Byron Howard ’90 wins Golden Globe for Best Animated Feature Film “Zootopia”

Byron Howard '90 (center) accepts Golden Globe for Best Animated Feature with producer Clark Spencer (left) and Co-Director Rich Moore (right)

Byron Howard ’90 (center) accepts the Golden Globe for Best Animated Feature Film with producer Clark Spencer (left) and co-director Rich Moore (right)

Zootopia is a buddy-cop animated feature starring a bunny detective (voiced by Ginnifer Goodwin) and her fox partner (voiced by Jason Bateman) as they uncover corruption in the metropolitan city of Zootopia. The film addresses prejudice and racism through division among the animal characters, a message that seemed more relevant over the 5 year span of film production. Backstage at the award ceremony co-director and Evergreen graduate Byron Howard commented, 

“The world around us started to explode. Bias and fear mongering were coming into the news daily. Something we hadn’t planned, but made us all the more dedicated to get the message out in the right way.”

Bryon’s 22-year career with Disney includes directing credits for Bolt (2008) and Tangled (2010). You can watch the full acceptance speech on the NBC website.

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    Winter on campus

    A light dusting of snow transformed campus into a dreamy snow globe twice in December. Our talented campus photographer Shauna Bittle captured the frosty scene, including the newly remodeled Purce Lecture Hall.

    Take a look and share your snowy campus memories in the comments below!

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      Longhouse collaboration gains national attention

      The National Endowment for the Arts featured Evergreen’s Longhouse Education and Cultural Center partnership with the Squaxin Museum in a new book titled, “How to Do Creative Placemaking: An Action-Oriented Guide to Arts in Community Development.”

      The NEA praises the community collaboration, which lead to a series of workshops and art residencies in 2012 to produce hand-made gifts for the annual Tribal Canoe Journey.

      “We were amazed to see how many Squaxin Island Tribal members filled the arena with dancers, drummers, and singers during the protocol ceremonies. The tribe expressed their cultural identity in so many beautiful ways—in the regalia they made, the art that was gifted to thousands of participants, and the many community members of all ages that filled the ceremonial protocol stage. People are still talking about how well they represented themselves as hosts of the 2012 Tribal Canoe Journey.”

      Tina M. Kuckkahn-Miller

      Director of the Longhouse Education & Cultural Center

      Read more at The Olympian, or see the case study on page 96.

      2016 snow campus daytime-43 (002)

      The Longhouse after a light snow on December 15, 2016.

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        “There’s only this planet, and there’s so much on it” – Nikki McClure ’91

        Nikki McClure ’91 is featured on the cover of South Sound Magazine this month. Read more about how this alumna artist uses paper and an X-Acto Knife to create art that captures the beauty of ordinary life.

        Made Locally With Love

        You may recognize Nikki’s art from the 2016 Return to Evergreen promotions, in addition to her many calendars and children’s books.

        Be sure to save the date November 3-5 for a weekend full of activities as we Return to Evergreen once again in 2017!


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          An interview with the Shers: What to expect in your first year at Evergreen

          Editor’s note: We asked Adam Sher ’02, and his father, Gerson Sher, to share the story of Adam’s first quarter at Evergreen. Add your experience in the comments and help new students and parents learn about transitioning to Evergreen’s educational approach. 

          Gerson: As a former Greener parent, I think there are a lot of parents out there of incoming Greeners who might want to hear about not only the high points of their children’s experiences, but also the lows, and especially some of the lows that are more typical of Evergreen. Adam, you have said that in your first quarter, especially, you had some tough challenges in adjusting. But before we go into that, let’s go back and set the stage with your reaction to your high school experience.

          Adam: OK. I went to McLean High School in Fairfax County, Virginia, in one of the supposedly finest public school systems in the country. It was terrible. I hated high school. I hated the whole approach to education – the rigidity, the mass-production style, the teaching to the test, the useless information, the senseless rules and discipline. I was turned off to education and to all the super-achievers and over-achievers who were college-bound. I was not at all sure that I wanted to go to college at all.

          Gerson: Yes. As I recall, you had something like a 2.4 GPA and we got periodic recorded calls from the school system informing us that you had once again not showed up for class.

          Adam: That’s right.

