Christopher Quilici spoke at the 9 a.m. spring 2015 commencement ceremony. Quilici graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theatre with concentrations in Acting and Dramatic Writing and a minor in Creative Writing. He was president of Student Theatre Productions and assistant director of “/faust,” a student-devised play that debuted this month. He is also a graduate of Mariner High School in Everett.

Robin Russell, the speaker at the 9 a.m. ceremony, is a member of Western Washington University Foundation board of directors and former president of the Western Alumni Association. She has more than 25 years of experience in the finance, investment and estate planning industry. Most recently, she was a senior client adviser and team manager for Laird Norton Wealth Management, specializing in financial planning, investment management and estate planning for multi-generation families.

When 28-year-old Hassan Byumvuhore bowled for the first time this April, he threw a perfect strike – and he didn’t even have his fingers in the holes of the ball.

Byumvuhore, from Rwanda, is now a student in Western’s Intensive English Program, where he is learning a new language – and making some new friends.

Gale Crater sits on a dry, barren, windy plain where temperatures edge into the 60s only during the summer and plummet below freezing most nights. Its mixtures of sun-baked rocks, jagged scarps and deep sands make geological research a struggle.

The fact that Gale Crater is 140 million miles away and on the surface of Mars makes things even more difficult. But what’s locked in the rocks of the windswept crater may help us understand how – and where – life could thrive in the universe.

This past weekend, the Dead Parrots Society improv comedy troupe held a special show to honor its graduating seniors.

WWU Communications and Marketing intern Margaret Degman was there to capture highlights.

Western Washington University’s Department of Theatre and Dance will perform an original play titled “/faust” at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 2, through Saturday, June 6, with an additional show at 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 6, at Western’s Performing Arts Center (PAC).

Tickets for students are $7-12 and $12-$17 for the general public. Discounts are available for WWUfaculty and staff.

Periodically, Western Today is reaching out to Western Washington University faculty and staff to get their expertise on topics of interest to the community.

For today's question, we reached out to psychology professor Jeff Grimm to ask a question he's been researching for some time:

Western Today: Your research, among other things, points to the ability of sugar to be as great an addiction to humans as many hardcore drugs such as cocaine. What is it about our brains’ relationship to sugar that makes it so potentially addictive?

The planned upcoming renovation of the Carver Academic Facility is displacing more than just people. The landscaping around the building will be impacted by the construction, too.

In recognition of that, groundskeepers at Western are moving what they can, including this variegated tulip tree, to other spots on campus. This work took place on Wednesday, May 20, 2015.

Video by Rhys Logan / WWU

You probably know that Western Washington University's nationally acclaimed Huxley College of the Environment is one of the oldest environmental colleges in the nation and a recognized leader in producing the next generation of environmental professionals and stewards.

But how much do you know about Western Washington University's Huxley College on the Peninsulas?

Western Washington University's campus was filled with hundreds of alumni, parents, students and community members during the annual Back 2 Bellingham celebration May 15 to 17.

The event, put on each year by the Western Alumni Association, featured food, a zip line, theatrical performances, a rock climbing wall, Classes without Quizzes and many other events.

Video by Jake Parrish and Margaret Degman / WWU Communications and Marketing interns