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The CougsFirst! Podcast

Recent Episodes

EP. 33 – Life After a College Athletic Career with Katie Grad Hyppa

Have you ever wondered what it’s like being a student-athlete at a Division 1 university? Can they find the balance between being a student and an athlete? And do college athletes stay involved with their sport after graduation, or do they move on? 

In this episode, Katie gives us a behind-the-scenes look at what being a student-athlete was like, why she’s inspired to give back to kids through the love of basketball, her career trajectory after WSU, and how she’s living out her dream life scenario! 

EP. 32 – Building a Team Culture Through Communication & Connection

Jake started his college coaching career in 2008. He’s since made a name for himself as a mindful and focused leader who truly cares about his players, whether they’re winning games in Martin Stadium or navigating campus life. There’s a reason Coach Dickert is in the seat he’s in today. And we’re talking about how he’s building a team culture through communication, connection, and discipline. We’re (of course) chatting all things football – but we’re also diving into leadership and creating a team dynamic filled with trust and respect.

EP. 31 – Leaving a Legacy Through Music

DJ Goldfinger has been DJing for over 25 years, from Vancouver to Portland and, of course, Pullman itself. He’s the myth, the legend, and Pullman’s favorite DJ. We’re talking about everything from the bonds and connections WSU creates and the lost art of living in the moment to making those dream-making moves and leaving behind a legacy through music. 

EP. 30 – How A Family-Owned Business Found Success Through Diversification

Taylor is giving us the inside scoop on what it’s like being a part of a family-run business, why diversifying your offers and business is key to weathering the shifting landscape, how she navigates the different brands of her family business, their passion for WSU, and the benefits of partnerships. 

EP. 29 – Why Everything You Do Is Relevant Experience

Jerry is sharing about his journey through university, including how he barely got into WSU, why he switched majors before finding the best fit, the importance of getting involved in extracurricular activities at university, why every experience you have is relevant for your career, and how he ended up back in his home town as the Executive Director for the Downtown Pasco Development Authority.

EP. 28 – How to Succeed in the Hospitality Industry

Did you know hospitality is a massive part of WSU and the WSU culture? We have one of the top hospitality programs in the nation and are in the top 10 in the world!

In this episode, we’re shining some much-deserved light on the service industry and talking all things hospitality with a leading expert passionate about helping business owners chase their dreams and share them with the world.

EP. 27 – Defying the Odds & Finding Success in Taking Risks

Greg shares his unique journey through his college (+ grad school) football career and professional career, where the common thread involves him defying the odds at every opportunity.

If you’re ready to hear a crazy story about a Coug’s resilience, why success always comes with risk, and how to build relationships throughout your life, this episode is for you!

EP. 26 – The True Story Behind the Pullman-Moscow Airport Runway Realignment Project

Tony Bean guided PUW through a $154 million runway realignment project to retain air service to Seattle, expand service to Boise, support and increase connectivity, and improve the standard of travel amenities and convenience to the public.

He is giving us all the history of the airport, the updates, what’s happening behind the scenes, and what this means for the area. 

EP. 25 – Leadership, Mentorship, and How to Transition in Your Career

Dave Whitehead, CEO of SEL, is talking to us about what running a big business in a small town is like, why plenty of Cougs work for SEL, how he transitioned from an engineer to a leadership role, the power of mentorship, and his best 3 tips for excelling in business. 

He also shares Cougar, life, and business advice - you don’t want to miss this episode! 

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