduate Asheley Gamboa attended coordinated to move them to and from events.” NCUR 2012 at Weber State and knows first hand what For more information on NCUR at Eastern or it means to a student’s future. “Bringing the national information on how to volunteer, visit conference to the Cheney campus and the Spokane area is a great way “The selection of Eastern as the host of this national for Eastern students to see what other students are doing at other universities conference is indicative of the tremendous progress and to inspire them to achieve greater the university has made in promoting research and things in their undergraduate research,” said Gamboa. “Participating in the development of high-quality programs.” undergraduate research symposiums is a way for students to pull together all Rodolfo Arévalo, PhD of the tools that we’ve learned over the President, Eastern Washington University



Excavating Ancient

CYPRUS EWU history professor provides rare research opportunity

By Brian Lynn

Snowman figurine mass-produced for the poor to offer at a sanctuary

Ancient Byzantine copper coin picturing Byzantine Emperor of 1380 A.D.

Bonny Bazemore, PhD, leads a group of EWU students on a trip to Cyprus


Templar cross discovered at site of Knights Templar Church in Cyprus

As the imposing bulldozer’s idling engine roared, eager to carve up the Mediterranean landscape on the island nation of Cyprus, Eastern Washington University’s Bonny Bazemore stood before it, barring the encroachment of the modern tool of progress as she and her team raced to gather and preserve instruments of an ancient kind that littered the surrounding ground. Since 1996, Bazemore has raced bulldozers and faced take place in and around the ancient site. So I was set on down land developers, while negotiating the fickle tides a path to survey the area intended for development, and of overseas’ politics, to discover, collect and catalogue that has been occupying me for the last 16 years.” antiquities that chronicle the island’s role as a cultural The survey range tacked on to her primary research crossroad for the past 8,000 years. In doing so, the site totals 7 kilometers-by-2 kilometers in area (more associate professor of history has become a leading expert than 5 square miles), and sits in the middle of the island’s on Cypriot history and archeology while putting EWU in largest private development project – which includes a pantheon of excavating universities. condominiums, golf courses and luxury hotels. That Bazemore originally obtained an exclusive permit intersection of modern progress and ancient history has from the government of Cyprus to excavate the hilltop of garnered Bazemore powerful adversaries on the island Lingren tou Dhigeni – which contains the site of the temple nation and has made her proficient in navigating the of Adonis, who, according to Greek mythology, was the waters of international politics. lover of the goddess Aphrodite. Homer, the greatest of the “The site has been under threat three different times ancient Greek epic poets, cites Cyprus as the birthplace and Cyprus stepped up each time and helped preserve it of Aphrodite, the goddess of beauty, love and procreation. Tradition holds that the Paphos District in southwest “It’s an archaeological wonderland, but the richest Cyprus was the specific site of her birth, and the number of relics, statues and part of the Rantidi Forest Excavation has yet to be cultural artifacts found would support found. I know that in my bones.” the fact that the goddess played a major role in the islanders’ lives. Georgia Bonny Bazemore, PhD The focus of Bazemore’s research EWU Professor of History however, is the so-called Cypriote syllabary – the arcane script of Cyprus that can be found on excavated pottery, tablets against some big, heavy hitters,” said Bazemore, noting and artifacts. Her exclusive permit came with a caveat, that the site was declared a protected monument in 2008. one that has kept her from fully excavating the temple “It’s caused the developer to break his plans into two of Adonis and studying the ancient script, and which different pieces and my site sits right in the middle.” has made her an expert on nearly everything to do Before that official designation however, staring with early Cyprus. down bulldozer drivers and frantically collecting artifacts “Cyprus was the only place in the ancient world was the routine. The collection of the island’s relics was that did not use the Greek alphabet to write the Greek more akin to a desperate Easter egg hunt than a vigilant language, and that is what interested me, “ said Bazemore. archaeological dig. “But when I received my excavation permit, I was told that “This is all surface pickup, not excavation,” said the largest tourist development in the Middle East was to Bazemore. “My job was to map what was there and get



