Olympia, WA – President Cullinan Successfully Advocates for EWU’s Students, Faculty, and Staff

January 28, 2019
EWU Traditional New Student Photo

Focused, consistent, and impactful; that is the approach Eastern’s government relations team took when visiting over 20 legislators during Dr. Cullinan’s visit to Olympia, January 22nd through the 25th.

Focusing on our 2019 legislative priorities, Dr. Cullinan and the government relations team were able to introduce Eastern through our unique mission and student demographic to several newly elected legislators. Taking time to first express her pride in our accomplishments and values, Dr. Cullinan highlighted the urgent challenges ahead—including funding compensation and meeting regional demands for well-prepared graduates. Legislative leaders in both chambers and caucuses acknowledged Eastern’s critical role in educating the innovators, educators, and leaders of tomorrow, and expressed a sincere willingness to partner with EWU and address the challenges.

The message was consistently delivered with policymakers. Regional universities are complex institutions, with a delicate balance of funding needs and departmental interests. That is why our talking points included topics such as academic freedom, foundational funding for compensation, student support services, program enhancements, and infrastructure. While complicated and diverse in nature, consistent messaging created a coherent and concise package.

Overall, Dr. Cullinan’s visit left a measurable impact on legislators in Olympia. The government relations team will build on the progress made, and work to advance the interests of Eastern and the higher education sector.

If you are a student or faculty member interested in getting involved, please contact the Assistant Director of Government Relations, Nathan Fitzgerald, at nfitzgerald1@ewu.edu.

Left to right: Nathan Fitzgerald (Assistant Director of Government Relations), President Cullinan, Austin Quinn (ASEWU Legislative Liaison), David Buri (Director of Government Relations).