On the recruiting process: “Western brought me to campus for the first official visit. They were definitely interested, and I was interested in them as well. It showed me they actually wanted me to be on their team. On the first official visit, I’m the running back that they’re bringing in. That was special for me. That went a long way for me. No other school had me for their first official visit.”
Take, for instance, his first game in the backfield against West Texas A&M in the 2013 season opener. Ekeler started as a true freshman for Western before the home crowd at the Mountaineer Bowl in Gunnison. It was an inauspicious start.
“My first college game ever, as a freshman,” Ekeler said, “I had 10 carries for 10 yards.”
It’s pretty easy to do the math there on yards per carry.
The Gunnison Arts Center held a charity auction and presented a short play written by Calvin Curry and adapted by Michael Callihan titled "Murder From the Past," a wry murder-mystery thriller set in the 1920s. The Coldharbour and I Bar ranches also set up booths near the arts center to promote upcoming events to pedestrians and Art Walk attendees.
Marching down Main Street
The rain and wind showed up just in time for the start of Western's Homecoming Parade on Friday, Sept. 29.
But first, let’s go back in time for a moment.
The forum, which will be in the University Center South Ballroom at 7 p.m., is free and open to the public.
Smith served as CFO of HealthSouth Corporation where he was involved in a 15-year, $3 billion fraud. He voluntarily exposed the scandal, worked with authorities and accepted the repercussions.
At the forum, Smith will discuss his experiences dealing with value conflicts and ethical dilemmas in the workplace.
Professor Anderson has more than 140 books to his credit, 56 of which have appeared on national and international bestseller lists, including many of the novels in the “Star Wars” series. There are more than 23 million copies of his works in print, in thirty languages. He and his wife also own and operate WordFire Press in Colorado Springs.
“Kevin’s resume is astonishing,” said GPCW Director David Rothman. “But it is not enough to be really smart or accomplished. We try to find people who are truly good company.”
Western fielded 13 athletes to compete across five disciplines: cross county, short track, downhill, dual slalom and the team relay. Western accumulated 399 points over the course of the three-day event, beating the 2016 defending DII champion, Warren Wilson College, and 2015 DII Champion, King University. Western has been runner up in three of the past four years.
First, five students gain invaluable hands-on experience in their chosen field of study by helping to treat GVH patients between the physical therapy clinic, cardiac rehabilitation program and Senior Care Center. For this work, they are paid a monthly stipend to offset the cost of tuition.
Secondly, the students conduct research and collect data to complement classwork, including theses.
The agreement widens the options for treatment and rehabilitation, ensuring that injured student-athletes are afforded the best possible care by a collective of three local orthopedic-care providers working in concert.
“This will be an inclusive care system, leveraging the incredible resources we are fortunate enough to have in Gunnison and Crested Butte,” Alpine Orthopaedics Director Bonnie McDonald said.
Western pitched the idea this year as part of its ongoing efforts to forge balanced partnerships that benefit both the college—particularly its students—and the community.
The free three-day conference features community tours and workshops, poetry readings, a dance performance, a keynote address and a panel titled “Wild Justice.” Plus, in a new addition this year, children ages 5-15 are invited to attend a Headwaters for Kids camp at the Coldharbour Ranch, an environmental education center.
Seth Adams, professor of Biology at Western State College from 1968 to 1998, passed away on September 18, 2017 at his home in Gunnison at the age of 85.
Adams was born in 1931 on a cotton farm in Hamlin, Texas. After graduating from high school there, he went to Abilene Christian University in Abilene, Texas on a football scholarship. After two years at Abilene Christian, he transferred to Eastern New Mexico University and played his final two years of football there.
The Friday evening concert will be the culmination of the group’s 43rd annual week-long rehearsal sequence.
Providing the Gunnison Valley with 43 years of summer concerts featuring traditional brass band music, the group draws players from all over the country. More than 50 participants will rehearse for more than 26 hours over the course of five days to produce a variety of music.
Gunnison, Colorado – Now in its 18th year, Writing the Rockies (July 19 – 23, 2017) is one of the largest and most diverse writers’ conferences in the Rocky Mountain region.
On a short trip into one of Colorado’s most beautiful summer valleys, aspiring novelists, screenwriters, poets, creative nonfiction authors, educators, editors, critics, and anyone who loves the written word can meet and work with a national roster of authors and teachers, all at an affordable price.
In addition to oral presentations, an awards ceremony and tours of the local ecosystem (as well as the High Alpine Brewery), the meeting will feature keynotes by University of California, Davis’ Gail Patricelli, Ph.D. and Adam State’s Megan Sherbenou, Ph.D.
Patricelli, a professor and Chancellor’s Fellow in the Department of Evolution and Ecology at UC Davis, will speak on new technology—such as microphone arrays, biomimetic robotics and remote telemetry—used to study breeding behaviors, bioacoustics and the effects of noise pollution on birds in the wild.