Bonny Bazemore, PhD, EWU Professor of History

out what I could. We literally walked over the area and picked these artifacts up off the ground, and if it was important enough, we would put a spade to the ground. Every few minutes we were finding another site.” With 15 sites identified, Bazemore and her teams of students have saved a plethora of artifacts that span millennia, but that tenacity has not come without great setbacks. “Rescue excavation is the most demanding type of excavating. I’d stop the bulldozers and leave to get my stuff, and when I returned it would all be gone,” said Bazemore. “There was an intact Roman drainpipe system – you could have poured water into it and used – and they bulldozed it up. We lost a lot, but we saved a tremendous amount, and what we lost, we have bits of. It all comes down to antiquities versus profit.” Big Finds

The artifacts Bazemore and her teams of students have rescued, cleaned and catalogued, span the historical, religious and cultural evolution of not just ancient Greece and Persia, but of mankind as a whole. Positioned between modern-day Turkey and Greece, where the infancy of civilization began to mature into the adolescence of Western thought, Cyprus was a site where that knowledge sharing took place. “It’s an absolute archaeological wonderland,” said Bazemore, who can unleash encyclopedic knowledge of milestones that bridge the history of antediluvian man. Within her survey site, Bazemore has found a village that dates to the Chalcolithic period, which was


approximately 6000 B.C. The village contained a major quarry, which she also found, and was a tool-producing area for more than 1,000 years. Axes and more than a thousand chert blades used in warfare have been catalogued and point to the island nation’s role as an international arms dealer throughout the ancient world. Bazemore also pinpointed and discovered a medieval religious/military facility run by the Knights Templar during the Crusades. While religious and important enough to be described in Papal papers in the year 1205, the site was just as much a military and production establishment; Templars used it as a fort to protect and process sugarcane from the adjacent fields. The sugar, which the Western world first learned about during the Crusades, was then sent back to Europe. Other items saved by the team include a clay container predating the Trojan War that was used to ship opium, the most effective painkiller of the time; a bronze feasting bowl from the time of the infamous war that tore mythological Greece asunder and was chronicled in Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey; coins from the reign of Alexander the Great (who conquered the island in 333 B.C.); and the only examples of a bronze “plank goddess” amulet worn at the top of the breastbone by expectant mothers. Bazemore’s hilltop temple has also produced more Cypriot inscriptions than anywhere on the island, as well as more life-sized and over-life-sized terracotta statues of priests, gods and important men of the time. While the survey area is protected from development, informal excavators and grave robbers are another story. “I have people watching the site for looters. We have mapped 430 opened tombs in the site, and we know there has to be a few left that aren’t opened. If we find an unopened one, we know there will be gold, silver, jewels and crystals inside,” said Bazemore. “It’s an archaeological wonderland, but the richest part of the Sanctuary of Lingrin tou Dhigeni has yet to be found. I know that in my bones.” Effect on Eastern

The excavation of Cyprus isn’t just personal fulfillment and a professional boon for Bazemore; the site and archaeological discoveries shine the spotlight on EWU – and puts the university’s name on the lips of some of the most esteemed archaeologists around the world. Sifting through the remains of ancient Cyprus has brought Eastern into a collaborative discussion with researchers and specialists from leading U.S. universities and global centers of learning, including University of Washington, Arizona State University, University of Cyprus and Oxford University.

“All of these places are hearing about us. This is becoming a synergy of scholars, and it really puts Eastern on the map in ways it normally wouldn’t be,” said Bazemore. “How many universities in the world can say they’re excavating a Homeric site?” The university collaboration extends from dating pottery and interpreting artwork to authoring a comprehensive book on the site and even funding the project – Harvard’s Loeb Classical Foundation underwrote the mission for a year (additional funding has come from faculty research grants and private donors). “Right now I’m trying to put a monograph together on everything we’ve found so far, and it’s really complicated – we have professors from all these different areas of study; it’s taken at least eight people to coordinate just what we’ve found so far – but it’s really exciting, too,” said Bazemore. EWU students benefit from the overseas’ excavation site as well. Bazemore has taken more than 28 students to Cyprus over the years, and they get hands-on experience cleaning, photographing, measuring and cataloging antiquities for further archaeological study and publication. They can also earn credit during the fiveweek excursion. “Students can get five to 10 archaeological credits. For archeology majors, they can count it as their practicum and can apply for grad school,” said Bazemore. “Plus, it’s just fun! They only work from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. for five days during the week, and they’re free to explore after that.” From ancient sites to varied menus, to a swimming hole that legend says was the exact spot Aphrodite was birthed from the sea, students can experience early and modern Mediterranean life simultaneously. The future will see Bazemore and her team of students finally able to concentrate on the original goal: the excavation of the Lingren tou Dhigeni hilltop and Adonis’ temple. “I’m going to be 65 years old before I get back to my temple! Next year is already funded through private donors. We will go back, and I’m hoping to work for six to eight months, to close up the book and get it to the publisher, and then to get back into the field,” said Bazemore, her voice edged with the same energy and tenacity it took to secure and protect the ancient site from bulldozers and land developers in the first place.

