Olympia, WA, United States
Olympia, WA, United States

The Evergreen State College is an accredited public liberal arts college and a member of the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges. It is located in Olympia, Washington, USA. Founded in 1967, Evergreen was formed to be an experimental and non-traditional college. Faculty issue narrative evaluations of students' work rather than grades, and Evergreen organizes most studies into largely interdisciplinary classes that generally constitute a full-time course load.Evergreen offers a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts and Bachelor of Science, Master of Environmental Studies, Master of Public Administration, and Master in Teaching. In 2012, there were 4,509 students, 4,193 of whom were undergraduates, and 240 faculty members. Wikipedia.

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The new theory is published along with illustrations – or "blueprints" – depicting how it applies to different vertebrate organ systems in Progress in Biophysics & Molecular Biology. According to Neo-Darwinian theory, major evolutionary changes occur as a result of the selection of random, fortuitous genetic mutations over time. However, some researchers say this theory does not satisfactorily account for the appearance of radically different life forms and their rich complexity, particularly that observed in vertebrates like humans. Embryo geometry, developed by a team from the University of San Diego, Mount Holyoke College, Evergreen State College, and Chem-Tainer Industries, Inc.. in the USA, looks at animal complexity generally and the vertebrate body in particular as more the products of mechanical forces and the laws of geometry than solely the outcome of random genetic mutation. "At the suggestion of evolutionary biologist Stephen Jay Gould, preliminary attempts at a solution to this problem were undertaken over many years. But these – as well as other, similar efforts – were met with strong opposition by supporters of the Neo-Darwinian interpretation of natural selection," commented senior author Stuart Pivar. "We hope that the theory of embryo geometry will stimulate further investigation by biologists of all stripes across a variety of fields." Anatomists have long postulated that animal complexity arises during development of the embryo – called embryogenesis – but despite detailed descriptions of the embryonic stages of all major types of animal, the evolution of organismal complexity and its expression during individual development have remained mysterious processes – until now. The researchers behind embryo geometry have shown that the vertebrate embryo could conceivably arise from mechanical deformation of the blastula, a ball of cells formed when the fertilized egg divides. As these cells proliferate, the ball increases in volume and surface area, altering its geometry. The theory posits that the blastula retains the geometry of the original eight cells produced by the first three divisions of the egg, which themselves determine the three axes of the vertebrate body. In their new paper, they present 24 schematic figures – or "blueprints" – showing how the musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, nervous, and reproductive systems form through mechanical deformation of geometric patterns. These illustrations explain how the vertebrate body might plausibly arise from a single cell, both over evolutionary time, and during individual embryogenesis. The authors have also completed a paper on the origin of the form of the flower and fruit, which they are currently submitting for publication. Explore further: New origin theory for cells that gave rise to vertebrates More information: "Origin of the vertebrate body plan in the conservation of regular geometrical patterns in the structure of the blastula," Progress in Biophysics & Molecular Biology DOI: 10.1016/j.pbiomolbio..2016.06.007

News Article | March 2, 2017
Site: www.prweb.com

Calypso Communications, an integrated creative and public relations studio, announced today the hiring of Carter Foster as social media coordinator. The addition of Foster marks an expansion of the Calypso inbound marketing team, whose strategic services help companies generate leads and grow their businesses. "Carter is a talented writer with experience in social media management, design and video production. We're glad to have him aboard," says Houssam Aboukhater, Managing Partner. "His varied experience and creative impulses are what will make him valuable to clients seeking to stand out in a crowded digital landscape." Before joining Calypso, which recently won NHBR's Best PR Agency award, Foster worked in communications and production at New Hampshire Public Television. While there, he strengthened the organization’s inbound marketing, content development, and social media strategy. "Calypso's integrated communications approach is both unique and powerful, which is why the company has been so successful,” said Foster. "I'm thrilled to join such a passionate and talented team, and have the opportunity to bring my experience to a wide array of clients.” Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Foster received his bachelor’s degree from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash. He moved to New England to earn a master of fine arts degree in writing from the University of New Hampshire. He lives in Portsmouth, N.H. with his fiancé, Demri, and writes fiction in his spare time. About Calypso Communications Calypso Communications is an award-winning premier public relations studio that combines strategy, content, and creative to solve business challenges. For 17 years, Calypso has delivered radical acts of communication to local, regional, and global companies across a wide array of sectors, including energy, health care, sporting goods, technology, and higher education. With offices in Portsmouth, N.H. and Portland, Maine, the Calypso team of experts uses an integrated communications approach to help clients achieve their objectives.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: | Award Amount: 137.24K | Year: 2016

