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Open Access News

Open Access News @WWU: Western CEDAR Updates

Western Washington University launched its Institutional Repository known as  Western CEDAR  in the fall of 2014. Part of a global movement promoting open access to scholarship and creative works, Western CEDAR is a service of Western Libraries, in partnership with Western's Graduate School, Office of the Provost, and Office of Research and Sponsored Programs.

During the past year, content in Western CEDAR has grown to include 108 faculty research pages, 26 departmental pages, 441 theses, 111 Scholars Week poster sessions, and the 2014 Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference. By the end of this past October, scholarship contained in CEDAR had been downloaded worldwide over 65,000 times.


Western Libraries has taken an active leadership role in managing CEDAR day-to-day, teaching interested faculty, staff, and students about the software’s many capabilities, and educating them on their intellectual property rights and responsibilities. Western CEDAR advances the University’s commitment to enriching academic inquiry and strengthening communities by sharing the expertise and creativity of its students, faculty, and staff worldwide via the Web.


Recently the Institute for Watershed Studies (IWS) collaborated with Western Libraries to add their collection to CEDAR. The IWS supports research on freshwater lakes, streams and wetlands, including Lake Whatcom, which is the primary drinking water source for the City of Bellingham and parts of Whatcom County.

The City of Bellingham and Western have worked together on investigations of the water quality in Lake Whatcom since the early 1960s. Beginning in the 1980s, a monitoring program was developed by the City and the IWS to provide long-term water quality data for the lake and its tributaries. Having the IWS collection in Western CEDAR means that this information is now accessible for anyone to search, find, and use.


This past summer, back issues of the interdisciplinary peer-reviewed Journal of Educational Controversy were also added to the repository. The next issue is scheduled for publication directly in CEDAR sometime this fall, and will include an article which examines the benefits, pitfalls, and sustainability of open access publishing.


For more information about Western CEDAR, contact Scholarly Communications Librarian Jenny Oleen or Western CEDAR Manager, Kim Marsicek.

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Floating Clouds

Masters of Japanese Cinema Series 

This year's Masters of Japanese Cinema Series begins Tuesday, November 10th at 6:30pm at the Pickford Film Center with a screening of Naruse Mikio’s  award-winning film Floating Clouds.


Floating Clouds made a clean sweep of the prestigious Kinema Junpo awards in 1956, winning best actor (Mori Masayuki), best actress (Takamine Hideko), best director, and best film. 


Based on one of the final works by Naruse’s favorite source novelist, Hayashi Fumiko, the story involves the love affair between Yukiko (Takamine) and a married man (Mori), starting during World War II in French Indochina and continuing through the privations of the postwar years.  Mori plays his traditional role of the weak-willed man whose choices (or lack thereof) affect those around him, and Takamine gives one of her best performances, showing why she is considered one of the greatest of Japanese actors.


Floating Clouds will be introduced by David Gray, who is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Film Studies in the English Department at Western Washington University.


Co-sponsored by Western Libraries and the Pickford Film Center, the Masters of Japanese Cinema series is one of the Pickford's longest running and most loved series. Jeff Purdue, who is both a librarian at Western and also the series curator, consistently selects some of the best films in World Cinema, featuring movies that span both decades and genres. Each film in the series begins with an introduction from select speakers including local professors, artists, and educators. 

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Digitization of Artists' Works

Washington Rural Heritage Grant Award 

Thanks to a $5,000 Washington Rural Heritage Grant,  Western Libraries will be digitizing the correspondence, photographs, sketches, and papers of three prominent Pacific Northwest artists: Guy Anderson, Charles Stokes and Louis Mideke. 


Once digitized, this content will be added to Heritage Resources’ digital collections, as well as the Washington Rural Heritage website, making these materials publicly available for use in research, teaching and private study.


Julia Sapin, chair of Western’s Art department, noted the significance of obtaining the Anderson materials.


“Guy Anderson was a leading figure in the Northwest School of painting and drew attention to this region through his form of abstract expressionism,” Sapin said. “It is a boon to our library’s collection to have this esteemed gift among its offerings, and Western students, as well as students and scholars from across the country, will be able to make use of this resource and increase their understanding of Anderson’s practice and community.”


Western Libraries Heritage Resources is partnering on the project with the Museum of Northwest Art in LaConner and the LaConner Public Library System. Washington Rural Heritage is a collaborative digitization program headquartered at the Washington State Library that brings together unique local history materials from libraries, museums and the private collections of citizens across Washington State.

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October, Events, Archives, & More!

What's Happening @Western Libraries?