A class of archeology students takes a break from digging to pose with EWU flags at the Sanctuary of Apollo in southern Cyprus.

Opium Container Shaped like a poppy bulb, its neck and handle are broken off. Opium was used for medicinal purposes by ancient Cypriots.

Workforce Ready by Brian Lynn

Computer Science Students Tackle Real-world Challenges

They’re helping fight crime, creating unique online educational tools and developing exciting new applications for mobile devices. And they’ve yet to spend a single day at the office. As part of the senior capstone class in computer science at Eastern Washington University, students under the direction of long-time professor Steven Simmons work on real-world computer applications that are used by the university and community at large. Not only are they learning how to code, debug and deliver a product to clients on a deadline, they’re meeting and working with area professionals – people who could become future employers. The Computer Science Department instructs approximately 90 students per year and works on about 18 projects, which are split between external and internal clients with a few science projects rounding out the curriculum. “The rarest but most fun are the science projects that are sent to us,” said the now-retired Simmons, citing a program students developed for a Japanese University that helps thwart forgery by analyzing calligraphy writing. External clients include projects that require student teams to work with public- and privatesector partners as varied as Spokane County and an educational gaming company. One team of students redesigned the website for the county’s incidentreporting website, Crime Check, while another created an online game that teachers can use to deliver content and lessons to their students on a broad array of historical events.

EWU Home



Crime Check

Internal university projects can run the gamut from dry infrastructure maintenance and database construction to more exciting application development for mobile devices and 3D gaming. Students are involved in projects that help the university teach more effectively, such as digitally cataloging faculty and class evaluations, as well as recruit the next generation of students. One group created a three-dimensional model of the university for the Visitor’s Center that is sent out on a DVD to prospective students. The digital format allows future students to explore campus from home, while giving program creators hands-on experience in the graphics and gaming world. One of the most intriguing projects came in the spring of 2012, when the EWU men’s basketball team called on Simmons’ students to develop an app for the team’s iPad that could analyze and quantify data in an effort to make better coaching decisions during crunch time. Taking a page straight out of Moneyball, a book subsequently turned into a movie starring Brad Pitt about Oakland Athletics General Manager Billy Beane’s approach to statistical analysis of players in fielding a team, the basketball team and Computer Science Department teamed up to create an application for ingame tracking of squads of players. A group of senior capstone students consisting of Jeff Butler, William Clark, Michael Holcomb, Kylie Martonik and Samwel Sitienei accepted the challenge

3D Gamer



that involved multiple statistics across numerous combinations of players and within a dynamic time and space setting. While this kind of information is available at the professional level, it isn’t something used by college teams. The program, created as an application for use on Android and iOS platforms, is called EagleShots and took more than a year to develop after Sam Boynton, a former EWU grad student and assistant coach on the men’s basketball team, brought the idea to Simmons with the blessings of head coach Jim Hayford – who strongly believes in data-driven decision making. Using an iPad, Boynton would input a plethora of information as it takes place. The backbone of the program is based on four theories outlined by Dean Oliver, a former Division III basketball player with a PhD in statistical applications, in his book Basketball on Paper: adjusted field goal percentage, turnover rate, free throw rate and offensive rebound percentage. “Typically you have an aggregate of statistics that shows how a team and individuals did over a half or an entire game,” said Boynton, who came up the idea and has worked closely with Simmons and his students on the app’s development. “What this does is try to quantify teamwork by measuring how different groups of five players, instead of individuals, play together in real time.” By inputting the different variables, including substitutions, especially over multiple games, the coaching staff can begin to see statistical patterns in different combinations of players on the court. The app outputs the top- and bottom-three squad combinations for those four categories, overall data and a season-output