The Visualization for Terrestrial and Aquatic Systems project helps environmental scientists produce visualizations for their own research and for presentation to other scientists and stakeholders including decision makers. A critical finding of work to date is the extent to which scientists use visualizations not only to explore data in new ways and present results, but also to work with stakeholders to jointly produce information that can be used during decision-making processes. The role of scientific visualization in the co-production of knowledge is as yet untested, even though this involvement could be critical in creating acceptable solutions, information, or technology. This proposal recasts VISTAS to co-produce visualization tools, i.e., exploring how negotiations between the users? needs and technological capacity shape the type of visualizations used and tools implemented, change or modify the research questions posed by scientists, and impact how results are interpreted so communities can respond to critical ecological challenges, including climate change. This is a unique experiment and collaboration among social-, computer-, and environmental scientists, with non-scientist stakeholders, to co-produce data visualizations for use in decision making. Social science methods will be used to explore knowledge co-production coupled with technology innovations that lead to community decision making to solve problems of climate change adaptation. The extent to which distinctions between scientific visualization for scientists and non-scientists need to be made will be determined, and unique visualizations will be developed jointly with project collaborators. The goal is to determine the influence of visualization on the co-production of knowledge among scientists and stakeholders on critical decisions related to climate adaptation.

This project involves both computer scientists and social scientists. Computer science: VISTAS, a C++ scientific visualization application with significant GPU processing, helps environmental scientists produce images that allow them to ?see? the effects of topography on ecological phenomena. For this award, new visualization techniques will be developed, visualization and visual analytics research that enables effective presentations to decision makers will be conducted, and technical support for environmental- and social scientists will be provided. If time and funds permit extensions to the current software that render it both more usable by primary and secondary users, and more maintainable and extensible directly by primary users will be provided: VISTAS engineers will proceed with a longer term strategy of migrating from C++ to Python, which will enable more effective and flexible user interface development, end user programming of data or visualization plug-ins, and use of emerging and existing Python and R libraries for visual analytics. The social science inquiry will help determine how the co-production enables usable software that answers the needs of both environmental scientists who generate large difficult to interpret data sets as well as decision-makers who must balance multiple demands as they make important choices. Case studies with three collaborators will be conducted as they work with stakeholders to co-develop usable information; these are structured through a comparative pre/post-test design with three phases to explore changes in how participants view and communicate scientific results before and after involvement in visualization development. In the baseline phase VISTAS social scientists will work with participants to document their current understanding of their data, expectations for the visualization and analytic products, and ability and tools used to communicate science to others including non-scientists. During the development phase case participants will be observed as they work together to create the visualization and analytic products. The post-assessment phase seeks to determine changes in understanding of data and ability to communicate science as a result of participation in visualization development. The usability of different types of visualizations and analytic tools, identifying the characteristics that contribute to or distract from usefulness, will also be explored. Information will be collected primarily through semi-structured interviews with participants (collaborators and stakeholders). Existing scales measuring environmental attitudes and preferences for science in decision-making and general attitudes toward science will be used so comparisons with larger national and international samples can be made. In addition, scoping and development meetings will be observed to determine how shared understanding of user needs is developed and then framed as a visualization problem.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: S-STEM:SCHLR SCI TECH ENG&MATH | Award Amount: 119.98K | Year: 2012

The objective of this project is to develop a cybersecurity lab environment (EDURange) that is open to the public and allows creation of custom exercises in a live-fire setting. It is designed to provide students with an active learning environment focusing on analysis skills rather than on training based on a pre-packaged set of tools. Preparing cybersecurity exercises is a major obstacle in many academic programs but the proposed environment is simple enough that faculty with limited knowledge of cybersecurity can employ it in the classroom. The exercises are accompanied by tutorials linked to learning objectives. EDURanges design, its lab scenarios and scoring system, reward the effort that students spend on analysis and reverse-engineering.

