WSU News

Faculty member to explore culture, community via Fulbright

By Madison Rosenbaum, WSU Tri-Cities intern

ChristensonPeterRICHLAND, Wash. – Peter Christenson works to connect his creative students at Washington State University Tri-Cities to like-minded members of the community. As a Fulbright award winner, he will apply this innovative approach in Scotland, as well.

An assistant professor in digital technology and culture and fine arts, he received a Core Fulbright Scholar Award; about 800 U.S. faculty and professionals earn this honor each year. He will spend seven months at the University of Dundee starting in January.

With students, faculty and staff, he will produce a video archive and multimedia exhibition about the diverse culture, traditions and stories of the region. The project will focus on new media art and exploring space – how to activate space, draw people into it and foster discussion.

The goal, Christenson said, is to get students out of the classroom and connecting with their community.

“The work I do (at WSU Tri-Cities) is often focused on connecting the creative class of an area; connecting academic institutions to community is important,” he said. “I hope to use this experience as a model to bring back to the classroom at WSU Tri-Cities and foster an exhibition of the videos and photographs from the experience.”

Fulbright programs operate in more than 155 countries. The Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program sends American faculty members, scholars and professionals abroad to lecture and/or conduct research for up to a year.

Fifty-three Fulbright alumni have won Nobel Prizes and 78 have won Pulitzer Prizes.

“This honor is a richly deserved recognition of Peter’s outstanding work in the classroom, the studio and the community,” said Mike Mays, WSU Tri-Cities vice chancellor of academic affairs. “It also highlights the exceptional work being done at WSU Tri-Cities by our remarkable group of faculty, staff and students.”

Christenson received his bachelor of arts and master of clinical social work degrees from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and his master of fine arts in intermedia from Arizona State University. His academic research and artistic practices are rooted in interventionist, psychosocial art and institutional critique theories; they are influenced by his experience working as a licensed psychotherapist.

Learn about WSU Tri-Cities and its commitment to dynamic student engagement, dynamic research experiences and dynamic community engagement at