Celluloid Cinema is a screening series put on by Mountaineer Media, a Film Studies co-curricular. Students who assist with Celluloid Cinema are all members of Mountaineer Media and these students all have a lot of love for old film. Last year was Celluloid Cinema's first; the new series was an idea that came together based off old 16 mm films in Taylor Hall.
First a reporter for the Korean arm of Mademoiselle Magazine, a now-shuttered women’s magazine, Park’s focus soon turned to research with the MIC, a Korean government program responsible for research into media development.
“I researched New Media and Telecom policy,” Park explained.
This research has continued through her education at the University of Michigan and Penn State, the latter of which she earned her doctorate from. Her research on New Media has flourished over the past 10 years as she's had a number of papers published in the field.
Starting this year, there has been more involvement from the Gunnison community and Western students to help restore the growth of small plants and to slow the growth of cheat grass, an invasive species in the Gunnison Valley. The cheat grass is especially dangerous to the sage brush.
That’s what Resident Advisor (RA) Amber Butler of Ute’s ground floor proudly states about her community: “It’s so cool walking by the lounge and seeing 18 people playing Cards Against Humanity, or walking by on a Sunday morning and seeing people playing Risk!”
The Hurst Quad and Quigley Band Shell were filled with students eager to learn how to fly fish, students who have been fly fishing for years and even a few who just stopped by for free hot dogs and live entertainment. Along with traditional hot dogs and hamburgers, the BBQ also featured wild-caught geese, a big hit. Club officers showed new members how to properly fly-cast rods (which can be rented out from Wilderness Pursuits) on the Hurst quad.
The new class, which is twice the size of last year’s cohort, gathered in Quigley to socialize amongst themselves as well as with the president and faculty members.
After Salsbury introduced himself and shared a bit of Western history with the group, the new students shared their undergraduate history and what drove them to take on this next academic and artistic challenge. They also discussed what they plan to gain from the MGES program and how they will use those skills moving forward.
In October, Western introduced its first student members (15 in all) to Omicron Delta Kappa, a national leadership honor society with chapters (“circles”) at approximately 300 colleges and universities across the United States. After merely eight months, the circle at Western, which introduced a second class of OΔK students (14) in April, was recognized this summer as a 2016-17 Circle of Distinction by OΔK national headquarters.
This May, seven students had the opportunity to investigate the topic of sustainable and resilient living throughout the Rocky Mountain region in an Environment & Sustainability (ENVS) special topics course called Mountain Resiliency.
Led by Brandon McNamara ’17, Mountain Resiliency immersed students in the world of sustainability through hands-on service activities. The class included a lecture and project preparation component, but the majority of the course took place in the field.
Gabriel, a Sociology lecturer at Western, received the Constance Coiner Award for Best Dissertation for her work titled, “Manufacturing Precarity: A Case Study of the Grain Processing Corporation (GPC)/United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 86D Lockout in Muscatine, Iowa.”
Judges for the award found Gabriel’s work to be “brilliant” and “a fascinating and useful take on how job loss and re-employment works in the Heartland.”
Like many 19-year-olds, Cote attended college after finishing high school. He enrolled at a university in his home state of New Hampshire, and hadn’t thought much about why he was there. It was just the next step in fulfilling what society taught him was the path to success.
“I didn’t know what I wanted to do,” Cote said.
Cote decided to drop out and become a self-declared “ski bum” out west. He skied and worked at Crested Butte Mountain Resort for eight years before deciding to attend Western for the Petroleum Geology program.
Adam Beede ’17 initiated the start of the Gunnison Sockeyes River Conservation Club when he rounded up seven signatures during a meet-and-greet activity. Since then, Beede has worked relentlessly to get the club where it is today.
The Gunnison Sockeyes River Conservation Club strives to rehabilitate, maintain and improve the Gunnison Watershed through volunteer work. The club works closely with Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Coldharbour Institute and the Gunnison Angling Society to improve angling opportunities in the Gunnison Valley.
From April 10 to 11, Western welcomed activists, lawmakers and visionaries to the University Center as part of the annual Environment & Sustainability (ENVS) Spring Symposium. Central to this year’s discussion was overcoming obstacles in tough times.
The event began with a keynote by Eryn Wise, a Dakota Access Pipeline activist who recently spent five months in the Standing Rock Reservation. She serves as an organizer for Honor the Earth and delivered an inspiring message on perseverance within conservation efforts.
The LEAD Sustainability Coordinators, Organics Guild and Sustainability Coalition came together to plan Earth Week from April 17-21.
The week started off with free, bicycle-blended smoothies at the Mountaineer Field House. Students hopped on a bike and pedaled away, powering a blender in the process. The only energy used was that of students themselves. Later, community members gathered at the Chipeta Garden to prepare the plot of land for spring.
The Race to Recycle event on Tuesday reminded students of the importance of recycling their waste at home and on campus.
