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Fall 2019

This issue is available for download, Flipbook viewing, and references to published articles.

Inside the 2019 fall issue

  • Reaching people with autism through music and muppets
  • Recent alumnus named Regional Teacher of the Year
  • Micronesia elects EOU alumnus president

All Stories

President’s Letter – Fall 2019

Alumni and Friends, Altruism, giving selflessly to empower one another through inclusiveness, appreciation, and stewardship, is a core value of our EOU community. We are all beneficiaries of this value and it makes for an especially distinctive student experience — an Eastern Edge. Frequently, I see altruistic service amongst EOU Mountaineers. Meaningful mentorship, creative curricular […]

Good to the bone

About one in 430 registered donors get matched with a recipient and successfully donate bone marrow. EOU Women’s Soccer Coach Jake Plocher became one of them last May. Plocher joined the registry of donors with a cheek swab in 2012 to support a soccer player who helped coordinate the drive on campus. Six years later, […]

Bringing healthcare home

Freshman year got off to a rough start for Andrea Camacho, now a junior studying Health and Human Performance at Eastern Oregon University. The first year away from her island home in Saipan was full of difficult transitions. “I had never been away from island life, and the transition to American living was overwhelming,” Camacho […]

A President from Pohnpei

David Panuelo, ’87, was sworn in as the ninth president of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) in May 2019. Islanders make up a growing number of EOU students and alumni, doubling from less than 2% to more than 4% of the student body over the last three years. Long-standing connections between EOU and Pacific […]

One man’s trash

By Katy Nesbitt Luke Dynes, ’02, is the poster child for the self-made business executive — but his work goes beyond his success in agriculture. Dynes moved to Eastern Oregon as a teenager from Danville, Illinois. He attended Hermiston High School and spent summers in Elgin. Motivated to get an education and gifted with a […]

Comfort in crisis

EOU Foundation funds keep students enrolled through life’s challenges Last year alone, 27 students benefited from EOU Foundation Crisis Awards. The funds support online and on-campus students who find themselves in difficult situations, where medical expenses, car trouble or childcare costs could threaten their progress toward earning a degree. These private funds close the gap to […]

Finding her way

Adjunct vocal instructor Jamie Jacobson walked 500 miles over 40 days this summer, following the ancient Camino de Santiago through northern Spain. She said the physical, mental and spiritual challenges and triumphs of the camino equipped her to better guide aspiring musicians. Learn more about her experience @theWAYtoJamie2019 on Facebook.     5 things I’m […]

From the Beat to the Street

Alumnus George Thompson, ’02, worked closely with Sesame Street muppet Julia to reach people with autism through music.

Finding strength through teaching

Pauci-immune necrotizing glomerulonephritis: 15 syllables that changed Tara Fox’s, ’18, life when she was diagnosed with the kidney disease as a sophomore in high school. The chronic disease means she’ll need an organ donor eventually, and bi-annual chemotherapy treatments to keep it at bay in the meantime. She said her kidneys have been functioning at […]

From boardroom to classroom

By Katy Nesbitt When TJ Presley, ’17, left a full-time management position to earn a Master of Arts in Teaching from Eastern Oregon University, he brought corporate experiences and values with him. Presley started teaching algebra and junior high math in Pilot Rock, and toward the end of his first year he also became athletic […]

Building community through business

Public relations was a developing industry in the Middle East and Northern Africa when Mohamed Al Ayed, ’91, returned home to Saudi Arabia in the early 1990s. His modern languages degree from Eastern Oregon University (then Eastern Oregon State College) soon translated into an expertise in communications of all kinds, and Al Ayed founded Trans-Arabian […]

“Yes, and…

Improv comedy relies on a central principle called “yes, and” that dictates participants respond to new ideas or actions from their peers with the phrase, “yes, and.” Two actors are pantomiming a dinner scene when another walks on stage and asks whether his pet skunk is welcome in the restaurant. One of the diners reaches […]

On the air

Local news anchor Mark Hanrahan, ’04, finds himself on the frontline of community issues nearly every day. From behind the evening news desk at KREM in Spokane, he tells viewers the latest happenings at 5, 6, 10 and 11 p.m. each night. “Journalism offers something new and interesting every day,” Hanrahan said. “It’s a very […]

Mountaineer Tracks

WEDDINGS Michael Goings, ’12, and Lindsey Bohard were married on Sept. 7, 2019 in Cle Elum, Washington. BIRTHS Carolyn, ’19, andTim Olmstead welcomed Olivia Olmsted on Dec. 19, 2018 in Tacoma, Washington. OTHER ANNOUNCEMENTS Robert M. Vancil, ’61, published “April and My Classmates: Growing up in small towns in Northeast Oregon” in 2019. Dori Kite, […]

Donor Spotlight: James Gorham

Part of something bigger A new business in his old hometown inspired James Gorham, ’95, to get involved in the EOU Foundation. Now, more than 10 years later, the business is thriving and Gorham is a member of the EOU Foundation Board of Directors. After graduation, he earned his master’s in physical therapy and opened […]

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