Dear Faculty and Staff:

Welcome to the beginning of the fall semester! We are delighted to have everyone back and fully reengaged with our students and the University—whether you are part of a campus in Everett, Pullman, Spokane, Tri‑Cities, or Vancouver; part of the Global Campus; or involved in programs at our Research and Extension sites or at Bremerton, Yakima, or elsewhere across the state.

We have much to be proud of as we start the 2018-19 academic year. In fact, our recent achievements provide much optimism about the future and the opportunities that await us. Among the reasons for confidence:

  • While we are still in the process of finalizing numbers, the University will achieve record enrollment this fall, both as a system and at many of our individual campuses.
  • This fall we will report the highest research expenditures in our history—more than $356 million.
  • We achieved the third best fundraising year ever during fiscal year 2018, receiving $145.1 million in private gifts. These gifts provide scholarships for our students and funds to fuel research and academic programs.

None of these successes would be possible without dedicated, hard-working faculty and staff throughout the WSU system who are committed to creating a transformational experience for our students. I deeply appreciate your efforts at every level of our statewide enterprise.

We also have made important progress in our fiscal recovery. In September we will release final figures, but I can say that we decreased our annual operating deficit by significantly more than our $10 million goal for the last fiscal year.

Thank you for your diligence in this effort. We will continue to provide regular updates about our fiscal health through WSU Insider.


As we have done the previous 2 fall semesters, Provost Dan Bernardo and I will host town hall meetings for each campus, college, and major administrative unit in September, October, and November.

During the get-togethers, we will provide a progress report on the Drive to 25, discuss key University accomplishments and priorities, update you about our institutional fiscal health, and answer your questions. We will also post the information from the presentations on the president’s office website for those of you who are not able to attend.

September town halls

SEPTEMBER 11
NoonMurrow College of Communications
Jackson Hall, Studio B
4:00 p.m.College of Education
SPARK 323
SEPTEMBER 12
NoonNoncollege-affiliated staff and students
CUB Jr. Ballroom
4:00 p.m.Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture
Engineering and Teaching Research Building 101
SEPTEMBER 14
NoonCollege of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences
CUB Jr. Ballroom
SEPTEMBER 17
6:00 p.m.Global Campus (online)

The October and November lineup of town halls is available online.

All of the town halls are open to everyone, regardless of unit affiliation. If you can’t make the meeting set for your unit, you are welcome to come to the one most convenient for your schedule.


I hope that all of you will also be able to participate in many of the activities occurring at our campuses this fall. Attend a musical performance, or a lecture about a topic outside your area of expertise. Go to an athletic event, or attend a meeting of your favorite student club. In short, embrace your WSU experience wherever you are located.

Let’s have a great semester. I look forward to seeing many of you at our town hall gatherings throughout the fall.

Go Cougs!
Kirk