The proposed project focuses on: (1) the construction and deployment of cybersecurity scenarios in local and cloud environments; and (2) using the scenarios as an assessment tool for both students in the course of their studies as well as an independent benchmark for other cybersecurity training curricula.

EDURange scenarios are well-documented and of varying difficulty and complexity to make them attractive to a wide range of academic programs and institutions. The scenarios are hosted in a publicly available cybersecurity testbed and in a cloud environment. The project includes outreach activities at the annual SIGCSE conference.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: Dimensions of Biodiversity | Award Amount: 523.00K | Year: 2015

The deep sea is more than 90 percent of the inhabitable space on Earth, yet life there is largely a mystery to science. Ctenophores, also known as comb jellies, are marine predators found in all oceans, inhabiting both deep and shallow seas. Although fragile and difficult to study, they are biologically important, in part because they appear to have been the first group of animals to split off from all other organisms during evolution, even before sponges and jellyfish. Over evolutionary time, many marine organisms have transitioned their home ranges to and from the deep sea despite the tremendous differences between these two habitats, including light, temperature, and hydrostatic pressure. Such habitat shifts required dramatic genetic and physiological changes to these animal lineages over time. The relationships between comb jelly species indicate that species from a variety of different families have evolved to live and thrive in the deep sea. This project will compare closely related deep and shallow species at biochemical, physiological and genetic levels to understand how these transitions came about. It will answer questions about the fundamental mechanisms of animal evolution and develop publicly available tools for analyzing genomic data sets. It will result in the training of cutting-edge techniques for two PhD students, a postdoc, two masters students, and numerous undergraduates. Public outreach involving biodiversity in the deep sea and gelatinous animals will help educate and inspire appreciation of marine life.

The main objective of this project is to understand evolution and diversification using cutting edge molecular analyses to investigate the deep-sea habitat as the generating force of novel biological adaptations. Ctenophore specimens will be collected using blue-water SCUBA in surface waters and remotely operated submarines in the deep sea to generate complementary physiological and genomic data across the full phylogenetic and functional diversity of ctenophores. With samples taken across a range of habitats from shallow tropical waters to temperate bathypelagic zone, the team will measure physiological capabilities and sequence transcriptomes and genomes. This project will develop novel algorithms to identify genes involved in depth adaptation and examine the genetic events that underlie physiological tolerances and adaptations to high hydrostatic pressures in the deep sea. To confirm the theory-based predictions of how gene sequence affects the properties of enzymes, proteins will be expressed and characterized in the lab. Collaborations between the students, postdocs and PIs involved in this project will substantially enhance an interdisciplinary workforce trained in both classical and cutting edge skills needed for contemporary biodiversity investigations.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: S-STEM:SCHLR SCI TECH ENG&MATH | Award Amount: 596.64K | Year: 2011

This project is designed to award 20 annual scholarships to financially-needy undergraduates with demonstrated academic potential. Student success is centered on a strong, supportive learning community; regular seminars on career and graduate school placement, research, and industrial applications; and partnerships with research universities.

Within the disciplines of laboratory-based biology and chemistry, the project has the following objectives:
(1) Increase enrollment of underrepresented groups in laboratory-based biology and chemistry programs.
(2) Increase retention and baccalaureate degree completion of biology and chemistry students.
(3) Increase the number of graduates who continue studies in these fields.
(4) Integrate student support, especially advising and career development, within these academic disciplines.
(5) Provide undergraduate research and industry internship opportunities.
(6) Demonstrate collaboration between faculty and student services staff.

Intellectual merit: The institution has high quality undergraduate biology and chemistry programs that are taught within interdisciplinary learning communities. A committed project team and superior laboratory and instructional resources provide a rich academic environment. The project includes creative and effective services for scholarship recipients that include pre-fall institutes; regular seminars; field trips; and internship and research opportunities.

