WSU News

Category: WSU in the Media

WSU in the Media – June 26, 2015

The Spokesman-Review – Amid shouts of “Go Cougs” in the normally sedate chambers, both houses passed resolutions honoring Floyd, who died last weekend of complications from colon cancer. Lawmakers described him as a winner who worked to make sure the university was a winner, too. He expanded the university’s programs, not just in Pullman but at branch campuses in Spokane, Everett, the Tri-Cities and Vancouver. In recent months he was working with legislators to change state law to allow a new medical school in Spokane, even as he was fighting the colon cancer that eventually took his life.

The Huffington Post – New research suggests that the answer may lie not in men’s skills or interests, but rather in the beliefs they hold about their abilities to do the complicated mathematics central to STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields. Researchers from Washington State University found that men tend to significantly overestimate their math abilities, while women are generally more accurate in their self-assessments.

The Wall Street Journal – The strong preference among major leaguers might suggest maple bats perform better. Not so. “The great irony is there is no advantage in using maple,” said Lloyd Smith, director of the Sports Science Laboratory at Washington State University, which measures the performance of baseball bats. “The speed of the ball coming off maple is no different than the speed of the ball coming off ash.” So, maple breaks. When it does, it sometimes hurts people. And science suggests there is no advantage to using it. Why does it prevail?

WSU in the Media – June 23, 2015

The Seattle Times – Floyd’s death on Saturday leaves a significant vacuum, both on the Palouse and in the state’s education community. In Pullman, his legacy includes surging student enrollment, research funding and university fundraising. He helped WSU weather the Great Recession by cutting his own annual salary by $100,000 for two years. He leaves the university with new colleges and schools, including his signature achievement: a just-authorized medical school in Spokane. Away from Pullman, Floyd was a galvanizing force for a more broadly imagined education continuum: “cradle to college.” He brought together the state’s colleges and universities to speak as a single voice against the Legislature’s wrongheaded policy of jacking up tuition, and was an equally eloquent advocate for early learning. As the University of Washington went through four presidents during Floyd’s eight years, he emerged as the steady, credible elder statesman of higher education in the state.

The Northwest Georgia News – Once he arrived on campus, Floyd quickly became involved in all aspects of campus life. A three-sport athlete, he was co-captain of the football team and a member of the track and basketball teams. He was also president of the “Y” Cabinet, president of Student Council, vice president of the Explorers, vice president of the Honor Council, and participated in many social school activities, including Advisory Committee and Social Committee. A leader among his peers, he was even voted “Class Favorite.”

The New York Times – “The reason there’s no consensus is because it’s really hard to measure how much of any export is due to this trip,” said Andrew Cassey, an associate economics professor at Washington State University who analyzed more than 500 gubernatorial trade trips taken from 1997 through 2006. It can take years to know whether the personal relationships forged on foreign trade trips pay off with increased business, he said. Cassey found the most common destinations were countries to which states already were exporting relatively large amounts of goods.

WSU in the Media – June 22, 2015

The Seattle Times – The late president of Washington State University was more than a scholar-statesman. He was an economic asset to the state that we can’t easily replace. The death of Elson Floyd, too young at age 59, is a crushing loss not only to Washington State University but also to the state and its economy.

The New York Times –  SEATTLE — Elson Floyd, the popular president of Washington State University whose influence in higher education and politics spread beyond the school in rural eastern Washington, has died from complications of colon cancer. He was 59. Floyd, WSU president since 2007, had gone on medical leave earlier this month. He died Saturday morning at Pullman Regional Hospital, school spokeswoman Kathy Barnard said.

 

WSU in the Media – June 17, 2015

Nature – Researchers are now designing culture systems for other microbes that grow only inside cells. Omsland, now at Washington State University in Pullman, has developed a cell-free culture system for Chlamydia trachomatis3, the pathogen behind one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases. He has not yet coaxed Chlamydia to divide in his medium, but “I was born optimistic,” he says — and his success with C. burnetii fuels his hope.

Engineering – MATS is designed by the food engineering scientist, Juming Tang at Washington State University, with a consortium of private food packaging and equipment companies along with the US Department of Defence. Pilot scale versions of this process, called MATS-B are already in use at two packaging companies, AmeriQual of Evansville, Indiana and Wornick of Cincinnati, Ohio. These companies are allowing other firms to come in and take a look at the process.

WSU in the Media – June 16, 2015

The New York Times – MOUNT VERNON, Wash. — The latest piece of equipment at the Bread Lab, a heavenly smelling corner of the Washington State University campus here, is a tortilla press, a gift from Chipotle Mexican Grill. The lab is working on a project for the restaurant chain that says it wants to improve the quality of mass-market food. The goal: create a tortilla that is as soft, pliant and tasty as something an abuelita may make in her kitchen, but one that can be produced on a vast scale.