Steven Simmons, Retired Faculty

learn to deal with common issues faced by computer programmers and information technology professionals in the workforce, the computer science program itself has had to learn to adapt and overcome hurdles as well. “Eastern’s development platform isn’t set up for iOS as well as it is for Android,” said Simmons. “The students had to create the basketball app with Android and then it had to be ported over to iOS for the team to use on their iPad.” Regardless, the hurdle is just another example of how EWU students are prepared for the workforce with genuine experience. Working around cross-platform development is a deep and demanding subject required in “We couldn’t get this information without this app. nearly every phase of computing these days – from desktop publishing and Even after just a few games we were able to see website design to app development and coding for mobile platforms. some cool patterns and statistics emerge.” “They get what amounts to job experience. Everyone has what amounts Sam Boynton to an industry internship built into their Former EWU Graduate Student and Assistant Basketball Coach senior year. In preliminary quarters they learn interaction – teamwork, how to conduct and give feedback in a meeting. Then they learn (over multiple games to date). That information can be the technical skills like buying an engine, coding, testing,” accessed in real time, during a timeout, to determine the said Simmons. “It’s working extremely well. They learn best combination of players to put on the court for any technical, leadership, communication and management given scenario or against various opposing lineups. skills, and then they have to build and work on their “We couldn’t get this information without this app,” project. And, just like in the real world, there are often said Boynton, who tested the program and suggested lots of technical issues to overcome, but they still have to changes, just as a real-world client would, during the deliver a product to the client on a deadline – they still 2012-13 season. “Even after just a few games we were able have to get it done.” to see some cool patterns and statistics emerge.” While students in the capstone class have to


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EWU & TURNBULL A history of restoration by Bart Mihailovich


the Turnbull Laboratory for Ecological Studies, it’s the It’s been 15,000 years since the great ice-age floods only university-run lab on a national wildlife refuge, scoured eastern Washington and created one of the and both EWU and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service most geologically diverse and unique bioregions in take full advantage of it and the many great research the world. Today, a huge chunk of that channeled scabland is home to an equally unique partnership between a state university and a national wildlife refuge. “It’s great that we can provide students an opportunity The long-standing relationship between Turnbull National Wildlife to fulfill the needs of the refuge while also furthering Refuge and Eastern Washington their own studies and careers.” University is unlike any other in the nation. A mere 10 minutes from the Margaret O’Connell, PhD main campus in Cheney, Turnbull Professor and Chair, EWU Biology Department National Wildlife Refuge is a site maintained by the United States Fish opportunities it provides. Work centers on three key and Wildlife Service. It encompasses approximately areas: wildlife habitat relationships, invasive species 18,217 acres and features a combination of basalt and elk management. “It’s a very strong relationship,” outcrops, flood-eroded channels and ponderosa said Refuge Manager Dan Matiatos, who has been at pine forests. Marshes, lakes and wetlands are in Turnbull for more than three years. “We feel privileged abundance. Wildlife enjoy some 200 acres of aspen in having this close of a relationship right next door. It’s riparian areas, 10,000 acres of ponderosa pine forest been built upon for many years, and with the important and 4,000 acres of prairie. More than 200 bird species and relevant work we’ve done in the past and continue call Turnbull home, including several waterfowl to do, we look forward to many more.” species, marsh birds, shorebirds and songbirds. At its core, this unique relationship between Additionally, 45 species of mammals, including 11 Turnbull and EWU is a partnership built on shared species of bats, Rocky Mountain elk, moose, cougar, resources. EWU students and faculty have the advantage badgers, beaver and flying squirrels occupy Turnbull, of having a nearby living, breathing ecosystem to as do 12 reptile and amphibian species, 51 species of conduct studies, research and observations, and butterfly and a multitude of invertebrates, which Turnbull benefits from having students and faculty Turnbull is working to catalog. conduct studies that assist the refuge in developing objectives or furthering “We feel privileged in having this close of a relationship research. Margaret O’Connell, professor and right next door. It’s been built upon for many years, chair of the Biology Department, rattled off a laundry list of projects, both past and with the important and relevant work we’ve and current, that she, her colleagues and their students have worked on for done in the past and continue to do, we look more than 20 years. forward to many more.” “There are so many ongoing projects, not to mention past projects, Dan Matiatos that the refuge and the U.S. Fish and Refuge Manager , Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge Wildlife Service were interested in doing but didn’t have the full resources to do justice to,” said O’Connell. “So it’s great But Turnbull is also home to EWU. that we can provide students an opportunity to fulfill Since 1976, Eastern, in cooperation with the needs of the refuge while also furthering their own the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, has studies and careers.” operated a 4,600-square-foot facility Fundamentally, National Wildlife Refuge System on the refuge that includes a classroom sites, of which there are more than 560 around the and research laboratories. Known as