Broader impacts: A thorough and flexible recruitment/selection plan ensures broad participation from underrepresented groups (students of color, women, persons with disabilities, first generation, and low-income). Specifically, outreach activities to local and urban high schools and community colleges are designed to attract more diverse students to biology and chemistry at the college. The project is continuing and improving a successful track record in placing students in graduate schools and industry. Project leaders are disseminating findings in journals, at professional meetings, and through a network of institutional research professionals.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Continuing grant | Program: | Phase: ADVANCES IN BIO INFORMATICS | Award Amount: 275.03K | Year: 2011

The Evergreen State College and Oregon State University (OSU) are awarded grants to collaborate on the VISTAS project to develop visual analytics software that will enable scientists to better understand and communicate about large and complex environmental problems spanning spatial and temporal scales. The research will help scientists understand relationships among ecological processes at the same and different scales, develop new testable hypotheses, and explain research results. The project has three objectives:

1) Conduct Ecology Informatics research to enable the required visual analytics and implement a proof of concept software tool: VISualization of Terrestrial-Aquatic Systems (VISTAS).
2) Co-develop VISTAS with environmental scientists who will use VISTAS in studies spanning spatial and temporal scales.
3) Apply social science methods to study the co-development and usability of VISTAS and its visual analytics.

The project leaders will also convene a six-member panel, The Northwest Computer Science Consortium to Enhance the Study of Climate Change, which will advise VISTAS scientists and developers, and enlist the CS research community in R&D applicable to environmental science.

The VISTAS project will broadly impact environmental science research with a long term vision to improve evidence-based practice of natural resource management with visual analytics. The project will assure dissemination, technology transfer, and sustainability of research results and tool development and will specifically include:

1) Technology transfer of results beyond normal dissemination channels (scholarly publication and presentation), i.e., communication of results to natural resource managers and policy makers, producers of scientific software, information managers serving scientists, and computer scientists (thus encouraging basic research in areas that would benefit scientific software development and lead to new technology useful in science and beyond).
2) Presentation of scientists use of VISTAS to natural resource managers and policy makers, and to professional masters students.
3) Involving undergraduate and graduate students in research, and enhancing environmental science and computer science education at our institutions with materials from this work.
4) Continuation of past successful dissemination of interdisciplinary educational materials and integration of visualizations from this work into an existing program for middle school girls.
Because methods to transcend time and spatial scales are not well understood, this project will determine if visualizing natural phenomena in new ways helps scientists develop intuition and hypotheses at multiple spatial scales -- formulating new insights about ecosystem services, and patterns and processes, in complex environmental systems. As important visualizations also help scientists communicate insights to non scientists.

Additional information about the project is available on the web: http://blogs.evergreen.edu/vistas

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: TUES-Type 1 Project | Award Amount: 147.57K | Year: 2011

This collaborative project between Evergreen State College and the University of Washington is creating, validating, and disseminating a science process and reasoning skills test (SPARST) to assess students acquisition of such skills as experimental design, data analysis, graphing, and scientific writing. SPARST is being designed to help biology faculty: a) gauge the skill level of incoming students, b) revise undergraduate curricula to better address the teaching of skills along with content, c) create a national network for sharing skill-teaching practices and resources, and d) improve the general science literacy of both science majors and non-majors.

Intellectual Merit: Since there are few tests of this type available within the biological sciences, SPARST will help inform faculty of their effectiveness at helping students develop these skills and will help students become better prepared to enter graduate school or careers in science.

Broader Impact: SPARST is being tested at several institutions and revised iteratively in order to create a valid and reliable test for distribution. The test will be free and available on-line as multiple choice and short-answer questions. It is designed to be graded online; responses to short answer questions will be compiled for ease of grading and faculty will be provided with a validated grading rubric. Faculty who implement SPARST will be provided with a free, descriptive diagnostic of their students abilities that will indicate how well each student performed on the subset of scaled questions in each science process skill area and how the facultys class compares to similar biology classes at an anonymous subset of similar institutions.

This project is being jointly funded by the Directorate for Biological Sciences, Division of Biological Infrastructure and the Directorate for Education and Human Resources, Division of Undergraduate Education as part of their Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education efforts.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: FED CYBER SERV: SCHLAR FOR SER | Award Amount: 240.69K | Year: 2015

The EDURange project, a collaboration between Evergreen State College and Lewis and Clark College, will support faculty teaching cyber security by providing hands-on exercises, a student-staffed help-desk, and webinars. These resources will be designed to be easy to deploy and will be interactive, competitive and collaborative to ensure student engagement. The availability of these resources will make it easier for computer science faculty with little prior background to teach security across, and will increase the number of schools teaching cyber security concepts. As a result this project will produce more students with the analytical skills required to secure computing assets in the Pacific Northwest and in turn will help to ensure American technical competitiveness in the future.