The Seattle Times – BELLEVUE — Washington State University and Bellevue College have taken another step toward a potential future education partnership. Under the proposed partnership, Bellevue College keep offering community college classes in Seattle’s eastern suburbs, while adding four-year degree options under the WSU name. The schools say the partnership would be unique because of the way the two schools would collaborate. Students would be able to complete four year degrees in Bellevue or transfer seamlessly to another WSU campus.

WSU in the Media – June 2, 2015

The Washington Post – Researchers David Crowder and John Reganold from Washington State University conducted a meta-analysis of 44 studies on organic agriculture, which included 55 crops grown in 14 countries across five continents. They found that when farmers did not charge a premium for organic food, it was significantly less profitable than conventional agriculture. But when they did charge a premium, organic agriculture was 22 to 35 percent more profitable. Crowder, lead author and assistant professor of entomology at Washington State University, says he and Reganold became interested in the topic after reading a study several years ago that indicated that organic farming produces a lower crop yield than conventional agriculture.

The New York Times – But wine grapes also do best in dry summer conditions, which pushes the plants to send sugar into the grapes and not into the canopy of leaves. State agricultural officials have projected financial losses this year of $1.2 billion, with much of that pain concentrated here in the Yakima basin. But those losses will be tied largely to other plants: Wine grapes, because of their drought hardiness and dry summer cycles, are expected to skate through just fine. “Of all the crops, I’m worried less about the wine grapes than any other,” said Markus Keller, a professor of viticulture at Washington State University. “Wine’s expansion will continue. If anything, it will accelerate.”Continue reading

WSU in the Media – June 1, 2015

ABC News – Sulfites, tannins, resveratrol—if you’ve read anything about wine, you’ve probably come across at least one of these terms. But what does all the fancy verbiage mean for your health? We asked Jim Harbertson, PhD, associate professor of enology (that is, the science of wine) at Washington State University, to decode the lingo commonly found on bottle labels so you know exactly what you’re drinking, and how it affects you, beyond a nice buzz.

Science Daily – Washington State University researchers have found that the more hunter-gatherers smoke cannabis, the less they are infected by intestinal worms. The link suggests that they may unconsciously be, in effect, smoking medical marijuana. Ed Hagen, a WSU Vancouver anthropologist, explored cannabis use among the Aka foragers to see if people away from the cultural and media influences of Western civilization might use plant toxins medicinally.

WSU in the Media – May 28, 2015

Time Magazine – Sulfites, tannins, resveratrol—if you’ve read anything about wine, you’ve probably come across at least one of these terms. But what does all the fancy verbiage mean for your health? We asked Jim Harbertson, PhD, associate professor of enology (that is, the science of wine) at Washington State University, to decode the lingo commonly found on bottle labels so you know exactly what you’re drinking, and how it affects you, beyond a nice buzz.

Smithsonian Magazine – Dads don’t use baby talk as often or in the same ways as moms—and that’s perfectly OK, according to a new study. Mark VanDam of Washington State University at Spokane and colleagues equipped parents with recording devices and speech-recognition software to study the way they interacted with their youngsters during a normal day. This was the first study to focus on the way fathers interact verbally with their young “in the wild” and then analyze those interactions with automatic software.

WSU in the Media – May 26, 2015

The New York Times – A group of Washington State University journalism students spent 11 days in Cuba, meeting Cuban journalists at state-run newspapers and Radio Havana, along with ordinary Cubans, from a taxi driver to a hairdresser. The trip was authorized under U.S. rules as educational, and professors kept careful records of their itineraries, as required by regulations — even though they’ve never, from past trips, been asked for proof of their activities.

The Charlotte Observer – Modern dads may change diapers and fill sippy cups, but you still won’t catch them using baby talk. That’s according to a new study by researchers at Washington State University, Spokane, who found that while mothers often use high-pitched tones and varied cadences to communicate with their babies and toddlers, fathers play it straight, speaking to their little ones as if they were adults. “Moms raised their pitch by around 40 hertz,” a verifiable change in sound, said Mark VanDam, a WSU-Spokane assistant professor in the speech and hearing sciences department. “Dads had no statistical effect at all.”

WSU in the Media – May 21, 2015

Nature – Bees have been found in fossils (pictured) that date to around the same time as the first flowers. “And then there was a huge radiation of plants, accompanied by a radiation of bees,” says entomologist Walter S. Sheppard of Washington State University in Pullman. Today, there are 25,000 species of bees, which are found on every continent except Antarctica.

The Guardian – A-ha! Reverse sexism! I knew if I stayed vigilant I’d spot some! Sexist, perhaps, but also documented: researchers at Washington State University recently hooked up pairs of parents to recording devices for a day.