It seems like October is always busy here at Western Libraries, and this fall is no different! We began the month with a Grand Opening celebration of the Research-Writing Studio, and then the very next week marked the beginning of this year's TLA  sessions. 


The Dr. Leslie E. Spanel Planetarium has announced their fall line-up with plenty of shows scheduled in October, and Western launched the Campus Equity and Inclusion Forum with a special event held in the Wilson Library Reading Room on October 15th. 


Additionally, the compelling photographic exhibition, Canada's Arctic: Vibrant and Thriving, now on display in Special Collections, had a fascinating complementary panel discussion on Oct. 22nd entitled "One Arctic or Many?" during which panelists considered questions of boundaries in the Arctic

You might not know this, but October also happens to be Archives MonthWestern Libraries Heritage Resources Tumblr has been posting new content every day featuring archival content highlighting some of the unique and fascinating tidbits from the history of our region and WWU. For example, did you know Western used to hold a pie-eating contest as part of the "Campus Day" celebration?

October 19-25th is Open Access Week. Observed internationally, Open Access Week is designed for the academic and research community to learn about the potential benefits of Open Access. Check out Display Case Number 2 by the Wilson Library North Doors to learn more and remember that all of the materials in that case are available for borrowing! Additionally, you can glimpse into some of the ways Western is involved with Open Access by exploring Western CEDAR.  

Western Libraries is participating in this year's Fall Family Open House on September 24 by offering special Saturday access to the exhibition of Canada's Arctic, and by hosting open houses in the Map Collection and Special Collections from 11am to 4pm. The Research-Writing Studio will also showcase its services at 3:30pm, while offering refreshments of cider and donuts! The ever-popular Canines on Campus, a certified service animal program, will be available for visits in their usual spot at the end of the Skybridge between the hours of 1pm and 4pm. 


Additionally, Garth Amundson's very talented Art 371 students are currently showcasing their visually-striking creative works in the windows of Wilson 3, 4, & 5 East as part of "Fast-Forward Reverse," (available for viewing now through November 4th). 


WWU Professor Laura Laffrado kicks off this year's Heritage Resources Distinguished Speakers events with a talk on October 27th at 4pm about the talented writer Ella Higginson, who was once quite famous and then nearly forgotten--until now, that is! Trust us, you don't want to miss this special event! 


We are also very pleased to share that this year both the Munro Seminar for Civic Engagement and Western's Sustainability Awards celebration are being held in the Wilson Library Reading Room. 


And we haven't even gotten to November yet...


If you are interested in learning more about events @Western Libraries and the Learning Commons, check out our online events calendar or check out the Library News.

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Fast-Forward Reverse

New Art Exhibit on Display Through Nov. 4th

There's a new art exhibit now on display in Wilson Library featuring the photographic work of Garth Amundson's Art 371 class. "Fast-Forward Reverse" was created by students at Western Washington University who worked with a traditional analog 4x5 view camera to learn the fundamentals of the camera while exploring issues of identity and portraiture.


After working in the lighting studio and processing their own negatives, they scanned the images and printed them with the Art Department’s 9800 large format printer. The class also had the added benefit of working with Quinton Maldonado, a recent WWU BFA alum and artist. 



At night the images are particularly striking as the light from the inside of the library shines through the images creating a lightbox effect. This exhibit will be on display in the windows of Wilson Library East from now through November 4th.


Special thanks to Garth Amundson and his talented students for displaying their work here at Western Libraries!

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Visit from Award-Winning Author

Kwame Alexander to Speak @Bellingham High School 

Western Libraries and PoetryCHaT are sponsoring a special event featuring award-winning writer Kwame Alexander.


Alexander, recipient of the 2015 Newbery Medal and a Coretta Scott King Author Honor for his novel in verse, The Crossover,  will appear from 6:30-7:30 pm on Wednesday, October 21st at Bellingham High School. Doors will open at 5:45pm for poetry displays and live readings by area youth.


This presentation is free and open to the public.


During the presentation, Alexander will talk about The Crossover, which tells the story of the complicated relationship between twin brothers who share a love for basketball. A question and answer session will follow, and copies of Alexander’s books will be available for sale and signing.


Alexander is a poet, educator, and bestselling author of 21 books. He regularly travels the world as a literacy advocate and expert, and has owned several publishing companies. He has also written for both stage and television, recorded a CD, produced jazz and book festivals, hosted a radio show and taught high school English.


The talk is being offered in celebration of the newly-established PoetryCHaT collection, an initiative at Western Washington University to create a distinctive collection of children and teen poetry books, curricular resources for educators and information about poetry events and programming.