          Gerson: But you performed spectacularly on the SATs, even though you made a show of not even trying. Did that surprise you?

          Adam: No. I love learning. I love reading. I have always done it on my own terms. And high school prevented me from doing that.

          Gerson: So, what changed your mind?

          Adam: Well, I read the 1998 edition of Forty Colleges that Change Lives, and Evergreen was the only one that looked remotely interesting.

          Gerson: I remember that distinctly. Why?

          Adam: Because it looked like Evergreen was the absence of everything I couldn’t stand about high school: Rules, grades, subjects broken down into meaningless shards of knowledge, discipline. It looked great.

          Adam in 2000 with puppy, Opus

          2000 – Adam with family dog  Opus

          Gerson: We thought so, too, especially for a student like you. And we were relieved that you even decided to go to college. So, what did you find when you got to Evergreen?

          Adam: I found out that my initial impression and expectations were completely out of line with what was going on at Evergreen.

          Gerson: In what way?

          Adam: Well, first of all, the notion that just because of the lack of conventional structure, you could just sail through the place on your own terms was dead wrong. What looked like an absence of requirements or rules turned out to be almost the opposite. You really had to plan your courses carefully, register for them on time so they don’t close out, and think about how you’re going to regulate your own study and life. It wasn’t the free and easy environment that I had envisioned. It was tough and demanding, but the demands were internal, not external. I was fine with rejecting external demands, but not at all ready for making internal ones of myself. This was quite a shock, and I wasn’t ready for it.

          Gerson: So what happened?

          Adam: I went into a funk. I didn’t do much work. I goofed off. My first quarter course was a disaster. I finished the course but I would add that the faculty’s experience with kids like me was a big help. That would not have happened just anywhere.

          Gerson: So what did you do to change your course?

          Adam: I realized that I needed to substitute my own self-discipline for the external discipline that I hated so much in high school. I realized that I needed to be responsible to myself. The next quarter and the next year, I had a much different experience and was motivated to mold Evergreen’s learning environment to my own evolving interests. I also met a lot of other students who had similar experiences to mine.

          Gerson: Yes, you seemed like you had grown a lot over a short period of time.

          Adam: Well, that might be pushing it…

          Gerson: And you were able to devote a whole year of your study to your favorite novel, Moby-Dick, under a fabulous professor.

          Adam: That was the highlight of my education. It’s a very deep book, and my professor, David Powell, was an extraordinary teacher.

          Gerson: Yes, I remember him well. So Adam, aside from your initial struggles with your preconception of Evergreen and the reality, and in addition to Moby-Dick, what do you think was the most important lesson you drew from your Evergreen education?

          Adam: It’s really impossible to separate all those strands. They all run together. What Evergreen excels at teaching, at instilling in students, is critical thinking. Critical thinking starts with thinking critically about yourself, and learning critical thinking often demands corrective action when things don’t work out. That’s one of the great lessons of Moby-Dick, too. And the way Evergreen teaches critical thinking is crucial: the interdisciplinary orientation to learning pushes us beyond formal categories of subjects like math, science, and history – uncovering the the endless source of wonder and self-reflection inherent in any phenomenon. Another important thing about Evergreen was also the presence of things i was interested in… intellectualism, creativity, opportunities for self-direction, and a [not so] subtle countercultural aesthetic. It was a great education.

          Gerson: So, if you’re a parent of a new Greener – a green Greener, if you will – who is having trouble adapting to Evergreen, who may be thinking of transferring to another school, or something else, what would your advice be to that parent?

          Adam: Let your child figure it out for herself. Odds are that if your child is the sort of student who would choose Evergreen for the reasons I did, she will work it out, though it will not be easy. If you’re just looking for an easy B.A., don’t bother. It’s not easy. If you’re not willing to look hard at yourself before you look hard at others, it’s also probably not the right place for you.

          Gerson: That all sounds pretty harsh, Adam. Don’t you have some words to reassure all those anxious parents out there?

          Adam: Sure. Let me put it this way. Trust your Greener. Trust her instinct to come here in the first place. She will sort it out, one way or another, and be the better for it.

