March 10, 2011
We all survived the last big snowstorm of the year, and there are finally signs of spring around campus as we prepare for break and the year’s final quarter. Before we turn the page to spring, I want to take a moment to recap some of the highlights of the last couple months, and update you on our budget situation.
There is no question the last few months have been one of the greatest times to be an Eastern Washington Eagle. You know the story by now, as the EWU football team rallied in dramatic fashion to win the FCS National Championship. This was an amazing achievement for our hard-working student athletes, and ignited a wave of community support unparalleled in Eastern’s proud history. Recently, the state Legislature honored us all with EWU Eagles Day in Olympia. Needless to say, it was great to be at the capital on such a good note for a change, as we were able to meet with legislative leaders and the Governor to share this proud moment.
As I’ve said before, this is more than just a big win on the football field. This has opened up many doors for the university, and instilled a new sense of pride among our alumni, students and the faculty and staff who work here. The public looks at us a bit differently. More people want to know about Eastern and our fine academic programs. In short, more people are talking about the university, and that is another victory. We hope to carry this momentum into everything we do here on campus, with the ultimate goal of helping all students succeed.
Still, our biggest obstacle remains the pending state budget cuts that will once again impact higher education. I have made many trips to Olympia this session to meet with lawmakers and urge them to protect education as much as possible. However, reductions seem inevitable. Eastern is preparing for various scenarios that will once again force us to make troubling choices that will no doubt put a strain on our efforts to do what we do best – educate our students.
I am very proud of our student body for once again taking a stand against more budget reductions, because ultimately, the cuts will make it more challenging for them to earn a degree. The recent rally in the Pence Union Building was another example of their passion for Eastern, and it is another reminder of why we are all here.
As the legislative session winds down, I will keep you updated on the latest budget news and how it will impact the university.
In the meantime, I hope to see you at one of the many great events on campus this spring that reflect our commitment to students and diverse ideas, from the Student Research and Creative Works Symposium to the annual Pow Wow at the Pavilion.
Rodolfo Arévalo, PhD
Signs of Spring?
Spokane Community Championship Celebration
NCAA trophy visits Olympia
2011 Student Budget Walk Out
2010 Spirit of the Eagle Pow Wow
For all these photos and more check out EWU’s Flickr photo share.