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Ongoing EWU-turnbull research projects For more than 20 years, EWU students and faculty have studied forest fires and timber management at Turnbull. The refuge’s diverse ecosystem allows researchers to dive deep into these critical issues in the arid West. The ponderosa pine forests of eastern Washington were once composed primarily of large, widely spaced trees. Natural and frequent low-intensity fires prevented dead trees and brush - fuel for forest fires from accumulating on the forest floor. In the early 1900s, fire suppression became the primary management tool to protect pioneer settlements, grazing land, valuable timber and a burgeoning road system. While the tactic reduced the size and numbers of fires, it, along with other factors, drastically increased their severity. In an attempt to restore the natural fire cycle, and in turn restore the ponderosa pine forest to pre-settlement conditions, Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge initiated a timbermanagement practice of thinning trees and prescribed burning. EWU has been there every step of the way.

Importance of Standing Dead Trees on Turnbull Standing dead or partially dead trees (i.e., snags) promote biodiversity because many vertebrate and invertebrate species use snags for feeding, resting, cover and reproduction. Since the late ‘90s, O’Connell, Adjunct Professor James Hallett and Rule, working with graduate students Sandra Rancourt, Laura Bradley, Heather Bateman and many undergraduates, have conducted research on the distribution and abundance of snags on the refuge, how this is impacted by prescribed burns and how this impacts big-brown bat roosting and cavity-nesting birds during both the breeding and overwintering seasons.


EWU Professor Margaret O’Connell with Mike Rule, Refuge Biologist

Elk management and affects on aspen In the arid West, quaking aspen cover less than 10 percent of the forest landscape, yet support a disproportionate diversity of native plants and animals. When elk become overabundant, browsing prevents aspen regeneration and reduces survival, consequently affecting local biodiversity. EWU graduate students Nathan Albrecht, Chris Dwight, Savanah Walker and Kat Farrell, McNair Scholar Heather Fuller and many undergraduates have worked work with O’Connell, Rule and biologists from the State Department of Fish and Wildlife to monitor elk movement on the refuge using radio telemetry to first identify areas of high elk use and then to follow elk response to a refuge elk hunt initiated in 2010.

country, are for the conservation, management and restoration of fish, wildlife and plant resources and their habitats for the benefit of present and future generations of Americans. There is at least one refuge in every state in America, and one within an hour’s drive of most major metropolitan areas. Refuge sites attract some 47 million visitors each year (40,000 per year to Turnbull). The National Wildlife Refuge System has a detailed conservation mission as sites where research, studies and environmental education and interpretation occurs, among other priorities. However, with federal and state dollars stretched thin, and with funding perpetually dissipating, the National Wildlife Refuge system relies on creativity and strong partnerships, and that’s exactly what they have with EWU. “It’s a two-way street,” said Matiatos. “Because it’s been so successful for so long, we can point back to a lot of success stories when we’re applying for

Small mammal response to timber management Small mammals consume and disperse seeds and fungi, and serve as prey for carnivores. Since 1998, O’Connell and her biology students in the mammalogy class have compared small-mammal diversity, dispersion and relative abundance between two control, two prescribe thinned/burned and two commercially harvested timber sites at Turnbull. Population levels have varied greatly between years. Variation was generally greater between years than between treatments. The findings suggest that the effects of the treatments might be masked when population levels are high.

grants or attracting funds or support for projects. That helps further research at Turnbull, but it also helps to prolong the opportunity for EWU to have a place for students and faculty to do research, collect data and conduct classes, among other things.” “We definitely leverage off each other,” added O’Connell. “Whether it be for matching grants or cost sharing on grants or projects, we benefit from each other. There are times when EWU student time is written in as a line item on certain projects that the refuge is undertaking. This allows students to know with certainty that they’re going to have meaningful projects. They know they’ll be doing work that will be benefiting the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s database.” For EWU, the understanding is simple for both students and educators. Turnbull is their study site; it’s where their ideas and interests can be viewed in real life. It’s where books and ideas come to life. It’s where life and nature talk back and reveal deeper understandings.

