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Sport Management guest lecture: “Performing in the spectacle: The 21st-Century Gladiator and the Modern-Day Coliseum”

Dr. Ashleigh-Jane Thompson, a Lecturer and Program Director within La Trobe University’s Department of Management, Sport and Tourism, will present a guest lecture entitled, “Performing in the spectacle: The 21st-Century Gladiator and the Modern-Day Coliseum,” 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 2, in Cleveland Hall 30E.

Social media have become pervasive parts of modern society, consumer culture and are now an important facet of sport communication. In this talk, Dr. Thompson will consider the growing importance of social media as a sport communication tool, share how athletes are negotiating and performing in this new arena, and the exciting new opportunities that make sport fans part of the spectacle. She will also discuss whether social media serves up the right results for stakeholders involved in a global sport like tennis.


The good, bad, and ugly of social media in sport will be discussed at Washington State University Pullman by a professor from La Trobe University in Australia, in an open lecture at 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 2, in Cleveland Hall 30E.

Ashleigh-Jane Thompson’s lecture, titled “Performing in the Spectacle: The 21st-Century Gladiator and the Modern-Day Coliseum,” will discuss the growing importance of social media as a communication tool in sport.

“The strategic use of social media might help sport brands create an authentic connection with fans, and develop social bonds that are not easily copied by competitors,” said Thompson, who directs study programs in Sport Development and Management in the La Trobe Business School.

“Social media’s lack of geographical and temporal boundaries allow fans to feel part of the tournament, even if they are thousands of kilometers away. Fans forget they are communicating with a company.”

Thompson studies the impact of communication between sport organizations, athletes, and consumers.

If used correctly, social media allows athletes to cultivate their image and increase their potential endorsement value. However, when used incorrectly, it can cause irreparable harm.

“Whether athletes want to acknowledge it or not, they are public figures and receive increased attention, and social media enhances this,” Thompson said. “There’s a fragility around an athlete’s playing career – for example, through injury – but there’s also the possibility of athletes destroying their career through posts to social media.”

Thompson is originally from New Zealand, a sport-mad nation that often punches above its weight in global contests. “I’m hoping to share with you a view inside New Zealand’s unique outlook on sport, our idolized stars and the use of social media,” Thompson said about her visit to Pullman.

“Australia and New Zealand are very technologically advanced, and frequent test markets for new digital products,” said Simon Licen, assistant professor of sport management and program coordinator. “Dr. Thompson will introduce us to the ‘tomorrow’ of today’s technologies.”

Thompson has studied a range of sports including elite tennis, rugby, and cricket. She maintains connections within the sport industry and provides guidance to national and international sport organizations and events.

“This presentation will be particularly valuable to people interested in social media and sport in university departments, Olympic sports, and beyond, who cannot count on league mastodons to provide detailed guidelines and rather need to rely on their own creativity and originality when using cutting-edge technology,” Licen said.

Earlier on Tuesday, Thompson will present a guest lecture on alcohol and sport in New Zealand to students in a course on sport and popular culture. She studied alcohol advertisement in rugby and cricket world cups hosted by the island nation.

The event is hosted by the Sport Management program in the College of Education.

International social media scholar to speak at WSU


COE Diversity Forum

Award winning author and illustrator Duncan Tonatiuh will visit WSU to discuss stories of immigration and teaching about immigration to elementary aged students. This event will include a book signing sponsored by The Bookie. Livestream is provided by WSU Global Campus.

The talk will be from 4:00-5:00 p.m. with a book signing and reception to follow from 5:00-6:00 p.m.

Duncan Tonatiuh (toh-nah-tee-YOU) is the author-illustrator of The Princess and the Warrior, Funny Bones, Separate Is Never Equal, Pancho Rabbit and the Coyote, Diego Rivera: His World and Ours and Dear Primo. He is the illustrator of Esquivel! and Salsa. His books have received multiple accolades, among them the Pura Belpré Medal, the Sibert Medal, The Tomás Rivera Mexican-American Children’s Book Award, The Américas Award, the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award and the New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Book Award.

Duncan Tonatiuh is both Mexican and American. He grew up in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico and graduated from Parsons School of Design in New York City. His artwork is inspired by Pre-Columbian art, particularly that of the Mixtec codex. His aim is to create images and stories that honor the past, but that are relevant to people, specially children, nowadays.


AFTOC Conference 2018

The Alhadeff Future Teachers of Color is proud to present our annual AFTOC Conference 

March 3rd, 2018 at the Elson S. Floyd Cultural Center 


Our Keynote Speaker this year is Kevan Chandler.

Kevan, despite having a physical disability caused by Muscular Dystrophy, set out to live his dream of traveling Europe. 

Today, Kevan and his friends continue the journey by encouraging others to step out, find adventure, and continue breaking barriers for people with disabilities.

Future Native Teachers Initiative

WSU is is the host institution for the 2017 Future Native Teachers Initiative organized by the Washington Education Association (WEA). This is the fourth year of the conference.

