Religious Studies Scholar Joins Evergreen Faculty


Sarah Eltantawi joins the Evergreen Faculty

Evergreen eagerly awaits the arrival of new faculty member Sarah Eltantawi, a scholar of religion, writer and political analyst. Sarah has a PhD from Harvard University (2012) focusing on Islamic studies in general, with a focus on Islamic law in contemporary Muslim-majority societies. Her vita includes fieldwork and research on the “political theology” of the Muslim Brotherhood in contemporary Egypt, and an in-depth study of the notorious case of Amina Lawal, a peasant woman from Northern Nigeria who was sentenced to death by stoning in 2002.

Starting in 2011, Sarah has been a visiting fellow at the Freie Universität, Berlin, a Scholar in Residence in Religion, Culture, Gender and the Law at Brandeis University, and the Sultan Postdoctoral Fellow in Arab studies at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at the University of CA, Berkeley.Sarah takes up her post at Evergreen later in 2014. Those eager to meet her can follow her on Twitter and read Lessons from the Egyptian Revolution, 3 years later, in Ma’an News Agency.

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    Alex Becker Appointed to Seattle Human Rights Commission


    Alex Becker

    “A distinctively dedicated and engaged student;” this is how Evergreen faculty member Lin Nelson describes her former student Alex Becker, ’11, who has just been named to the Seattle Human Rights Commission.

    Alex is the community organizer for the social justice non-profit organization Real Change, and has been active in public service and social justice issues since 2005, according to Real Change News. Read the full article.




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      Writer Nick Mattos, ’06, Interviewed on LGBT Characters in Pop Culture


      Nick Mattos, ’06, is a freelance journalist and essayist.

      Nick Mattos, ’06, is a freelance journalist and essayist living in Portland, OR. He turned up recently in The Guardian as one of three panelists discussing the evolution of LGBT characters in pop culture.  Here is a sample:

      The Guardian: The concept of the ‘gay sidekick’ is a classic mainstream exploration of the LGBT community in American pop culture. Have gay characters moved more to the center of the plot in recent years, and where does work still need to be done?

      Nick: One great effect I’ve observed in recent representation of queer people in pop culture is the presence of queer characters whose sexuality is not the crux of their identity. A great example of this was the character of Mitch Downe in the excellent 2012 film Paranorman, who was arguably the first openly gay character in a mainstream children’s animated film. He wasn’t stereotyped at all – the revelation of his sexuality was actually a humorous but sensitively handled plot twist. [He] was instead a whole, integral character, whose personality grew organically through the course of the film. In terms of work that still needs to be done, there are still very few representations of queer people that don’t fit the mold of being affluent, white, and relatively heteronormative in expression.

      Read the entire interview at The Guardian.

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        The Inkwell Project: Part of Evergreen’s Writing Culture

        Inkwell volume 1 cover 300 px

        Cover of the first Inkwell, 2006.

        Editor’s Note: The Writing Center, located in the Library building just off Red Square, is the creative home of Inkwell, A Student Guide to Writing at Evergreen. In this interview, Writing Center publications editor Shaina Fay, ’13 talks with Inkwell co-founders Shaun Johnson, ’07 and Victoria Larkin, ’07 about the history of this student publication

        This is the first of a series exploring the Inkwell project and how students, faculty, and alumni can benefit from its influence on Evergreen’s writing culture. 


        Inkwell cover 2012

        Inkwell is written, edited, and designed entirely by Writing Center peer tutors, students dedicated to helping others find their voices through the writing process. Each year, authors discuss writing specific to Evergreen—such as seminar papers, evaluations, and academic statements—as well as exploring themes like developing a writing process, finding your voice as a student writer, and learning tools for academic and creative writing. With its emphasis on cultivating student voices and creating a culture of student empowerment in academics, Inkwell inspires student writers to think about how they write and invites them to become part of the Writing Center community


        Inkwell cover 2008

        Inkwell co-founder Shaun Johnson, ’07 reflected that “Evergreen puts incredible emphasis on writing in curriculums across disciplines, so it seemed especially appropriate to draw a map for students to navigate.” Inkwell was created to be this kind of map.

        The Writing Center distributes over a thousand free copies of Inkwell annually, both on campus and to the wider community. Inkwell co-founder Victoria Larkin ‘07 sees the publication as providing “a common ground, a jumping off place for conversations,” inspiring writers to “go into and beyond their preconceptions of the writing process, of writing in general, and of their own abilities.”

        Learn more about The Writing Center. Read digital copies of past editions of Inkwell.


        Continue reading

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          Learning Opportunity on Campus: A Bee Fair – Where Are the Bees Going and Why Does it Matter?

          beeeA Public Event at The Evergreen State College:
          The Olympia Beekeepers Association and Evergreen Academic Programs present a Community Bee Fair, featuring “More than Honey,” an internationally acclaimed film describing the looming, world-wide crisis of disappearing bee colonies.
          March 8, 2014, 6:00 – 10:00 pm
          A Film, Community Bee Fair and Student Displays
          The Evergreen State College, Lecture Hall 1 and Lecture Hall Rotunda

          • 6:00 pm – Informational displays and student art show in the Rotunda.
          • 7:00 pm – A short film, created by Evergreen students, on the bee crisis.
          • 7:30 pm – A presentation of the “Pollinator Protector Award” will be given to local business owner Robert Thompson, Jr. of Lincoln Creek Lumber.

          The feature film “More than Honey” will be followed by a Q & A with a panel of local bee experts and the filmmaker via Skype from Berlin.