Monitoring of wildlife and habitat on restored lands Turnbull has been used as a reference site for restoration projects in the region. An example of this is an affiliation with the five members of the Upper Columbia United Tribes (UCUT). Working with Hallett and O’Connell, the tribes have developed a regional monitoring and evaluation program to provide assessment of a varied set of ecological restoration projects on mitigation and tribal lands under their management. The hope is that the tribes can be the most effective and efficient managers of the restoration projects they’re undertaking, and that students and faculty at EWU and staff at Turnbull can have a hand in such critical restoration.


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Whether it be a fresh idea like understanding climate change impacts on elk distribution or sampling water for environmental DNA to determine species presence, or continuing a long-term research project on fire management, Turnbull can provide those answers. “It’s a great place for doing research and also allows us to provide service-learning and communityinvolvement opportunities to our students, which is a win-win,” said O’Connell. Turnbull was first established to provide productive breeding wildlife and nesting grounds for migratory birds. Thus its primary mission, initially, was waterfowl protection. In the early ‘90s, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service shifted that focus to include more biological-diversity outlook. At the same time, Mike Rule started as the refuge biologist and O’Connell started teaching at EWU. They began a research partnership that has included

Prairie Restoration Turnbull is home to unique Mima Mound Prairies, which have hemispherical mounds of soil and a plethora of native wildflowers. In the past 50 years, these prairies have become invaded by annual grass species such as North Africa Grass (Ventenata). Under the direction of Associate Professor Rebecca Brown, McNair Scholar Jessica Bryant and graduate students Brandy Reynecke and Kristin Anicito have been working with Rule to study ways to control invasive species and restore natives. Preliminary data suggest that fire might be an effective management tool in reducing the abundance of Ventenata.


many other faculty and students, and that addressed restoration of ponderosa pine habitat, aspen stands and, most recently, prairie habitats on the refuge. That’s where some of Turnbull’s legacy priorities and projects come from, many of which are ongoing – and essentially are either wholly or partially in the hands of EWU students and faculty. “Turnbull Laboratory for Ecological Studies is not just a launch pad for refuge projects,” said O’Connell. “It’s also a launch pad for partnerships and projects regionwide. This is the comparison site from which we can see on a local level how things might be on a broader scale.” With tight budgets, shrinking funding and uncertainty faced by federal programs and universities, it’s safe to say that the partnership between EWU and Turnbull will continue to generate solid science for generations to come.

Reed canary grass studY EWU graduate student Adam Gebauer, under the direction of EWU professors Rebecca Brown, Camille McNeeley, Carmen Nezat and Suzanne Schwab, has been studying a particularly troublesome invasive species that is impacting stream flows, as well as water quality in eastern Washington. The ongoing study surveys vegetation, groundwater and stream flow at nine sites (including a site in Turnbull) along four watersheds to determine community composition and flow regime. The goal is to determine the effect of reed canary grass on stream hydrology in semi-arid eastern Washington.

Creative Collateral EWU faculty produce original works

The eight stories in Half as Happy (Engine Books, 2014), Gregory Spatz’s book of short stories, reveal their characters’ secrets, losses and desires. These insightful portraits of the darkness and light within us reverberate long after they’ve ended. The stories include a grieving couple who rent a desperate landlord’s house in an effort to recover lost intimacy, twins who are irrevocably separated by events both beyond and within their control, and a nighttime prank and its gruesome aftermath that forge human connections no one could anticipate. Spatz is the author of Inukshuk, Fiddler’s Dream and No One but Us, and the story collection Wonderful Tricks. His short stories have appeared in literary journals and magazines and he has published numerous book and music reviews for The Oxford American. He is the winner of a 2012 NEA Literature Fellowship, as well as a recipient of a Michener Fellowship, an Iowa Arts Fellowship and a Washington State Book Award.