While mountain biking has been a flourishing component of Mountain Sports since the program’s inception in 2012, most riders tend to hang their bikes up when the snow begins to fly. Sophomore Ryan Trimble, a Business Marketing major from Seattle, WA, decided to break that mold and race in the Rocky Mountain Collegiate Cycling Conference (RMCCC) road biking circuit as the only representative from Western when he was a freshman.
Beer is a booming industry.
Inside Western, Press Release
The conference, running Nov. 8-12, will highlight faculty and student research; provide development training for administrators; and focus on issues of technology, equity and access.
Bennett has organized a panel, “Asking Enduring Questions in Honors.” In this presentation, she and other recipients of grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) will discuss various models of NEH-funded honors courses—and how these courses can increase students’ understanding of the humanities, regardless of majors.
Featured News, Inside Western
The Sierra Club recognized Western as one of the top 200 for schools in the nation for on-campus sustainability and sustainability education programs.
In May, sustainability leaders at Western applied for the raking with the Sierra Club. The Sierra Club then examined aspects of each university and what schools are doing to help the community be more sustainable on campus and beyond.
The class, which is double the size of last year’s inaugural class, will get acquainted with each other during the event, which precedes a two-week, on-campus orientation. The on-campus residency provides students with an introduction to the master’s program, including: a one-day program orientation; practicum instruction in on-site gallery and studio classroom settings; field trips; and workshops with arts professionals.
The MGES students will also have an opportunity to get acquainted with Ethel Rice, benefactor for both the Art and MGES programs at Western.
The bracketed contest began with dozens of colleges and universities across the West, including University of Colorado Boulder, University of Utah, Montana State University and Colorado Mesa University. The final round came down to Western vs. Prescott College.
“It’s the school’s dedication to programs that study, celebrate, protect and expand those wildlands that put it at the top in our poll,” Doug Schnitzspahn said in a recent Outdoor Elevation article about the victory.
Once a year the Chemistry Club puts together a magic show that demonstrates the reactions that can occur when mixing elements. They work with everything from acid and bases to liquid nitrogen.
“I’m the coordinator of this club and the students work on this show for a couple of months to learn about the reactions that take place,” said Ryter, who helps the club get everything together.
Graduation will feature 402 graduates: 342 will receive their bachelor’s degrees and 60 will receive graduate degrees. Students hail from 37 different states and three foreign countries.
Alumna Nancy Chisholm ‘90 will serve as commencement speaker. Chisholm is the former vice president and general manager of Tyco Retail Solutions, a $1 billion vertical business unit of Tyco, headquartered in Neuhausen, Switzerland.
From March 30-31, Western hosted the Gunnison Valley Farm-to-Table Conference, bringing together students, farmers, legislators and activists in a discussion about healthy local economies.
Now in its fifth year, this event is supported by Western’s Borick School of Business, the Colorado State University Exension and the National Young Farmer’s Coalition. This time, turnout exceeded expectations and generated hope for future growth.
Konieczek has been running track for more than nine years. She is from Poland and while looking for colleges, was on the hunt for the perfect place to train at elevation.
“I was considering somewhere to train in elevation. I asked around, and decided to come to Colorado. My brother came [to Western] in the summer for an elevation sports camp. He sent me pictures and talked about the coach,” Konieczek said.
Konieczek wanted to make sure that Western would be a great fit for her.
Western's Model United Nations (Model UN) Team is one of hundreds to compete in the largest collegiate Model UN conference in the world, National Model United Nations - New York. For five action-packed days each spring, over 2,800 students from 40 countries simulate the workings of the United Nations in 21 committees.
Seavey, a Bostonian who came to Western in 2013 to pursue a degree in Exercise and Sports Science with an emphasis in Sport and Fitness Management, reveled in the prospect of snowboarding after class on mountains far larger than out East. While the wall of mountains that appear upon leaving the Gunnison city limits still capture his heart and imagination, his sights are currently set on Cranor Hill just four miles north of town.
Peterson joined the Western community in 2005 and quickly made his mark on the university with his congenial spirit, drive for knowledge and ability to persuade even the most reluctant to join him on an adventure.
This year was the Amigos’ 30th year celebrating Carnaval. All students could enjoy food and drinks in the front of local establishment, Timbers, and those who were 21 or over were able to enjoy the bar in the back. The dance floor was open to everyone to enjoy the music.
Business and entrepreneurship professor Tom Miller joined Western last year because, he says, “I got to a spot in my career where I wanted to teach.” He had also recently written a book, Lift: A New Paradigm for Influential Leaders, which redefines and revalues influence and encourages the building of communities and character.
Western has welcomed two new faces to the campus, Keating and Beamer, who will help expand Western’s Innovation, Creativity and Entrepreneurship (ICE) program’s role in the community.
Returning to campus
Featured News, Press Release
Dear Western Community,
It has been a pleasure to engage and connect with all of you through various campus events and activities, especially at the Campus Conversations events held this spring. I hope open dialogue continues to enrich our campus culture.