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Scene from the 2016 Black Excellence Ball at Western Washington University. Photo by Simon Bakke / for Western Today

The Black Student Union at Western Washington University held its first Black Excellence Conference April 23 to 25 with the goal of empowering and cultivating community among black students in Washington.

Black Student Union members from universities throughout the state attended the weekend events.

The conference included four workshop options:

Photo by Rhys Logan / WWU

The 39th Annual Employee Recognition Ceremony was held Thursday, May 5, from 8:15 to 9:30 a.m. in the PAC Main Stage theatre. The ceremony recognized both faculty and staff for their service and exceptional efforts. In addition, recent retirees were invited to be recognized.

Attendees enjoyed a performance by Rebel Clef, part of Western's a'capella club.

This year's President's Exceptional Effort Award recipients included:

The Fellowships Office hosted a recognition ceremony for Western students who are candidates and winners of nationally competitive scholarships and fellowships May 5 at 4 p.m. in the Western Gallery. 

Provost Brent Carbajal and Dr. Tom Moore, director of the Fellowships Office, spoke in appreciation of the students as well as the faculty and staff who supported their candidacies. Candidates and winners were then invited to speak about their experiences pursuing scholarships and fellowships.

Rep. Rick Larsen speaks with Western students during a tour of the Shannon Point Marine Center Wednesday, May 4, in Anacortes. Photo by Matthew Anderson / WWU

Rep. Rick Larsen, a congressman for Washington's 2nd Congressional District, visited the Shannon Point Marine Center in Anacortes on Wednesday, May 4.

Showing him around was Erika McPhee-Shaw, the center's director. Becca Kenna-Schenk, Western's director of Government Relations, and Joe Timmons, Western's assistant director of Government Relations, also were on the tour.

While visiting the facility, Larsen spoke with a group of Western students and several WWU researchers.

Photo by Jonathan Williams / WWU

Western Washington University faculty award recipients were honored April 28 at the annual Provost and Faculty Senate Spring Awards Ceremony in the Western Gallery on campus.

Western Provost Brent Carbajal and Faculty Senate President Molly Ware spoke at the event, which honored the various faculty award recipients for the 2015-16 school year.

This year's awardees:

Participants in the 2016 Earth Ride with Alternative Transportation embarked on a bicycle tour of Bellingham today. The ride is guided by student coordinators with WWU Alternative Transportation and tours centers of sustainability around Bellingham.

The tour begins and concludes near the Performing Arts Center Plaza, where there is an Earth Day celebration this afternoon.

Photo by Britta Eschete / for Western Today

More than 60 companies showed up at the big spring career fair on Western Washington University's campus Thursday, April 21. Students, alumni and community members filed in and out of the Viking Union Multipurpose Room throughout the free, four-hour event, which was put on by Western's Career Services Center.

Event coordinator Millie Johnson speaks to the participants before kicking off the WWU Great Puzzle Hunt Saturday, April 9. Courtesy photo by Gabrielle Poncz.

The first-ever Great Puzzle Hunt was a big hit this past Saturday, with more than 300 people signing up to participate in the cross-campus scavenger hunt.

At each stop on the hunt, participants were challenged to complete a puzzle (think logic puzzles, trivia, word scrambles, etc.) before moving on.

Millie Johnson, an associate professor of mathematics at Western, coordinated the event and led the puzzle development team.

Western Washington University’s Fraser Lecture Series presented the keynote lectures for its 'Big Data' series at the Mt. Baker Theater Wednesday, April 6. More events are planned for campus. Photo by Rhys Logan / WWU

Western Washington University’s Fraser Lecture Series this month presents “The Big Data Revolution in Human and Environmental Health,” a series of lectures, seminars, workshops, and public panel discussions, both on and off the Bellingham campus.

The Viking Union is showing "Dinh Q. Le: Beautiful Terror" in the VU Gallery from April 4 to 22. Photo by Amanda Raschkow / WWU Communications and Marketing intern

An art exhibit titled "Dinh Q. Le: Beautiful Terror" is on display in the Viking Union Gallery from April 4 to April 22.

Dinh Q. Le presented a free lecture in Miller Hall Room 138 on Wednesday, April 6. His lecture included his Vietnamese background and inspiration for his large scale cut-and-woven color prints. The opening of the gallery immediately followed the lecture. There, the contemporary artist was available for questions from Western students and the Bellingham community.

Photos by Amanda Raschkow / WWU Communications and Marketing intern