Eastern’s annual Jazz Dialogue Festival hit a magnificent musical milestone this year with a concert featuring musicians from around the world performing together, in real time, over a computer network. Moments before featured musician Robin Eubanks took the festival stage, 1,400 people watched as the EWU Concert Jazz Ensemble led this trailblazing experience, utilizing the high-speed network and Internet2 at the Martin Woldson Theater at the Fox in downtown Spokane, Wash. The Jan. 12 concert, Jazz at the Speed of Light, featured the jazz ballad Body and Soul, performed by EWU Director of Jazz Studies Phillip Doyle and Charles “Chip” McNeill on piano inside a music room at the University of Illinois at UrbanaChampaign. McNeill could be seen via a theater-size screen on stage and was thrilled to collaborate on the project. Two additional musicians, Ari Braggi and Eythor Gunnarson, also participated in the event, but from even further away, at the University of Reykjavík in Iceland. This real-time musical cyber performance is part of the Metropolitan Area Network Optimized Music Environment (MANOME) Project at Eastern, one of the few universities in the country to actually utilize this groundbreaking technology.

Sara Goff, assistant professor of theatre, has received multiple awards from the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF). This national theater program involves 18,000 students from more than 600 academic institutions throughout the country, and serves as a catalyst in improving the quality of collegiate theater in the United States. Goff was presented with an award for Excellence in Program Development at the KCACTF Region VII Festival in Fort Collins, Colo., in February 2012. She also received two Certificates of Merit for Direction for the productions, The Things They Carried (fall 2011) and In the Next Room or the Vibrator Play (spring 2012). The original adaptation of Tim O’Brien’s novel, The Things They Carried, was selected as the alternate production to perform at the February 2012 festival. Only four productions from the ninestate region (Alaska, Washington, Oregon, northern California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming and Nevada) are selected to perform at the Region VII festival. Goff was also invited to give a workshop on the adaptation process at the festival.


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Standout Research Symposium Provides Research Opportunities for Students Since 1998, Eastern Washington University undergraduate and graduate students have demonstrated their ability to identify a research question, gather and assess pertinent data, and present their findings in a convincing, intriguing and sometimes amusing manner at the EWU Student Research and Creative Works Symposium. During this two-day annual event, students from disciplines across campus present their research and creative work to the university community and the general public. Students are encouraged to participate in the symposium as an integral component of their higher education. Now in its 15th year, the symposium has grown into the university’s largest, campuswide academic event, with 479 student presenters and 138 faculty mentors participating in the 2013 symposium, held this past May in Cheney. The first day of the symposium highlights creative works, including art, film, music, theatre and creative writing. The following day features presentations and posters, from natural and social sciences and humanities. The following are a sample of exhibits presented during this year’s symposium. These projects address important health, social and environmental concerns, all relevant to the local and world community.



Student Research and Creative Works Symposium

A selection of outstanding undergraduate research Metal Concentrations: A Comparison between the Spokane and Little Spokane Rivers Authors: Garth Ahern-Hendryx, Amy Thompson, Cristine Schucker

Faculty mentor: Carmen Nezat, geology Metals in aquatic systems can adversely affect wildlife and pose a risk to human health. The goal of our study was to compare dissolved metals between the Spokane and Little Spokane Rivers. Water samples were collected from 14 sites and conductivity, dissolved oxygen (DO), pH and temperature were measured in situ. Dissolved metals that may be from upstream mining activities in Silver Valley (such as zinc, cadmium and lead) were analyzed by ICP-OES in the EWU geochemistry lab, as well as elements commonly found in river water (e.g., calcium, potassium and silicon). The Little Spokane River showed higher concentrations of most metals, while the Spokane River showed slightly higher levels of the EPA-regulated metals cadmium and zinc.

Punitive Populism and the Social Capital It Depletes—Causes, Complications and the Cure: Restructuring the Criminal Justice System Author: Betty Craipo

Faculty mentor: David May, government This research uses historical and comparative data to examine the role of popular opinion in creating the current mass incarceration crisis. By tracing the evolution of the “war on crime,” a direct link between punitive populism, mass incarceration and the depletion of social capital can demonstrate the need for a systemwide effort of reform. The effort proposed relies on a data-driven approach that rests on three empirically measurable goals, historically low incarceration and recidivism rates, and a systemwide return to prevention-treatment-rehabilitation options rather than punishment. The data demonstrates that restructuring the criminal justice system to function structurally similar to the Federal Reserve system provides the mechanisms to end America’s addiction to mass incarceration and allow a rebuilding of social capital by creating the buffer zone necessary to deflect political pressure and realize these objectives.