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TLA begins October 7th & 8th

Fall Quarter 2015 TLA

The Teaching-Learning Academy (TLA), the campus-wide dialogue forum to study and enhance the learning environment at Western Washington University, begins Wednesday, October 7th.  TLA welcomes faculty, staff, students and community members and offers four dialogue group options to accommodate busy schedules: Wednesdays and Thursdays from noon to 1:20pm or from 2pm to 3:20pm.

Dialogue groups begin meeting Oct. 7th or 8th and then meet every other week in the Learning Commons (Wilson Library 2 West) for a total of five times during the quarter. Fall quarter is when TLA designs its BIG question to study for the rest of the year, so it’s a great time to participate.

While the sessions last officially for 80 minutes, attendees are welcome to come for whatever time they have available. Many faculty and staff, stay for the first 50 minutes as there is a logical break then.

Participants report that the TLA is a great place to connect with others outside their departments and to learn more about Western’s teaching and learning culture. Many say it also gives them a chance to take a breath and just listen to what others (especially students) really think. Others report delight in being able to advance real action steps in making Western an even better place to teach and learn.

For more information, see For more information or to sign up for a regular dialogue group, email

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Laura Laffrado & Ella Higginson

The Beginnings of PNW Literature

Laura Laffrado, an award-winning Professor of English at Western Washington University, will discuss her recent research project focused on early-twentieth century author Ella Higginson on Tuesday, October 27th,  from 4:00pm-5:30pm in Special Collections at Western Libraries.


During this presentation, Laffrado will explain how her project to recover the fascinating writings of forgotten Pacific Northwest writer Ella Rhoads Higginson began in Western Libraries Heritage Resources’ collections and ultimately led to the publication of her recent book, Selected Writings of Ella Higginson: Inventing Pacific Northwest Literature.


Noted writer and Washington state Poet Laureate Ella Higginson (1861-1940) moved to the town of Sehome (now Bellingham) in 1888, at which time her writing career began to flourish. Higginson was deeply concerned with community and civic affairs, including issues affecting women such as female education and the institution of marriage, and she helped establish Bellingham’s first public reading room and library.


Higginson’s poetry and short stories were published nationally by journals including McClures, Harper's Monthly, and Colliers, and her best known work, a poem entitled "Four Leaf Clover," was published by West Shore Magazine in 1890. Laffrado’s book shines a spotlight on this once widely-known and celebrated author, helping to restore Higginson as a significant voice in American Literature.  


This special talk is being offered as a “Heritage Resources Distinguished Speakers” program. These quarterly events are free and open to the public, and  feature presenters who are authorities in their respective fields who have used Heritage Resources collections significantly in their research.


For more information about this event, please contact Western Libraries Special Collections Manager,

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Exhibition: Canada's Arctic

Canada's Arctic: Vibrant and Thriving

Canada’s Arctic: Vibrant and Thriving, a traveling exhibition of contemporary photographs of the Canadian Arctic, is now open at Western Libraries. This unique exhibition offers audiences a brief glimpse into the lives of Northerners, while showing a perspective of the environment and activities that help shape and influence this vibrant region.


Canada’s North is a region as vast as it is diverse. Modern conveniences exist alongside thriving traditional cultures in a region that faces both challenges and opportunities. Canada and its partners in the Arctic Council face the challenge of trying to ensure sustainable economic and environmental development throughout the circumpolar region with lasting benefits to the health and well-being of Northerners and Northern communities. 


The exhibition is open for public viewing Monday through Friday (excluding holiday closures) from 11:00am to 4:00pm in Western Libraries Special Collections (6th floor Wilson Library) from now through December 11th. A special selection of maps related to this region will also be on display in Western Libraries’ Map Collection (1st floor Wilson Library).


Exhibition sponsors are Western Libraries Heritage Resources, Western Washington University’s Center for Canadian-American Studies; Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada; and the Royal Canadian Geographical Society.


For more information about this exhibition, contact Western Libraries Special Collections Manager,; (360) 650-3193



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Intersession Hours & Closures

Intersession Hours & Entrance Information 

Western Libraries will be open during the intersession August 24, 2015 – September 23, 2015 Monday through Friday from 8:30am to 4:30pm, (closed weekends). Please note that the Wilson Library north entrance to the library will be closed during intersession, but the library will be accessible via the Haggard Hall entrance. Western Libraries will re-open the north doors on Tuesday, September 15th, and resume regular hours when fall quarter classes begin on Thursday, September 24, 2015.


Special Closures

Special Collections: Closed August 31st – September 11th

Map Collection: Closed August 24th – September 18th

Center for Pacific Northwest Studies: Closed August 25th – September 8th

Music Library: Closed August 31st - Sept 18th

Zoe’s Bookside Bagels: Closed August 22nd - September 20th



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