More information can be found at:

The link to register is at that site, or you can go directly at:

Leadership Development Camp

The Leadership Development Camp, designed for youth ages 13-17 years old from the Coeur d’Alene Reservation, aims to develop leadership skills, resiliency, and strengthen academic skills.  Through participation in team building and sports activities and Culturally responsive specialized academic seminars, this one-week residential camp offers students a chance to develop new skills, experience college life, and reflect upon and prepare to meet their goals for the future. The camp,, which brings tribal students to the WSU Pullman campus, continues under the direction of Paula Groves Price and Cedric Price.

AFTOC Meeting and Documentary

Come join us for the last Alhadeff Future Teachers of Color meeting of the academic year. ALL are welcome. In addition to good discussion about next year, we’ll have the chance to watch the Academy-award-winning documentary Inocente, about a homeless teenager and her struggles. Food will be provided (pizza… a who doesn’t like that?!?!?!).

Diversity in the classrooms

By Paula Groves Price, Associate Dean for Diversity and International Programs

This fall has been an exciting semester for elementary education. It included our WSU students visiting classrooms in Pullman Schools, grades 1-4, and teaching lessons on tribal sovereignty, and integrated critical social justice issues in language arts and mathematics lessons. This helped realize part of my dream of giving our pre-service teachers more practical experience in multicultural lesson planning and culturally-responsive teaching.

Here’s a video we put together about our students working at Jefferson Elementary School in Pullman:

While many teacher education programs across the country require a course on diversity or multiculturalism, most do not provide opportunities for teacher candidates to put theory into practice and engage with children on many of the tough equity issues that we face as a society. The reality is that children in America’s schools need and want to have these dialogues, and they deserve to have teachers that are equipped with the knowledge and skills to facilitate lessons and conversations about difference and equity.

When novice teachers can take risks and gain experience facilitating dialogue with children on issues of race, class, gender, and justice, they are more likely enter into the teaching profession with the confidence to teach multi-culturally and from culturally-responsive frameworks. For the youth in our schools, these lessons provide opportunities to think critically, engage in conversations around difference, and recognize their power to make their school and society more equitable and just.

As a parent with a young African American child in the Pullman Schools, it excites me to see her enthusiasm for having WSU students and multi-cultural books and lesson brought into her classroom. Perhaps the greatest outcome, however, is the significant lessening of the micro-aggressions that she and many students of color experience in school. As young children learn more explicitly about diversity, they also become more committed to ensuring that their school and class are inclusive.

Schools across the country, and in the State of Washington are becoming increasingly diverse, both culturally and linguistically, but the teaching profession is not diversifying at the same rate. Part of my mission is to ensure that teachers who graduate from WSU have a strong sense of understanding of what it means to be a culturally-responsive educator, and put those ideas and lessons into practice. When teachers understand multiculturalism as simply “good teaching,” it can then be implemented with all of the state and national standards that are required of them, and not as an “add on” to be done when time permits. Their approach to teaching, developing lessons, and creating community in their classrooms is one that facilitates greater justice. Their experiences in the program with the Pullman Schools are just the beginning. I know that my child, and many children across the state, are counting on them to continue to teach multiculturally.

First Dominican-born PhD student in WSU history set to graduate

By: Trevor Havard – College of Education Intern

Abraham Barouch-Gilbert, a PhD student in the Educational Psychology program, is believed to become the first Dominican-born PhD graduate in WSU history.Gilbert

“Being the first known Dominican PhD graduate is a great accomplishment and the beginning of a new journey,” he said.

Barouch-Gilbert is not only excited about his current accomplishment, but also what it will allow him to do for the Dominican moving forward.

“It means I have the privilege of contributing directly to Dominican higher education and society at large,” he said. More specifically, Barouch-Gilbert will continue to research student experiences when on academic probation in the Dominican, along with teaching and mentoring processes in higher education.

At WSU, along with being a PhD student Barouch-Gilbert worked as a research assistant for University Recreation performing research and assessments. He received two research grants from his university back home in the Dominican Republic, the Technological Institute of Santo Domingo, with which he produced multiple poster presentations for the American Educational Research Association (AERA) and WSU’s academic showcase, as well as a manuscript that is slated for publication this November, along with two research papers currently under review.

“Upon graduation I will contribute in full to higher education in the Dominican Republic.”

Cougs with strong showing in Malaysia

The 13th annual EARCOS Teachers’ Conference was held in Malaysia on March 26-28. Officially, the theme was “Language for Life.”

Unofficially, it was “Cougs Take Over Malaysia.”

Led by our International School Leadership Program (ISLP) leads Forrest Parkay and Walt Gmelch, as well as other educational leadership folks like Glenys Hill and Teena McDonald, the college hosted a successful Cougar Gold and Washington Wines Reception.