Dangerous Dentistry: How Safe is BPA? Authors: Nila Davis, Danielle Lycklama, Jennifer Keller

Faculty mentor: Charles Regalado, dental hygiene As the number of dental materials and options are expanding, so is the demand for esthetically-pleasing dental work. One of the options currently available is composite fillings. Some composite filling materials contain Bisphenol A, better known as BPA. There is some controversy over the potential negative health affects that BPA may contribute, including increased risk of breast and ovarian cancers, reproductive issues, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

The Effect of Caffeine on Time Perception in a High Demand Task Authors: Trevor Fry, Dana Case, Chelsea Joynes, Andrew McCall, Christin Quinn

Faculty mentor: Jonathan Anderson, psychology The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect that caffeine has on time perception during a task involving high cognitive demand. Previous research has supported this and shown that caffeine does not have an effect on time estimation in tasks that are low in cognitive demand (Gruber & Block, 2005). Participants were randomly assigned to consume either 200 mg of caffeine or placebo in a double-blind fashion. We measured retrospective and prospective time estimation in a number of trials. We predicted that participants who were given caffeine would report shorter and less accurate prospective time estimates than those given the placebo. Data collection continues, however, preliminary results support our hypothesis. Furthermore, coefficient of variance scores demonstrate consistency, which supports the theory that the brain utilizes an internal clock mechanism. These results suggest that a moderate dose of caffeine can have a noteworthy impact on our ability to estimate time while performing demanding tasks.


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Book Shelf

A sampling of recently published books by Eastern Washington University faculty

The Compassionate-Mind Guide to Managing your Anger By Russell L. Kolts, PhD, psychology (foreword by Paul Gilbert PhD) The Compassionate-Mind Guide to Managing Your Anger helps readers overcome anger with an approach called compassion-focused therapy (CFT). Kolts, a clinical psychologist, has pioneered the application of CFT working with anger in prisons and other settings. Kolts’ book addresses the evolutionary origins of anger and offers readers CFT skills for understanding their own anger, feeling compassion for themselves, and developing compassion for others, including the targets of their anger. Readers can learn to notice automatic anger processes, step back from them, and replace them with compassionate strategies that will assist them in working with difficult emotions.

The No-Growth Imperative: Creating Sustainable Communities under Ecological Limits to Growth By Gabor Zovanyi, PhD, Urban and Regional Planning More than 20 years of evidence confirms that the existing scale of the human enterprise has surpassed global ecological limits to growth. The NoGrowth Imperative discounts current efforts to maintain growth through eco-efficiency initiatives and smartgrowth programs, and argues that growth is inherently unsustainable and that the true nature of today’s challenge is one of replacing the current growth imperative with a nogrowth imperative. The book presents rationales and legally defensible strategies for stopping growth in local jurisdictions, and portrays the viability of nogrowth communities by outlining their likely economic, social, political and physical features.

New Harbinger Publications, 2012 Routledge Publishers, 2013


The Making of Modern Girlhood By Jessica Willis, PhD, Women and Gender Studies This book focuses on an exploration of the different ways that girls in the U.S. actively construct narratives of selfhood in relation to their readings of visual and literary discourses of “femininity.” Girls’ roles as social players in changing notions of gender are one of the richest sites for mapping shifts in everyday gendered behaviors. Girls negotiate cultural discourses of “femininity” in their daily talk, dress and self-presentation. The ways that girls learn to construct normalized gender identities reveal important shifts in changing cultural ideas about social expectations for female adolescents. Kona Publishing & Media Group, 2013

G r a n t s 2012 by the numbers


Total dollar amount for 2012-13 funded grants

$10,398,044 Total number of faculty grantees

Highest dollar amount for a single grant


$1,766,902 Total number of grants for… Science, Health and Engineering

Arts, Letters and Education

Business and Public Administration

Social & Behavioral Sciences and Social Work

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Student Research & Creative Works Symposium Smart Cruise Control EWU engineering student Seungmin Kim displays his work at the 16th Annual Student Research and Creative Works Symposium. Together with another student and engineering and design faculty mentors, Seungmin demonstrated Smart Cruise Control. When activated, the system detects a car in front, calculates a safe distance according to the current speed and closing speed, and keeps a safe distance automatically. Read more about the unique research projects Eastern students presented at this year’s symposium on page 18.

DiscoverE | 2013-14  
DiscoverE | 2013-14  

The Research Magazine of Eastern Washington University