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Willamette in the World — Our Stories

The university’s motto — “Not unto ourselves alone are we born” — motivates and inspires students, faculty and alumni to turn knowledge into action. It creates a sense of purpose in what we do, as well as engaged citizens who want to give back, make a difference and leave the world a better place. Read our stories below to learn more about how each person represents Willamette’s unique ethos and tradition.

Professor Kirk pours solution into a beaker

Willamette chemists help distillery boost sanitizer production

04.09.2020

Chemistry department helps Divine Distillers increase hand sanitizer production by donating and prepping materials. The Print Center and graphic designers provided labels.

Conner Mertens ’17

From athlete to advocate

02.25.2020 | Jennifer Johnson

Politics grad starts nonprofit, becomes public speaker and fights for patient rights.

Alfredo Zuniga ’12

Biology lab guides alum beyond graduation

12.11.2019 | Jennifer Johnson

In his first week as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Texas, Alfredo Zuniga ’12 relied on old notes from his Willamette biology class to teach students.

Leah Olson ’20

Father’s ALS diagnosis inspires student’s advocacy

09.03.2019 | Jennifer Johnson

Leah Olson ’20 interns with ALS Association, lobbies at D.C. and in Salem.

Alison Ecker JD’20

U.S.-Mexico border work was ‘most meaningful yet difficult’ experience in law school

08.20.2019 | Alison Ecker JD’20

Alison Ecker JD’20, who is pursuing a career in immigration law, joined Professor of Law Warren Binford at the border to help protect children’s rights. She shares her story.

Alex Compton ’06

Collaborative research catalyzes career

08.20.2019 | Adam Torgerson

Undergraduate research experiences catalyzed the career of Alex Compton ’06, virologist and lead investigator at the National Cancer Institute.

Jamal Raad ’08 and Gov. Jay Inslee JD’76 in Las Vegas

From Willamette to Washington

08.14.2019 | Adam Torgerson

Jamal Raad ’08 takes on climate change as campaign communications director for presidential candidate and fellow Bearcat Gov. Jay Inslee JD’76.

Warren Binford

Living Willamette’s motto, law professor protects children’s rights

08.06.2019 | Jennifer Johnson

Warren Binford continues to shine light on children’s treatment at U.S. border facilities.

Olivia Scott at the South African coast

Student athlete works to prevent gang violence

07.10.2019 | Jennifer Johnson

Olivia Scott ’20 reflects upon interning with a program founded by a reformed gang member in South Africa.

Victoria Black Horse (Photo by Dominick Reuter)

Alumna builds bridges to a healthier future

07.01.2019 | Rosemary Camozzi

Medical resident Victoria Black Horse ’13 laid her foundation for medical school at Willamette University and continues to mentor Native American students entering the field.

Warren Binford

Professor Binford describes conditions at the border

06.25.2019 | Tom Mayhall Rastrelli

Willamette Law’s Warren Binford and a team of lawyers find hundreds of children being neglected and living in dangerous conditions.

Dennis Koho holds a baseball

Public servant and Willamette Law alumnus Dennis Koho JD’04 dies

06.16.2019 | Sarah Bello

Law partner Eleanor Beatty JD’04 and alumna Sara Kendrick JD’15 recall the former mayor of Keizer’s generosity and care.

caylee campbell

Tipping the scales of justice

05.14.2019 | Tom Morlan

Caylee Campbell JD’19 has been an advocate for positive change at home and abroad.

Raul Marquez ’22

Representing diversity and fighting for more equitable resources in schools

05.08.2019 | Jennifer Johnson

First-year student is among youngest candidates ever to run for Salem-Keizer School Board.

anna ayala in the lab

Promoting a healthy future

05.01.2019 | Tom Morlan

Aspiring physician Anna Ayala ’19 wants to make an impact at the individual and policy levels.

Paige Morrisey ’19

Willamette politics major lands Stanford data fellowship

04.23.2019 | University Communications

Paige Morrisey ’19 will interview families, collect data for groundbreaking study.

adrian uphoff

Plugging into the power of proximity

04.23.2019 | Tom Morlan

Adrian Uphoff ’19 is pushing legislation at the Capitol and opening doors for future interns.

students present check to grant recipient

MBA Community Grant Program announces recipients

04.16.2019 | Bryan Martz MBA'19

Willamette MBA students award more than $150,000 granted to nine local nonprofits.

sarah pope in lab coat

Chasing down a childhood dream

04.15.2019 | Tom Morlan

The pre-vet studies of Sarah Pope ’13 took her from Willamette to a biodiversity hotspot in South Africa.

blue badge logo; text: Peace Corps Top Colleges 2019 Ranked in the Top 10 Peace Corps producing schools peacecorps.org

Willamette ranks No. 9 in US for Peace Corps volunteers

03.22.2019

University has been ranked among the top small colleges 15 of the last 17 years.