          2014 Georgetown, DC - From left; Adam, Gerson, Margery Sher, and Adam's wife Megan Sher.

          2014 Georgetown, DC – From left; Adam, Gerson, Margery Sher, and Adam’s wife Megan Sher.

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            Nate Gibbs-Bowling, Mit ’06, a self-described “Nerd Farmer”

            Bill Gates recently sat down with Washington State Teacher of the Year Nate Gibbs-Bowling, MiT ’06 to discuss the New Majority in American public schools and how to support exceptional teachers. Nate will join outstanding MiT alumni for the “Teachers are Agents of Change” panel at Return to Evergreen 2016.

            Read the full story here.

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              Draw your own roadmap for success

              Do you love to plan? Can you scheme cross-country road trips just by staring at a map? Join us at Return to Evergreen 2016 for a dynamic workshop with Patti Dobrowolski ’80. Patti’s celebrated session encourages you to break out the markers and visualize your future. You’ll leave with a roadmap to accomplish your goals without getting lost along the way!

              Learn more about visual goal setting and register for Return to Evergreen today.

              Take a look at the updated sessions page with even more exciting offerings!

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                Color outside the lines with Bezango, WA at Return to Evergreen 2016

                I could tell you about Bezango, WA, which will be screening at Return to Evergreen on October 15, but I think this comic by Chelsea Baker explains the film perfectly:

                Cartoon by Chelsea Baker

                Check out the trailer!

                After the screening, hear from the filmmakers Ron Austin ’91 and Louise Amandes with alumni artists Megan Kelso ’91 and Dana Simpson ’99 for an engaging panel as they explore connections between the comics, cartoons, and Evergreen.

                Have you registered for Return to Evergreen yet? Do it today and stay tuned as we add more sessions and speakers!

                Movie Poster

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                  Interim President Dick Schwartz dies at 83

                  Richard “Dick” Schwartz passed away last week. He is perhaps best remembered at Evergreen for his service as Interim President. Dick was hired as Vice President for Finance at the college in 1980, but was appointed by the Board of Trustees to fill the role of Interim President when Dan Evans left the presidency abruptly in 1983 to fill the vacancy in the US Senate left by Henry (Scoop) Jackson’s sudden passing. He served in that role for almost two years, from 1983 to 1985. Before his time at Evergreen, Schwartz served as Director of Business Affairs and Chief Financial Officer at University of Michigan, Dearborn; Campus Planner at Stockton State College; and as Executive Vice President of Monmouth College. Although he was at Evergreen for just five years, he remained connected to the college, including participating in the Presidents Seminar at the college’s 40th anniversary celebration in 2012.

                  An obituary was published in The Olympian.

                  Dick Schwartz

                  Dick Schwartz at the 9th annual President’s Recognition Dinner on May 17, 2012.

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                    “Put a bird on it” at Return to Evergreen 2016 with famed ornithologist Steve Herman

                    Mark your calendars now for Return to Evergreen 2016 on October 15! Back by popular demand, Faculty Emeritus Steve Herman, PhD will lead a nature walk through the lush woods surrounding campus.

                    This session will put you right in the ecological core of Evergreen. Steve will name and describe for you the native specimens and how they interact while answering any questions you have about how the college is part of an ecosystem. From the upper forests, the session treks down to the rocky shoreline past the marshes and creeks stretching over the Evergreen property. On the waterfront, you’ll be treated to views of Eld Inlet and rolling foothills leading north to the Olympics.

                    Students walk through Evergreen forest trails on August 1st, 2012.

                    Steve still teaches summer ornithology programs, as he has been doing for more than forty years. He’s taken student across the west, from Washington to Oregon, California and beyond, but he knows few places like he knows Evergreen.

                    His work in naturalism has not only helped him succeed in academia, but also in activism against abusive grazing by ranch cattle. He’s focused on protecting wild lands for as long as he’s been teaching, and has even been able to combine the two in his programs. More recently, Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, where Steve engaged with federal and private landowners to modify land practices in favor of native flora and fauna, was part of a nationally covered struggle this past January.

                    Nature-lovers should come with warm fabrics and shoes that can handle the elements and live to tell the tale. The Evergreen Conservation Corps’ work this past spring has significantly improved the primary beach trail, but the chance for mud is still high.

                    Register for Return to Evergreen 2016 today!


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