          Please Note:

          • Seating is limited.
          • Admission is free with Evergreen I.D.
          • For non-Evergreen attendees, tickets are $10 each, available at Traditions and Radiance in Olympia, Gordon’s Garden Center in Yelm.
          • For more information:

          Sponsored by:

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            Dever Kuni ’12 Takes on Statewide Leadership in Solar Power Advocacy

            From left to right: Bruce Hargrave, VP Dever Kuni '12, and President & Owner Kirk Haffner '88 -photo by South Sound Solar

            Dever Kuni ’12 (center) with customer (left) and father and boss, Kirk Haffner ’88 ( right) – photo by South Sound Solar

            Solar Installers of Washington, a trade association and solar power advocacy group, has named Dever Kuni its legislative and public policy committee chairwoman.

            Kuni currently is vice president of South Sound Solar. Read the article in Bloomsberg Business Week.



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              Japanese Americans Remember Wartime Incarceration

              Tom Ikeda

              Tom Ikeda, founder and executive director of Densho: The Japanese American Legacy Project, to speak at Evergreen February 27

              Event Notice: Don’t miss this talk by Tom Ikeda, founder and executive director of Densho: The Japanese American Legacy Project, on Thursday, February 27th, at 7:00 p.m. at the Longhouse Cultural Center on the Evergreen campus in Olympia. Admission is free and open to the public. This presentation is part of Evergreen’s Willi Unsoeld Seminar Series.

              The stories of local Japanese Americans who were incarcerated in Idaho concentration camps during World War II are the subject of a talk by Tom Ikeda, founder and executive director of Densho: The Japanese American Legacy Project, on Thursday, February 27th, at 7:00 p.m. at the Longhouse Cultural Center on the Evergreen campus in Olympia. Admission is free and open to the public.



              Ikeda’s presentation, “When Citizenship Didn’t Matter: Personal Stories from Japanese Americans Incarcerated during World War II,” will explore issues of democracy, intolerance, wartime hysteria and civil rights, based on hundreds of oral histories conducted by Densho over the last 18 years.

              Ikeda was born and raised in Seattle. His parents and grandparents were incarcerated during World War II at Minidoka, Idaho. A former manager at Microsoft, Ikeda graduated from the University of Washington. He has received numerous awards for his historical contributions, including the Humanities Washington Award for outstanding achievement in the public humanities, the National JACL Japanese American of the Biennium award for Education, and the Microsoft Alumni Fellows Award.

              Ikeda’s presentation takes place under the banner of the Willi Unsoeld Seminar, a speaker series honoring Unsoeld, a founding faculty member of The Evergreen State College.

              “Each year, faculty, staff, and students focus on a theme linked to the college’s core values,” said Evergreen faculty member Nancy Koppelman. “This year, the theme is ‘listening’, and why listening is essential to education.”

              Evergreen launched the academic year by assigning NPR Story Corps creator Dave Isay’s book, Listening is an Act of Love, to all students, and he spoke on campus in September 2013. Ikeda’s presentation continues and elaborates on the theme.

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                Craig Danner ’85 Takes a Stand on Affordable Health Care


                Craig Danner in his Portland medical clinic.

                Craig Danner ’85 is a physician’s assistant in Portland, OR. Last September, he opened Wilson Street Medical Clinic and he doesn’t take insurance. Sound exclusive? Just the opposite.

                By avoiding all the administrative costs associated with medical insurance companies — pre-authorizations, billing, mandatory pricing — Craig says he can make a good living at about 1/3 the cost to his patients.  Read more about how this Greener is bringing some humanity, sanity and common sense to one of the nation’s thorniest issues.

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                  Evergreen Recognized as Spawning Ground for Creativity


                  Carrie Brownstein ’98 in her Sleater-Kinney Days.

                  Thanks to the arts and culture blog “Dazed” for the Evergreen shout-out. Even if College’s name was slightly botched (missing “The” and further down “State”), many Greeners will agree, their alma mater inspires students to care, create and participate in their communities.


                  Forget Hogwarts. This exceptional school was the alt. place to be. The female-friendly liberal arts college spawned almost all the early movement big dogs, from Corin Tucker and Carrie Brownstein of Sleater-Kinney and Heavens to Betsy to Kathleen Hanna and Kathi Wilcox of Bikini Kill. Hanna studied photography. Brownstein was taking sociolinguistics. Tobi Vail was DJ of an Evergreen College radio show. Evergreen served as the environment that brought them together as likeminded individuals. While there, many of the grrrls volunteered or interned with SafePlace, a local shelter for women affected by domestic violence. This had a big impact on their blossoming movement.

                  Read the full article, an A-Z reflection on “grrrls who owned the 90s.”

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                    Evergreen Provost Champions Liberal Arts Education

                    Zimmerman Michael-photo

                    Evergreen Provost Michael Zimmerman

                    Note: Provost Michael Zimmerman and Arts Advisor Pablo Schugurensky ’84 will facilitate an Evergreen Traveling Seminar in Seattle on March 14, titled Pushing Back Against the “STEM” Tide: The Value of A Liberal Arts Education. If you are in area and wish to attend, reserve your seats soon. Participation is limited to 25.  

                    ‘Long before Michael Zimmerman joined Evergreen as Provost, he was a nationally respected voice in the often strident conversation about the value of a liberal arts education in an increasingly technology-driven world. Michael chairs the Washington Consortium for the Liberal Arts, a role that allows him to champion the restructuring of the conversation from the oppositional – liberal arts versus STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) – to a nuanced discussion of curricular balance on a continuum of knowledge. It starts with a respectful insistence on accurate definitions. Continue reading

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