Students pack food for Global Day of Service

Bearcats team up for third annual Global Day of Service

03.13.2019 | Paul McKean ’11

Willamette community unites to live out the university motto through service projects across the country and overseas.

Norma Paulus JD’62

Remembering Norma Paulus LLB’62, Oregon’s first woman secretary of state

03.06.2019 | University Communications

Paulus paved the way for women in politics and long supported Willamette.

AJ Alley stands with his original carbon fiber Speed Phreak bicycle

Law graduate founds sports technology company

02.10.2019 | Sarah Bello

AJ Alley JD’13 turns his love of triathlon into the bike of the year.

Chris Garrett

Willamette Law adjunct professor appointed to Oregon Supreme Court

01.23.2019 | Sarah Bello

Gov. Kate Brown recently named Justice Chris Garrett to the court.

E.M. Lewis '94 attends a performance of, "The Gun Show."

Playwright champions common ground in controversial topics

01.03.2019 | Jennifer Johnson

E.M. (Ellen) Lewis ’94 sparks conversation surrounding topics such as climate change and the divide on American gun ownership through theatre.

“When I travel somewhere, I love going to the local store, not the big box — that’s where you see who lives there, what they’re eating, what they’re talking about.” —Dani Cone '98

A not-so-general store — the GOOD food and drink guide

01.03.2019 | Erik Schmidt

Dani Cone ’98 seeks to foster close-knit community in fast-paced Seattle with Cone & Steiner general stores.

Owen Carver ’03

Be the change — the GOOD food and drink guide

01.02.2019 | Erik Schmidt

Owen Carver ’03 advocates for sustainable practices and social equity in the coffee industry.

Carina Comer MBA’15

Resilience baked in — the GOOD food and drink guide

01.01.2019 | Erik Schmidt

Carina Comer MBA’15 promotes resiliency by employing people with disabilities at her business, Carina’s Bakery.

Nick Schoeppner ’11

Park ranger protects Oregon’s stunning places

12.30.2018 | Tina Owen

Inspired by the community spirit of Willamette’s faculty and students, Nick Schoeppner ’11 built a career in public service.

“By being willing to hire people with (criminal) backgrounds,  we had access to great employees other companies were openly discriminating against.” —Shobi Dahl '05

Dave’s killer nephew — the GOOD food and drink guide

12.26.2018 | Erik Schmidt

Working with his uncle at Dave’s Killer Bread, Shobi Dalh ’05 helps people with criminal records start anew.

Amarit Ubhi ’20 holds photo of self with Gov. Kate Brown

In conversation with Amarit Ubhi ’20

12.23.2018 | Tina Owen

Budding public servant Amarit Ubhi ’20 spent the summer working in the Oregon governor’s office.

“(We've helped prevent) the creation of countless tons of emissions and landfill waste.”  —Colin Schilling '10 MBA '12

Crafting a new business approach — the GOOD food and drink guide

12.21.2018 | Erik Schmidt

Colin Schilling ’10, MBA’12 commits to environmental and social sustainability through his business, Schilling Hard Cider.

Jon Steiner (third from left) in the Kenyan village where his nonprofit installed a well to provide clean water.

Not unto ourselves alone with Jon Steiner ’63

12.20.2018 | Jon Steiner ’63

Retired teacher Jon Steiner ’63 uses the international perspective he gained at Willamette to make a difference in the lives of students abroad.

Assistant Professor of Chemistry David Griffith and research student Logan Vine ’17

Faculty-student collaborative research gains national visibility

12.05.2018 | Jennifer Johnson

Study of halogenated estrogens leads to publication, audio story on NPR.

Kelli O'Brien ’22

Tutoring program educates and improves the lives of school children

11.27.2018 | Jennifer Johnson

Willamette undergrads make connections with local students through Tiger Club.

Assistant Professor of Biology Rosa León-Zayas, Karen Espinoza ’19, Moncerrad Barajas Gomez ’21, Arianna Cannady ’19, Kat Vazquez ’21, Dayton Towata ’19  and Jash Sekai ’19.

Students find ‘all races, all research fields’ represented at science conference

11.13.2018 | Jennifer Johnson

Willamette students present summer research at the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics & Native Americans in Science conference.