The resources will be linked to the concepts and learning outcomes defined in the IEEE/ACM CS Curricula 2013 report. Support for these resources will be provided by a student-run help desk and a user interface that will allow faculty to modify exercises to fit the content and level of difficulty of their classes. Background material will be provided for students to make the exercises applicable to a variety of computer science classes. These resources will fulfill four important needs: (1) expanding and disseminating technology ? improving exercises using EDURange, a flexible, cloud-based teaching infrastructure, (2) faculty development ? helping them use hands-on security exercises in their classrooms and providing curricular resources, (3) student engagement ? developing their skills, leveraging their talent and knowledge, and mentoring them to become the next generation of teachers and researchers, and (4) education research --investigating the acquisition of analytical skills.

Assessment of the resources will focus on four activities: (1) a quantitative evaluation and summary of how often and how widely the resources are used, (2) a qualitative assessment of how well exercises map or express the cyber security knowledge units of CS2013, (3) an assessment of faculty experience using the resources in their courses, and (4) an evaluation of the experience using the resources by security faculty, professionals, and students.

News Article | August 30, 2016
Site: news.yahoo.com

In the wake of the news that former New York Rep. Anthony Weiner was caught (once again) sexting with a woman who is not his wife, the country let out a collective sigh. The news was the opposite of shocking, and seemed to affirm the old adage "once a cheater, always a cheater." [6 Scientific Tips for a Successful Marriage] But Weiner's case is unusual, because his behavior looks more like a sexual compulsion or addiction, said Pepper Schwartz, a sociologist at the University of Washington and co-author of "The Normal Bar: The Surprising Secrets of Happy Couples," (Harmony, 2013). "It's about this kind of thrill that he gets showing his body to some anonymous woman, and you call it an addiction or a compulsion when they can't stop it even in the face of catastrophic consequences," Schwartz told Live Science. But when it comes to more garden-variety infidelity, sneaking around once does not necessarily mean that a person will be unfaithful again, she said. Depending on whom you ask and who does the asking, cheating is either the default mode in marriage or the province of a persistent minority: Different surveys have found that between 20 and 72 percent of married people admit to infidelity. If someone cheats once, there probably is a higher risk that the person will cheat again than there is for someone who has never cheated, Schwartz said, although she noted that cheating is difficult to study because many people won't admit to it. But evidence doesn't back up the notion that past cheating guarantees future misdeeds, Schwartz said. Most people who cheat may have one or two affairs, she said. "Statistics indicate it's really a small number of people who are serial cheaters, who cheat all their lives, no matter what," Schwartz said. Often, it's ordinary emotions — such as boredom, ambivalence or unhappiness — that drive infidelity, Schwartz said. "Often, a lot of cheating happens when a relationship is going sideways or [when a couple is] in hiatus and never made a firm commitment in the first place," Schwartz said. But while it's impossible to fully understand Weiner's motivations, the idea of a powerful (or once powerful) man cheating is far from new. Historically, powerful men have had a so-called license to cheat, and a 2011 study in the journal Psychological Science found that powerful men are more likely to cheat. "It's really been in the last 150 years that we have begun to hold men to a higher standard of fidelity" than in earlier times, Stephanie Coontz, a historian at The Evergreen State College in Washington and author of "Marriage, A History" (Viking Adult, 2005), previously told Live Science. What's more, the archetypal politician's personality may make cheating more likely: They are energetic and driven, they have a need to be admired, and they meet lots of people, providing many opportunities for affairs, Schwartz said. Throw in the throngs of starry-eyed women who are often 40 years younger than these men's wives, and it's not surprising many of them cheat, she said. "They get way more opportunities than the average guy, which makes them feel like they're not screwing around too much if they're only doing it occasionally," Schwartz said. Even in nonfamous, happy couples, however, the decision about whether to cheat may come down to opportunity and consequences, Schwartz said. For their book, she and her co-authors conducted a survey to see how people would act if given a chance to cheat without any consequences. "We asked if people would cheat if they knew it wouldn't affect the relationship, and the majority of people say they would," Schwartz said. Even a sizable chunk of the couples who said they were very happy were open to straying, provided it didn't impact their relationship, she said. Copyright 2016 LiveScience, a Purch company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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