Here are a few photos of the reception:

For more info on the ISLP, visit:

Pyeongchang 2018

Many of you know that the 2018 winter Olympics will be held in Pyeongchang, South Korea. The effort a host city must take in preparing to host the games is endless. Our group had the opportunity to tour the facilities. Not all are completed, but seeing the work in progress is amazing. We spent most of our time at the ski jump tower. We toured the biathlon stadium and rode the gondola over the ski hills. The skating arena will start construction soon, and we stayed in the village. Josh Tyler and Kimber Behrends have a lot to say about this experience. Please enjoy their stories. – Chris Lebens

Josh Tyler

Today marks the 3rd week we have been in Korea. I could not express the pure amazement and awesomeness of this trip. I have been seeing so much and experience things in Korea that are unlike the United States and it gives me a whole new perspective on the Korean culture and day-to-day life. This trip has also given me a newfound respect for the way countries value sports outside the United States. In the US people think it’s the best place in the world for sports, which is arguable. But I’ve come to realize the sport is more than just the game on the field. It’s the people behind the scenes, the fans, and the front office that truly make sports. The opportunity this trip has given me has shown me so much that you can’t learn in a classroom. I continue to learn day in and day out and will continue to until our journey ends.

Some of the most substantial experiences we have had of late are getting to travel to the PyeongChang site for the 2018 Winter Olympics. Holy cow, that place was just incredible. We saw so much of what the park is going to look like. Although it’s under construction, we could see the plan, the vision, of what would be the pedestal of sports in the coming years. I was blown away by the structures and it just gave me a feel of joy to see how substantial the Olympics are. Something really cool was, we were able to travel to the top of ski jump that will be used for the Olympics, and it was so high. We took a ride up to the top and then a 6-story elevator ride to the small jump that was just so high off the ground. I do not to heights so it took a lot for me to go to the top. But I am so glad I did because I got to see something that not a lot of people get to see. The top of an Olympic jump and it was just incredible. I will be able to have that experience for the rest of my life. It was truly incredible.

Another experience was we got to see the park’s plan and what it will look like when the construction is completely done. The vision of the project is incredible. To see what the facility was going to look like in 2018 is awesome. Korea is going to be an incredible host for the Olympics and I cannot wait to watch in 2018. While we toured the facilities, we were able to stay at a resort. The resort was awesome. It had a mountain coaster ride, ATV course, horse riding, and there was a water park not to far from where we stayed. We had a chance to experience the water park and had so much fun. We rode 4 different slides, went through the lazy river, and relaxed in the hot tubs and saunas. I even had fish eat all the dead skin off my feet! It was weird and tickled so bad but cool to have done. We all had a good time and it was something nice to relax too after long days of touring at the Olympic parks.
This trip continues to amazing me day in and day out and I continue to make new memories and experience things everyday that I would never had been able to do if I didn’t come to Korea for this study abroad. We travel to the JSA tomorrow (7/18) and I cant wait to see what it is like. Not that many people have experienced the JSA and I cannot wait to tell the story when I get back! We also leave for Busan on Sunday where we are going to experience a whole different part of Korea. I am very excited to see what its like and to add to the experience of this trip! Until next time!

Josh2-3 Josh2-2 Josh2-1

Kimber Behrends

Winter Olympic Park

At the beginning of our third week here in Korea, we took a trip up to the 2018 Winter Olympic site in Pyeongchang. We spent just about three days up at this location, one of which we actually got a tour of the facilities that have already been built for the Olympics. The facility that we were able to get a tour of was called the Alpensia Ski Jumping Stadium. The first place at the stadium that we went to was the bottom of the ski jump. Looking up from the bottom amazed me because of the size of the jumps that the skiers fly off of and some how land. Other than the sheer size of the jumps, I noticed a tower at the top of the jumps that very closely resembles the Space Needle in Seattle, but was just a little bit smaller. During our tour around the facility, I learned that the tower actually has a restaurant at the top as a part of the sustainability of the facility, just like the Space Needle. After spending a few minutes at the base of the jumps, we had a guide take us to the second floor where we were allowed to actually walk to the edge of the smaller ski jump.

To get to the edge of the ski jump we had to take a gondola up to the top of the hill. Then, once we were at the top, we had to take an elevator up to the second floor of the tower, which lead to the jump. Once on the second floor, we had to walk across a bridge to the start of the jump. Walking over this bridge was not an easy task for many of us because if you looked down at your feet you could see the ground about thirty yards below you. This especially scared our Korean friend, BK, who we basically had to carry over the bridge to the start of the jump. As I looked over the edge of the jump, I knew this was a once in a lifetime occurrence and I had to absorb as much of the experience as I could. The feeling was incredible, especially knowing that in less than four years there will be Olympic skiers standing in the exact same spot as I was standing at that moment. The view from this ski jump was also breath taking because I could see for miles. Even though it was a slightly foggy day in Pyeongchang, I was amazed at how beautiful the area was. If only I could come back in four years to witness the Winter Olympic games in person.

After our tour of the actual ski jumps, we went back down to the bottom and walked over to where the Korean Winter Olympic athletes train. There were three practice jumps, each a different size, that were made of a turf-like material. This was where the athletes actually practice without snow, but while wearing real skis. I thought that sounded like it would not work until a ninth grade girl who was training for the Olympics climbed to the top of the highest jump and showed us how she does it. It was amazing to see someone actually ski down on the turf jump and land like it wasn’t hard at all. I really hope the girl we watched that day makes it into the next Winter Olympics so that I can watch her compete for the gold metal. Touring this facility made me feel like I was a part of history and now I am excited to watch the 2018 Winter Olympics in four years.