Giving Opportunities

Creativity in Teaching Fund

Supporting veterinary education through creative teaching, curricular innovation, and enhancement of learning facilities


Steve Hines Cover Photo

The Endowment for Creativity in Teaching was established in 1995 by Dr. Stephen Hines using a $25,000 national teaching award received in recognition of the college's Diagnostic Challenge exercises. The endowment has grown since then thanks to additional teaching awards, memorial gifts, and the generosity of alumni and friends of the college.

Gifts to the Creativity in Teaching Fund are used exclusively to support and improve veterinary education at the college. All expenditures from the fund directly benefit our students through creative approaches to teaching and learning, enhanced curriculum and learning experience, and improved facilities for our students. The fund continues to help support the Diagnostic Challenges.

Some of the programs that are supported by the Creativity in Teaching Fund include:

The Diagnostic Challenge

Students gathering
The Diagnostic Challenges, a nationally recognized program, was established in 1991 by Drs. Steve Hines and Guy Palmer. The program gives veterinary students an opportunity early in their training to break out of the routine of lectures and labs to apply their developing knowledge and problem solving skills to real-world, clinical cases.

This innovative teaching approach is a clinical simulation, based in problem-based learning theory. Working in small teams with a volunteer “client” and an assigned case facilitator, students are challenged to arrive at a clinical diagnosis using basic principles of pathophysiology, clinical pathology, infectious disease, public health, and toxicology. Many of our case facilitators are alumni of the college who now work in private practice or at other institutions.

Creativity in Teaching funds help support the development of new Diagnostic Challenge cases, provide limited travel funds for volunteers, and operating costs to provide the quality education that is recognized as the DCs. In conjunction with college teaching funds and support from the dean’s office, the Endowment for Creativity in Teaching helps provide the infrastructure needed to sustain this innovative program

Volunteer to be a DC Client.

WSU CVM Teaching Academy

Creative Teaching

An essential part of innovative teaching is teaching FACULTY how learning works - and building communities by which innovative instructors come together to learn, share ideas and experiences, and support each other.  In 2010, the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine developed the first veterinary school Teaching Academy to support these goals.  The CVM Teaching Academy is an important reason why WSU is viewed as a leader in veterinary medical education.  As just one example, the WSU TA served as a model for formation of a Regional Teaching Academy with 4 other veterinary colleges in the western states. 

Teaching academies are common in medical education.  They were envisioned as an organizational entity that can influence structural and behavioral change (Irby et al., 2004).  An essential part of that goal is to MAKE TEACHING MATTER in our college, university, and profession.  The Teaching Academy provides a supportive collaborative culture, or ‘community of practice,’ that is comprised of a network of likeminded individuals all working towards a common goal to enhance teaching. 

The activities of the WSU CVM Teaching Academy are many, but include faculty development workshops lead by internationally known medical educators, informal lunch time brown bag discussions focused on high impact teaching practices or critical learning issues like veterinary student wellness, and a summer Teaching Toolbox series.  Faculty Learning Communities focus on particular challenges, like teaching in clinical settings.  A peer observation program provides coaching and feedback, especially for faculty early in their career.  The TA helps members prepare professional dossier so that they might be promoted based on innovative and highly effective teaching.  Likewise, the Academy fosters the recognition of high impact teachers through teaching awards, support for educational research, and advocacy at the college and university levels.

Your donations to the CVM Teaching Academy supports faculty who make the biggest impact in our college’s innovative teaching programs and in the lives of our students.  You are supporting leadership and change.


Other Programs

The Endowment for Creativity in Teaching is used to support a variety of other endeavors in veterinary student education including individualized teaching and learning. Our students are our number one resource and our greatest pride! For more information contact Dr. Steve Hines.


To make a gift by mail:
Please make check payable to the WSU Foundation and send to:

Lynne Haley
PO Box 647010
Washington State University
Pullman, WA 99164-7010

For questions about giving, contact Lynne Haley, Director of Development
(509) 335-5021

Washington State University