Eleven Willamette students stand on the steps of a building at the Pacific Northwest Students of Color Conference at Gonzaga University

Students of color foster community and growth at conference

10.30.2018 | Kawika Kalama ’21

Pacific Northwest Students of Color Conference inspires Kawika Kalama ’21.

Andrew Galen

Alumni Spotlight: Andrew Galen

10.29.2018 | Tynan Gable

Not unto ourselves alone are we born: Andrew Galen, a Class of 2017 Willamette MBA alum, has truly taken our school motto to heart. After graduating just over a year ago, he wasted no time before becoming heavily involved in both the Salem and Willamette communities.

an alumna speaks with former White House Chief of Staff Leon Panetta and Sylvia Panetta, his wife

Switchboard makes connections for jobs and more

10.22.2018 | Daniel Johnson

An alumna launches a new career thanks to the free Willamette community resource.

Student shows off sculpture at art opening.

Creativity flourishes with new arts fellowship

10.09.2018 | Jennifer Johnson

Students gain more access to faculty mentorship, funding and peer learning communities.

Two female students hold a bee

New Willamette ‘hotel’ provides good ‘bee-search’

10.01.2018 | Jennifer Johnson

Faculty member, students build bee hotel to learn more about the species’ behavior.

Willamette grads top Teach For America list

09.12.2018 | Adam Torgerson

Willamette University shares the top spot among small colleges nationally for alumni service to the program.

Cindy Richards

Professor Richards receives national award for teaching excellence

09.10.2018

The civic communication and media professor was lauded for using civic engagement and experiential projects to help students learn.

Bioscientist Travis Stiles ’05 stands in his lab

Not Unto Ourselves Alone with Travis Stiles ’05

05.24.2018

Bioscientist Travis Stiles ’05 explains how three professors and a fraternity brother inspired his potentially life-saving research.

Sierra Wilson ’18

First-generation student aims for healthcare career

05.07.2018 | Jennifer Johnson

Sierra Wilson ’18 heads to the National Institutes of Health this fall.

José Fausto ’18

Jump-starting a career with Willamette networks

04.27.2018 | Jennifer Johnson

Alumni office connects José Fausto ’18 to job prospects

Megan Hinzdel

Fresh start focuses career on inclusion

03.30.2018 | Jennifer Johnson

Megan Hinzdel JD’18 leads LGBT organization, OUTLaw, as she works to become lawyer.

Colby Takeda

Colby R. Takeda ’11

03.05.2018 | Alumni Engagement

In 2015, Colby Takeda became one of the nation’s youngest administrators when he opened The Plaza at Waikiki, an assisted living community in Honolulu.

3-point challenge logo

Women’s basketball is in fifth place nationally for cancer fundraiser

02.19.2018

The only Division III school in the top 10, Willamette can win a huge cash bonus by getting the most new pledges the week of Feb. 18.

John Poulsen ’94

Alumnus exposes devastating slaughter of elephants

12.20.2017 | Jen Johnson

John Poulsen ’94 publishes research that leads to crackdown on poachers.

Three 1Ls represented Willamette Law's APALSA student group at the NAPABA Convention: (L to R) Alex Dooley JD'20, Megan Irinaga JD'20 and Noelle Chan JD'20.

NAPABA Convention a success for Willamette Law students

11.10.2017 | Sarah Carlson

Five Willamette Law students represented the school in great fashion last weekend at the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) Convention.

Third-year JD/MBA student Andy Blevins serves the LGBTQ military community through his work as an extern at OutServe-SLDN.

Law student and veteran serves LGBTQ military community through fall externship, work on transgender ban lawsuit

11.06.2017 | Sarah Carlson

Third-year JD/MBA student Andy Blevins’ first encounter with OutServe-SLDN occurred while he served in the military. From 2007-11, he was a cryptologic technician for the Navy.

Judge Beth Allen JD'96 was surprised with the OGALLA Community Service Award at the organization's annual dinner October 20. She also won the Chief Justice's Juvenile Court Champion Award in August.

Judge Beth Allen JD’96 wins recent awards

11.02.2017 | Sarah Carlson

Judge Beth Allen JD’96 now knows how well her friends can keep secrets from her. The Willamette Law alumna was surprised this fall with not one, but two awards for her work in the community and judiciary.

Marie Watt artist at work

Sewing new and old tales into familiar fabrics

07.20.2017 | Jennifer Johnson

In her latest work, acclaimed Native American artist Marie Watt ’90 explores the symbiotic relationships between humans and the natural world.

Swen newsfeed

In 3-2 engineering program, Donald Swen ’18 discovers challenge and success

02.09.2017 | Jennifer Johnson

Through Willamette’s joint degree program, Donald Swen ’18 heads abroad, works with robots and finds shorter path to advanced engineering degree.

Bull kelp performance

Music and nature meet in Colloquium grant composition

12.02.2016 | Jennifer Johnson

Michael Chergosky ’19 transforms bull kelp into a horn section.

Jessica Weiss

Jessica Weiss ’18 publishes academic paper, lands coveted NYC internship

05.09.2016 | Erin Dahl

Willamette’s liberal arts approach creates opportunities for Jessica Weiss ’18.

Lettajoe

Driven by sustainability and business

04.22.2016 | Erin Dahl

Lettajoe Gallup '15 MBA'16 uses her dual-degree to jump-start her career.

Brewer-Wallin News Feed

A Love of Creativity and History

04.11.2016 | University Communications

Each season, Bobby Brewer-Wallin designs the costumes for three mainstage plays and one dance concert.

 Kip Ioane ’01, MAT ’02

A team built on a lasting foundation

03.25.2016 | Erin Dahl

Head Basketball Coach Kip Ioane ’01, MAT ’02 leads by example.

Sonny Nguyen

From refugee to attorney

03.11.2016 | Mike Russell

Sonny Nguyen LLM’16 hopes to use his knowledge of the law, and incredible personal experiences, to advocate for human rights.

Mark Andreoni '16

Mark Andreoni ’16 focuses his talents on helping others

02.29.2016 | Erin Dahl

By exploring new pursuits, Mark Andreoni ’16 discovers his calling

Will Nickerson

The Myriad Lives of a Maker

11.23.2015 | Sarah Evans

The more you talk with Will Nickerson ’16, the more you wonder, “What doesn’t he do?”

Maya Kaup '17

Maya Kaup '17 stands up to her fears to champion important causes

11.04.2015 | Erin Dahl

Maya Kaup ’17 overcomes her aversion to the spotlight to champion important causes.

Clanton Art

World of Whimsy

11.01.2015 | Erin Dahl

From an idea to a sketch to a finished drawing, Ben Clanton ’10 explains the makings of his new children’s book.

Willamette University

New ASWU president reveals his goals for 2015-16

10.12.2015 | Erin Dahl

Shamir Cervantes '16 shares his challenges, goals for the 2015-16 year

Nicole Roth MBA'16

Thriving in Willamette's professional program

10.07.2015 | Mike Russell

Most challenges are too big to tackle alone. That’s why Nicole Roth MBA'16 decided to earn her MBA.

Mitch Diaz

Walking the talk

10.01.2015

Among his many activities, Mitch Diaz '16 serves as an admission intern and welcomes visitors to campus.

Erin Milos

Supported for success

09.24.2015

Erin Milos, JD/MBA ’17 found the comfort of her small-town roots at Willamette.

Will Christiansen

From AmeriCorps to the Willamette MBA

09.17.2015

William Christiansen MBA’16 is pursuing his passion for the not-for-profit sector.

Nate Aggrey

At home at Willamette Law

09.09.2015

Nate Aggrey ’09 JD '16 is ready to apply his knowledge of the law to global issues.

Willamette University

Taking the fast lane

08.13.2015 | Erin Dahl

Teneah Rushen '18 shares the tools that keep her competitive.

Laura Appleman

Serving the law and the community

07.30.2015

Willamette Law Professor Laura Appleman trains students to practice criminal law.

Ashley Nixon

What will bring you the greatest amount of fulfillment in your work?

07.29.2015

Ashley Nixon, assistant professor of human resources, helps her MBA students find out.

Roy Perez

Pérez teaches his students never to settle for the world in which they live

06.26.2015

Roy Pérez, who teaches English and American Ethnic Studies, helps his students challenge concepts of culture and power.

Eva Kripalani

The many hats of corporate counsel

06.18.2015

Eva M. Kripalani JD ‘86 makes the connection between law and business.

Natalie Pate Journalist

Pate '15 pursued her love for performing, activism at Willamette

05.18.2015

An aspiring human rights journalist, Natalie Pate '15 is honing her writing skills through a reporting job with the Statesman Journal newspaper in Salem.

Holman KMUZ

Students find their voices through community radio

02.16.2015 | Sarah Evans

What’s it like to host a radio show? Chemistry professor Karen McFarlane Holman’s “Community Radio” students try it firsthand — and learn about themselves along the way.

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